Mackay School of Mines Records

Identifier: NUB 30

Scope and Contents

The Mackay School of Mines Records contains administrative, publication, department and program materials, and student activities records.


  • 1904-2020


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Materials must be used on-site; advance notice suggested. Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law.

Historical Note

Founded as the School of Mines in 1888, the Mackay School of Mines (MSM) was created in place of the "Mechanic Arts" requirement for the Morrill Land Grant Act of 1862. Although the original University of Nevada in Elko lacked a mining department, in 1882, Professor Jules E. Gignoux began teaching Assaying and Mining Engineering. In 1874, the university relocated from Elko to Reno. By 1894, the School of Mines finally had its first home in the State Mining Laboratory.

In 1906, Clarence Mackay donated money to construct a new mining building in the name of his father, John Mackay. Designed by Stanford White of McKim, Mead and White, the Mackay School of Mines building became the permanent home of the school, opening on June 10, 1908.

Although the director of the MSM reported directly to the President of the University, the MSM was part of the College of Engineering and not an independent department. It was not until 1951 that the Mackay School of Mines became a separate college. Other departments under the umbrella of the Mackay School of Mines have been the Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology, the Hydrologic Sciences Program, and the Seismological Laboratory. Additionally, in the 1990s, the Burrus Student Mine was also operated.

[Information partially adapted from Larson, E. R. "Mackay School of Mines: Reminiscences on the Growth of a College," 1974-1975 (accessed April 25, 2022); Doten, Samuel B. History of the University of Nevada, 1924; and Hulse, James W. The University of Nevada: A Centennial History, 1974.]


7.292 Linear Feet (14 boxes, 1 oversize folder)

Language of Materials



The School of Mines was originally founded in 1888 as part of the requirements of the Morrill Land Act of 1862. Over the years it has grown to encompass other aspects of earth science and is currently named the Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering. The collection contains materials related to the administration of the school; publications and press relases by the school; department, program, and building information; and student activities and groups.


Arranged into the following series: 1) Administrative; 2) Publications and Press; 3) Departments and Programs; 4) Student Groups and Activities

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Material recieved via transfer, various dates. Burrus Student Mine records donated by Edward P. Jucevic in September 2021.

Processing Information

In 2021, the department began the process of addressing the legacy processing of the University Records Series by reuniting provinance-related materials into distinct collections. This series of NUB 30 records, all related to the Mackay School of Mines, are now described as one collection. Former collection numbers are as follows: NUB 30/01/02, NUB 30/01/10, NUB 30/01/11, NUB 30/01/12, NUB 30/01/14, NUB 30/01/18, NUB 30/02, NUB 30/02/03, NUB 30/03, NUB 30/05, NUB 30/05/07, NUB 30/05/08, NUB 30/06, NUB 30/06/01, NUB 30/07, NUB 30/09, NUB 30/50, and NUB 30/200. The former numbers of materials are included in the file level descriptions where appropriate.

This colllection was processed by Jessica Maddox in September and October 2021. During the course of processing standard archival preservation measures were taken to ensure the longevity of the materials. This includes rehousing into appropriate acid free containers.


Guide to the Mackay School of Mines Records
Jessica Maddox
October 2022
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Nevada, Reno. University Archives Repository

Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center
1664 N. Virginia St.
University of Nevada, Reno
Reno NV 89557-0322 USA
775-682-5724 (Fax)