The Two Sitting Bulls

Archives and Special Collections has recently received a 1964 letter written by author Mari Sandoz stating there were two Sitting Bulls. He was not one person as reported by newspaper men and historians. The letter contains some of her evidence, and refers the reader to her book Hostiles and Friendlies for the entire argument. The letter has been added to the Institute of American Indian Studies papers, and a copy is on display outside of the Archives.


Stop by the Archives and Special Collections where we have on display children’s literature from the Mahoney Music Collection. In addition to possessing great illustrations, these books enhance music vocabulary and music appreciation, introduce famous composers and musicians, and/or educate on musical concepts like rhythm and melody.

Christmas Carols

Did you know that the Archives and Special Collections has Christmas carols in Latin?


They can be found in the Classics Department collection.

A photograph of the city of Vermillion, with Court Street running along the foreground, from the Mabel Townsley scrapbook in the Mabel Townsley papers, Richardson Collection.

Mabel Townsley started her scrapbook of photographs in 1903, which includes images from Vermillion, the University, and the Black Hills region. Read more about her scrapbook in a previous blog post and more about Mabel Townsley in the collection finding aid.

In this photograph one can see the First National Bank on the corner of Court and Main, as well as West Hall, Science Hall, University Hall (Old Main) and East Hall in the distance.


The Archives Special Collections has recently received a book about residents of our county who did not return from war. It contains 10 biographies written by USD students and their professor concerning military service personnel from Clay County, South Dakota, who were killed in action. The biographies are based on information gathered from local archives, libraries, historical society, veterans services office, online resources, and family members.

hometonwns follen1001

The library has received two copies. One is in the book collection in Special Collections, and one is in the main collection of the library.

The Archives and Special Collections will be open its regular hours of Monday through Friday except for:

  • Nov. 12
  • Nov. 22
  • Nov. 23
  • Dec. 24
  • Dec. 25
  • Dec. 31


The 36th Division Campaign Maps mystery has been solved. After speaking with many other archives and museums that had the same amount of information as the USD archives, I spoke with someone from the Texas Military Forces Museum. She was able to provide much more information than we were expecting, and it’s some interesting stuff!

The maps were printed and distributed by the 36th Division during their German occupation in 1945 and handed out to soldiers, like a souvenir to take home. They show major battles, including ones we now know for certain Frederick Cullen Burton played a role.

The Texas Military Forces Museum was also able to tell us more about the battles Burton fought. Burton served with Company F of the 143rd Infantry Regiment under the 36th Infantry Division from December 4, 1943 to January 12, 1945. Burton joined the 36th right before the Rapido River battle in Italy, where he was one of fifteen men of his unit of 153 not be killed, wounded, or missing in action. The two day Rapido River battle can be seen on the map in the previous post. He later transferred to Company G and was Killed in Action on January 21, 1945, in Germany. The assumption is that he was killed during the battle at Bowden Woods where both his previous and current companies were under heavy attack. This battle is shown on the map below provided by the Texas Military Forces Museum, and the town Hagenau/Haguenau can be found on both the previously posted map of Germany and the new map below.

The new materials have been added to Burton’s collection, and the maps now have some context. Thanks to the archivists we spoke to in the past weeks and the Texas Military Forces Museum for helping us solve this mystery!

jan 21 1945 map

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