Oral Histories

Interview of James V. Mink

UCLA university archivist, director of the UCLA Oral History Program, and head of the UCLA Department of Special Collections. First president of the Society of California Archivists.
With UCLA Library's Special Collections Department, 1952-83
Interviews not in a series, part one
UCLA and University of California History
UCLA Librarians
Biographical Note:
UCLA university archivist, director of the UCLA Oral History Program, and head of the UCLA Department of Special Collections. First president of the Society of California Archivists.
Treleven, Dale E.
Mink, James V.
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library's Center for Oral History Research.
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
Family background; childhood in Pasadena, California; attends Midland School; studies chemistry at Occidental College; serves in the Army Air Corps; employment as a wine chemist; enrolls at the University of California, Berkeley; transfers to UCLA and earns a master's degree in history; works part-time in the library; accepts a position at the Bancroft Library; the state of postwar archival management; manuscripts acquisitions at the Bancroft; earns an M.L.S. degree from the Berkeley School of Librarianship; the school's curriculum and faculty; the loyalty oath controversy; accepts a position in the UCLA Department of Special Collections; the UCLA Library's organization and leadership; Lawrence Clark Powell; collection development at UCLA; rivalry between Berkeley and UCLA over archival acquisitions; attends the Institute of Archival Administration and Preservation at American University; creation of the UCLA Graduate School of Library Service; named university archivist; defining the role of university archives; acquisition of the Michael Sadleir collection; the origins of the UCLA Oral History Program; program director Doyce B. Nunis Jr.; archival difficulties involved in preserving magnetic tape; Mink succeeds Nunis as director of the program; planning the first national meeting of oral historians at the UC Lake Arrowhead Conference Center; founding of the Oral History Association; debate over procedures for editing oral history transcripts; establishing standards and guidelines for the field of oral history; early projects undertaken by the UCLA Oral History Program; the Society of American Archivists and archivists' attitudes toward oral history; founding of the Society of California Archivists; revamping the training and classification of archivists; the use of oral history in library collection development; the UCLA Department of Special Collections; the department's manuscript and rare books collections; the department's patrons and donors; space and security problems in the department; the department's space in the new University Research Library; the leadership of librarian Robert G. Vosper; creation of the Library Association of the University of California; revising the library's personnel classification system; Wilbur J. Smith resigns as head of special collections and Mink is named his successor; improving the department's public services; department budget and staff; the evolution of the Oral History Program; the library institutes a controversial Management Review and Analysis Program; teaching in the Graduate School of Library and Information Science; cataloging department materials; the Friends of the UCLA Library; the use of videotape in the Oral History Program; Mink's retirement and involvement in the Emeriti Association; Mink's ocean cruises.