The Oregon State University Libraries & Press is pleased to announce that a nearly complete run of the OSU yearbooks have been digitized and are freely available online. The full text of this important digital collection is keyword searchable and easy to use. The collection website is located at http://oregondigital.org/sets/osu-yearbooks
The contents of the OSU Yearbooks website begin with the first yearbook produced by the school, titled The Hayseed and released in 1894. Every yearbook published between that date up to the 2012 edition is currently accessible on the website. The 2013 and 2014 Beaver yearbooks will be added soon. In total, 109 volumes are currently available without restriction.
The full text of this digital collection is keyword searchable, both across the collection and within an individual volume. Users looking for names of students, clubs or events recorded in the yearbooks will be able to locate information quickly and easily, simply by typing terms into a search box. Online viewing of given volumes is also user-friendly: full-screen views and multiple page layouts are available, and users can “flip” through virtual pages with the click of a button. The website also allows users to zoom into a page for easy reading.
All of this has been accomplished through the implementation of a new digital collections platform, called Hydra, which has been developed jointly by the Oregon State University Libraries & Press in collaboration with the University of Oregon Libraries. The OSU Yearbooks website is itself the fruit of a collaboration between OSU Libraries & Press staff working in three of its divisions: the Digital Production Unit, Emerging Technologies and Services, and the Special Collections & Archives Research Center.
The digital yearbooks collection is a major resource for investigations into the undergraduate experience at Oregon State University. Particularly in its earlier decades, the yearbook provided a detailed photographic and textual chronicle of student life and campus climate, revealing important insight into the evolution of cultural trends, attitudes, fashions and much more as Oregon State changed with the times. Research projects of many types will benefit from convenient online access to this rich collection.
The school yearbook has variously been titled The Hayseed, The Orange and, since 1917, The Beaver. (Two yearbooks were also published, in 1900 and 1905, as souvenir editions of The Barometer.) The last ever edition of the Beaver yearbook was published in 2014. Much more about the history of this hugely important publication is available in an introduction, “Hayseed-Orange-Beaver, 1894-2014” released on the OSU Yearbooks website.