Flower-Sprecher Veterinary Library

About the Archives


The mission of the Archives of the College of Veterinary Medicine is to document the history of the college, with an auxiliary focus on the development of veterinary medicine in New York State, particularly Tompkins County and the Southern Tier.


The Archives of the College of Veterinary Medicine is a joint project of the College and the University Library's Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections.

The administrative home of the Archives of the College of Veterinary Medicine is the Flower-Sprecher Veterinary Library in the Veterinary Education Center at the eastern end of the campus. Find directions here.

The collections are housed in the Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections in Kroch Library in the center of campus.


The Flower-Sprecher Veterinary Library was founded in 1896. Since then the library has grown along with the College, expanding its collections and services to meet the changing needs of the community. The Library has always cared for historical materials and provided reference service regarding the history of the College, and since 1951, when Cornell founded the University Archives, the College has worked with the University Archivist to transfer collections to that central repository.

In 2002 the College joined forces with the Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections (home to the current University Archives) to hire an archivist to care for the materials and ensure proper documentation of the college's past, present and future. This temporary position ended in 2004. However, we continue to work to preserve our history and to seek permanent funding for a College Archivist. Meanwhile, Susanne Whitaker, Reference Librarian at the Veterinary Library, currently serves as Archives Coordinator.


The Archives holds the official records of the college as well as the personal papers of many alumni, faculty and staff. There are also materials from veterinary professional organizations, such as the New York State Veterinary Medical Society.

The documents come in many forms, including: office files, manuscript collections, publications, photographs, oral history interviews, ephemera, maps, and architectural drawings.

Topics covered in the collections span a number of disciplines within the framework generally ascribed to veterinary medicine as well as many that are not. Patrons can work with materials about the development of veterinary education, medicine and research including all of the various subcomponents, such as bacteriology, pathology, immunology, etc. Additionally, researchers can discover the important role the veterinary field has played in U.S. agriculture, human medicine, public health, animal rights, the military and many more significant historical themes.

Guidelines for donating your records to the Archives are located on the Your Records page of this web site.

A number of guides to our collections are available. Please note: this is not a complete list of veterinary collections in the Archives, but rather a list of those guides that have been formatted electronically. For help locating collections not on the list please contact the Archives Coordinator.