Records generated by administrators and offices charged with the financial activities of the University, including Secretary and Vice-President Shirley W. Smith and Controller and Assistant Secretary John C. Christensen; include general University financial records; records of land; trust fund records; proposed development and construction projects; operating records of buildings, divisions and other units.
The records of Financial Operations date from 1837 to 1982, primarily after 1910. The 27 linear feet of manuscript material, 52 oversized volumes and one reel of microfilm reflect not only the financial records normally associated with an accounting office, but also the broad range of subjects which became a concern under the leadership of Shirley Smith. What would eventually become Financial Operations may have served as a records storage office for many of the other units under Smith's control. In any event, Financial Operations became the guardian of a wide variety of records, documenting the University in a number of ways not normally expected of an accounting service.
Of particular note, the collection contains a variety of different record formats. Bound materials, in the form of books, are included in the boxes and when numbering more than one, are listed in the finding aid as multiple volumes. The collection also contains oversized volumes, in the form of large accounting books. These oversized volumes are numbered and stored separately. They are listed in the finding aid where intellectually appropriate, and designated by volume number. Enclosed in this finding aid is an index of the oversized volumes, organized by number, and their contents.
The collection is divided into six series: General University Financial Records; Trust Fund Records; Records of Land, Proposed Development and Construction; Operating Records of Buildings, Divisions and other Units; Miscellaneous Reports, Studies and Volumes; and Accounting Office Records.