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Roger G. Barry glaciology collection

Identifier: COU:5025

Scope and Contents

The collection includes many of the analog materials archived by the World Data Center and the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) on glaciology and ice covering a period between 1860 to 2012. It includes the Glacier Photograph Collection (found in the Glacier Collections series) which consists of prints, negatives, slides, and glass plate negatives documenting the historical record of glaciers from around the world, the bulk of which are from North America. There are also reports from government funded projects such as Birdseye Aerial Project and the U.S. Navy Aerial project. There are ice charts documenting ice flows including the Dehn Ice charts from mid-century Alaska, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL) and the National Ice Center (NIC) ice charts from the arctic, antarctic, Germany, Sweden, Canada and Japan. There also expedition reports, data print outs, films, and aerial imagery from a variety of research projects including but not limited to AIDJEX, CEAREX-MISEX, and CLPX (see each series for a more in depth description of these programs). Material was generated by organizations like NOAA’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL), the USGS, the U.S. Coast Guard in addition to individual researchers. Most sub-series in the collection constitute a collection originally held by the NSIDC analog archive.

Most of the glacier photography in the sub-series titled "Glacier Photographs by Photographer" and "Geographical Glacier Photographs" has been digitized and are available on the University of Colorado Digital Library (CUDL).

Reports and expedition notebooks from the 1890-1975 from the sub-series titled "Lawrence Martin expedition notebooks," "Louis L. Ray expedition notebooks,"Harry Fielding Reid collection," and "National Park Service Glacier Survey Reports" have been digitized and are available on the Universtiy of Colorado Digital Library (CUDL).


  • Creation: 1860 - 2012

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use. Material marked as restricted is due to the inclusion of legally and ethically protected confidential collection donor and researcher information. Please contact for questions about access to this material.

Research access to original moving image films in this collection is restricted, due to preservation concerns. Contact with a list of desired items and a statement of intended use, which will be evaluated by the Moving Image Archivist based on preservation condition of the desired items and staff availability; please note that access may not be guaranteed for all items.

All analog sound recordings, video formats, and badly deteriorated film held by the Archives must be digitized for research access, due to preservation concerns. If these materials have not previously been digitized, the researcher is responsible for the cost of digitization. Researchers may request access to previously-digitized audiovisual materials that are not online on the CU Digital Library by contacting

This collection contains digital materials not available for download directly. Access to these materials is available either on-site in the Reading Room or by remote access. Requests to access born-digital materials must be made in advance by contacting Once a request has been made, please confirm viewing arrangements with Archives staff. Please allow at least 7 business days before download access is provided.

Copyright Statement

The University Libraries may not own the copyright to all materials in this collection. Researchers are responsible for contacting the copyright holder(s) for this material and obtaining permission to publish or broadcast. The University Libraries will not grant permission to publish or broadcast this material and are not responsible for copyright violations resulting from such use.

Biographical / Historical

The materials in this collection were collected by the National Snow and Ice Data Center. The NSIDC supports research into the cryosphere, or the earth’s frozen places, by managing and distributing scientific data. They perform data management by creating and supporting data products and tools, and they conduct scientific and support research into the remote sensing of snow and ice. In doing so their mission is that data will remain accessible for studying the Earth and its climate. They are part of the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

The NSIDC originated with William O. Field. When Field was a young glaciologist he realized the importance of saving photographs and notebooks to preserve the data gathered during important and often dangerous early expeditions. He began collecting material in 1932 with $100 dollars left over from an expedition in 1932. In 1957, The American Geophysical Society established the World Data Center (WDC) for Glaciology under Field to document the data being produced during the first International Geophysical Year (IGY). Afterwards it archived all available information on glaciology. Between 1971 and 1976 the WDC operated out of the United States Geological Survey (USGS) Glaciology Project Office in Tacoma, WA under Mark F. Meier.

In 1976, the USGS transferred the WDC to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) Environmental Data and Information Service. It was at this time that Professor Roger G. Barry directed the center at the University of Colorado Boulder. It was officially named the NSIDC in 1982, so that the WDC holdings could grow and NOAA could archive data from its programs. Support for the center increased after that with support from NASA and the NSF during the 1980s and 1990s.

For more information about the NSIDC visit


786.39 linear feet

Language of Materials



The materials in this collection were collected by the National Snow and Ice Data Center. The NSIDC supports research into the cryosphere, or the earth’s frozen places, by managing and distributing scientific data. The collection includes many of the analog materials archived by the World Data Center and NSIDC on glaciology from a period of 1860 to 2012 and consists of photographs, data sheets, ice charts, maps, reports, and obersvations regarding ice and glaciers from around the world.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection was recieved from the National Snow and Ice Data Center in 2018.

Processing Information

This collection is arranged into subseries groupings based on the creators of the materials where possible, when information about the creators was preserved and shared after it arrived from the World Data Center and later the National Snow and Ice Data Center. To support research use, the series level organization is arranged by data type, topic, and geography.

Box numbers contain decimals. The first number indicates the "sub-series" it belongs to. The second number is the box number within that series.

Four boxes of active business records documenting activities at the NSIDC were returned to the NSIDC by Ashlyn Velte on November 16, 2022.

This collection is currently being processed. This finding aid reflects the most current work on the collection, and will continue to be updated. Email with any questions.

Roger G. Barry glaciology collection
In Progress
This finding aid was authored by Allaina Wallace, Athea Merredyth, Ashlyn Velte and Jennifer Sanchez; contributor Aldo Rodriguez 2022.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
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Repository Details

Part of the University of Colorado Boulder Libraries, Rare and Distinctive Collections Repository

1720 Pleasant Street
184 UCB
Boulder Colorado 80503 United States