A $1 million gift was recently made to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Libraries by an anonymous donor via the Greater Milwaukee Foundation. The gift will support the renovation of the Archives Department, which houses records related to the history of UWM as well as the greater Milwaukee metropolitan area. The Archives is also a local branch, or Area Research Center, of the Wisconsin Historical Society.
The renovation will provide the department with a new space within the Golda Meir Library and will feature a public reading room, a classroom for group use, and new technology.
“This unprecedented gift shows the donor’s deep understanding of the library’s vision and the importance of the archives to our university and to our region,” said Michael Doylen, associate vice provost and director of UWM Libraries. “Our Archives Department contains the most significant civil rights collection in the city, the WTMJ-TV News Film Archives, an extensive photograph collection of Milwaukee’s Polonia, and the largest LGBT collection in the state. This gift allows us to reimagine some of our physical spaces in a way that will make these important resources even more accessible to the campus community and the public.”
Engberg Anderson Architects has been selected for the Archives renovation. “This is a great choice,” Doylen said. “The firm is currently working on the nearly completed State Archives Preservation Facility in Madison and they are sensitive to the needs of archives.”
The donation supports UWM’s comprehensive fundraising effort, named Made in Milwaukee, Shaping the World: The Campaign for UWM. Focused on raising support for students, research and community engagement, the campaign has a goal of $200 million, the largest in UWM’s history.