Guide to the Explorers' Club Records, 1919-2000


The Explorers' Club was formed as an informal walking club for Duke students and faculty in 1930.

The collection includes photographs of club expeditions, memorabilia and correspondence, mostly from the years 1932 to 1971.

Descriptive Summary

University Archives, Duke University
Duke University. Explorers' Club.
Explorers' Club records 1919-2000
Language of Material
1.2 Linear Feet, 100 Items
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

Collection Overview

Includes "Recollections of the Explorers' Club," recorded in April 1971 by Ernest Seeman and "The Explorers' Club" by Exie Duncan. The photograph album contains pictures of club and earlier expeditions from 1919 to 1934. Also includes memorabilia, correspondence, "The Explorer: A Semi-Scholarly Yellow Sheet Devoted to the Pursuit of Epedaphics, Wiener-Schnitzels and Camaraderie; And Being a Circulatory Circumbendibus of the Explores' Club" , and the Spring 2000 issue of the Eno River Association's newsletter.

Administrative Information

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

Collection is open for research.

warning Use Restrictions

Copyright for Official University records is held by Duke University; all other copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Contents of the Collection

Correspondence, Photos, 1937, 1976
Box 1
Clippings, Negatives, Photographs, Memos, 1975-1979
Box 1
Miscellaneous Memorabilia, Correspondence, 1971-1979
Box 1
Scrapbook, 1932-1934
Box 1
Scrapbook Loose Pages, 1919-1970
Box 1
Scrapbook Loose Page, Loose Photos, Newsletter, 2000, undated
Box 1

Historical Note

The Explorers' Club was founded in September 1930 by a group of faculty members that included Alice Baldwin, Anne Gardiner, Justin Miller, and Ernest Seeman. According to Burke Smith, one of the early members, the club had no formal membership, no dues, and no officers. Several of the members decided where to go hiking and whom to invite. The names were selected from a list of more than 200 interested students. Trips were made very two weeks on a Sunday afternoon (sometimes on Saturdays). A leisurely walk through a wooded section was followed by a picnic meal around a campfire. Twice a year, weekend trips were made to the mountains and to the sea.

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Explorers' Club Records, Duke University Archives, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.


The Explorers' Club Records were received by the University Archives as a gift in 1974.

Processing Information

Processed by Jessica Wood, January 2007

Encoded by Kimberly Sims, July 2007

Accession A74-158 is described in this finding aid.

Descriptive sources and standards used to create this inventory: DACS, EAD, NCEAD guidelines, and our local Style Guide.

This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.