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.

Collection Details

Record Group
Explorers' Club records
Duke University. Explorers' Club
1.2 Linear Feet, 100 Items
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
Material in English

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.

More Biographical / Historical Info

Using These Materials

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 2 full business days in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

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Collection is open for research.

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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.

More copyright and citation information

How to Cite

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

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.

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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.