Guide to Archival Holdings at NARA's Rocky Mountain Region (Denver)
Record Group 104
Records of the U.S. Mint
The Bureau of the Mint, established in the Department of the Treasury by an act of February 12, 1873, succeeded the Mint of the United States, founded in 1792 at Philadelphia, and continued there after the Federal Government moved to Washington, DC, in 1800. Originally an independent agency, by 1857 the Mint had become responsible to the Department of the Treasury. The Mint has been responsible for manufacturing coins; for receiving, storing, and selling gold and silver bullion; for assaying and refining; and for a variety of functions, such as inspections and gathering statistics. The Mint has operated mints in several cities, as well as assay offices and bullion depositories.
Volume: 253 cubic feet
Records of the Denver Mint and Assaying Office, 1863-1995. The records document assays, coinage, gold and silver bullion deposits, construction of the Mint and its two additions, and the location, receipt, and processing of gold, silver, and other precious metals at the National Archives at Denver. Included are assay reports, correspondence, and registers.
Records of the following assay offices:
- Deadwood, South Dakota, 1897-1927;
- Helena, Montana, 1851-1933;
- Salt Lake City, Utah, 1909-33.
The records document assays, bullion shipments and redeposits, mass melts, and mining activity. Included are correspondence, registers, statements, and statistics.
Forrest R. Holdcamper, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Bureau of the
Mint, NC 152 (1958).
Record Group 114
Records of the Natural Resources Conservation Service
The Soil Conservation Service (SCS) was established in the Department of Agriculture (USDA) in 1935, replacing the Soil Erosion Service which had been established in 1933, and acquiring duties from other Government agencies. In 1937, it began to provide technical and other assistance to farmers in soil conservation districts organized under State laws. In 1938, the SCS was given responsibility for farm forestry programs; in 1944, it was given responsibility for assisting in water conservation programs; and in 1952, it was authorized to assume the soil survey previously run by other USDA units. The SCS conducts soil and snow surveys, river basin surveys, and investigations and watershed activities; assists local groups in planning an developing land and water resources; and gives technical help to landowners and operators who participate in USDA's agricultural conservation, cropland conversion, and cropland adjustment programs.
In 1935, regional offices were established to supervise conservation work in large geographic areas and in 1938-1939 area offices were created to assist the regional offices. State offices replaced area offices in 1942. Regional offices were discontinued in 1954, and the SCS now relies on State offices to give technical and administrative supervision to local units.
Volume: 23 cubic feet
Records of the Southwest Regional Office, Albuquerque. The records document range management and utilization, forestry projects, Civilian Conservation Corps projects, meetings and conferences, surveying and mapping programs, and camp inspections. Included are correspondence, reports, and work plans.
Records of area offices in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah. The records relate to agronomy, biology, cooperative programs, engineering, erosion control, meetings and conferences, range and woodland management, surveys, and work plans. The records are correspondence, memorandums, and reports.
Records of the North Dakota State Office, Bismarck. The records relate to the Tongue River Watershed and include geologic reports, contracts and specifications, test data, and work diaries.
Records of Civilian Conservation Corps camps in New Mexico and
Utah. The records relate to
policies, staffing, and work programs and include agreements, correspondence, and orders.
Record Group 115
Records of the Bureau of Reclamation
The Reclamation Service was created under the Reclamation Act of June 17, 1902. The act authorized the Secretary of the Interior to locate, construct, and maintain irrigation projects in 16 contiguous public land States and territories. Texas and Hawaii were later included. The act created a reclamation fund to finance the projects with monies generated from sales of public lands. Costs would be repaid by the water users, mainly homesteaders on public lands within the projects. The irrigation works would be owned by the Government. By the end of 1907, over 24 million dollars had been spent for work on 40 "primary projects" featuring construction of dams, canals, and reservoirs.
In 1907, the Reclamation Service was made a separate agency within the Department of the Interior. In 1914, a Construction Division was created in the Washington office of the Reclamation Service. In the following year, the division relocated to Denver under the Chief of Construction and was given responsibility for management of all Reclamation Service work in the field. On April 1, 1920, the Chief of Construction in Denver was redesignated Chief Engineer.
The Reclamation Service became the Bureau of Reclamation (USBR) under charge of the newly established and appointed Commissioner on June 20, 1923. Criticism of the Federal reclamation program resulted in a series of USBR reorganizations. Two new laws were passed to amend reclamation land settlement policy and further liberalize repayment by settlers. The Boulder Canyon Project Act, passed on December 21, 1928, revolutionized the scale, design, purpose, and funding of USBR projects. Thereafter, USBR's water resources program embraced not only irrigation, but hydroelectric power development, flood control, and navigation. USBR construction financing would come largely from municipal water sales, hydroelectric power leases, and direct congressional appropriations, thus decreasing reliance on the reclamation fund.
Among the major USBR efforts that followed during the New Deal and post-World War II years were the Columbia Basin, Big Thompson, Central Valley, Boise, Missouri River Basin, Colorado River storage, and central Arizona projects.
On September 9, 1943, the USBR Commissioner established six regional offices, soon supplemented by a seventh, with jurisdictions drawn along river basin lines. Regional directors would report directly to the Commissioner's Office. The same reorganization established four branches at the Denver office. The Design and Construction Branch remained under the Chief Engineer, who was given assistant commissioner status in 1953.
Volume: 9535 cubic feet
Records of the Office of the Chief Engineer, Engineering and Research Center, Denver, 1902-1990. The records document office administration; engineering research; design, construction, and operation of reclamation projects; and operation of water user districts. Included are applications, construction and geological reports, correspondence, land acquisition case files, project histories, and specifications. Nontextual records include drawings, maps, photographs, and sketches.
Records of the following project and regional offices:
- Great Plains Region, Billings, Montana, 1942-77;
- Lower Colorado Region, Boulder City, Nevada, 1911-81;
- Mid-Pacific Region, Sacramento, California, 1947-79;
- Pacific Northwest Region, Boise, Idaho, 1904-93;
- Upper Colorado Region, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1938-68.
The records document administration, operation, and relations with local
towns and planning boards. They include correspondence; construction, geology,
and land classification reports; and press releases.
- Draft preliminary inventory.
- Folder title lists.
- Lists of captions for photographs.
- Special lists for project histories and drawings.
- Classification manuals.
Related Microfilm Publications
M96, Project Histories and Reports of the Reclamation Bureau Projects, 1905-1925 (includes only some projects).
Record Group 118
Records of United States Attorneys
The Judiciary Act of September 24, 1789, made provision for U.S. attorneys and marshals who are appointed by the President and have functioned under the general supervision of the Department of Justice since its creation in 1870.
U.S. attorneys investigate violations of Federal criminal laws, present evidence to grand juries, prosecute Federal criminal cases, and serve as the Federal Government's attorney in civil litigation in which the United States is involved or has an interest.
Volume: 213 cubic feet
Records of the following U.S. attorneys:
- Albuquerque, New Mexico, 1954-76;
- Billings, Montana, 1973-82;
- Butte, Montana, 1975-80;
- Cheyenne, Wyoming, 1891-1911, with gaps;
- Del Norte, Colorado, 1874-1965;
- Denver, Colorado, 1891-1980;
- Fargo, North Dakota, 1976-80;
- Grand Junction, Montrose, and Pueblo, Colorado, 1891-1926;
- Great Falls, Montana, 1979;
- Helena, Montana, 1980;
- Phoenix, Arizona, 1950-67;
- Sioux Falls, South Dakota, 1894-1982, with gaps.
The records relate to bribery, civil rights, claims by Indian tribes, conscientious objectors, conspiracy, draft evasion, fraud, and internal revenue. Usually included are the attorney's work papers, copies of papers filed in Federal court (see RG 21 for the originals), correspondence with the Department of Justice and other agencies, investigative reports, newspaper clippings, and trial notes. Nontextual records include photographs and other exhibit material.
Shelf lists (for most records) which provide the case number and title.
Access to some files or portions of documents may be restricted due to law enforcement and/or privacy concerns.
Record Group 121
Records of the Public Buildings Service
Federal construction activities outside the District of Columbia were performed by individual agencies and, to some extent, by special commissions and officers appointed by the Secretary of the Treasury until 1853, when a Construction Branch was created in the Department of the Treasury. The Branch later became the Bureau of Construction in the Office of the Supervising Architect, and that office, in turn, was transferred in 1933 to the Public Buildings Branch of the Procurement Division. The Public Buildings Administration was created in the Federal Works Agency in 1939 by consolidating the Public Buildings Branch and the National Park Service's Branch of Buildings Management. The latter branch had inherited responsibilities for Federal construction in the District of Columbia from the Office of Public Buildings and Public Parks of the National Capitol.
An act of June 30, 1949, abolished the Public Buildings Administration and transferred its functions to the newly established General Services Administration (GSA). The Public Buildings Service was established December 11, 1949, by the Administrator of General Services to assume the functions once assigned to the Public Buildings Administration.
The Public Buildings Service designs, constructs, manages, maintains, and protects most Federally-owned and -leased buildings. It is also responsible for the acquisition, utilization, and custody of GSA real and related personal property.
Volume: 105 cubic feet
Records of the Office of Real Property Disposal, Fort Worth. The records concern the disposal of surplus Federal real property (such as airfields, ordnance plants, military depots, buildings and installations, prisoner-of-war camps, school buildings, Atlas and Titan Missile sites and Veterans Administration hospitals) in Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming. They are case files, which include correspondence, deeds, reports of surveys, studies, and title searches. Nontextual records within the case files include drawings and maps.
Records of the Construction Management Division, Denver. The records document the design and construction of Federal buildings at the National Archives of Denver, including a 1978 addition to the Denver Mint, and construction of Buildings 20 and 41 at the Denver Federal Center. In addition there are files relating to the historical development of the Denver Federal Center from 1941, when it was the Denver Ordnance Plant, to 1996. Included are correspondence, reports, specifications, and nontextual records such as drawings and photographs.
Box contents lists for the real property disposal case files.
The Agricultural Marketing Service was established in the Department of Agriculture in 1939 to consolidate agricultural marketing and related activities such as collecting and interpreting agricultural statistics, performing market inspection and grading services, and establishing official grade standards for many farm products. Its predecessors included the Bureau of Agricultural Economics. The service was discontinued in 1942 and its functions performed by other agencies. A new Agricultural Marketing Service was established in 1953 and was renamed the Consumer and Marketing Service between 1965 and 1972.
Volume: 7 cubic feet
Records of the Packers and Stockyards Administration, Denver. The records concern transportation of livestock and operation of stockyards and packing plants. They are primarily correspondence.
Entry 110 of Virgil E. Baugh, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Agricultural
Marketing Service, NC 118 (1965).
The Bureau of Provisions and Clothing was established in the Department of the Navy by an act of August 31, 1842, and renamed in 1892 the Bureau of Supplies and Accounts. At first its functions, taken over from the former Board of Navy Commissioners, were to supply the Navy with provisions, clothing, and small stores, and to perform Department accounting. Later many of the duties of the Bureau of Equipment were transferred to it. Through the end of World War II, the Bureau was also Paymaster General of the Navy. Among other functions, the Bureau supervised the procurement, receipt, storage, shipment, and issuance of food, fuel, clothing, general stores, and other materials; maintained and operated naval supply depots and similar units and supervised activities of Supply Corps officers; procured, allocated, and disbursed funds; and kept money and property accounts. The Bureau of Supplies and Accounts was abolished May 1, 1966, as part of a Defense Department reorganization, and its functions were assigned to the Naval Supply Systems Command.
Volume: 1 cubic foot
Record titled History of U.S. Navy Supply Depot, Clearfield, Utah, 1942-45. The record is a narrative account of the development, construction, commissioning, and operation of the depot. Nontextual records include photographs. The record is a bound volume.
PLEASE NOTE: All series in RG 147 have been transferred to our archival facility in Saint Louis. Please submit your request to the National Archives & Records Administration, ATTN: Archival Programs, P.O. Box 28989, St. Louis, MO 63132-0989.
An Executive order of September 23, 1940, established the Selective Service System to provide an orderly, just, and democratic method of obtaining men for military and naval service. Except between December 5, 1942, and December 5, 1943, when it was placed under the jurisdiction of the War Manpower Commission, the System was responsible to the President. The System operated through a director and national headquarters, regional boards, State headquarters, medical and registrant advisory boards, boards of appeal, and local boards. There was a local board for each county and for each unit of 30,000 people in urban areas. Through the local boards the System registered, classified, and selected for induction male citizens and aliens subject to service.
Volume: 128 cubic feet
Records of the State headquarters for Arizona, Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming. The records document the selection of men for service in the armed forces including: registration cards for individuals in those States born from April 28, 1877, to February 16, 1897 (the "fourth registration"); and DSS Form 301, "Application by Alien for Relief from Military Service."
Records of the Utah Appeals Board and the South Dakota State headquarters. The records document administrative matters and are correspondence and minutes.
Box contents lists.
The War Finance Corporation was created by an act of April 5, 1918, to give financial support to industries essential to the war effort and to banking institutions that aided such industries. After the armistice, the Corporation assisted in the transition to peacetime by financing railroads under Government control, and by making loans to American exporters and agricultural cooperative marketing associations. The Corporation established agricultural loan agencies in farming areas to facilitate handling its agricultural loans, and cooperated with several livestock loan companies. It was abolished on July 1, 1939.
Volume: 30 cubic feet
Records of the following offices:
- Denver, Colorado;
- Helena, Montana;
- Minneapolis, Minnesota;
- Santa Fe, New Mexico.
The records document efforts to strengthen essential war industries, primarily through loans. Included are accounts, applications, circulars, collections and check issuances, correspondence, journals, ledgers, minutes, and receipts.
The Public Contracts Division was created to administer the Walsh-Healey Public Contracts Act of June 30, 1936, which required Government supply contracts exceeding $10,000 to stipulate minimum wage, overtime pay, safety, and health standards. The Wage and Hour Division was established in the Department of Labor to administer the minimum wage, overtime compensation, equal pay, and child labor standards provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act of June 25, 1938. The two divisions were consolidated in 1942, and their area of responsibility was expanded by subsequent legislation.
Volume: 57 cubic feet
Records of New Mexico and Region 7, which covered Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. The records document the inspection of businesses to ensure compliance with contract and wage and hour regulations. The records are inspection case files including correspondence and reports.
Herbert J. Horowitz, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Records of the Wage and Hour and
Public Contracts Divisions, NC 77 (1964).
The Ordnance Department was established as an independent bureau of the War Department by an act of May 14, 1812. It was responsible for the procurement and distribution of ordnance and equipment, the maintenance and repair of equipment, and the development and testing of new types of ordnance. The Department was abolished in 1962, and its functions were transferred to the U.S. Army Material Command.
Among the field establishments maintained by the Ordnance Department within the United States have been armories, arsenals, and ordnance depots, district offices, and plants.
Volume: 31 cubic feet
Records of the following arsenals, depots, and plants:
- Black Hills Ordnance Depot, Igloo, South Dakota;
- Denver Ordnance Zone and Plant;
- Deseret Depot, Tooele, Utah;
- 58th Quartermaster Depot, Ogden, Utah;
- Fort Wingate Army Depot, Gallup, New Mexico;
- Ogden Arsenal, Ogden, Utah;
- Pueblo Ordnance and Army Depot, Pueblo, Colorado;
- Tooele Depot, Tooele, Utah;
- Utah Depot, Ogden, Utah.
The records document the administration and operation of all facilities and the activation and deactivation of some. The records include circulars, correspondence, manuals, memorandums, orders, planning files, regulations, reports, and unit histories.
The Selective Service System, under the direction of the Office of the Provost Marshal General, was authorized by an act of May 18, 1917, to register and induct men into military service. Much of the management of the draft was left to the States, where local draft boards were established on the basis of 1 for every 30,000 people. These boards, appointed by the President on the recommendation of the State Governor, registered, classified, inducted, and delivered to mobilization camps men who were eligible for the draft. Legal and medical advisory boards assisted the local boards and registrants, and district boards were established to pass on occupational exemption claims and to hear appeals. The Provost Marshal General's Office worked with local and district boards through Selective Service State Headquarters.
Classification ceased shortly after the Armistice in 1918, and by May 31, 1919, all Selective Service organizations were closed except the Office of the Provost Marshal General, which was abolished July 15, 1919.
Volume: 41 cubic feet
Records of the Office of the Provost Marshal. The records document appeals to the President for exemptions from military service. They are case files.
Records of district boards in Colorado, New Mexico, and North Dakota. The records document appeals for exemptions from military service. They are docket sheets.
Records of local boards in Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming. The records document registration and classification of men for military service, including delinquents and deserters, and men ordered to report for induction and their appeals. The records are dockets and lists.
Box contents lists and binder contents lists.
The National Bureau of Standards (NBS) was established by an act of Congress of March 3, 1901 (31 Stat. 1449). The Bureau provides for a consistent system of physical measurements, conducts tests on the properties of materials, develops technological standards and testing methodology, performs research on radiation and in computer technology, and promotes the dissemination of scientific and technological information.
Radio work by the Bureau began in 1911 when the first measurement of a wavemeter was made by J. Howard Dellinger. In 1913, a Radio Section was organized within the Electricity Division. From 1914 to the U.S. entry into World War I, the Radio Section became involved in developing equipment for the Bureau of Navigation, the Bureau of Lighthouses, and the Coast and Geodetic Survey. By the end of World War I, the staff had grown from 7 to 40 people, with responsibilities for vacuum- tube measurements, radio frequency measurements, and radio equipment design and development, and some U.S. Army Signal Corps activities. After the war, major emphasis was placed on problems related to the rapid growth of radio broadcasting. When World War II ended, the Radio Section had grown to about 140 members, with more than 80 persons in the Interservice Radio Propagation Laboratory (IRPL). This laboratory, a cooperative effort of the Allied Armed Forces, predicted conditions of the ionosphere for worldwide radio communication.
On May 1, 1946, the Central Radio Propagation Laboratory (CRPL) was organized from the former Radio Section and absorbed the activities of the IRPL. In 1954, the CRPL moved to Boulder, Colorado, where during the next decade, it grew to seven divisions.
In 1964, the NBS was restructured, and on October 11, 1965, the CRPL was transferred to the Environmental Science Services Administration, the forerunner of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) within the Department of Commerce. Portions of the remaining divisions formed the Institute of Telecommunication Sciences of the Department of Commerce, and the Radio Standards Laboratory and Radio Standards Physics Division within the Institute for Basic Standards of the NBS.
Volume: 122 cubic feet
Records primarily of the Radio Section, the Interservice Radio Propagation Laboratory (IRPL), and the Central Radio Propagation Laboratory (CRPL). There are also some papers of John Howard Dellinger, who was a pioneer in the radio communications field. The records document the development and refinement of radio transmission technology. Included are central decimal, project, and program files; reports; and technical publications. Nontextual records include photographs.
Records of the National Institute of Standards Library, Boulder, Colorado. The records document all types of measurements and consist of analyses, annual reports, circulars, monographs, studies, and technical notes.
The Office of Civilian Defense (OCD) was established in the Office for Emergency Management by an executive order of May 20, 1941, to coordinate Federal, State and local defense relationships regarding the protection of civilians during air raids and other emergencies, and to facilitate civilian participation in war programs. It took over the functions and records of the Division of State and Local Cooperation of the Advisory Commission to the Council of National Defense. Fiscal, budgetary, and personnel responsibilities for the OCD were handled by the Division of Central Administrative Services of the Office for Emergency Management until 1942 when these responsibilities, with minor exceptions, were transferred to the OCD. The nine regional offices that coordinated the work of State and local defense organizations were closed June 30, 1944, and an executive order of June 4, 1945, terminated the OCD.
Volume: 2 cubic feet
Records of the Eastern Sector Office, Salt Lake City, Utah. The records document civilian defense programs and interagency cooperative efforts in Idaho, Montana, and Utah, including civil defense drills, communications, medical facilities, protection of plants and businesses, training and volunteer programs, and State and local defense organizations. The records are correspondence and reports.
The National Resources Planning Board (NRPB) was established in the Executive Office of the President by Reorganization Plan No. 1 of 1939. It inherited the functions of the National Planning Board of the Federal Emergency Administration of Public Works (created July 20, 1933) and its various successors. The NRPB and its predecessors planned public works, coordinated Federal planning relating to conservation and efficient use of national resources, and encouraged local, State, and regional planning. The NRPB was abolished by an act of June 26, 1943.
In 1934, the NPB began using the regional advisors and State advisory boards of the Public Works Administration for field contacts with State and local governments. On March 1, 1934, the NPB began developing a field organization of its own, establishing 12 Planning Districts throughout the country. The number of districts was subsequently reduced to 11. On May 13, 1937, the 11 planning district offices became nine regional offices. (Two additional regions were subsequently added for Alaska and the Caribbean territories.) The NRPB was liquidated in 1943. The regional offices primarily acted as clearinghouses of planning information, carried out the Board's activities in the field, and coordinated regional, State, and local natural resource planning activities.
Volume: 19 cubic feet
Records primarily of Region 7 (which covered Colorado, New Mexico, and Wyoming), Denver, and some records of the office in Roswell, New Mexico. The records document committees and projects; defense planning; drainage basins; the natural resources of the Colorado, Pecos, and Upper Rio Grande Rivers; and urban planning. The records include a card file, correspondence, and investigation reports.
Virgil E. Baugh, comp., Preliminary Inventory of the Regional Offices of the National
Planning Board, PI 64 (1954).
The Office of Price Administration (OPA) originated in the Price Stabilization and Consumer Protection Divisions of the Advisory Commission to the Council of National Defense on May 29, 1940, and in their successor, the Office of Price Administration and Civilian Supply, created in April 1941 and redesignated the Office of Price Administration by an Executive order of August 28, 1941. The OPA was given statutory recognition as an independent agency by the Emergency Price Control Act of January 30, 1942. Under this legislation the OPA attempted to stabilize prices and rents by establishing maximum prices for commodities (other than agricultural products which were under the control of the Secretary of Agriculture) and rents in defense areas. It also rationed scarce essential commodities and authorized subsidies for the production of some goods. Most of the price and rationing controls were lifted between August 1945 and November 1946.
Volume: 314 cubic feet
Records of the following Region 7 units (the region covered Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New
Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming, with headquarters at Denver):
- Accounting Department;
- district offices, executive offices, and local boards in Albuquerque, Boise, Cheyenne, Denver, Helena, Salt Lake City, and Santa Fe;
- Enforcement Division;
- Information Division;
- Price Department (including the Building Materials and Construction Price Division);
- Rationing Department.
The records document the efforts of field
offices to ensure compliance with price regulations.
Meyer H. Fishbein and Elaine C. Bennett, comps.,
Preliminary Inventory of the Records of
the Accounting Department of the Office of Price Administration, PI 32 (1951).
- Fishbein, Walter Weinstein, and Albert W. Winthrop, comps., Preliminary Inventory of the Price Department of the Office of Price Administration, PI 95 (1956).
- Fishbein, et al., comps., Preliminary Inventory of the Rationing Department of the Office of Price Administration, PI 102 (1958).
Betty R. Bucher, comp., Preliminary Inventory
of the Information Department of
the Office of Price Administration, PI 119 (1959).
- Fishbein and Bucher, comps., Preliminary Inventory of the Office of Price Administration, PI 120 (1959).