- Project Directors: Nicole Gray, Mary Ellen Ducey
- Editorial Consultant: Kimberli Lee
- Partner: Mari Sandoz Society
- Site URL: Site is not live.
- Project Status: Active
- Dates Active: 2023-Present
- Associated Department: University Libraries
- Technologies & Methodologies Utilized:
The Mari Sandoz Digital Archive will be a freely available web resource devoted to the work of one of Nebraska's most notable novelists and historians. Writing primarily in the tumultuous first half of the twentieth century, Mari Sandoz (1896-1966) explored a range of topics of continued relevance in our own time. Like her books, her letters and notes are full of information about Plains country, American Indian tribal histories, colonization, violence and hardships of the U.S. frontier, and ecosystems and trade and migration patterns in the Midwest. Sandoz's work, based on extensive research into the history of the Great Plains and its inhabitants, was well ahead of its time in its careful, sympathetic treatment of Native cultures and dispossession, its attention to figures like female frontier physicians and wives of Anglo-European immigrants, and its forthright warnings about fascist movements and power in the 1930s American Midwest. During her lifetime she published more than fifteen book-length works, several of which were translated into multiple languages, and numerous shorter pieces in collections and periodicals. Her own experience as the daughter of Swiss immigrants in western Nebraska, her tenure as a teacher in rural schools, her travels to Indigenous nation homelands and federal reservations, her classes at the University of Nebraska, and her work at the Nebraska State Historical Society all informed the structure and content of her writing.After her death, Sandoz's sister Caroline Pifer sent much of Sandoz's large collection of correspondence, manuscripts, drafts, maps, books, and original research materials to Archives & Special Collections, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries. Materials related to Sandoz also are held by the Mari Sandoz Society at the Mari Sandoz High Plains Heritage Center at Chadron State College, History Nebraska, the Denver Public Library, Syracuse University, and the University of Nebraska at Kearney. By eventually drawing together scans of documents at various repositories and making them available online, many for the first time, the Mari Sandoz Archive will aim to provide a unique and comprehensive view into the life and work of an extraordinary writer and chronicler of the Great Plains.