The local history collecting area focuses on the history of St. Louis and the surrounding region. While a few documents from the city’s colonial-era are found within the rare books and manuscript collections, most of the archival collections focus on life in the 19th and 20th century. Collections documenting urban development and city life are a particular strength. Contemporary (21st century) St. Louis historic events are also preserved, as with the Regional Ferguson Collecting Initiative.
These collections are also in some way connected to the University — often created, saved, or produced by faculty, staff, student or alumnus. This differs from University Archives’ collections which focus on the history of the University itself, although there is significant overlap in some collections.