Down the Corridor: UNT yearbooks online

From the 1906 Cotton-tail to the 2007 Aerie and all the Yuccas and Wings in between, UNT yearbooks are now online and fully searchable through the Portal to Texas History. The portal, created by the UNT libraries’ digital projects unit, provides access to Texas history materials from libraries, museums, archives, private collections and historical and genealogical societies throughout the state.

The portal’s UNT yearbook collection includes all yearbooks printed: the 1906 Cotton-tail; the Yucca, 1907-1943, 1945-1974; Wings, 1977, 1979, 1980; and the Aerie, 1982-2007. The books are searchable by text or can be browsed by page.

If you need help, there are handy guides that explain how to do anything in the portal. Just click on “Help” at the top right corner of any web page in the portal, then click on “Guides.”

You also can find yearbooks on the portal from a number of other universities in Texas that have paid to have them added. Yearbooks are included from Abilene Christian University, 1916-2007; Daniel Baker College in Brownwood, 1913-1952; Hardin-Simmons University, 1908-2007; Howard Payne University, 1913-2002; McMurry College in Abilene, 1924-2006; and Austin College, 1899-1950. While you’re browsing, check out other collections, including photos from the UNT archives showing the early days of campus.

Dreanna Belden, coordinator for grants and development in the digital projects unit, says it took about eight months to get the UNT yearbooks online, with the staff also working on other projects. Each book is scanned page by page, and then its text is extracted through optical character recognition to make it searchable. Belden offers a few helpful tips for navigating the yearbooks:

  • After going to the Portal to Texas History, type the words or name you’re looking for into the search box (enclose in quote marks to search for the exact phrase). The search results will include a list of the yearbooks that contain those words. Choose the book from the year you’re interested in and search again to find the specific page or pages on which the words occur.
  • When you’re viewing a yearbook page, if you’d like to see a larger version, click on “all image sizes” to the right of the page. You can select from several sizes to view. Or click on “zoom (full page)” to magnify.
  • If you’d like to save the image of the yearbook page to your own computer, just choose the image size you’d like and click “download image,” or right-click on the image and choose “save picture as.” It’s ok to download UNT yearbook images for your personal use.

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