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University Union Collection, 1947 - Present | University Archives

By Perri Hamilton

Collection Overview

Title: University Union Collection, 1947 - PresentAdd to your cart.
Predominant Dates:1965 - Present
ID: 02/20/U0475
Extent: 34.0 Boxes
Arrangement: The papers are arranged alphabetical and by organization for the documents that came in with no established order.  The photographs and media are in their own series. Artifacts are also grouped in a series.
Date Acquired: 00/00/2013. More info below under Accruals.

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The need for a campus center to house student activities was recognized as early as 1928.  In that year UNT alumni started a fund drive to construct a memorial tower dedicated to the veterans of World War I.  The tower was designed by UNT alumnus O’Neal Ford.  Plans were for a 130 foot tower with chimes to replace the curfew bell, two electric clocks, and offices for the Ex-Student Association.  By 1931, Ford had incorporated the tower into a union.  The depression made it impossible to raise the funds for the structure.

By 1944-1945 a College Club House was opened on Ave. A and Sycamore Street.  It was called the “The Student Center” the following year.  The plan was to use this structure as a union until war priorities were lifted and a permanent structure could be built.

In 1948 construction started on an army surplus building to be the core of the new union. A brick veneer and two wings were added to the structure. A bookstore, post office, cafeteria, snack bar, meeting rooms, an office for the Ex-Students Association, and a large center room for dances and gatherings (the Howdy Room) were incorporated into the structure. The union was located on Chestnut Street.  It was two stories high and had a basement. The interior was decorated with a western theme – wagon wheels, barrel bases for lamps, and rustic wood furniture. The Memorial Union Building was dedicated on March 31, 1949, the fiftieth anniversary of the signing of the legislative act providing for the establishment of UNT as a state institution. A bronze plaque with the names of 147 former students who died in service was erected in the main foyer. Major General Roger Ramey, a UNT alumnus and later UNT regent, was the speaker.

The university’s growth led to the need for a larger union building by the 1960s.  The new structure was built in two sections.  The first wing was started in 1963 and opened in 1964. Then the old building was demolished and the main wing of the new union was built on the original Union site. It was opened in 1965.

In May 1973 the Board of Regents approved an expansion of the Union. One wing of the second Union was razed and the new structure was built around the remaining wing.   The bookstore and Post Office were retained in the surviving wing.  The expanded Union contained a central courtyard with a horizontal fountain on one side, the One O’clock Lounge, the Avesta Lounge (a quiet study area), meeting rooms (the Silver and Golden Eagle Suites, and the Denton Suite), offices for student services, the Campus Chat (a grill), The Corner (originally an ice cream parlor), the Rock Bottom Lounge (a bar) and the Syndicate (a game room) Later additions included the Mini Store (a trade bookstore), a food court, the Avesta (a restaurant).

In the 1990s students voted down a proposed expansion of the Union.  The poor economy was thought to have played a part in the students’ rejection of the planned enhancements to the facility. It was not until 2012 that the Student Government Association successfully put the idea of a new Union to a student wide vote. The students approved the referendum in April 2012.  In 2013 the first phase of construction started.  The new Union is expected to be finished by 2015.

Union Directors:

Harold Farmer

Hall Miller

Dorothy Pijan

Mike Maturea

Mary Yates

Jim Nicklas

Tom Rufer

Zane Reif

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The items in this collection were gathered and maintained by the University Union Administation and the Union's Design Works staff.  The items reflect the history of the unions on campus, the activities, the publications produced by and for the Union, and the organizations the Union served.  The collection contains publications, photographs, clippings, and artifacts.

Administrative Information

Repository: University Archives
Accruals: 2013-25
Access Restrictions: This collection is not restricted.
Use Restrictions: Reproduction and publication of materials in this collection are subject to the policies of the UNT Archives and Rare Books department. Copyright restrictions may apply.
Physical Access Note: This collection is stored off-site and requires a minimum of 24 hour notice prior to use.
Acquisition Source: Design Works (Analise Minjarex and Steve Meehin)
Acquisition Method: Gift

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Series:

Series 3: University Union Collection: ArtifactsAdd to your cart.
Items in this series reflect University Union activites or were used to promote the facility.
Box 14: University Union Collection Artifacts, 1996Add to your cart.
Two tee shirts that were worn or given out to participants in the Association of College Unions-International conference that was held on the UNT campus in 1996.
Barcode: 50426
Items: 2
Box 15: University Union Collection Artifacts: Tee Shirts and Bandana, 2001, 2002, 2007, no dateAdd to your cart.
This box contains a collection of tee shirts that promote events in the Union.
Barcode: 50425
Items: 6
Item 1: Bandana, no dateAdd to your cart.
Green bandana with white drawing of an eagle and lettering that reads "University of North Texas."
Item 2: Tee Shirt, 2002Add to your cart.
A dark green tee shirt that was created to celebrate University Day in 2002.  The lettering is white.
Item 3: Tee Shirt, 2001Add to your cart.
A dark green tee shirt that was prepared to celebrate University Day 2001.  The lettering is white and it is decorated with the head of an eagle in a circle.
Item 4: Tee Shirt, 2002Add to your cart.
A dark green tee shirt with white lettering that reads "North Texas, Homecoming 2002."
Item 5: Tee Shirt, 2007Add to your cart.
A light green tee shirt with a black and white box on the front that reads "The Unbreakable Bonfire, Homecoming 2007, Unbreakable  Bonds; North Texas."
Item 6: Tee Shirt, 2009Add to your cart.
A tee shirt that has the UNT eagle mascot carrying a birthday cake and torch.  The design and lettering are colored yellow, red, green and black.  The body of the shirt is light green. The wording reads, "UNT '09, Bonfire; 50th Anniversary Celebration; October 16, 2009."
Box 16: University Union Collection Artifacts: ButtonsAdd to your cart.
A collection of buttons that reflect the activities that took place in the University Union or that the Union staff participated in.
Barcode: 50424
Item 1: Association of College Unions-International, Program Committee, 1996Add to your cart.
Red, white and blue buttons that read: "ACU-I Philadelphia: 1996 Program Committee; Forming a More Perfect Union."
Items: 7
Item 2: Association of College Unions-International, Volunteers, 1996Add to your cart.
Red, white and blue button that reads: "ACU-I Philadelphia: 1996 Volunteers: Forming A More Perfect Union"
Button: 1
Item 3: Association of College Unions-International: Host Committee, 1996Add to your cart.
Red, white and blue button that reads: "ACU-I Philadelphia: 1996 Host Committee; Forming A More Perfect Union"
Items: 4
Item 4: Association of College Unions-International: Michael, 1990Add to your cart.
Pink, white and green button that reads: "Northwest Passage, Michael, Portland 1990, ACU-I"  The button also has a handwritten note with it.
Items: 2
Item 5: America's First Student Union, 1996Add to your cart.
A white button with blue image and print that reads: " America's First Student Union, University of Pennsylvania, Houston Hall, 1894 - 1996, The First 100 Years. "
Item: 1
Item 6: University Union Button, no dateAdd to your cart.
"University Union" in white lettering on a blue band that is across a white button decorated with images of confetti.
Items: 2
Item 7: Union Day Button, circa 1987Add to your cart.
A button with a yellow ground and black image and print that reads: "12th Annual Union Day, 40 Years of Union Pride."  The image is of a couple dancing.
Item: 1
Item 8: Union Day Button, 1990Add to your cart.
A pink button in the shape of a triangle with black print that reads: "The Place 2 B: University Union; The Great Escape To The Union; 14th Annual Union Day, March 8, 1990."
Items: 2
Item 9: Union Day Button, 1991Add to your cart.
Circular green button that is decorated to resemble a clock face.  The image and print are in black.  The button reads: "15th Annual Union Day; It's Time, March 6, 1991; The Place 2 B." There are also two orange buttons, with the same design and lettering.
Items: 4
Item 10: Button, no dateAdd to your cart.
A circular, yellow button with black lettering that reads, "I'm out of the BOX! ARE YOU?"
Items: 2
Item 11: Name Tag, no dateAdd to your cart.
A rectangular, white, plastic name tag with "University Union" in black lettering has had the employees name removed from the recessed slot it would have been dispayed in.
Item: 1
Box 17: University Union Collection ArtifactsAdd to your cart.
A collection of stickers and a paperwieght.
Barcode: 50423
Item 1: Stickers, 1998Add to your cart.
Oval green stickers with gold colored print that reads: "Celebrating Fifty Years of Unions at North Texas, 1948-1998, 50."
Item: 1 strip
Item 2: Stickers, no dateAdd to your cart.
A roll of two tone (gold colored) stickers that read: "20 Years of Service to UNT, 20, University Union."
Items: 1 roll
Item 3: Paperweight, no dateAdd to your cart.
A square shaped metal paperweight with a "U" on the face.
Item: 1
Box 18: University Union Collection ArtifactsAdd to your cart.
A collection of plaques that reflect the Miss Tesas Pageant Scholarship program at UNT.
Barcode: 50422
Folder 1: Plaque, 1976Add to your cart.
A brass plaque on a red velvet background which reads " Scholarship Donor, 1976, Miss Texas Pageant."
Item: 1
Folder 2: Plaque, 1978Add to your cart.
"Miss Texas Pageant, North Texas State University, scholarship donor, 1978"
Item: 1
Folder 3: Plaque, 1979Add to your cart.
"Miss Texas Pageant, North Texas State University, scholarship donor, 1979"
Item: 1
Folder 4: Plaque, 1980Add to your cart.
"Miss Texas Pageant, 1980, Scholarship Donor, North Texas State University"
Item: 1
Folder 5: Plaque, 1981Add to your cart.
"Miss Texas Pageant, 1981, Scholarship Donor, North Texas State University"
Item: 1
Folder 6: Plaque, 1982Add to your cart.
"Miss Texas Pageant, 1982, Scholarship Donor, North Texas State University"
Item: 1
Box 19: University Union Collection ArtifactsAdd to your cart.
A collection of artifacts that reflect activities that took place in the University Union.
Barcode: 50421
Item 1: Maracas, no dateAdd to your cart.
Green plastic maracas with a UNT logo, in black, on one side.
Items: 2
Item 2: Hat, no dateAdd to your cart.
A baseball shaped hat with a green bill, a white face with green printing on it, and a green mesh back section. The hat has a green "U" and "the Union, Food Services" printed on the front.
Item: 1
Folder 3: Fan, no dateAdd to your cart.
Spade shade shaped piece of cardboard with a wooden hand piece.  The front of the fan is silver colored with an image of a band playing on a gazebo.  The face reads: "Presenting Mr. Jack Daniel's Original Silver Cornet Band in Their Rousing Performane of Hometown Saturday Night."  The back of the fan is white with images of the band and band members,  the program and words to songs.
Item: 1
Folder 4: Fan, no dateAdd to your cart.
A white cardboard fan in a square shape with rounded corners and curved in on the sides. It is decorated with a dark green eagle logo, the words to "Glory to the Green and White" and the "Fight Song" and a light green logo for the First State Bank.
Items: 1
Folder 5: Flag, 1980Add to your cart.
A white flag with blue, white, and red stars across the top and the Olympic rings in black along the bottom of the flag. It is marked "1980 L. A. Olympic committee, TM" The flag is 5 inches by 3.5 inches.
Item: 1
Box 20: University Union Collection ArtifactsAdd to your cart.
Artifacts that were used in the University Union.
Barcode: 50420
Item 1: Ash Tray, no dateAdd to your cart.
A silver colored, cardboard ash tray that has green print that reads, "N.T.S.U.; The Union."
Item: 1
Item 2: Plaque, no dateAdd to your cart.
A clear acrylic rectange that is set into a wooden base.  The acrylic  has green print on it that provides the  "University Union Service Commitment" and has an image of Mary Yates signature at the bottom.
Items: 3
Item 3: Check Book Cover, 1997Add to your cart.
A dark green check book cover with white seal of the university and "University of North Texas" with "1st" (for First State Bank)  printed on the cover.  There is a check register, dated 1997-1999, inside.
Item: 1
Item 5: Stamp, no dateAdd to your cart.
A stamp that is attached to a wood body with a wooden knob handle.  The stamp says, "Artwork by Union Art Center." The stamp has white lettering on the handle that reads, "Cartan-Varo, Ft. Worth, F.D. 2-4739"
Item: 1
Item 6: Sign, No DateAdd to your cart.

A black sign with engraved writing on it that reads," ROCK BOTTOM LOUNGE, Frequesntly referred to by its initials, RBL, this intimate lounge provides a club-like atmosphere Monday through Friday during the long terms.  A luncheon fare awaits you.  Evenings, you may enjoy live entertainment, television viewed on a wide screen projector, disco dances, and a fun menu of specials with your favorite beverages.

The RBL has its own outside entrance on the north side of the Unin for your added convienience.

The Lounge bears the same name the identical area had in the old Union.  The Lounge is open only to University of North Texas students, faulty/Sstaff and their guests."

Item: 1
Box 21: University Union Collection Artifacts: Bottle, 1986Add to your cart.
A large green glass bottle with a white lablel with black and white wording, "Union, 10th Anniversary." There is a red banner that goes across the lable  that reads, "1976, NTSU, 1986."
Barcode: 50419
Items: 1
Box 22: University Union Collection Artifacts: AlbumAdd to your cart.
A photography album that has been decorated with white cloth and lace.  It was used to present prints, menus, and other documents that documented weddings and special events that the Union catered.
Barcode: 50418
Item: 1
Box 23: University Union Collection ArtifactsAdd to your cart.
Items that were used in the Union or honored the staff of that facility.
Barcode: 50417
Item 1: Ribbon, no dateAdd to your cart.
A first place ribbon from the National Association of College and University Food Services.  The ribbon is purple and is marked, "NACUFS; Menu Exchange Award, Catering; First Place."
Item: 1
Item 2: Foam Eagle's Claw, no dateAdd to your cart.
A foam mitt in the shape of an eagle's claw with "Mean Green" printed on it.
Item: 1
Item 3: Fan, no dateAdd to your cart.
White paper fan, square shaped with rounded edges, a dark green ealgle logo and the First State Bank logo and name at the base.  The fan's face is stapled on to a wood handle.  "Glory to the Green and White" and the"Fight Song" are printed on the face of the fan.
Item: 1
Item 4: Sign and Brochures, no dateAdd to your cart.
A sign promoting the NT Express card, a prepay card that allowed users to purchase food items or meals on campus. Brocures are held in a pocket on the sign.  The sigh has a bright pink background with an image of playing cards with one NT Express card in the mix. The pocket has the working, "The Best Card in the Deck."
Brochures: 30
Sign: 1
Box 24: University Union Collection Artifacts: Mugs, no dateAdd to your cart.
A collection of coffee mugs are in this box.
Barcode: 50416
Item 1: Mugs, no dateAdd to your cart.
Dark green coffee mugs with white lettering and the eagle's head logo.  The text is "University of North Texas, University Union, 'A Partner in Your Success,', (940)565-3805."
Items: 2
Item 2: Mug, no dateAdd to your cart.
One deep blue coffee mug with white printing on it that reads: ACUI, Video Training Series; Operations Insight."
Item: 1
Box 25: University Union Collection ArtifactsAdd to your cart.
Items that were used by Union Food Service.
Barcode: 50415
Item 1: Tray, no dateAdd to your cart.
One off white, plastic food service tray that was used by patrons of the University Union food outlets.
Item 2: Sign, no dateAdd to your cart.
A white, plastic sign that is decorated with images of fruits and vegetables and the words, "Union Food Service."
Box 26: University Union Collection Artifacts: FinelineAdd to your cart.
Artifacts from Fineline, a design and advertising studio at the University of North Texas.
Barcode: 50414
Item 1: Tee Shirt, no dateAdd to your cart.
A white tee shirt with an image of a sliced pizza with the text, " I Got a Piece at the Fineline Open House!"  The back of the box shows a pizza delivery-man supporting a portfolio with one hand and the words, "Fineline Delivers."
Item: 1
Item 2: Box, no dateAdd to your cart.
A pizza box with an image of a pizza delivery-man supporting a portfolio with one hand and the text, "Fineline Delivers."
Item: 1
Box 27: University Union Collection Artifacts: Award, circa 1963Add to your cart.
The award used to honor the "Outstanding Sophomore Woman."  It is a loving cup shaped and capped with a winged woman raising a victory cup.  It is mounted on a wood base that has a metal plaque mounted to it that lists the recipients of the award: Marylin Merritt (1961), Billie Sue Blake (1962) and Jeri Goss (1963).
Barcode: 50413
Item: 1
Box 28: University Union Collection Artifacts: Shirts, no dateAdd to your cart.
Polo shirts used to promote the University Union. One shirt is green and the other is black. Both are decorated with a white embroidered "U" in a circle and the words, "University Union, UNT" below the "U."
Barcode: 50412
Items: 2
Box 29: University Union Collection ArtifactsAdd to your cart.
Plaques and awards that reflect the accomplishments of the yearbook staff.
Barcode: 50411
Item 1: Award, 1942Add to your cart.
A victory cup with "John Thomason, Editor-In-Chief" engraved on the cup and "1st Place T.I.P.A. Yearbook Award, 1942" on the base.  This was awarded by the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association.  There is a lid for the top of the cup.
Items: 1
Item 2: Award, 1948Add to your cart.
An cup shaped award with the inscriptioin, "T.I.P.A., 1948, Winner Class A Yearbook."
Item 3: Award, 1948Add to your cart.
An urn shaped award with a lid that has lost its base.  The engraving on the urn reads, " T.I.P.A., College Annual, 1948, The Yucca, Elizabeth Youngblood."
Item: 1
Item 4: Award, 1949Add to your cart.
This item is a loving cup shaped top on a tall cylindrical base. The inscription on the cup reads, "T.I.P. A., Year Book, 1st Place, First Division, 1949.
Item: 1
Item 5: Award, 1951Add to your cart.
A loving cup shaped award that has the inscritption, "Winner, 1951, TIPA, Yearbook Contest, First Division."   TIPA is the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association.
Item: 1
Item 6: Plaque, 1952Add to your cart.
"1952, T.I.P.A., Class-A Yearbook" is on a plaque from the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association.
Item: 1
Item 7: Award, 1953Add to your cart.
A tall wood base is capped by a winged victory raising a wreath.  The inscription on the base reads, "TIPA, 1953, Yearbook, Class I."
Items: 1
Item 279: Union Print, 1986Add to your cart.
An etching of the interior of the third University Union (1976-2015) by Rhae Burden. It comes with an inscription by Julie Bollinger.  The etching was created to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Union in 1986.
Barcode: 702956
Item Number: G-93-5

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