New items have been added to the WMU Archives and Regional History Collections website. Of particular interest are WMU yearbooks through 1975.
The digitized collections accessible here are:
The U.S. Civil War Collection of letters and diaries of nine men, some of whom served in the military and a few who did not. I blogged about this about a year ago. To see a list of the men's names and their units (where applicable) see Searchable Civil War Letters.
The Caroline Bartlett Crane's Everyman's House Collection includes books, photos and more. Crane designed the home with efficiency for the common woman in mind.
The Ward Morgan Collection consists of photos from 1939-1980 showing a variety of aspects of life in Kalamazoo from industry to women working in the kitchen to a nursing home.
The African American History Book, Michigan Manual of Freedman's Progress, was published in 1915 and includes a variety of topics. The book was written to catalog areas of progress made by African Americans since the end of the Civil War and in conjunction with the Lincoln Jubilee to be held in Chicago in that year and includes a list of Michigan delegates and exhibitors at the Lincoln Jubilee. Of genealogical value are the brief biographies of professional men, a list of property owners throughout the state and a list of men who served during the Civil War. A description is also given of many different organizations or clubs of which African Americans were founders or members. The book also has a brief history of African Americans in Michigan and statistical information obtained from the census as well as information on occupations and mortality. If you have any African American kin in Michigan during the time described it is definitely worth perusing. You can view it online or download it as a PDF.
For anyone with ancestors who attended Western Michigan University, the WMU Yearbooks Collection has been digitized. Yearbooks from 1906-1975 are available to view online or download. I found a photo of my gg-grandfather's niece in the 1907 yearbook. Most of the yearbooks are large files (up to 50 MB) and they can take some time to load on your screen. I have found it easier to download a particular yearbook and scan it offline than to wait for a particular paid to load.