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Dolores C. Renze Papers

Identifier: M194


Born in Denver, Colorado, Dolores C. Renze served as State Archivist of Colorado from 1949-1973. She was an adjunct professor at the University of Denver from 1952-1985, where her academic-year program of archival management was the only one in the nation wherein a graduate student in history or librarianship could become a trained archivist. The collection includes Colorado State Archive materials, archival projects, University of Denver materials, professional membership lists and notes, and repository guides that were created and used during her career at these institutions. The materials are largely textual, comprised of correspondence, publications, newspaper clippings and inventories, and also includes repository guides created during her time at the State Historical Society of Colorado and the General Services Administration.


  • 1937-1985


Biographical / Historical

Dolores C. Renze was born in 1907 in Denver, Colorado to Thomas E. Calahan and Anna Phennah. She married Walter Renze and had two children, a son James and a daughter Beverly. She was educated at the University of Denver and American University with Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctoral degrees. She held Certificates of Completion in Archives, Records Administration and Management, Oral History, Micrographics, and Public Administration. She was a member of Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority, Phi Beta Kappa, Mensa Society, American Association of University Women, and was a lifetime member and Elected Fellow of the Society of American Archivists and Westerners. In 1949, Ms. Renze became Colorado State Archivist and Public Records Administrator, Emeritus, and continued in that capacity until 1973. She began teaching and directing an annual “Summer Institute of Archival Studies” at the University of Denver in 1952. Ms. Renze retired as State Archivist in 1973, but continued an active role in archival education at the University of Denver, which had the only program in the nation offering archival certification to students pursuing a graduate degree in either history or librarianship. In 1976, she partnered with Enid Thompson, the former head librarian at the Colorado State Historical Society, as adjunct professors in archival management and history until 1985, when the University of Denver terminated the program. In addition to her contributions to the University of Denver and archival studies, she was an archaeologist in the Southwest, an administrative assistant to a U.S. Senator from Wyoming, a law enforcer for the Departments of Labor and Agriculture, and a Colorado ranch owner. She served in many volunteer organizations and was a director on several boards. She has lectured and written widely about archival subject matter, and has produced an extensive bibliography of her writings. Ms. Renze passed away on December 4, 2002.


2.5 Linear Feet (2 record boxes and 1 letter document box)

Scope and Contents

The papers highlight the activities and career of Dolores C. Renze as a professor at the University of Denver and as the Colorado State Archivist. The bulk of the collection contains reference materials related to records management and archival practice including: administration information, collection guides, equipment information, form controls, legislation and retention schedules, policy statements and procedure manuals, preservation guides and reports, records management, professional memberships and microfilm program information. Materials related to the archival courses she taught at the University of Denver include: course outlines, lecture notes, research materials and conference information.


The collection is organized into five series:; 1. Colorado State Archives, 1940-1975.; 2. Archival Projects, 1950-1985.; 3. University of Denver, 1937-1983.; 4. Professional Memberships, 1962-1984.; 5. Repository Guides, 1941-1973.;

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Source unknown.


No further accruals are expected.


There is no accession record.

Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and Archives Repository

2150 East Evans Avenue
Denver CO 80208
(303) 871-3428