The West Coast School of Nature Study at San Jose State College began in 1931 and was created by Dr. Karl S. Hazeltine, instructor of nature studies and Dr. Gayle B. Pickwell, instructor of natural science. The program focused on the study of geology, history, and the flora and fauna of the region. The first study site took place in Big Basin State Park in 1931, followed by program sites in Asilomar State Park, Sequoia National Park, Death Valley National Park and throughout California. This program continues at San Jose State University during the summer session under the name Field Studies in Natural History.
The Gerald L. French Photograph Collection documents the San Jose State College West Coast School of Nature Study program held in Death Valley in 1958. Gerald L. French, then a San Jose State College student, attended this program and donated this collection to the university. The images document the activities, events, and participants on this field trip. The digital collection consists of forty-two 4x5 inch negatives and twenty-seven 35 mm color slides. Forty-one black and white prints which duplicate most of the negatives are included in the physical collection, but are not part of the digital collection. For additional information about using images in this collection contact the SJSU Special Collections Department.
For a description of the contents of the physical collection, see the online Finding Aid.
For more information about the scope of the physical collection see the online Collection Guide.