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Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record (HABS/HAER) Collection

Identifier: DADA-HD

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of measured drawings of historic sites and structures, many of them in the format prescribed by the U.S. National Park Service for the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) and the Historic American Engineering Record (HAER). Survey teams organized and sponsored by HABS and HAER prepared the earliest drawings in the collection: twenty-eight sets dating between 1934 and 1970. The archive holds blackline and blueline prints of these drawings, originally collected by David R. Hermansen, Professor of Architecture, to use as samples in his classes. Most of the later drawings, from 1970 to the present, were done by undergraduate architecture students at Ball State University as part of a required course (originally a series of four one-credit courses taught by Professor Hermansen) about documenting historic structures. Nearly all of the drawings by Ball State students are of buildings and bridges located in Indiana.

For over two decades, the documentation course required that final drawings be in Indiana ink on Mylar drafting film and be drawn to HABS/HAER standards. Many of the ink-on-Mylar originals from that period were forwarded to the National Park Service and are now part of the HABS/HAER Collections of the Library of Congress. The archive holds xerographic copies of the drawings that were transmitted to HABS/HAER.

The content of the documentation course was broadened in 1994 and the drawing requirement was revised. Drawings done for the course since that date generally do not meet all of the HABS/HAER standards.

The Library of Congress Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record/Historic American Landscape Survey collection may be accessed online at

Many HABS documents at the Library of Congress are available also in microform. Ball State's Architecture Library holds a large microfilm set published in 1974 covering all states and U.S. territories and also two supplements (1980 and 1990), on microfiche, covering Indiana only. The microform sets do not include HAER drawings.


  • 1934-present

Language of Materials

Materials entirely in English.

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Copyright Notice

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Drawings and Documents Archive, Archives and Special Collections, Ball State University Libraries, Muncie, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Drawings and Documents Archive.


Open-ended Cubic Feet

Custodial History

David R. Hermansen; students and faculty in the College of Architecture and Planning


Additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed. Finding aid created 1987/8/14 and revised 2003/2/18 by Andrew R. Seager.

Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record (HABS/HAER) Collection
Created and revised by Andrew R. Seager.
Created 1987/8/14; revised 2003/2/18.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Andrew Seager Archives of the Built Environment Repository

Architecture Building, Room 120
Muncie IN 47306 USA
765-285-3726 (Fax)