Reopening information

Masks are required in library buildings. Learn more about fall reopening.

Kautz Family YMCA Archives

The Kautz Family YMCA Archives collects the historical records of the Y's national resource office, YMCA of the USA. The archive also holds records of the Greater Twin Cities and Greater New York YMCAs, as well as those of Y's Men International, a service club in partnership with the Y.


The collections document the evolution of the Y from its Protestant evangelical origins. It includes its contributions to war relief, the invention of basketball and volleyball, public health campaigns in China, rural reconstruction in India and Korea, teaching English as a second language, and much more.

The YMCA Archives is affiliated with the Y and is part of the University of Minnesota Libraries' Migration and Social Services Collections in the Archives and Special Collections Department (ASC).

As America's leading nonprofit committed to helping people and communities learn, grow and thrive, the Y's contributions are both far-reaching and intimate -- from influencing the nation's culture during times of profound social change to support to adults learning to read. Here's a glance at the Y's rich history.

Back to top

Search collections

Collection guides
Use collection guides (or finding aids) that describe a collection of archival records, personal papers, or manuscripts to locate material for your research. The guide may be a brief summary or a detailed description and inventory.
Images and more
Search for digitized images and other media from the YMCA Archives.
Libraries catalog
Search for cataloged books, journals, and records from the YMCA Archives.

Back to top

Explore the Kautz Family YMCA Archives

Contact us

  • Reference & Outreach Archivist Ryan Bean 612.626.7899
  • Description & Access Archivist/Webmaster Lara Friedman-Shedlov 612.626.7972
  • YMCA of Minneapolis/Greater Twin Cities Archivist Alex Bentley 612.626.7956

Back to top

About the collection

Back to top


9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Wed, Sep 22
9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Thu, Sep 23
9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Fri, Sep 24
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sat, Sep 25
Note: Appointments are required to visit the reading room within these hours.

Back to top

Give to the collection

The Kautz Family YMCA Archives collects, preserves, and provides access to the records of the YMCA of the USA and related historical material.

We do this through conservation of historical documents, description and digitization projects that make material available online, research assistance to scholars, genealogists, YMCA staff, and the general public, exhibits highlighting the amazing heritage of the YMCA movement, and speaking engagements involving YMCA communities and other interested parties.

Your financial donation in any amount will help us to expand our preservation and outreach activities.

Give to the Kautz Family YMCA Archives

Back to top