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The American Heritage Center has elected to interpret the definition of “Asia” in an expansive manner and, as a result, acknowledge that the boundaries of Asia encompass a wide swath of the Asian continent, the Pacific Islands, and the Middle East. This reflects the countries and regions represented by the existing collections that comprise the “American Perspectives of Asia” collecting area. Many of the collections currently in the AHC’s holdings overlap with other collecting areas, most notably with the areas of military history and journalism. Many of the individuals who spent time in Asian nations did so during times of global conflict—World War II, and the Korean and Vietnam wars, for example. Many of these individuals served as soldiers, sailors, and pilots, as well as journalists assigned to foreign correspondent positions. Other collections share topical areas with the AHC’s focus on politics, as several personal papers were donated by individuals who served in the U.S. State Department, the U.S. Treasury Department, and various branches of the U.S. Foreign Service in consulates and embassies around the world. Also represented heavily are collections that document Americans’ experiences as energy, mining, or infrastructure consultants for foreign firms, universities, or international affiliates of U.S. companies. In addition, mountaineers are fairly well represented in our existing holdings, as certain mountainous regions of Asia include popular climbing peaks, such as Mr. Everest and K2.
Some of our prominent Asian holdings are detailed below. Additional holdings can be located by searching our online inventories (select University of Wyoming as the institution), or by searching our online catalog.