May 16, 2022

Massive Marr Sound Archives at U. of Missouri-Kansas City Will Move Into Robotic Storage Unit

From The Kansas City Star:

The thousands of discs — one of the largest archived collections of recorded sound in the country — are being relocated to the [ Miller Nichols Library’s] third floor, where they will be housed in the university’s gargantuan, robotic storage unit.

The unprecedented move will give the discs digital identities and better preserve the collection, but visitors will no longer be able to stand amid its vastness.


The nearly $2 million move will gather the entire Kenneth J. LaBudde Special Collections, which includes the Marr Sound Archives as well as some old books, vintage movie posters and show bills.


[Our emphasis] The move into robotic storage is the first time known to archivists that a record collection the likes of the Marr Archives has been taken off the stacks and put into a giant electronic retrieval system. The new space will be triple the size of the archives’ current space.

While music is the bulk of the sound archives, which includes 350,000 recordings, other trophy pieces are involved, including photos and manuscripts and recordings such as a radio broadcast of Joplin-born African-American poet Langston Hughes reading his work.

Read the Complete Article, View Images

See Also: Marr Sound Archives Web Site ||| Marr Digital Projects

See Also: Scripts and Grooves (LaBudde Special Collections Blog)

See Also: Lear More About RooBot (Library’s Automated Storage and Retrieval System )
Includes video.

See Also: Miller Nichols Library Expansion & Renovation Project

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.