Salutation to Zonnie Gorman's Navajo Code Talker Collections Donated to CSWR

Departmental News

Posted: Dec 02, 2022 - 02:22pm

Photo of Zonnie Gorman - Credit: Anthony Anaya-Gorman

The University Libraries proudly celebrates Native American Heritage Month by shining a light on recently added indigenous collections in the Center for Southwest Research and Special Collections (CSWR). The Carl N. Gorman and William Dean Wilson Collection, both document the lives and service of the aforementioned men who were among the First Twenty-nine Navajo Code Talkers of World War II. The collections were donated by Zonnie Gorman – a recognized historian on the Navajo Code Talkers of World War II, prior CSWR Graduate Fellow, and daughter of Carl Gorman.

Both collections include military documents and photos from their lives including their time in the military. Wilson’s collection contains six boxes and is available with permission from the donor. The Carl Gorman Collection is currently still being processed with about 52 boxes of materials.

Between 1969 and 1973, Carl Gorman was a professor at the University of California – Davis. There he was one of the four founding faculty of the Native American Studies Department. Gorman received an honorary doctorate in Humane Letters from The University of New Mexico in 1990 for his lifelong work and achievements in Indian art, Education, and culture.

Zonnie Gorman is a doctoral candidate within the UNM History department and is writing her dissertation about the original pilot group of Navajo Code Talkers. Zonnie was also a CSWR graduate fellow in 2021 and was tasked with processing both the Wilson and Gorman collection.

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