Concerned that the history of the migration of 350,000 "Okies" to California would be lost, Gerald Haslam, Sonoma State University Professor of English, established the Okie Studies Project, now Dust Bowl Migration Archive. Included are examples of the work of Charles L. Todd, a librarian in the U.S. National Archives, who collected camp songs to add to the folk music collection of the National Archives
The collection was donated by Gerald Haslam in 1994, with an additional donation by B.J. Blanchard in 2016 from the collection of her father, David Kinkead, formerly the director of several Dust Bowl migrant camps. Materials include correspondence, camp records and diaries, stories, music scores, newsletters, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, a quilt, and photographs that document the history and experiences of the "Okies" who migrated to California in the 1930s. The collection materials are stored in 11 boxes, organized by topic. The name of the collection was changed to the Dust Bowl Migration Archive in 2008.
The research material in the collection is available to view by appointment.