The cassette tape recordings consist of approximately 550 separate recordings, primarily of campus events and productions. The earliest recordings on cassette tape in this collection are user copies from phonograph records and reel-to-reel tapes. Starting in 1980 the College consistently recorded campus events on cassette tape up until the dominance of digital media in the mid-2000s. The collection does not include any recordings from 2007 or 2009. Only three recordings represent 2013, and as of May 2014 the Archives had not received any campus recordings on cassette tape for that year. The researcher should also consult the CD-ROM collection for recent recordings, and the reel-to-reel tape collection for earlier recordings.
Oberlin College has a long history of attracting distinguished speakers for its lecture series and for the commencement address, as well as for symposia and other events. Researchers will be interested to know that among the speakers represented, in addition to College presidents and faculty, are (in date order) Pete Seeger, Cesar Chavez, Desmond Tutu, Gunnar Birkerts, Eugene McCarthy, Benjamin Zander, Nat Brandt, Angela Davis, Kwame Toure, Sister Helen Prejean, Gary Wills, Richard Haas, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Elizabeth Drew, John Adams, V.S. Ramachandran, Stephen Carter, Martha Nussbaum, Paul Krugman, Sherman Alexie, Martin McGuinness, Nikki Giovanni, Christopher Edley, Jr., Julian Bond, Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot, Lynn Margulis, Donald Byrd, Jonathan Schell, Dennis Kucinich, Billy Collins, David Brooks, Tony Kushner, Lawrence D. Bobo, Bill McKibbin, and many others.