Lafayette at U. Va.

This summer the French frigate Hermione—a reconstruction of the vessel which, in 1780, brought the Marquis de Lafayette back to the United States with welcome news of French aid, and which then helped to secure final victory at Yorktown in 1781—made a triumphal voyage to the United States. Built in France between 1997 and 2012 at a cost of over $20 million, the Hermione—measuring 213 x 37 feet, its center mast reaching 177 feet—takes pride of place as France’s grandest “tall ship.” After arriving at Yorktown, Va., to a gala reception on June 5, the Hermione stopped at a dozen ports of call along the eastern seaboard before departing for France on July 18.

The Hermione at anchor in Baltimore's Inner Harbor, June 2015.   (Gift of Albert H. Small)

The Hermione at anchor in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, June 2015. (Gift of Albert H. Small)

As a memento of the Hermione’s visit, the U.Va. Library’s devoted friend and generous supporter Albert H. Small has presented us with a photograph of the reconstructed ship at anchor in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. Mr. Small’s gift prompted us to search Under Grounds for rare books, manuscripts, and other artifacts relating to Lafayette, and we located much of interest! Following is a brief sampling of what Lafayette enthusiasts will find in the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library.

The Marquis de Lafayette - Albert H. Small copy of the 1823 "Stone" facsimile of the Declaration of Independence, on display in the Small Special Collections Library's Declaration Exhibition Gallery.   (KF4506 .A1 1823; Gift of Albert H. Small)

The Marquis de Lafayette – Albert H. Small copy of the 1823 “Stone” facsimile of the Declaration of Independence, on display in the Small Special Collections Library’s Declaration Exhibition Gallery. (KF4506 .A1 1823; Gift of Albert H. Small)

Perhaps pride of place should go to Lafayette’s own copy of the Declaration of Independence—the document he devoted his life to defending and disseminating. During Lafayette’s triumphal tour of the United States in 1824-1825, he was presented with an official full-size engraved facsimile, printed on vellum, of the original Declaration now on display in the National Archives. Lafayette treasured this copy of the “Stone printing,” hanging it in his bedchamber after returning to France. Eventually acquired by Albert H. Small, Lafayette’s copy now resides at U.Va., where it forms part of Mr. Small’s superlative Declaration of Independence collection. Visitors may view it (or rather, for conservation reasons, an exact facsimile of the original) in the Small Special Collections Library’s permanent exhibition of highlights from Mr. Small’s collection.

Lafayette sends orders to Capt. Belfield in Staunton, Va., July 3, 1781.   (MSS 8097)

Lafayette sends orders to Capt. Belfield in Staunton, Va., July 3, 1781. (MSS 8097)

Arriving in the U.S. in 1777 as a newly commissioned officer, the 19-year-old Lafayette soon won the respect and friendship of George Washington while contributing significantly to the American cause. In the early summer of 1781, Lafayette played a critical role in skirmishing with British forces in Virginia until Washington had time to spring his trap at Yorktown. On July 3, 1781, Lafayette sent the orders shown above to a Capt. Belfield at Staunton, Va., also noting the presence of Baron von Steuben in Charlottesville.

An engraved facsimile, ca. 1824, of Lafayette's 1784 testimonial letter on behalf of James Armistead Lafayette, with added portrait.   (Broadside 1824 .L25)

An engraved facsimile, ca. 1824, of Lafayette’s 1784 testimonial letter on behalf of James Armistead Lafayette, with added portrait. (Broadside 1824 .L25)

Another Virginian in Lafayette’s service was James, a slave permitted by his master to serve as an American spy behind British lines by posing as a fugitive. In 1787, with his owner’s support and a testimonial letter from Lafayette, James was freed by the Virginia Assembly and took the name James Armistead Lafayette. When Lafayette returned to the U.S. in 1824, his kindness to James—and his ardent support for the as-yet-unrealized ideal that “all men are created equal”—were commemorated in an engraved print bearing James’s likeness above a facsimile of Lafayette’s testimonial letter.

Jefferson's presentation inscription to Lafayette in the gift copy of Notes on the State of Virginia (Paris, 1784-1785).   (F230 .J4 1785; Gift of William Andrews Clark, Jr.)

Jefferson’s presentation inscription to Lafayette in a gift copy of Notes on the State of Virginia (Paris, 1784-1785). (F230 .J4 1785; Gift of William Andrews Clark, Jr.)

While James sought his freedom another Virginian, Thomas Jefferson, was in Paris, where he arranged to print 200 copies of his book, Notes on the State of Virginia, during 1784-1785. These he privately distributed as he saw fit on both sides of the Atlantic. To a small number of specially bound presentation copies, including one sent to Lafayette, Jefferson added long, personal inscriptions. Lafayette’s copy now resides at U.Va., the gift of William Andrews Clark, Jr.

Thomas Jefferson's letter of November 27, 1793 to Angelica Schuyler Church, in which he discusses American efforts to free Lafayette from a French prison.   (MSS 11245-b)

Thomas Jefferson’s letter of November 27, 1793 to Angelica Schuyler Church, in which he discusses American efforts to free Lafayette from a French prison. (MSS 11245-b)

Silk ribbon commemorating Lafayette's 1824-1825 visit to the U.S.   (MSS 14211)

Silk ribbon commemorating Lafayette’s 1824-1825 visit to the U.S. (MSS 14211)

Among the many friendships Jefferson cultivated in Paris was that of American expatriate Angelica Schuyler Church, wife of an American diplomat and Alexander Hamilton’s sister-in-law. Church later moved to London, where she monitored with increasing dismay the unfolding French Revolution and its tragic consequences for her friends. In her unceasing efforts to aid one imprisoned friend—the Marquis de Lafayette—Church was ultimately successful, as documented in an extraordinary cache of correspondence obtained by U.Va. a few years ago. Included is a 1793 letter from Jefferson, then Secretary of State, who thanks Church for forwarding a letter from “my very good friend” Lafayette, and informs her that “the influence of the United States has been put into action as far as it could be either with decency or effect.” (Sharp-eyed readers will also note a fascinating reference to Maria Cosway.)

Most of our Lafayette holdings, however, relate to his extended American tour, from July 1824 to September 1825, during which he received the proverbial hero’s welcome from Americans in 24 states. In Special Collections one will find a diverse assortment of primary sources documenting Lafayette’s American travels, ranging from commemorative silk ribbons worn in his honor to eyewitness accounts of local festivities in letters sent to friends and family. From November 4-8, 1824, Lafayette was in Charlottesville where, after an emotional reunion with Jefferson at Monticello, Lafayette was fêted at a banquet held in the still-unfinished U.Va. Rotunda. Many interesting details of the event were conveyed in this letter from local resident Jane E. Ferguson to her father.

Jane E. Ferguson's account of Lafayette's reception at the U.Va. Rotunda on November 8, 1824.   (MSS 38-122-a)

Jane E. Ferguson’s account of Lafayette’s reception at the U.Va. Rotunda on November 8, 1824. (MSS 38-122-a)

From Charlottesville Lafayette journeyed overland to Orange, Va., where on November 25, 1824, he was received with great ceremony. Making the public introduction was former president (and local resident) James Madison, whose remarks are preserved in the holograph draft to be found in the Small Special Collections Library.

James Madison's remarks introducing Lafayette to the citizens of Orange, Va., November 25, 1824.   (MSS 4677)

James Madison’s remarks introducing Lafayette to the citizens of Orange, Va., November 25, 1824. (MSS 4677)

Nearly a year later Lafayette was back in France. On November 5, 1825, Lafayette wrote to Jefferson from his home in La Grange, advising him of a shipment of, what else but books, and sending “my ardent wishes for your better health, and the affectionate sentiments of your old friend.” On the reverse Jefferson noted the letter’s receipt at Monticello on May 18, 1826—perhaps the final communication he would receive from Lafayette.

Lafayette to Thomas Jefferson, November 15, 1825.  (MSS 8885)

Lafayette to Thomas Jefferson, November 15, 1825. (MSS 8885)

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On View Now: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the first publication of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Special Collections holds a collection of more than 1500 items related to this and Charles Dodgson’s other works, such as Through The Looking Glass and various works on logic and mathematics. The portion of the collection relating to Alice is the largest, and includes hundreds of editions as well as parodies, interpretations, and reimaginings of Alice’s adventures from all periods and in many different languages. This collection was built  by U.Va. Professor of Philosophy Peter Heath, who taught at the university from 1962 to 1995. His own book, The Philosopher’s Alice (1974), juxtaposes the novel’s text with Heath’s own philosophical commentary.

In honor of Professor Heath’s collection, undergraduate Wolfe Docent Susan Swicegood curated the mini-exhibition “Happy 150th Birthday, Alice!” Faced with the daunting prospect of selecting just a handful of items from the remarkable Heath collection, Susan decided to focus on how illustrators have envisioned the figure of Alice herself over the course of the book’s publishing history. She did a beautiful job, and has filled three exhibition cases with items to stimulate memories and artistic inspiration for all generations of Alice readers. Here are just a few examples to tempt you:

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This detail comes from a pop-up edition advertised as a “come to life panorama.”  With her rosy cheeks and curly hair, this Alice looks more like a cherub than a curious Victorian child. Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, illsutrated by A. L. Bowley. (London: Raphael Tuck, [1920s]). (PR 4611 .A7 1920b). Peter Heath Lewis Carroll Collection. Gift of Diana Salcedo and Philip Heath.

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Alice parodies use the book’s playful structure as an avenue for political or social commentary. This space-age Alice no longer travels down a rabbit hole, but to a new planet. Renzo Rossott, Alice in 2000, illustrated by Grazia Nidasio. (London : Ward Lock Limited, [1970]) (PR4611 .A72 R68 1970). Peter Heath Lewis Carroll Collection.Gift of Diana Salcedo and Philip Heath.

 

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Alice got a big makeover in the 1970s, as modern printing techniques gave illustrators brighter and more dynamic colors that embody childish imagination, and finally giving Wonderland its psychedelic flair. This beautiful pop-up book displays a fabulous, hippie Alice at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland Retold by Albert G Miller, designed by Paul Taylor, illustrated by Dave Chambers, Gwen Gordon and John Spencer. (New York: Random house [1968]) (PR4611 .A72 M53 1968). Peter Heath Lewis Carroll Collection. Gift of Diana Salcedo and Philip Heath.

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The exhibition is broken into three sections: “The Origins of Alice,” which looks at how Alice’s visual identity first emerged, “Alice in the Golden Age of Illustration,” focusing on the lavish aesthetic of the early twentieth century, and “An Alice for Every Generation,” looking at Alices from the 1960s through our own time, with examples ranging from the iconic Disney animation aesthetic to the edgy pen and ink imaginings of Ralph Steadman.

 

We encourage you to stop by and visit the exhibition, which is on view in the First Floor Gallery through September 18. It’s a visual feast–or should we say, tea party?

 

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First Floor Exhibitions Explore Slavery and Abolition

The Harrison/Small First Floor Gallery is excited to announce our two summer exhibitions: “My Own Master: Resistance to American Slavery” and the mini-exhibition “‘Read, Weep, and Reflect': Creating Young Abolitionists through Uncle Tom’s Cabin.” Together these two exhibitions extend some of the themes explored in our Harrison Gallery exhibition, “Who Shall Tell the Story: Voices of Civil War Virginia. ”  Come in out of the heat and spend some time with these marvelous exhibitions. Some images to tempt you follow…

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The larger exhibition, “My Own Master,” is of particular note because it is the first exhibition in memory that the University of Virginia Library has mounted on the topic of slavery (a fact discovered in discussions with long-time Special Collections staff). Though artifacts relating to slavery have been included and the topic discussed in past exhibitions, slavery has not been the sole subject of an exhibition here.  We are very pleased to end that tradition this summer. Even more exciting, in 2018 we will mount a major exhibition on the topic of slavery at the University of Virginia in the Harrison Gallery, in support of the President’s Commission on Slavery and the University.

“My Own Master” showcases thirty remarkable items from the collections demonstrating some of the ways that blacks–slave, free, and freed–fought against slavery. Curator Petrina Jackson describes the exhibition’s project as follows: “When the white abolitionist Sydney Howard Gay published his four-volume A Popular History of the United States in 1876, he covered slavery and abolitionism in the final volume. He wrote, ‘the African in America whether bond or free had learned the habit of submission and had rarely shown any spirit of revolt.’ Gay wrote this even though he labored closely with black abolitionists who risked their freedom and their lives to secure the freedom of their enslaved brethren. He likewise documented the harrowing stories of fugitive slaves, who wagered everything to gain control of their personhood, their bodies, their lives. “My Own Master” challenges the notion of black passivity and shows African Americans as active agents in breaking the bonds of slavery.”

mom3The exhibition displays artifacts that document a variety of forms of rebellion: running away, planning insurrections, writing abolitionist works and manifestoes, and buying one’s own and one’s family’s freedom. It concludes with a recently acquired broadside printed by African-American leaders in Richmond a year after the city surrendered.

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Portraits of black abolitionists from books in our collections are featured in the gallery and on the poster.

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Our mini-exhibition, “Read, Weep, and Reflect: Creating Young Abolitionists through Uncle Tom’s Cabin” was curated by undergraduate Wolfe Docent Susan Swicegood (CLAS 2015, Curry 2016). Curator Molly Schwartzburg asked Susan to develop an exhibition around a recently acquired early puzzle about Harriet Beecher Stowe’s novel, which is our second such puzzle. Susan tracked down a wonderful range of children-related publications and “tie-in products” from the nineteenth century. It is not to be missed!

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The new puzzle is on the left.

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Games, theater tickets, and more!

uncle3Come on by and take a look!

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Tales from Under Grounds II: War

This is the final of four posts, spotlighting the mini-exhibitions of students from USEM 1570: Researching History.

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Turner Labrie, First-Year Student

Turner Labrie

Photograph of Turner Labrie by Sanjay Suchak, November 18, 2014.

Virginia and The Spanish American War

In February of 1895, the Spanish-controlled island of Cuba erupted in rebellion. Over the course of their fighting with the rebels, the Spanish employed increasingly brutal repression tactics. These brutal tactics were further sensationalized by American newspapers, a method that is now better known as “yellow journalism.”  In response to the growing unrest in Cuba and domestic pressures at home, the United States government sent naval crafts to protect US citizens residing in Cuba.

The Spanish-American War began in April of 1898, prompted by the inexplicable explosion in the USS Maine, which was one of the ships based outside of Havana protecting U.S. interests. After the explosion, fighting erupted between the United States and Spain in various parts of the world, including Puerto Rico, Spain and the Philippines. Ultimately, the United States won the war, made Puerto Rico and the Philippines their territories, and freed Cuba from Spanish control.

This exhibition documents Virginia’s involvement in the Spanish American War.

Soldier's Memorial, Spanish American War of 1898: Suffolk Light Infantry. Company G. Fourth Regiment, Virginia Volunteer Infantry ... Organized at Suffolk, Va., June 22, 1892 mustered into the United States Service at Richmond, Va., May 23, 1898. Washington, D.C.: Fuller Bros., 1898. (Poster 1898 .S73) This poster portrays the Suffolk Light Infantry in combat, and in the middle, it lists members of the Company G, including officers. Virginia was expected to contribute heavily to the war, but outside of the involvement of a couple regiments, it served more in an ancillary role. Many supplies were shipped through its ports and camps were established throughout the state to train soldiers for combat. That being said, fourteen of the deceased sailors from the explosion of the Maine were originally from Virginia.

Soldier’s Memorial, Spanish American War of 1898: Suffolk Light Infantry. Company G. Fourth Regiment, Virginia Volunteer Infantry … Organized at Suffolk, Va., June 22, 1892 mustered into the United States Service at Richmond, Va., May 23, 1898. Washington, D.C.: Fuller Bros., 1898. (Poster 1898 .S73)
This poster portrays the Suffolk Light Infantry in combat, and in the middle, it lists members of the Company G, including officers. Virginia was expected to contribute heavily to the war, but outside of the involvement of a couple regiments, it served more of an ancillary role. Many supplies were shipped through Virginia’s ports, and camps were established throughout the state to train soldiers for combat. That being said, fourteen of the deceased sailors from the explosion of the USS Maine were originally from Virginia.

Capt. Edgar de Duphane. Wanted. 100 Volunteer Crack Shots, for Immediate Service. New Market, VA: Henkel & Co., Printers, 1898. (Broadside 1898 .D84) Captain Edgar de Duphane posted this message in New Market, Virginia to encourage proficient shooters to join the US Army at the outbreak of the Spanish American War. These shooters would then be shipped off to various camps throughout the country for integration into the army. From there, they would be sent to participate in the fighting against Spanish forces.

Capt. Edgar de Duphane. Wanted. 100 Volunteer Crack Shots, for Immediate Service. New Market, VA: Henkel & Co., Printers, 1898. (Broadside 1898 .D84)
Captain Edgar de Duphane posted this message in New Market, Virginia to encourage proficient shooters to join the U.S. Army at the outbreak of the Spanish American War. The shooters were then sent to various camps throughout the country for integration into the army. From there, they  fought against Spanish forces.

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Max Novick, First-Year Student

Max Novick presents a WWI era scrapbook, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

Max Novick presents a WWI era scrapbook, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

Propaganda and Sentiments of World War I

While World War I can be at times dwarfed by the magnitude of the Second World War, many of the same feelings of fear that the Allies expressed towards the German enemy still existed. Through this mélange of emotions, the use of propaganda became commonplace to strike fear in the heart of the enemy and to motivate the allied nations. Though propaganda can be quite coarse and grating, this mini-exhibition makes an attempt to display a few types of this curious art form.

Through the use of five dissimilar items, this exhibit moves in a somewhat linear fashion, from crass to serious, in order to capture the very essence of the emotions that were shared in the Allies battle against the Imperial forces.  Nevertheless, Novelist James Dickey’s sentiments to a major donor to Virginia of this era caps the exhibition in its ability to look beyond the pairing of one side versus another and at the real issue of humans versus humans.

Falser, M. “Pour le suprême effort.” World War I posters 1914-1918.  (MSS 5023-b) Robertson Gift Dec. 1969 Produced in 1918, artist, M. Falser, shows a darkly colored image of a French soldier in fierce, but advantageous, combat with an eagle. This black eagle as well as the helmet known as a Pickelhaube, are signs of the German Imperial Army. The violent force with which the French soldier maims this Imperial enemy seeks to inspire hope and courage within the nation of interest, like many propaganda posters of the time, and to deflate the image of the enemy.

Falser, M. “Pour le suprême effort.” World War I posters 1914-1918. (MSS 5023-b) Robertson Gift Dec. 1969
Produced in 1918, artist M. Falser shows a darkly colored image of a French soldier in fierce combat with an eagle. This black eagle as well as the helmet known as a Pickelhaube are signs of the German Imperial Army. The violent force with which the French soldier maims this Imperial enemy seeks to inspire hope and courage within the nation of interest and to deflate the image of the enemy.

 

Dickey, James. “For Matt Bruccoli’s Father.” Letter. World War I Memorabilia. (MSS 10875-s) Bruccoli Great War Collection. Gift of Matthew J. Bruccoli, July, 1997  Famous American novelist, James Dickey, through this extremely personal letter, offers a writer’s input on the war. This letter looks beyond the simplicities of propaganda and talk about war’s more virulent nature. This note does not degrade the enemy in any way, but rather looks at the matter from the perspective of a human being to express the atrocities and horrors that war imposes on mankind.

By arrangement with the Heirs of James Dickey and their agents Raines & Raines. James Dickey. Letter for Matt Broccoli’s Father, July 1997. (MSS 10875-s) Bruccoli Great War Collection. Gift of Matthew J. Bruccoli.
Famous American novelist, James Dickey, through this extremely personal letter, offers a writer’s input on the war. This letter looks beyond the simplicities of propaganda and talks about war’s more virulent nature. This note does not degrade the enemy in any way, but rather looks at the matter from the perspective of a human being to express the atrocities and horrors that war imposes on mankind.

 

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Emily Templin, First-Year Student

Emily Templin

Photograph of Emily Templin by Sanjay Suchak, November 18, 2014.

World War II Propaganda in America

America officially entered World War II after Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. While American soldiers were off fighting for the Allied cause, other forces worked to keep the home front involved and in support of the war. The Office of War Information (OWI), created by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1942, was designed to help mobilize domestic support and keep citizens informed. The OWI produced propaganda, such as radio broadcasts, newspaper articles, posters, and photographs that served as a direct appeal to citizens at home to support the war.

Much of the propaganda tended to focus on how everyone could “play their part” in the war effort, including buying war bonds, rationing, and conserving scrap metal and rubber. Ultimately, propaganda helped to shape the culture of the American home front, sparking a unified effort to help fight the war by any means possible.

1942 War Bonds Poster. "We Shall Win Or We Shall Die": Double Your Shares In the U.S.A. ... Buy War Bonds and Stamps Today!. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1942.  (Poster 1942 .W4) This 1942 propaganda poster advertises the sale of war bonds as a way for people at home to contribute to the war effort. Since World War II was a “total war,” patriotic propaganda was used to garner support for the war on the American home front. The poster’s language serves to unite soldiers with civilians back home in a combined revenue-raising effort that both financially and morally supports the war

1942 War Bonds Poster. “We Shall Win Or We Shall Die”: Double Your Shares In the U.S.A. … Buy War Bonds and Stamps Today!. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1942. (Poster 1942 .W4)
This 1942 propaganda poster advertises the sale of war bonds as a way for people at home to contribute to the war effort. Since World War II was a “total war,” patriotic propaganda was used to garner support for the war on the American home front. The poster’s language serves to unite soldiers with civilians back home in a combined revenue-raising effort that both financially and morally supports the war.

 

United States of America. Four Freedoms Booklet. Louis G. Cowan World War II Propaganda Collection, 1941-1946  (MSS 11569) Based on Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech, this booklet elaborates how the freedoms of speech and worship and the freedoms from want and fear operated in America. The booklet contrasts pictures of America’s happy children, education systems, and plentiful harvests with pictures of the violence, government restrictions, and food lines in Axis countries in order to promote the Allied war efforts.

United States of America. Four Freedoms Booklet. Louis G. Cowan World War II Propaganda Collection, 1941-1946. (MSS 11569)
Based on Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech, this booklet elaborates how the freedoms of speech and worship and the freedoms from want and fear operated in America. The booklet contrasts pictures of America’s happy children, education systems, and plentiful harvests with pictures of the violence, government restrictions, and food lines in Axis countries in order to promote the Allied war efforts.

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Timothy Rodriguez, First-Year Student

Timothy Rodriguez

Timothy Rodriguez talks to a attendee about his exhibition, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

Cold War Propaganda in the United States and the Soviet Union

The Cold War, which started in 1946 after the end of the Second World War, produced a significant amount of propaganda on both sides. In the United States, this propaganda was focused against the nature of the communist regimes in Soviet Bloc countries and on the ideals of communism. For the Soviets, the propaganda was more focused on convincing citizens that their system of governance and economic structuring was superior to capitalist countries like the United States.

This exhibition contains propagandist pictures, literature and broadsides that represent some of the most subtle and blatant propaganda of the Cold War. Sources include both the Soviet and American governments as well as special interest groups with Anti-communist agendas.

Siebel, Fred O. "Eyes on Formosa." Richmond Times Dispatch. 1 Jan. 1950. Original drawing by Fred Seibel. Published in the Richmond Times Dispatch, this cartoon, drawn by Fred Siebel, is a piece of American anti-communist propaganda and political commentary. The depiction of communism as a gigantic octopus, embossed the Soviet Union’s hammer and sickle, is a clear statement of the American perspective of communism as an expansionary threat to the world. The cartoon is intending to convey the intent of the communists specifically in China of taking over the island of Formosa, now known as Taiwan.    (still need permission)

Siebel, Fred O. “Eyes on Formosa.” Richmond Times Dispatch. 1 Jan. 1950. Original drawing by Fred Seibel. (MSS 2531)
Published in the Richmond Times Dispatch, this Fred Siebel cartoon is a piece of American anti-communist propaganda and political commentary. The depiction of communism as a gigantic octopus, embossed with the Soviet Union’s hammer and sickle, is a clear statement of the American perspective of communism as an expansionary threat to the world. The cartoon conveys the intent of the communists, specifically in China, to take over the island of Formosa, now known as Taiwan.

Pedigo, Jess L. Yes, Ginger. Communism Is Your Enemy. Tulsa: Christian Crusade Publications, 1970.  This booklet was published by the Christian Crusade publication company in 1970. During the Cold War many organizations in the United States, including Christian Crusades, published Anti-Communist literature. This specific booklet is a story directed at children informing them of the supposed evils of communism and as per the title explains why communism is their enemy. This artifact is a prime example of religious, anti-communist propaganda which was prevalent during the cold war era.

Pedigo, Jess L. Yes, Ginger. Communism Is Your Enemy. Tulsa: Christian Crusade Publications, 1970. (HX44 .P42 1972)
During the Cold War, many organizations in the United States, including Christian Crusades, published anti-communist literature. This specific booklet, directed at children, informs them of the supposed evils of communism and as per the title explains why communism is their enemy. This artifact is a prime example of religious, anti-communist propaganda which was prevalent during the cold war era.

 

 

 

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This Just In: Problematic Provenance

My previous post on the acquisition of U.Va.’s first papyrus manuscript has been a popular one, made more so by a subsequent U.Va. news release. Two readers have since contacted me with a question unaddressed in the blog post and news release (the latter now amended): What is the document’s provenance, that is, its recent ownership history? This follow-up post seeks to summarize what little is known at this point about its provenance, acknowledge an error of judgment in this instance, and touch upon an important ethical issue concerning the antiquities trade.

P. Virginia 1, U.Va.'s first papyrus document, measures 16.5 x 8 cm. It was written in Greek, probably in Egypt during the 3rd century CE. Purchased on the Associates Endowment Fund.

P. Virginia 1, U.Va.’s first papyrus document, measures 16.5 x 8 cm. It was written in Greek, probably in Egypt during the 3rd century CE. Purchased on the Associates Endowment Fund.

UVa’s papyrus fragment was purchased at the March 19, 2015 public auction (lot 71) of Swann Galleries, a major New York auction house. The lot description offered no provenance information, nor (as is common in the auction trade) was the consignor identified. When the papyrus was unpacked at U.Va. on May 7, I saw on the glass mount, sealed with a distinctive “papyrus”-patterned tape, an identification label with the handwritten notation “M30305/2.” Neither feature had been visible in the cropped image accompanying the lot description. Was this a collection inventory number, or, more likely, a dealer or auction house number? I have since done what I should have done initially, prior to bidding, and that is to contact the auction gallery for all documentation the gallery and the consignor may have on the papyrus’s ownership over the last several decades. Swann Galleries has confirmed that the label bears its “internal cataloguing number.” Swann has also requested documentation from the consignor, “a dealer with whom we have done business on a number of occasions,” and we are awaiting a response.

So far my other efforts to trace this fragment to a known collection, to a previous auction or trade sale, or to other pieces have been fruitless. If readers have any knowledge of other papyrus documents in mounts sealed with the same tape (visible in the attached images), I would be grateful to hear from you.

Provenance is no small matter, for we want to avoid acquiring, whether through purchase or gift, collection items for which we do not have clear title. The matter is a complicated one, for we obtain a wide chronological and geographical range of materials, in a variety of formats, from many different sources. In the case of antiquities (and certain categories of books and manuscripts), provenance is paramount, for many countries now require a license for the export of such objects, or for export after a specified date from their country of origin.

The verso of P. Virginia 1 clearly shows the vertical papyrus strips which form the document's secondary layer. Additional lines of Greek text--perhaps docketing, or unrelated manuscript notes--are also visible.

The verso of P. Virginia 1 clearly shows the vertical papyrus strips which form the document’s secondary layer. Additional lines of Greek text–perhaps docketing, or unrelated manuscript notes–are also visible.

For papyrus documents of Egyptian origin, the primary statute is Egypt’s 1983 law on the protection of antiquities, which henceforth prohibited their export without a proper license. Many, of course, were exported before the law took effect. What if we cannot trace the document’s ownership prior to 1983? That would neither prove nor disprove that the papyrus was properly exported. Here, however, assuming proper export in the absence of contrary evidence is not sufficient, for ethically we would want assurance that U.Va. was not supporting, in even the smallest way, the illegal antiquities trade.

The situation could have been avoided, of course, had I sought provenance information prior to bidding; if the document’s history could not be verified earlier than 1983, there would be no point in bidding. To my regret, I did not. I am deeply indebted to the readers who have enlightened me by sharing information on what is apparently an active, illegal market in papyrus manuscripts, online and elsewhere, conducted by dealers outside the established antiquities and manuscripts trade channels. Accounts such as those posted by Brice Jones and Dorothy King present a disturbing picture of this market, which is likely replenished by continuing illegal exports and supported by buyers who neither demand full documentation, nor convey it to the next owner. Often the provenance information supplied is either insufficient or dubious.

It may take some time to complete our investigation into the document’s provenance and then settle on a course of action. Readers will receive an update in a future blog post.

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This Just In: Please Welcome P. Virginia 1!

Please note: This post has been updated by a follow-up post.

The Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library’s collections span over 4 millennia, from Babylonian clay tablets dating to ca. 2000 BCE, to poetry published only this spring via 3-D printer. Impressive as this may sound, it actually conceals a glaring gap, for until last week we possessed no original manuscript written in the nearly three-millennium period between our two clay tablets and our earliest parchment manuscript fragments, which date to the 9th century CE. We have now begun to address that gap with the acquisition of the U.Va. Library’s first original manuscript from Classical antiquity: a papyrus document from Egypt tentatively dated to the 3rd century CE.

P. Virginia 1, U.Va.'s first papyrus document, measures 16.5 x 8 cm. It was written in Greek, probably in Egypt during the 3rd century CE. Purchased on the Associates Endowment Fund.

P. Virginia 1, U.Va.’s first papyrus document, measures 16.5 x 8 cm. It was written in Greek, probably in Egypt during the 3rd century CE. Purchased on the Associates Endowment Fund.

Papyrus was already employed as a writing surface in Egypt by 2500 BCE, and it was used widely throughout the Mediterranean and Near East from ca. 500 BCE up to ca. 1000 CE before being superseded by parchment and paper. Papyrus sheets were formed by taking the stem of the papyrus plant, cutting the inner pith into long, thin strips, laying the strips side by side to form a sheet, laying another layer of strips crosswise over the first, then hammering the two layers together. The sticky pith strips would naturally adhere to one another. After polishing, the papyrus sheets could either be pasted together to form a scroll, or used individually. Taking up a reed pen, scribes would typically write on the “recto” side—that is, the side on which the strips ran horizontally—though both sides could be used.

Few of the many millions of papyrus documents written over the millennia have survived to the present day. Because papyrus is an organic material and easily damaged by water, the vast majority of the extant documents have been obtained from two sources. Most come from desert areas in Egypt, where documents were quickly buried by sand and protected from moisture until excavated from the late 19th century onward. These mostly fall within the period 300 BCE – 500 CE and are written in Classical Greek, though many papyrus documents in Demotic, Coptic, Arabic, and other languages also survive. A lesser, though productive, source has been mummy wrappings, for papyrus documents were frequently recycled (and thereby preserved) in this fashion. Regardless of the source, most of the surviving documents are fragmentary in nature, having been torn, crumpled, nibbled, or otherwise damaged at various points over the centuries.

The verso of P. Virginia 1 clearly shows the vertical papyrus strips which form the document's secondary layer. Additional lines of Greek text--perhaps docketing, or unrelated manuscript notes--are also visible.

The verso of P. Virginia 1 clearly shows the vertical papyrus strips which form the document’s secondary layer. Additional lines of Greek text–perhaps docketing, or unrelated manuscript notes–are also visible.

Even in fragmentary state, papyrus documents have a great deal to tell us about the cultural, economic, political, and social history of the Ancient World. Deciphering them is the task of papyrologists—classicists who have received specialized training in the skills necessary for working with these documents. First the papyrus pieces need to be cleaned, flattened, fibers straightened, and fragments aligned before the texts can be studied in full. Sealing them between two panes of glass greatly facilitates their handling, study, and long-term preservation. In transcribing and translating the documents, papyrologists face the problems of missing text, poor handwriting, faded or flaking ink, variable spelling and grammar, unfamiliar vocabulary, local dialects &c. Over the past 125 years, however, an impressive corpus of tens of thousands of papyrus texts has been published. These texts are now being digitized and placed online—Papyri.info is a leading web portal—furnishing papyrologists with powerful new tools for comparing texts and readings, and even for locating fragments of the same document scattered in collections around the globe.

Although not complete, U.Va.’s papyrus document—which we will designate as P. [for Papyrus] Virginia 1 (it will also receive a MSS number)—is a large and wonderfully representative example, measuring 16.5 x 8 cm. Probably originating in the Fayyum region southwest of Cairo and dating to the 3rd century CE, the Greek text may be a receipt or tax document concerning grain. Faculty in U.Va.’s Department of Classics are already at work studying the text and planning student practicums for the coming academic year. Soon, we hope to know more about the document and to see it published. Meanwhile, we have begun the search for P. Virginia 2!

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Tales From Under Grounds II: Regional History and Mr. Jefferson and His University

This is the third in a series of four posts, spotlighting the mini-exhibitions of students from USEM 1570: Researching History.

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Zach Buettner, First-Year Student

Zach Buettner, November 18, 2014. (Photo by Sanjay Suchak)

Photograph of Zach Buettner by Sanjay Suchak, November 18, 2014.

The Early History of Woodberry Forest School

Woodberry Forest School, founded by Robert Stringfellow Walker in 1889, was intended to teach his six sons. Walker began the school by hiring a tutor because he felt that the nearby schooling was inadequate. The school quickly grew to include local kids on nearby farms. The numbers continued to increase, and now there is an average of 100 boys per grade.

Woodberry Forest School is an all-boys boarding school in Woodberry Forest, Virginia, right outside of Orange, Virginia. The school prides itself on creating the “Woodberry boy,” one who is balanced in many facets of life. In addition to rigorous academic work, Woodberry also requires participation in athletic events. In fact, its rivalry with Episcopal High School dates to 1901, making it one of the oldest continuous southern rivalries in football.

Woodberry has an honor code that was created by the students a couple years after the founding of the school. The honor is an important part of the school’s culture even today.

 

Woodberry Forest, “Catalogue of Woodberry Forest,” (Woodberry Forest, VA: Woodberry Forest School, 1901) (LD7501.W6 W62). Gift of Shelah Kane Scott This catalogue was the main source of information in regards to attending the school in 1901. The catalogue listed the students and the prefects of the current classes. It also laid out the terms necessary to graduate including the classes one should take, the cost of education, and the objects that one needed to bring to school with him.

Woodberry Forest. “Catalogue of Woodberry Forest.” Woodberry Forest, VA: Woodberry Forest School, 1901. This catalogue was the main source of information in regards to attending the school in 1901. The catalogue listed the students and the prefects of the current classes. It also laid out the terms necessary to graduate including the classes one should take, the cost of education, and the objects that one needed to bring to school with him. (LD7501 .W6 W62. Gift of Shelah Kane Scott)

Waring P. Austin, “Woodberry Forest School Scrapbook. 1910-1913, (MSS 15119). Coles Special Collections Fund This scrapbook, complied by Pickney Austin Waring, focuses mainly on sports teams at Woodberry Forest School. It has a collection of photos of different athletic teams and also lists scores, lineups, and posters for games. A notable object in this scrapbook is a hand drawn poster of a Woodberry vs. Yale baseball game.

Waring P. Austin. Woodberry Forest School Scrapbook, 1910-1913. This scrapbook, complied by Pickney Austin Waring, focuses mainly on sports teams at Woodberry Forest School. It has a collection of photos of different athletic teams and also lists scores, lineups, and posters for games. A notable object in this scrapbook is a hand drawn poster of a Woodberry vs. Yale baseball game. (MSS 15119. Coles Special Collections Fund)

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Abby Herz, First-Year Student

Abby Herz

Photograph of Abby Herz by Sanjay Suchak, November 18, 2014.

Fielding a Faculty: The Original Faculty of the University of Virginia

In the early 1800’s as Thomas Jefferson looked to fulfill his dreams of creating the University of Virginia, one of the challenges he faced was to recruit a faculty.  He needed to find distinguished, intelligent scholars in the fields of ancient languages, modern languages, mathematics, moral philosophy, natural philosophy, chemistry, law, and medicine.

Interestingly enough, Mr. Jefferson assigned a large part of this task to Mr. Francis Walker Gilmer, a close friend of his and the University’s attorney.  Francis Gilmer took this request very seriously and travelled all the way to England in 1824, to find some of the brightest people in their fields and bring them to Mr. Jefferson’s University to teach.

Gilmer returned to the United States having found 5 of the 8 first faculty members of the University.  He recruited George Blaetterman, Charles G. Bonnycastle, Robley Dunglison, Thomas Hewitt Key and George Long.  The other three, John Patton Emmet, John Tayloe Lomax, and George Tucker all came from the United States and were not recruited by Mr. Gilmer.

Thomas Hewitt Key Contract with Francis Walker Gilmer, Attorney for University of Virginia (MSS 10300) This is the official contract between Francis Walker Gilmer, the attorney for the University of Virginia, and Thomas Hewitt Key, the first professor of mathematics at the University.  This contract covers Key’s duties as a professor, like the specific subjects he must teach, as well as his salary, which at the time included what was known as a “tuition fee.”  Finally the contract goes over Key’s responsibilities as an occupant of Pavilion VI.

Thomas Hewitt Key Contract with Francis Walker Gilmer, Attorney for University of Virginia.
This is the official contract between Francis Walker Gilmer, the attorney for the University of Virginia, and Thomas Hewitt Key, the first professor of mathematics at the University. This contract covers Key’s duties as a professor, the specific subjects he must teach as well as his salary, which included what was known as a “tuition fee.” Finally the contract goes over Key’s responsibilities as an occupant of Pavilion VI. (MSS 10300)

Regulations of the University, in the Hand of and Signed by Thomas Jefferson, Rector, 3-7 October 1825 (MSS 10300) This manuscript, written by Thomas Jefferson, defines all of the rules of the University of Virginia.  In these rules, Mr. Jefferson places a lot of power in the hands of the Professors and charges them “with the execution of the laws of the University.”  He gives them the responsibility of disciplining students for actions committed outside of the classroom in places like the dormitories.

Regulations of the University, in the Hand of and Signed by Thomas Jefferson, Rector, 3-7 October 1825. This manuscript, written by Thomas Jefferson, defines all of the rules of the University of Virginia. In these rules, Jefferson places a lot of power in the hands of the professors and charges them “with the execution of the laws of the University.” He gives them the responsibility of disciplining students for actions committed outside of the classroom in places like the dormitories. (MSS 10300)

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Cassidy Faught, First-Year Student

Cassidy Faught

Cassidy Faught discusses her exhibition with visitors, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

Equality on Grounds: The Struggle for Desegregation at the University of Virginia

The 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson United States Supreme Court case used the “separate but equal” doctrine to uphold the constitutionality of state laws requiring racial segregation in public facilities.  This “separate but equal” doctrine remained the standard in United States law until it was overturned by the Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision in 1954.  Until the 1950’s many public colleges, including the University of Virginia, refused the admission of African Americans to their schools on grounds that it was contrary to the long established and fixed policy of their states.

This display showcases the correspondence between the first African American applicant and the rector at the University of Virginia, a letter regarding segregation by the first African American to attend the University, a photograph of the first African American graduate, and “Notes on Negroes in U of VA” from the Director of Information Services in 1955 and 1956.  These items are used to display the initial rejection, struggle, and eventual triumph of African Americans integrating into the University of Virginia.

Alice C. Jackson Letter to Frederick W. Scott, 28 September 1935. (RG-2/1/2.491) University of Virginia, Office of the President This is a handwritten letter from Alice C. Jackson to Dr. Frederick W. Scott, the Rector and Board of Visitors at the University of Virginia.  Ms. Jackson was the first African American to apply to the University and was seeking a master’s degree in French.  In her spirited letter, Ms. Jackson writes an appeal to the University in search of a full explanation as to why her application was rejected.

Alice C. Jackson Letter to Rector Frederick W. Scott, 28 September 1935. This is a handwritten letter from Alice C. Jackson to Dr. Frederick W. Scott, the Rector, and the Board of Visitors at the University of Virginia. Ms. Jackson was the first African American to apply to the University and was seeking a master’s degree in French. In her spirited letter, Ms. Jackson writes an appeal to the University in search of a full explanation as to why her application was rejected. (RG-2/1/2.491. University of Virginia Archives)

Photograph of UVa Finals, Academic procession. 15 June 1953.  (RG-30/1/10.011) University of Virginia Visual History Collection Here, a photograph of Walter Nathaniel Ridley, the first African American to graduate from the University of Virginia, is captured.  Ridley (center) smiles for a photograph as he walks the Lawn at the Academic Procession of the summer of 1953.  Ridley received a Ph.D. in education.

Photograph of U.Va. Finals, Academic Procession. 15 June 1953. A photograph of Walter Nathaniel Ridley, the first African American to graduate from the University of Virginia, is captured. Ridley (center) smiles for a photograph as he walks the Lawn at the Academic Procession of the summer of 1953. Ridley received a Ph.D. in education. (RG-30/1/10.011. University of Virginia Visual History Collection)

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Ford Slater, First-Year Student

Ford Slater explains his exhibition to onlookers, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

Ford Slater explains his exhibition to onlookers, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

A History of Baseball at The University of Virginia

Baseball started at the University of Virginia in the late nineteenth century and has developed into one the best programs in the country. After over 100 years, Virginia has worked its way up to a nationally recognized athletic powerhouse in most sports, including baseball. The items in this exhibit include pictures, artifacts, and newspaper clippings that will show the viewer facets of the University’s baseball past.

Photograph of University of Virginia Baseball Team

Photograph of University of Virginia Baseball Team, 1890. This is a photograph of the 1890 University of Virginia Baseball, which includes what appears to be nine players and two coaches. The border frame around the picture once included all of the names and hometowns of the players, but has worn away with time. Some things to notice are the old fashioned uniforms with the collars and pockets on their shirts, the short brimmed hats, and the equipment. The gloves have no web, but are more similar to an oven mitt. Also peculiar, the mustache on the player on the far left. Most universities required short hair and clean shave until mid-twentieth century. (MSS 9767. University of Virginia Archives)

 

Baseball Scorecard

Virginia Baseball Game Scorecard, 1949. Featured is a hand-completed scorecard from a 1949 game between Virginia and an unknown opponent. Virginia was victorious, scoring two runs to none and outhit its opponent 5 to 4. The historical side of this piece apart from being in such good condition is the amount of advertising it contains. A total of nineteen different businesses paid to have their name and number on a scorecard for a baseball game. (RG-27/13/1.091. University of Virginia Archives)

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Tales from Under Grounds II: Pastimes, Play Time, Illustration, and Literature

This is the second in a series of four blog posts, spotlighting the mini-exhibitions of fall semester 2014 students from USEM 1570: Researching History.  The following is the abridged version of the students’ final projects, featured at their outreach program, Tales from Under Grounds II.

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Regina Chung, First-Year Student

Regina Chung

Photograph of Regina Chung by Sanjay Suchak, November 18, 2014.

Monticello Music

Thomas Jefferson declared that music “is the favorite passion of my soul, and fortune has cast my lot in a country where it is in a state of deplorable barbarism.” Jefferson practiced the violin three hours a day and would later share his love for music with his wife, Martha, and then his daughters. He would not only spread this passion among his family, but also as a political tool that would lead to wide popularity with his lively campaign songs.

Using scrapbooks, notebooks, music programs, political campaign songs, and newsclippings, this exhibition displays the passion Jefferson held for music in his personal and work life.

This scrapbook of 18th century songs, ballads, and cantatas were collected by Thomas Jefferson and his family. There are 95 titles in this volume from Jefferson's distinct music collection.

Thomas Jefferson’s Scrapbook of Sheet Music. This scrapbook of 18th century songs, ballads, and cantatas were collected by Thomas Jefferson and his family. There are 95 titles in this volume from Jefferson’s distinct music collection. (A 1723-90 .J4 no. 1. Tracy W. McGregor Library of American History)

 

TJ Newsclipping

Newsclipping of a letter written by Thomas Jefferson to his daughter Martha “Patsy” Jefferson, n.d. After Jefferson’s wife’s death, he strongly enforced music upon his eldest daughter, Martha (“Patsy”). In this reprinted letter, he encourages her to continue to learn new music. (MSS 6696. Thomas Jefferson Foundation)

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Lily Davis

Lily Davis

Photograph of Lily Davis by Sanjay Suchak, November 18, 2014.

Nathaniel Hawthorne

 Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864) was a 19th-century American author. He is known as a “romancer,” examining the inner nature of man, and as a “realist,” using literature to articulate the flaws in American society. Many of his stories have a common theme of probing human nature and criticizing culture. In his books, he examines and scrutinizes Puritan society, which points back to his long line of Puritan ancestors.

The photograph of Hawthorne with his signature across the bottom was taken around the time he wrote The Scarlet Letter and The House of Seven Gables, pieces of literature that are still read and loved today. The Scarlet Letter, probably Hawthorne’s most well-known book, provides insight to his Puritan background. The House of Seven Gables was published shortly after The Scarlet Letter and is also set in 19th century New England. Centuries later, Hawthorne is still considered a great American author.

Title page of The Scarlet Letter

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. The Scarlet Letter. Boston: Ticknor and Fields, 1850. The Scarlet Letter, published in 1850, tells the story of Hester Prynne and her illegitimate child Pearl in Puritan society. This novel was inspired by Hawthorne’s strict Puritan background. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s great grandfather, John Hathorne (1641-1717), lived in Salem, Massachusetts and was a prominent judge in the Salem witch trials. Nathaniel Hawthorne eventually added the “w” in his true family name of “Hathorne” (changing it to “Hawthorne”) to distinguish himself from his ancestors. In reading the Scarlet Letter, it is obvious that his writing points to his background.(A 1850 H39 S3. Tracy W. McGregor Library of American History)

Signed Carte de Visite of Nathaniel Hawthorne, ca. 1850s. (MSS 6249. Clifton Waller Barrett Library of American Literature)

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Mary Elder, First-Year Student

Mary Elder

Mary Elder discusses her exhibition with visitors, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

Games of American Children in the Victorian Era

The Victorian Era is viewed as a time of rapid development and change, and it is easy to overlook the role of children in this era. Many of people’s ideas come from films such as A Christmas Carol, and characters such as the grandmother of American Girl’s Samantha, but much can be learned by looking at the toys and games that children enjoyed during this time.

Games and stories can often reveal the values of the time they were played, and Victorian Era games frequently had educational value, or intended to teach moral lessons. Other times, they were simply to keep children occupied quietly. Outdoor and recreational activities were also encouraged to allow children to run and play, but were sometimes limited to boys as many still held the belief that girls should be quiet and dainty.

These games can tell a story as they give us a glimpse into the lives of the younger generation in the late 19th-century. Many of the games and concepts might be familiar to people today and can show the continuity in children’s attitudes toward fun and perpetuity of childhood pleasures.

Toy Catalogue

Selchow & Righter, New York, Manufacturers and Wholesale Dealers in Games and Toys, 1894-1895.  This trade catalog for toys and games provides images, cost, and descriptions of the games. Frequently sold by dozens, costs vary greatly, but many are in the $7-$10 range. Many items, such as the church and blocks, have religious associations, while others, such as the Spelling Boards and reading cabinet, are educational. Many items, such as a ring toss, dolls, toy pianos, and air rifles, would be familiar to children today. (TS199 .A5 T62 no.16. Albert H. Small American Trade Catalogs Collection)

Ruhig Blut Game

Ruhig Blut. New York: Dr. Richter’s Publishing House, 1899. This puzzle, whose name in English is “Be Quiet,” has instructions in German, English, and several other language. It resembles what is now known by many as a Tangram, and the small shaped masonry pieces could be combined in a variety of ways to create pictures. (Lindemann 05868. The McGehee Miniature Book Collection)

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Grace Kim, First-Year Student

Grace Kim

Grace Kim talks to Rare Book Cataloger Gayle Cooper about her exhibition, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

John Tenniel: An Illustrator with a Punch

Originally, John Tenniel was a classic artist who created oil paintings for the Royal Academy. Dissatisfied, he left to join the illustration world. In 1850, he found a position at the British political magazine Punch, where he would work for fifty years. Citizens soon recognized his drawings, and his work at the magazine would soon allow for other illustrating opportunities. He drew for Thomas Moore’s oriental romance novel, Lalla Rookh, which was considered to contain his best illustrations. He was also the illustrator for The Arabian Nights edition, created by the engravers the Dalziel brothers. Tenniel would constantly go to the Dalziel brothers for the engraving of his drawings.

Tenniel preferred not to use real life models to help him form his illustrations. Instead, he claimed that he could draw anything through the use of memory. This may have helped him when he worked with Lewis Carroll, otherwise known as Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, to create Alice’s fantastical world.

In 1893, John Tenniel became knighted for his work in political cartoons and illustrations. After he retired from Punch about a decade later, he would not take on any other projects.

Illustrations from Alice in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Illus. by John Tenniel. New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1866. Most well known for his work with Lewis Carroll, Tenniel includes forty-two of his illustrations in this first American edition. Originally, Carroll wanted to draw the illustrations himself; however, a friend, Thomas Combe, suggested a professional illustrator instead. Lewis Carroll wanted no one other than John Tenniel. His work at Punch led the surreal author to become a big fan. In this particular book, the color marking comes from the original owner, Alice Huff Johnston. (PR4611 .A7 1866. Gift of Clement Dixon Johnston)

Note from Tenniel to Ponny

Note from John Tenniel to Ponny, ca. 1869. Sir John Tenniel reflects on his own reputation in a note to his friend, Ponny, stating, “You say my name is as good as a bank note – I wish you could prove it.” (MSS 6693-a. Gift of Clement Dixon Johnston)

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This Just In: Mapping with Movable Types

This week we feature an acquisition made many years ago, but one whose true significance was discovered only this month. The Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library has long possessed a copy of Tableaux historiques & topographiques, ou Relations exactes et impartiales des trois événemens mémorables qui terminèrent la campagne de 1796 sur le Rhin (Basel: Chrétien de Mechel, 1798). Although lacking several plates, the U.Va. copy retains what turns out to be the key plate: a large folding map captioned “Retraite de Bavière en France … 26 Octobre 1796.”

“Retraite de Bavière en France … 26 Octobre 1796,” from Tableaux historiques & topographiques, ou Relations exactes et impartiales des trois événemens mémorables qui terminèrent la campagne de 1796 sur le Rhin (Basel: Chrétien de Mechel, 1798).   (DC220.8 .T3 1798)

“Retraite de Bavière en France … 26 Octobre 1796,” from Tableaux historiques & topographiques, ou Relations exactes et impartiales des trois événemens mémorables qui terminèrent la campagne de 1796 sur le Rhin (Basel: Chrétien de Mechel, 1798). (DC220.8 .T3 1798)

This plate is one of the few known examples of a map set entirely from movable types. Everything—text, borders, and topographic features—has been set by hand using a variety of text fonts as well as a specially designed cartographic font (here heightened with red and greenish-blue hand-coloring).

The map, "composed with movable types," bears the imprint of G[uillaume, i.e. Wilhelm] Haas, the Basel [Switzerland] typefounder who cut and cast the special cartographic font.

The map, “composed with movable types,” bears the imprint of G[uillaume, i.e. Wilhelm] Haas, the Basel [Switzerland] typefounder who cut and cast the special cartographic font.

Until the later 18th century, maps were printed in one of two ways: either from a relief block (typically a woodcut, with all non-printing areas cut away from the block’s top surface); or from an intaglio plate (typically an engraving, with the map’s lines cut into the surface of a copper plate). The same could be said for nearly all pre-1800 book illustrations, that is, they were produced using a limited repertoire of relief and intaglio processes—chiefly woodcut, wood engraving, engraving, etching, and mezzotint—rather than being set (like text) using fonts of metal type.

A detail showing the special symbols used to denote towns of various sizes, mountainous areas, rivers, roads &c. Note especially the tiny gaps (printing as white lines) between, e.g. the types used to set the meandering rivers.

A detail showing the special symbols used to denote towns of various sizes, mountainous areas, rivers, roads &c. Note especially the tiny gaps (printing as white lines) between, e.g., the types used to set the meandering rivers.

In the early 1770s, August Gottlieb Preuschen of Karlsruhe, Germany, invented an alternative to the printing of maps from engraved copper plates: a 21-character cartographic type font. Preuschen’s idea was realized through the technical skill of Wilhelm Haas, a typefounder in Basel, Switzerland, who perfected and cast the cartographic font and, in 1776, published the first map composed entirely from movable types. Over the next two decades, Haas continued to refine and expand his cartographic font until it contained at least 139 different characters, or “sorts.” These were special symbols, not letters, including 24 designed for depicting streams and rivers, 17 for borders, 14 for roads, 31 for charting military movements, 15 for human habitations, 6 for mountains and forests, and 32 for coastlines. All told, Haas employed his proprietary font to publish approximately two dozen typographic maps, including the “Retraite de Bavière en France … 26 Octobre 1796.”

Note how the outline of Lake Constance is formed using separate pieces of type, each consisting of multiple horizontal lines; many of the pieces probably were individually filed down to create custom shapes. The bluish tint and red highlighting were hand-applied.

Note how the outline of Lake Constance is formed using separate pieces of type, each consisting of multiple horizontal lines; many of the pieces probably were individually filed down to create custom shapes. The bluish tint and red highlighting were hand-applied.

In setting these maps, Haas’s compositors worked from manuscript maps drawn on gridded paper. By breaking the complex cartographic image into small units, the compositors were better able to translate the image into small blocks of type metal. In doing so they faced two principal problems. First, the twists and turns of rivers and roads could be approximated but not rendered exactly, as could be done through engraving. Second, great care was needed to “lock up” these disparate assemblages of movable types so that they would not shift during printing. Type fonts are designed so that each sort has the same height, or “body size.” As long as each horizontal row of movable type contains sorts of the same height, a page consisting of several thousand small rectangles of metal type will “lock up” easily. Because Haas’s cartographic font contained sorts with a range of body sizes, which could not be arranged into uniform rows, it was necessary to painstakingly add filler material to the irregular gaps between types. In essence, the process was more like assembling a mosaic than setting type.

Haas's cartographic font contained types in at least five different widths for setting rivers and streams--note how some rivers progressively narrow in width. Rivers follow a meandering course, though their paths look more representational than accurate--a major limitation of Haas's font.

Haas’s cartographic font contained types in at least five different widths for setting rivers and streams–note how some rivers progressively narrow in width. Rivers follow a meandering course, though their paths look more representational than accurate–a major limitation of Haas’s font.

In principle, Haas’s cartographic font could claim several advantages over copperplate engraving: maps could be prepared more quickly, revision was easier, and unlimited impressions could be taken. But decided disadvantages remained for the prospective map publisher: only a limited level of accuracy could be achieved, and a large initial investment would be necessary to purchase the requisite types. Soon, however, the invention of lithography (and later, wax engraving) gave cartographers a far easier method for reproducing maps accurately, and Haas’s font was never adopted by other map publishers.

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Tales from Under Grounds II: Plato, Darwin, Early Medical Practices, and Peaceful Protests

This is the first in a series of four posts, spotlighting the mini-exhibitions of students from USEM 1570: Researching History, Fall 2014.

Last semester, I taught USEM 1570: Researching History for the second time. The course gives first-year students the opportunity to learn about and immerse themselves in primary source research. For most undergraduates, archival research is scary stuff. However, my students bravely navigated through the rich array of research materials held in the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, sharing what they learned with friends, family, and the general public. Sharing what they learned was most evident in their final assignment, curating a mini-exhibition. The mini-exhibition had to illustrate a particular story with only five items of varying formats. After creating the exhibitions, these budding researchers  presented them at their outreach program, Tales from Under Grounds II.

For those who could not make it, I present to you the second best thing: Tales from Under Grounds II in its abridged version as captured in each student’s own words.

Note: only two selections per student are shown.

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Maryknoll Hemingway, First-Year Student

Maryknoll Hemingway

Photograph of Maryknoll Hemingway by Sanjay Suchak, November 18, 2014.

Plato at U.Va.

Known for his philosophies on political science, the soul, and love, the ancient Greek Plato is one of the most infamous men of world history. At the Albert and Shirley Small Collections Library at the University of Virginia, there is material on the works and reviews of Plato and his ideas and theories. Of the works presented here are translations of two works of Plato, a letter appraisal, and a review by Thomas Jefferson.

In this collection, reviewers negatively and positively respond to Plato’s philosophies, most suggesting, such as Author Samuel Goodrich, that Plato was at the “highest point, in the search after divine knowledge which has ever been attained, without the direct aid of inspiration.” In contrast, Jefferson, stated that “[Plato’s] dialogues are libels on Socrates.” Accompanied by two compositions and a brief biography, this exhibition shows Plato’s works and reviews of his philosophies as one of the world’s most famous men of all time.

Jefferson, Thomas. Jefferson on Plato. Roanoke, Virginia: Stone Printing & Manufacturing Company, 1941. (B393 .J4 1941) Thomas Jefferson wrote a review on Plato’s infamous The Republic of Plato and, it is apparent that he was not particularly impressed by the writings of Plato. This brief and concise five page review provides Jefferson’s raw opinion of Plato’s ideals. Similar pamphlets were printed, totaling 600 copies. This one in particular was privately printed for John Wyllie, early curator of rare books and manuscripts at the University of Virginia.

Jefferson, Thomas. Jefferson on Plato. Roanoke, Virginia: Stone Printing & Manufacturing Company, 1941. Thomas Jefferson wrote a review on Plato’s “The Republic of Plato,” and it is apparent that he was not particularly impressed by the writings of Plato. This brief and concise five page review provides Jefferson’s raw opinion of Plato’s ideals. Similar pamphlets were printed, totaling 600 copies. This one in particular was privately printed for John Wyllie, early curator of rare books and manuscripts at the University of Virginia. (B393 .J4 1941)

 

Baron Alfred Tennyson, Letter to Benjamin Jowett, May 4, 1858 (MSS 10499) This is a handwritten letter from Alfred Tennyson to Benjamin Jowett, featuring a picture of Tennyson. In this letter, Tennyson praises the works of Plato and thanks his correspondence, Jowett, for the copies and recommendation of the books. In Tennyson’s opinion, he is “unworthy” of reading Plato’s pieces, but asks Jowett for page numbers as references to key points, and possible favorite sections of the books.

Baron Alfred Tennyson, Letter to Benjamin Jowett, May 4, 1858.
This is a handwritten letter from Alfred Tennyson to Benjamin Jowett, featuring a picture of Tennyson. In this letter, Tennyson praises the works of Plato and thanks Jowett for copies and recommendation of books. In Tennyson’s opinion, he [Tennyson] is “unworthy” of reading Plato’s pieces, but asks Jowett for page numbers as references to key points, and possible favorite sections of the books. (MSS 10499)

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Josh Huttler, First-Year Student

Josh Huttler

Photograph of Josh Huttler by Sanjay Suchak, November 18, 2014.

Monkey-Man or Genius: The Development of Charles Darwin’s Evolutionist Theories and Public Response

Throughout the nineteenth century, Charles Darwin was one of the principle contributors to the theory of evolution. Following his expeditions on the H.M.S Beagle, Darwin produced one of the most influential and controversial texts of the era: On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection.

In this collection of artifacts, a Conrad Martens watercolor of the H.M.S Beagle and a first edition copy of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species reflect the development of Darwinian evolutionist thought. Further, several cartoons from British periodicals, a magazine describing religious responses, and an obituary released after Darwin’s death illustrate the mixed public reactions to Darwin’s work. Several of these items refer to one of Darwin’s most contentious and publicized ideas— the concept that man and monkey share a common ancestor.

Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. London: John Murray, 1859.  (QH365 .O2 1859) Gift of Colonel J.R. Fox Published almost twenty years after The Voyage of the Beagle, this first edition copy of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species set the foundation for new evolutionist theory. Amongst other important topics, this text outlines the theories of natural selection and species variation while building on the ideas of his evolutionist predecessors.

Darwin, Charles. “On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life.” London: John Murray, 1859.
Published almost twenty years after The Voyage of the Beagle, this first edition copy of Charles Darwin’s “On the Origin of Species” set the foundation for new evolutionist theory. Amongst other important topics, this text outlines the theories of natural selection and species variation while building on the ideas of his evolutionist predecessors. (QH365 .O2 1859. Gift of Colonel J. R. Fox)

Martens, Conrad. Terra Del Fuego: H.M.S. Beagle Under the Land, ca. 1834.  (MSS 3314)  Paul Victorius Evolution Collection This watercolor of the H.M.S. Beagle reflects the ship landing in Tierra Del Fuego, a South American archipelago. Darwin developed many of his early evolutionist theories during his almost five-year expedition on this ship. Darwin discusses some of his findings from the expedition in his book The Voyage of the Beagle.

Martens, Conrad. Terra Del Fuego: H.M.S. Beagle Under the Land, ca. 1834.
This watercolor of the H.M.S. Beagle reflects the ship landing in Tierra Del Fuego, a South American archipelago. Darwin developed many of his early evolutionist theories during his almost five-year expedition on this ship. Darwin discusses some of his findings from the expedition in his book The Voyage of the Beagle. (MSS 3314. Paul Victorius Evolution Collection)

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Sierra Teate, First-Year Student

Sierra Teate

Photograph of Sierra Teate discussing her mini-exhibition with library staff, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

What Was Medicine Really Like During the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century in Charlottesville, Virginia?

Everyone knows medicine has come a long way since the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, but just how different were practices and philosophies then? Despite substantial discoveries that had been made hundreds of years before, much more progress needed to be made.

The sources displayed here give a first hand look at how doctors and upcoming doctors in Charlottesville, Virginia viewed their profession as well as how they diagnosed and treated their patients. It is obvious that many of their practices are foreign to us today. For example, now at the University of Virginia, students do not pose for a picture with cadavers. Hospital receipts are printed on very different paper. Some remedies doctors used are definitely frowned upon now. Yet, we still of course have many similarities with this generation of medical professionals. They record their patients’ symptoms, speak at medical events, and vaccinate children. A great deal can be learned about the evolution of medicine from this collection. Beyond being simply fascinating, the history of medicine is important to keep in mind for the future.

Frank Carr's Journal and Commonplace Book, 1810-1838 (MSS 15444)  C. Venable Minor Endowment Fund, 2012/2013. This is the personal journal of Frank Carr, which includes a register of vaccinations during May, 1814 and an extensive description of a man’s case of hydrophobia.

Frank Carr’s Journal and Commonplace Book, 1810-1838.
This is the personal journal of Frank Carr, which includes a register of vaccinations during May, 1814 and an extensive description of a man’s case of hydrophobia. (MSS 15444. C. Venable Minor Endowment Fund, 2012/2013)

 

 Photograph of U.Va. Medical Students, The Sixth Club. Facsimile.  (RG-30/1/10.011) University of Virginia Visual History Collection This picture taken in 1899 shows University of Virginia medical students posing with cadavers they have been studying.


Photograph of U.Va. Medical Students, The Sixth Club, 1899.
This picture shows University of Virginia medical students posing with cadavers they have been studying. (RG-30/1/10.011. University of Virginia Visual History Collection. Image by University of Virginia Digitization Services)

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Nick Kumleben, First-Year Student

Nick Kumleben

Nick Kumleben discusses his mini-exhibition with visitors, November 18, 2014. (Photograph by Sanjay Suchak)

Peaceful Protest in the 20th Century: from Cape Town to Charlottesville

This exhibition tracks the development of ideas and forms of peaceful protest in the 20th century, beginning with Mohandas Gandhi’s campaigns in South Africa and India, moving on to document the civil rights campaigns in 1950s and 1960s America, to the more recent South African and international protests against apartheid. It aims to give the viewer a sense of the development of peaceful protest as a political and social tool, the demographics that took part and its eventual success, or lack of, in changing the course of 20th-century history. It is particularly interesting to observe the difference and the evolution in terms of how the movements were commemorated, both by those who attended and those who chronicled it in print.

The focus on South Africa also allows us to consider the changing political landscape of that country, especially the dynamic of internal protest first gaining external coverage, then a previously local protest movement expanding to become an international phenomenon in an increasingly globalized world.

The Indian Opinion, Souvenir of the Passive Resistance Movement in South Africa, 1906-1914. Phoenix, Natal, South Africa, 1914.  (DT763 .S88 1914) Gift of R. Smith Simpson Featured is a commemorative edition of the Indian Opinion magazine celebrating the passive resistance campaign spearheaded by Mohandas Gandhi in South Africa from 1906-1914, resulting in the eventual repeal of pass laws for the Indian population. This campaign was where Gandhi developed his idea of satyagraha, or devotion to the truth through the form of nonviolent protest.

The Indian Opinion, Souvenir of the Passive Resistance Movement in South Africa, 1906-1914. Phoenix, Natal, South Africa, 1914. Featured is a commemorative edition of the “Indian Opinion” magazine, celebrating the passive resistance campaign spearheaded by Mohandas Gandhi in South Africa from 1906-1914, resulting in the eventual repeal of pass laws for the Indian population. This campaign was where Gandhi developed his idea of satyagraha, or devotion to the truth through the form of nonviolent protest. (DT763 .S88 1914. Gift of R. Smith Simpson)

 

Atcheson Laughlin Hench. Anti-Apartheid Rally. Photograph, 1987 (RG-30/1/10.011) University of Virginia Visual History Collection This photograph, taken in 1987, depicts University of Virginia law students in the McIntire Amphitheatre, peacefully protesting the racially divisive apartheid system in South Africa. Hench, a University professor since 1922, was also a keen chronicler of University life through photography and many of his pictures remain in the University’s Visual History Collection. The apartheid government would begin the process of handover to a democratic system three years later in 1990.

Paula Windridge. Photograph of Anti-Apartheid Rally, 1987.
This photograph depicts University of Virginia law students in the McIntire Amphitheatre, peacefully protesting the racially divisive apartheid system in South Africa. The apartheid government would begin the process of handover to a democratic system three years later in 1990. (RG-30/1/10.011. University of Virginia Visual History Collection. Image by University of Virginia Digitization Services)

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