Ed Young donates extensive archives to Northeast Children’s Literature Collection

Archives & Special Collections is proud to announce that Ed Young, the multi-award winning author and illustrator of children’s books, has donated his extensive collection of artwork, sketches, scrolls, storyboards, color studies and other archival materials to the Northeast Children’s Literature Collection.  Mr. Young was born in Tientsin, China, lived in Shanghai and Hong Kong, and moved to the United States in 1951 to study architecture.  He graduated from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, and taught at the Pratt Institute, Yale University, Naropa Institute, and the University of California at Santa Cruz.

The awards and accolades for his books are too numerous to list but include the Caldecott Medal for Lon Po Po (1989) and Caldecott Honors for The Emperor and the Kite (1967) and Seven Blind Mice (1992). His books have been named to the ALA Notable Books list seven times, have been awarded the AIGA Award: The Fifty Most Beautiful Books of the Year ten times, and have received three Boston Globe Horn Book Honor Awards.  Mr. Young was also nominated in 1992 and 2000 as the U.S. representative to receive the Hans Christian Andersen Award, for “works that have made a lasting contribution to children’s literature.” Some of Mr. Young’s best-known and most-loved books are derived from Chinese folktales and include The Sons of the Dragon King (2004); Monkey King  (2001); The Lost Horse (1998); Mouse Match (1997); Night Visitors (1997); Little Plum (1994); Red Thread (1993); Seven Blind Mice (1992); The Voice of the Great Bell (1989); The Eyes of the Dragon (1986); Yeh Shen (1982); White Wave (1979); Cricket Boy (1977), and 8000 Stones (1971).

Ed Young in his studio
Ed Young in his studio © Gina Randazzo 2014. All rights reserved.

The Ed Young Papers have been on deposit in the Northeast Children’s Literature Collection for approximately eighteen years.  His artwork travels extensively around the world for exhibitions, including many museums in this country as well as the European Union.  Mr. Young employs various media such as collage, watercolor and pastel, making his collection a treasure trove for researchers in the fine arts.  The finding aid for the Ed Young Papers provides information on the more than ninety books’ worth of archival materials.  Mr. Young now lives in Westchester County, New York, with his family and a cat.  More information on Ed Young is available at http://edyoungart.com/.   The Northeast Children’s Literature Collection holds a substantial collection of materials pertaining to children’s literature and is very grateful for this extremely important addition.

Thank you, Mr. Young!



A traveling preacher with Connecticut ties

It happens with delightful frequency that historical treasures find their way to our archives in round-about ways.  Last week I received a call from UConn history professor Christopher Clark, who had been contacted by a woman in Texas who owned a letter that had a connection to eastern Connecticut.  Dr. Clark put me in touch with Ms. Anne Bowbeer of San Antonio, who described the letter and asked if I would like to include it in the archive.  I most certainly would!

Letter from S. Hitchcock of Reidsville [possibly North Carolina] to Michael Richmond of Windham County, Connecticut, August 13, 1835

Letter from S. Hitchcock of Reidsville [possibly North Carolina] to Michael Richmond of Windham County, Connecticut, August 13, 1835

The letter, written on August 13, 1835, from Mr. S. Hitchcock of Reidsville (no state stated but likely North Carolina, possibly Georgia) to Mr. Michael Richmond of Westford, Windham County, Connecticut, tells us that Mr. Hitchcock is originally from Connecticut and plans to return at the end of the month to hold a religious meeting.  Here is a transcription of the letter:

Reidsville August 13th A.D. 1835

My dear Sir I expected to have written to you, long before this time. But in consequence of the plentiful harvest and few Labourers in this region I have delayed writing till now. By letter received from Connecticut I have understood that my temporal concerns required that I should once more journey to my native town. And as any field of labour in this Country is verry extensive; and my whole time devoted to religious service I have waited [for] the vacancy of a fifth Sabbath that I might consistently[?] leave my circuit for a few days; you may therefore expect (If the Lord will) me to attend meeting at your Meeting house on the fifth Sunday in August at the usual hour of meeting. You are therefore at liberty to make the appointment if you think it best. I greatly desire your prosperity as a free religious; people had[?] should have much to write; But as I hope soon to see you face to face I defer writing more. Serve the Lord and Fare Well. Your Respectfully S. Hitchcock.

The letter brings up a lot of questions — who was S. Hitchcock?  What led him to leave Connecticut?  Who was Michael Richmond?

Perhaps an inquisitive student from the region will choose to research these men and their place in history.  For now we’re grateful to Ms. Bowbeer for her thoughtful decision to send the letter to us and allow us to save it for another 180 years and beyond.

Radical Families: Rethinking Life and Relationships in Intentional Living Communities

image (8) Communes, especially the communities that arose in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s, occupy a particular place in popular culture. Films, movies, novels, and public memory have provided a particular rendering of the experiences, relationships, and motivations that drove people “back to the land” as part of the larger cultural, political, and social shifts of the post-war period. But how did the members of these communities define their experiences? What did it look like to live in these spaces? Using materials from the Alternative Press Collection and the Diane di Prima papers, this exhibit seeks to offer a visual record of daily activities on a variety of communities; religious, political or otherwise, that will challenge or confirm viewers understanding of communal living. More specifically, these photos and documents focus on family life in these spaces. What did it look like to be part of a family in an intentional living community? How were mid-century ideas of motherhood, fatherhood, and generational boundaries and knowledge questioned, reinforced, or redefined. By asking these questions viewers will hopefully gain a richer portrait of what it meant to live and grow in these radical spaces and how these communities fit in to a longer history of the family and of communal living in the United States. image (3)

This exhibit was curated by Graduate Student Intern Danielle Dumaine. It will be on display in the John P. McDonald Reading Room, Archives and Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center until the end of September.

2014 Reunion of the sisters of Delta Pi

Birth of Delta Pi, November 1955

Birth of Delta Pi, November 1955

On July 26, 2014 the sisters of Delta Pi returned to Storrs to visit, reminisce, share stories and remember those who have passed.  In addition to the stories and tours of campus and the Storrs surroundings, a number of the sisters brought with them momentos, photographs, banners, beanies, clippings, notes, patches and other bits of Delta Pi history.  Many of these items have been donated to the University Memorabilia Collection in the University Archives, where they are now securely preserved and available for the future.  In this regard, Delta Pi is now one of the best documented student organizations in the Archives.  Congratulations to the sisters of Delta Pi!


Crowded reunion at the Nathan Hale, July 26, 2014

Crowded reunion at the Nathan Hale, July 26, 2014

Founding sisters

Founding sisters

Welcome to the sisters of Delta Pi

On Saturday July 26, 2014, the sisters of Delta Pi will be gathering for a reunion in Storrs. In addition to sharing stories of experiences since leaving UConn, the sisters have gathered documentation of the sorority and its activities over the years to add to the four scrapbooks, which will be available for viewing during the reunion, currently held in the University Archives.

The University Archives is interested in documenting student activities and organizations at the University.  Anyone interested in donating materials should contact the University Archivist, Betsy Pittman (betsy.pittman@lib.uconn.edu).

Celebrating National Parks and Recreation Month With Historical Photographs of Connecticut

caseonesmallThis July, Archives & Special Collections at the Dodd Research Center is celebrating National Parks and Recreation month through the temporary exhibit titled “Baseball, Beaches, and Bathing Beauties.” All month, two display cases in the John P. McDonald Reading Room will feature photographs from collections held in the archives that highlight the visual history of summertime fun in Connecticut.

Case one focuses on summer outings to Ocean Beach in New London by the Thermos Company. Stop by and see photographs of Thermos employees enjoying seasonal picnic favorites like tug-of-war, wheelbarrow races, pie-eating contests, and relaxing in the sand. Case two highlights more summertime casetwosmallactivities including the Willimantic Boom Box parade, softball and baseball, and Southern New England Telephone Company’s employee picnics. In addition to photographs, the exhibit contains several texts about outdoor activities including an article from 1946 in Coronet from the Edwin Way Teale Collection and several books from the Northeast Children’s Literature Collection including Kathryn Lasky’s Pond Year and Betsy Mable Hill’s Summer Comes to Apple Market.

This exhibit will run through the month of July and can be viewed Monday- Friday, 10 am- 4 pm in the Reading Room.

This exhibit is curated by Reference Desk Coordinator Tanya Rose Lane and Graduate Student Intern Danielle Dumaine.

Archives to Host Pre-College Digital Media Course


2013-0052_gm030 Emzon Shung and Chron.Dis. Present, Box 1 Folder 1.

2013-0052_gm030 Emzon Shung and Chron.Dis. Present, Box 1 Folder 1. Joe Snow Punk Rock Collection, Archives and Special Collections, Thomas J. Dodd Research Center at the University of Connecticut.

This summer, Research Assistant of Digital Media & Design Clarissa Ceglio and Archivist Graham Stinnett will be co-teaching two courses on Digital Humanities and Archives. The courses are for junior’s in high school intended to provide them with early education in University tools and resources such as libraries, archives and digital instruction. The course will focus its primary source work on the Joe Snow Punk Rock Collection at the Archives & Special Collections, where students will have a first hand experience with punk flyers, posters, stickers, pins and ephemera within the collection. Students will benefit from a behind the scenes experience with historical records and artifacts in an archives to prepare them for future research access in an academic setting. The archival experience will then be extended into the digital realm, where students will construct portals for digital content and description and analysis of primary resources on the web.  Students will learn about techniques for manipulating digital content and interface tools to build contextual digital media pages.  Providing students the opportunity to engage in archival resources at an early age promotes further investigation into historical documents as education and research continues at the University level and beyond.

Historic University Films

Archives & Special Collections has recently enhanced access to historic University films through digitization.  In conjunction with the current exhibit, “What’s in a Name?” on display in the Dodd Center Gallery, AS&C is hosting a summer film series.  Selected films will be shown around a theme on Fridays from 12-1 in Room 162 of the Dodd Center.  So bring your lunch and share a brief moment of UConn’s past, memorialized on film!

6/20    Agriculture on Display

  • Title: Eastern States Expo (7m 47s) Film is from the Baby Beef Club auction at the Eastern States Exposition (The Big E) and was taken by Wilifred B. Young, former dean of Agriculture at Connecticut State College. The video begins with beeves being led in the Coliseum. Placards for several beeves are shown, including those for the Storrs, Connecticut 4-H members and the grand champion, reserve champion, highly commended and commended entrants. Placards include the name of the animal, the 4-H Club member who raised them, member’s hometown, beeve’s weight, and auction purchaser. Camera pans over the Connecticut Baby Beef Club’s “Home Grown Feed” exhibit and the fair’s “Buy Your Baby Beef” sign, dairy cows and seconds harness races
  • Title: Chopping 1 (3m 3s) Film documents a wood chopping contest hosted by the Hartford Farm Bureau. The winner recieves a cash prize and runner up participants are awarded new axe heads.
  • Title: Chopping 2 (3m 8s) Film documents a controlled burn demonstration and then cuts to a wood chopping competition in front of the Hawley Armory Building at the Connecticut Agricultural College.
  • Title: Field Day (7m36s) Film depicts a sheep shearing demonstration and competition, possibly the annual field day of the Connecticut Sheep Breeders Association at Avon Old Farms on May 2, 1936. Three methods of shearing are shown: hand shears, a hand crank sheep shearing machine, and a gas-powered, belt driven sheep shearing machine. The video also documents horse jumping. The film was most likely shot by Wilifred B. Young, then head of the sheep program for the Extension Service and faculty member at Connecticut State College.

7/11    Teaching the Land

  • Title: Logging in ME (19m12s) University of Connecticut students in the former town of Davidson, Maine at the location of the Summit Lumber Company. Film documents students involved in surveying, logging, recreation activities and life in camp.
  • Title: Felling Trees (7m5s) Film documents a method for felling trees. A direction cut is made and then a portion of the felling cut. The demonstrator then cuts a notch into the opposite side of the directional cut, inserts a jack and fells the tree using the jack. Film may have been made for classroom or Extension Service work.
  • Title: Tree Planting (10m 10s) Film provides instructions for the planting of conifer seedlings. Two steps are covered, planting seedlings as bunch to allow them to root, and then separating and planting individual seedlings. Camera pans over tools needed at start.
  • Title: Potato Field Tour ( 3m49s)

7/18    Diary of a Student Revolution

  • On-campus industrial recruiting of students at the University of Connecticut resulted in confrontation between student activists and the University president. Two camera crews worked independently to simultaneously show the philosophies and strategies of both sides during the conflict. The students attempt a peaceful protest against recruiters but are met by police who read the riot act and begin making arrests. Elsewhere the president is seen chatting about the action with fellow administrators. The question remains whether the administration’s repressive action in summoning force was an appropriate response to the peaceful demonstrations.

7/25    Yankee Conference Championship game at UConn, 1970

  • UConn vs. URI  (40min) 1970 Yankee Conference Championship between UConn and Rhode Island at Storrs. Final score UConn 35 Rhody 32. Playing for UConn is Doug Melody, Bob Staak, Bob Taylor and Ron Hrubala. Film includes footage of the cheerleaders, crowds, and Jonathan the husky.

8/1      Technology and the Farm

  • Title: Swamp Logging (10m23s) Film depicts the logging of virgin forests of Longleaf Pines throughout the Southeast United States. The exact site is most likely North Carolina or Florida. The Longleaf Pine was valued for lumber and for its resin, which was used in navy stores, and the production of turpentine and rosin. By the time of this film the Longleaf Pine had been almost entirely cleared from North America and replaced with faster growing varieties of pine. The footage includes examples of the use of a steam donkey, or steam driven winch, a geared steam locomotive, a steam skidder, and a variety of hand tools.
  • Title: Sawmill (10m 23s) Film depicts hardwood logging in Connecticut. Several students can be seen in the beginning of the footage measuring tree sizes and taking notes. Trees can be seen being loaded on to a horse-drawn sled.
  • Title: Potato Harvesting, Lee Farm (3m47s) Footage depicts potato harvesting demonstration at the farm of noted jurist Simon S. Cohen in Rockville, Connecticut. Potatoes are unearthed by a digging machine, collected in baskets, and then put in barrels which are picked up by men using small crane mounted to flatbed truck. The film cuts, possibly to Lee Farm, also to potato harvesting.
  • Title: Potato loading machine (3m49s) This short film contains footage of men harvesting potatoes, probably on Lee Farm. The harvester (digger) can be seen, which required twelve men to drive the tractor, sort, bag, and load potatoes on to a second truck. Researchers of the history of agricultural technology may be interested in this video. Albert E. Wilkinson served as the Extension Service’s vegetable gardening specialist as part of his duties in the Horticulture Department at the Connecticut Agricultural College at Storrs starting in 1930. Wilkinson shot over 1000 feet of film documenting vegetable growing and harvesting throughout the country to share with his classes and during community movie nights throughout the Extension Service Program.
  • Title: Machine Plowing (3m47s) Film depicts young men transplanting seedlings and several examples of machine farming at Lee Farm in Coventry, CT.



What’s in a Name?

A new exhibit opened this week in the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center.  Drawn primarily from the University of Connecticut Memorabilia Collection housed in Archives & Special Collections, the exhibition highlights the variety of avenues by which the University of Connecticut has represented and identified since is establishment in 1881.  Past logos, letterhead and mascots are represented on pins, buttons, patches, clothing, documents and other materials.  Check out the Husky Hoops game or work on the UConn football puzzle.  A film series of recently digitized historic film is to be scheduled for lunch time viewing on selected Fridays throughout the summer (schedule to be announced soon).  The exhibit is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 – 4:30 in the Dodd Center Gallery through September 26, 2014. 

Articles providing some background about the institution’s colors (and shades of colors), mascot, and memories are available online (http://www.advance.uconn.edu/uconnhistory/) and in the binder located in the Gallery.

Grants for Research: Apply Now For Fall/Winter Travel

Edwin Way Teale at TrailwoodScholars and graduate students whose research requires use of the collections held in Archives and Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center are invited to apply for travel grants.  Applications must be received by June 30, 2014 for travel to the University of Connecticut between September 2014 and February 2015.  Grants up to $500 are awarded to graduate students and post-doctoral students, and established scholars are eligible for awards of up to $1,500.  Grants are awarded on a competitive basis to cover travel and accommodations expenses.  Details and application instructions can be found on the Strochlitz Travel Grant website.

Criteria for selection include the scope and significance of the individual’s research project relative to the subject strengths of the repository collections, his or her scholarly research credentials, and letters of support.  Applications from individuals whose research relates to the following fields of inquiry are strongly encouraged: Alternative and Underground Press in America, American Literature and Poetics, American Political History, Blues and African American Vernacular Music, Latin American and Caribbean Culture and History, Human Rights, Labor History, Public Polling History, and Connecticut and Railroad History, among others.

Contact Greg Colati, Director, with any questions.