Special Collections Highlights Debs Collection (September 28)

Special Collections staffer, Dennis Vetrovec, and visitor, Cathy McGuire

On Saturday September 28, the Debs Foundation sponsored numerous events leading up to the Debs Award Dinner. This included special Saturday access to Special Collections’ Debs Collection.  Special Collections staffer Dennis Vetrovec chose many unique items from the Collection to display and staffed the open hours from 1pm – 4pm. Based on the reaction of the many people who took advantage of this opportunity, he chose well. People from all around the U.S. (California, North Dakota, Illinois, etc.) spent time poring over materials that included:

  • Photographs
  • Editorial Cartoons
  • Records from the National Archives, including court cases
  • Postcards
  • Correspondence
  • Proceedings of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen
  • Magazine of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen (Debs was a contributor and editor)
  • Manuscript of BLF membership written by Debs in part
  • Journals contemporary with the creation of the Debs Foundation
  • Leftist newspapers like the Appeal to Reason and clippings

middle: Michelle Morahn, Kate Debs researcher and Debs Foundation Secretary

In addition, two cases focused on Seymour Stedman, Debs’ lawyer and running mate, and David Karsner, Debs’ contemporary biographer.

Debs Collection materials displayed in the Cordell Dictionary Room

LARRY BIRD SPOTTED ON LIBRARY’S 3RD FLOOR!

Larry Bird – as far as the eye can see!

A 13-case display of Larry Bird’s golden years at Indiana State University is now on display. In addition to photographs and magazines held by Archives, the exhibit is enhanced with personal memorabilia, including buttons, tickets and tee-shirts – are on loan from Al Perone. Al (’81 GR ’84) is known to everyone on the ISU campus. Currently he is serving as Assistant Director, Indiana State University Alumni Association in the Division of University Advancement.


Al on Larry: Being a student at Indiana State during the Larry Bird Era hooked me into Sycamore sports.  I was always a sports fan in HS, but when I came to ISU we were on the National stage.  When we made it to the Final Four in Salt Lake City Utah, there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to be there!   A week later and 33 hours in the back seat of a Datsun B210, I was there.  I was able to witness “The Game that Made the Game.”    I feel very fortunate to be one of the few students in the world that was able to watch, in person, their school play for the National Title in Basketball!  Since then I’ve traveled over 50,000 miles watching Sycamore Teams play across the United States.  Go Trees!


 

Library will digitize St. Theodore Guerin’s works

The Digital Initiatives Unit of the Indiana State University’s library’s Special Collections Department received a $15,453 grant to help the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods Archives provide online access to Saint Mother Theodore Guerin’s letters and journals. 

The project will digitize approximately 1,500 pages of original documents, translations and transcriptions and provide access to the digital representations through Indiana Memory and the Digital Public Library of America. The master digital files will be stored long term in the MetaArchive Digital Preservation Network.

This is an opportunity for the ISU library digital initiatives staff to share their expertise with community organizations,” said Cinda May, librarian and chair of Special Collections at Indiana State. “We’re working to include English translations along with the French text to make the letters and journals of Mother Theodore Guerin available to a worldwide audience.”

This project is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered by the Indiana State Library.

The letters and journals provide a variety of insights into the culture and history of 19th century America, especially in Indiana. In 1840, Mother Guerin and five companions traveled from Ruillé, France, to serve the Catholic community in Indiana.

A prolific writer, Mother Guerin kept detailed journals and wrote numerous letters describing the experiences of the French nuns in Indiana’s remote forests. Composed between 1840 and 1856, the 429 letters and three travel journals, written primarily in French with some English translations, are preserved in the Sisters of Providence Archives at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods. Indiana.  State students Kirsten Campbell and Jazmyne Magee were hired to help with the digitization and metadata creation.

“This is good hands-on experience for any history major and it’s always good to know more about how to analyze documents and handle data, which I am doing working about 16 hours a week on this project,” said Campbell, a senior political science and history major from St. Joseph, Ill. “Spending this much time on the project has allowed me to learn a lot about Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, too. I really didn’t know much about the college before I started, especially not its history or founding, and it’s interesting.”

Magee, a sophomore business major from Gary, Ind., travels to the Sisters of Providence Archives to scan and transcribe Mother Guerin’s works.

“I’ve acquired a lot of new skills since I applied to help with this project, like new computer software, how to input and analyze data and even a little of the French language,” she said. “The information I’ve learned is really interesting, too, and I think people will be surprised by all they’ll learn when everything goes live.”

The grant runs through June when the information is expected to be searchable through Indiana Memory and the Digital Public Library of America.

Media contact: Cinda May, librarian chair of Special Collections, Cunningham Memorial Library, Indiana State University, cinda.may@indstate.edu

Article re-posted

October 20: Debs Collection on View

Following the showing of the documentary “At the River I Stand” and q/a from Debs Foundation Award winner, civil rights/union activist William “Bill” Lucy, items from the Debs Collection were on display in Special Collections. Special Collections Department Chair and Debs Foundation Board member, Cinda May, was on hand to discuss the items.