Making the case with Case Maker

Studying primary sources allows us to discover information about the past. A primary source might be anything from correspondence to photographs to newspapers and diaries. Primary sources are extremely useful not just for projects, but provide us a way to understand the history more deeply and personally from those that came before us.

Casemaker website homepageWhen visitors come into the Maryland Room, they use primary sources to help with their research projects.  Researchers pour over material, thinking critically about what the material is and what answers it can provide. Critical thinking and inquiry are crucial tools when conducting a research project that involves archival material and primary sources.

These sophisticated research skills are being introduced to children earlier than ever. Case Maker is one of the tools educators can use to help middle school students begin to develop their critical thinking skills. Continue reading

Digital projects using archives

#BlackLivesMatter   #SayHerName   #BringBackOurGirls   #ICANTBREATHE

Internet activism has changed the national conversation and must be taken seriously. Social media is reshaping how scholars study social movements. Is there an opportunity for archival collections to support these conversations on race and digital social justice activism? Can archival primary source materials that weren’t born digital be more effectively used alongside born-digital records in data analysis and scholarship? This semester members from the AADHum Project Team, along with our Teaching and Learning Librarian and Labor History Archivist, explored these questions to gain a broader sense of how primary resources support projects in the digital humanities.

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The World’s Fair Ephemeral and Graphic Material Collection

The World’s Fair Ephemeral and Graphic Material Collection is now available at the Maryland Room, 1st floor Hornbake Library. To celebrate, we are featuring four blog posts about World’s Fair history and the collection. Read the first post here.

Part 2 of 4

Centennial Exhibition (1876 : Philadelphia, Pa.). R. Magee & Son (Philadelphia, Pa.). Reproductions, Cards; 10.2 x 14.1 cm.

Centennial Exhibition (1876 : Philadelphia, Pa.). R. Magee & Son (Philadelphia, Pa.). Reproductions, Cards; 10.2 x 14.1 cm.

The 1852 London exposition set the precedent for the many international exhibitions or world’s fairs that have continued to be held to the present time. The character and focus of world expositions has evolved to keep up with the changing times, but they have always allowed people to experience ways of life outside their normal way of living.

Admission ticket, Abraham Lincon, World's Columbian Exposition, 1893.

Admission ticket, Abraham Lincon, World’s Columbian Exposition, 1893.

The fairs introduced the world to new scientific advancements and new inventions such as the Ferris wheel, telephone, zipper, Cracker Jacks, x-ray, fax machines and television. The world’s fairs also gave us some of the world’s most notable landmarks and buildings such as the Crystal Palace, the Eiffel Tower and the Space Needle.

Visit the recently expanded finding aid for the World’s Fair Ephemeral and Graphic Material Collection and A Treasury of World’s Fair Art & Architecture digital archive for more information.

Article by A. Moore, Historic Preservation Graduate Assistant.

The World’s Fair Ephemeral and Graphic Material Collection

The World’s Fair Ephemeral and Graphic Material Collection is now available at the Maryland Room, 1st floor Hornbake Library. To celebrate, we are featuring four blog posts about World’s Fair history and the collection.

Part 1 of 4

Crystal Palace, 1853-54

Crystal Palace, New York Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations (1853-1854). Carstensen, Georg, 1812-1857. Periodical Illustrations: monochrome.

Before the internet, World’s Fairs gave people the chance to explore the world outside their everyday experience. People from all over the world flocked to the fairs to see the monumental architecture and exotic landscapes and to experience different cultures, international foods and new inventions. For a brief amount of time, cities would transform their everyday setting into places of magic and entertainment.

Festival Hall

Festival Hall, Louisiana Purchase Exposition (1904 : Saint Louis, Mo.). Photomechanical prints: black and white; 23.5 x 18.5 cm.

The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of all Nations, held in 1851 in London’s Hyde Park, is known as the first international exposition. The Great Exhibition was organized by Henry Cole and Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria, to celebrate modern industrial technology and design. It became a platform for countries from around the world to display their achievements.

Crystal Palace 1851

Crystal Palace, Great Exhibition (1851 : London, England). Paxton, Joseph, Sir, 1803-1865. Gelatin silver print: black and white.

Visit the recently expanded finding aid for the World’s Fair Ephemeral and Graphic Material Collection and A Treasury of World’s Fair Art & Architecture digital archive for more information.

Article by A. Moore, Historic Preservation Graduate Assistant.