By: Kevin Rigsbee, ARB and History Department Intern
The University of Cincinnati Archives and Rare Books Library recently received the papers of Don Heinrich Tolzmann, a retired Senior Librarian at UC and the former director of German-American Studies. He has served as president of the Society for German-American Studies and during his tenure of office, he helped commemorate the 1983 German-American Tricentennial to mark the establishment of the first German-American settlement at Germantown, Pennsylvania Tolzmann also led the 1987 campaign to establish October 6th as German-American Day in the United States. He has also served on the boards of international and national organizations, including the Deutsches Auswandererhaus in Bremerhaven and the Friends of the German Historical Institute in Washington, D.C. and he is currently president of the German-American Citizens League of Greater Cincinnati,
Dr. Tolzmann created the German-Americana Collection (also known as the Fick Collection because the initial bulk of the collection came from the library of noted Cincinnati educator and poet H.H. Fick) when he was on the University of Cincinnati Libraries faculty and built it into a world-renowned resource for research and teaching. This extensive collection contains materials from the nineteenth century to the present day, and ranges from periodicals and newspapers to personal letters, census records, and spelling books and almanacs. Continue reading The Don Heinrich Tolzmann German-Americana Collection
In 1866, dozens of Cincinnatians, many of them veterans of the Civil War, helped launch an unsuccessful Irish invasion of Canada. After capture by British and Canadian forces, these Cincinnati Irish were repatriated and they came home. In 1894, a young Irish immigrant by the name of Mary “Mollie” Gilmartin, living in Cincinnati’s West End, was killed by a man who had stalked her from County Sligo. Mollie was buried without a grave marker and then forgotten for almost a century. In 1908, a little girl from the Avondale neighborhood wrote her Christmas letter to Santa Claus. Elainae, the six-year-old of a wealthy family asked for a doll and for an Irish maid. And in the 1920s, Ireland’s political leader Éamon de Valera came to Cincinnati to raise money for his emerging independent country. The Cincinnati Irish had deep pockets with an abiding connection to their heritage. These are all fairly disparate stories that touch upon just one of the ethnic groups that shaped Cincinnati then, but what meaning is to be found in them now? How are commonalities with other groups, other eras, and other places discovered and studied? Continue reading Revealing the Cincinnati Irish
Last year, I wrote a short history of the Cincinnati House of Refuge for a website that is currently under development by some UC Librarians which will make the data from ARB’s digitized Cincinnati House of Refuge records more easily searchable. While conducting research on the history of the House of Refuge, I became intrigued with how Cincinnati dealt with children whose parents for one reason or another were unable to care for them in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The Cincinnati House of Refuge was designed as a facility for juvenile delinquents, but over time it also came to house children who had nowhere else to go. This fall I am beginning a research quest to piece together why this happened, and when and what alternatives to the House of Refuge were established. I will be writing a series of blog posts on what I find. This first one, though, will provide some background on Cincinnati’s House of Refuge. Continue reading Caring for Cincinnati’s Children: The Cincinnati House of Refuge and Beyond
Read Source, the online newsletter, to learn more about the news, events, people and happenings in UC Libraries.
This latest issue of Source includes an article with Xuemao Wang, dean and university librarian, about how UC Libraries is utilizing Organizational Development to help bring about transformational change. Kevin Grace, university archivist and head of the Archives and Rare Books Library writes about the Enoch Carson Shakespeare Collection and how it will be a part of autumn 2017 Shakespeare celebrations in Cincinnati. Another great reading collection, the Cohen Enrichment Collection, is also featured in this issue.
In the spring of 1883, Cincinnati held its first Dramatic Festival at Music Hall, performing for a consecutive six days. The show had a lineup of performances of all sorts of dramatic works, with many of them holding Shakespearian titles. The festival was such a big deal that even the Chicago Tribune sent someone over to see what it was all about but unfortunately, the Tribune was less than impressed with Cincinnati’s efforts, claiming that the largeness of Music Hall drowned out the performances of almost all the actors. However, the critics did have some kind words for the orchestra as well as the performances of Hamlet and Julius Caesar. Apparently, these were the only two plays that were “great” enough to be worthy of performance while simultaneously using the space effectively. It certainly helped that in the role of Hamlet was the famous thespian James E. Murdoch.
Founded in 1819, Cincinnati College was home to two literary societies, the Philomathic Society and the Erophoebic Society (which had a bit of a rivalry between them). Students of the College formed the Philomathic Society prior to the opening of the College, on January 18, 1818. The Society’s aim was “for mutual literary improvement” and its first members were John Hough James, Junius James, George Mackey Wilson, Lemuel D. Howells, Robert T. Lytle, and Edward L. Drake. Soon after its creation, the student members created a separate branch of the Philomathic Society for elected members consisting of William Henry Harrison, Thomas Peirce, Daniel Drake, Benjamin Drake, Peyton Short Symmes, as well as “other gentlemen, well known at that day… interested in literary affairs.” On April 3, 1821, Daniel Drake invited the members of the Philomathic Society to join the public commencement of the Medical College being held the following day at Cincinnati College’s Chapel. In the early part of 1821, the Society created a semi-monthly paper called The Olio, which featured local literature and was “the first effort on the part of a literary society, in the West, for development of poetic ability.” The publication contained historical essays, articles, poetry, and the occasional “humorous essay.”The Olio, published and edited by John H. Wood and Samuel S. Brooks, ended after just one year of publication.Continue reading History of the Philomathic Society of Cincinnati College
This year’s lecture will consist of a panel discussion by prominent African American physicians and is titled “African American Physicians in Cincinnati: Past, Present and Future.” Moderated by Dr. Elbert Nelson, the panelists will include Drs. Chester Pryor, Charles Dillard, Camille C. Graham and Christopher Lewis.
The evening will include the talk from 5-6 p.m., followed by Q&A and a reception at 6:30 p.m. In addition, an exhibit of the same name will be on display in the Lucas Board Room in the Winkler Center.
The following post was written by Winkler Center assistant archivist, Nina Herzog. All images courtesy of the Henry R. Winkler Center for the History of the Health Professions
Without a doubt, checking into and staying at hospitals is a lot different today than it was over a half century ago. Computerized check-ins, televisions in rooms and bans on smoking, etc. have all improved the patient experience. The images below were taken from an informational booklet given to patients at the Cincinnati General Hospital (CGH) in 1958.
The instructive pamphlet titled, “Well Here I Am,” provides the incoming patient with information on subjects ranging from check in, dining hours, and visitor information to hospital maps, directions, and much more.