Dolly Cohen: Philanthropist and Fashionista

Dolly Cohen

By Suzanne Maggard

If you were a member of Cincinnati’s blue blood society in the 1950s and 1960s, you would have surely known Dolly Cohen.  You might have also been acquainted with her, if you were a polio or cancer researcher, a local orphan, a victim of muscular dystrophy, a University of Cincinnati faculty member, a student seeking a scholarship, or even an Ohio State University football player.  The woman was everywhere, donating her time and money to a myriad of causes in Cincinnati and throughout the country.  The University of Cincinnati’s Archives and Rare Books Library holds Mrs. Cohen’s scrapbooks and other mementos which provide a visual timeline of her life and charitable work. Continue reading Dolly Cohen: Philanthropist and Fashionista

Generous Gift Funds More News Record Digitization

UC News RecordBy:  Kevin Grace

An additional four years of the University of Cincinnati News Record has now been digitized, thanks to the generosity of a Bearcat alumnus.  Jordan L. Bleznick, a 1976 A&S graduate, funded the project to digitize the student newspaper from 1973 through 1976, adding to the previous digitized issues from 1960 through 1970.  Researchers can access these years by visiting the University of Cincinnati Digital Collections site at:  The newspapers are available as full-text and are keyword searchable. Continue reading Generous Gift Funds More News Record Digitization

ARB Makes the Poster Lineup for Archives Month

By:  Kevin Grace

Bag piperEvery October, the Society of Ohio Archivists sponsors “Archives Month in Ohio” to encourage teachers, students, scholars and the general public to seek out and learn from the rich historical resources in the state.   From the smallest community historical society to the largest public libraries and universities, the wealth of primary research material in Ohio contributes not only to appreciation of our heritage, but provides understanding of our current lives as well.

And each year, the SOA Archives Month Committee selects a specific topic to highlight repository holdings.  In the past, some of the themes have been music, African American heritage, business, and sports.  As part of the annual focus, exhibits, lectures, and other programs are offered and a promotional poster is printed.  For 2012, the theme is “Peoples of Ohio” and southwestern Ohio will focus on Irish heritage.  For the poster, the Archives & Rare Books Library contributed the image shown here of a piper from the Cincinnati Emerald Society of Police and Fired Pipes and Drums Corps performing in the city’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade.  This photo will accompany other wonderful images representing the state’s Native American, Greek, Slovak, Jewish, German, French, and African American citizens, for example. Posters will be available by late summer. Continue reading ARB Makes the Poster Lineup for Archives Month

Dr. Carl A. Huether-Genetic Counseling Collection Available for Research

Carl Huether

By Kate Krueger, ARB Student Assistant

Now available in the Archives and Rare Books Library are the papers of Dr. Carl A Huether, professor of biology and the visionary behind the establishment of a graduate program in genetic counseling at the University of Cincinnati. Dr. Huether was director of the genetic counseling program from 1982 to 1992. After this he remained a vital part of the program as a professor, advisor and advocate for medical genetics. In 2007 after 41 years as a member of the biology faculty, Dr. Huether retired and the first ever endowment fund for a graduate program in genetic counseling was established.

Established as an emphasis for graduate biology majors in 1982, the program is documented in the papers of Dr. Huether and chronicle his tireless efforts to have a formalized program in genetic counseling. Through the correspondence with colleagues and university administration, this collection provides an interesting Genetic Counseling Brochurehistory of how new programs are established at the UC. In addition, the various drafts and revisions of the formal proposal to have the genetic counseling program established give insight into the importance of such a program. Copies of the various versions of the proposal in addition to the final version that was submitted to and approved by the Ohio Board of Regents are available in the collection.  A guide to the collection is available on the OhioLINK Finding Aid Repository.  For more information on this collection and other items related to the history of the University of Cincinnati contact the Archives and Rare Books Library by phone at 513-556-1959 or by email at

Dr. Isay Balikin: Innovative UC Teacher and Researcher

Isay Balinkin with an inventionOne night in October of 1938, in Cincinnati’s General Hospital (now University Hospital), there was an unusual hustle and bustle as nurses, doctors, and interns searched throughout the building for a tiny piece of uranium which had disappeared. The radium, no larger than a sugar cube, was worth $1400 and hospital staff was intent on locating it.  During the search, it was discovered that Dr. Isay Balinkin of UC’s College of Engineering had an electroscope that could be used to find uranium.  The problem was that it was late at night, and Dr. Balinkin did not have a telephone.  Instead, the hospital sent Postal and Western Union messengers to get Dr. Balinkin and his electroscope at his home on Auburn Avenue.  (Yes it does seem like an odd way to fetch someone only a few miles away.)  They did find Dr. Balinkin and Dr. Balinkin found the uranium in the trash.    Dr. Isay Balinkin spent 40 years at the University of Cincinnati and did even more important things than locating uranium in the middle of the night.  An enthusiastic teacher, he taught an estimated 8000 students demonstrating science with devices like bowling balls, rubber gloves, and mousetraps.  He was also a great researcher and held 7 patents for devices he had invented.  Some of his papers are held in UC’s Archives and Rare Books Library. Continue reading Dr. Isay Balikin: Innovative UC Teacher and Researcher

Richardson's rocks: DAAP-designed Cincinnati memorial in Burnet Woods turns 40

UC Magazine recently published a story celebrating the Richardson Stones in Burnett Woods.  Read the story below or to view the original story, go to  You can also find a collection on the Richardson Stones at the Archives and Rare Books Library.  The finding aid is available on the OhioLINK Finding Aid Repository.

Richardson Stones
UC architecture faculty and students who integrated H.H. Richardson and his works into their ongoing studies completed this memorial in Burnet Woods Park in 1972. photo/Jay Yocis

Former UC architectural history professor Bill Rudd shares the story behind the student-led construction of the Burnet Woods memorial to famed architect H.H. Richardson’s Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce Building. Henry Hobson Richardson is highly regarded, along with Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright, as one of “the recognized trinity of American architecture.” The style he popularized is named for him: Richardsonian Romanesque.

Among the last buildings Richardson designed was the one-time Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce building on 4th Street. That building, dedicated in 1889, would stand among the most significant public structures in the region — along with works like the Suspension Bridge, the Carew Tower, City Hall, Music Hall and Union Terminal — had it not been destroyed by fire a century ago, in 1911. The memorial was completed in 1972.

Continue reading Richardson's rocks: DAAP-designed Cincinnati memorial in Burnet Woods turns 40

URC Funds Granted for Study of ARB's Van Meter Ames Collection

By Lauren Fink, ARB Intern, 2011-2012

When I began working at the Archives and Rare Books Library last June, I never could have imagined all that I would learn in the following year.  As my one year anniversary at ARB is quickly approaching, I find myself reflecting on all of the great collections I have had the opportunity to process and research, all of the priceless books I have gotten to Betty and Van Meter AmesJohn Cagebrowse every day, and all of the help and support I have been given from my wonderful co-workers.

By sheer chance, the very first collection I was given to process, during my initial weeks of working here, was directly related to my percussion performance major and my academic interests.  Continue reading URC Funds Granted for Study of ARB's Van Meter Ames Collection

UC Commencement - A Time-Honored Tradition

By: Dawn Fuller 

(Re-posted from UC News:

Look through historic photos of UC Commencement Ceremonies and discover some of the university’s traditions that continue to thread through Commencement today.

Who remembers Commencement at Nippert Stadium?

As depicted in the video that features Commencement photos stored in UC Archives, Nippert Stadium – for decades – was the venue for June Commencement.


UC last held Commencement in Nippert Stadium in 1984. UC President Henry Winkler delivered the Commencement address at the 1984 cerermony in Nippert Stadium. In 1985, 1986, 1987 and 1988, June Commencement was held downtown, when the spring ceremony took place in Riverfront Coliseum, now called U.S. Bank Arena. Continue reading UC Commencement - A Time-Honored Tradition

Taking Part in Something New: Participatory Archives and the Midwest Archives Conference

Cincinnatian 1958
It looks like these students are moving into new territory. From the 1958 Cincinnatian Yearbook

Often when I tell family or friends that I’m going to be going to an archives conference, they say “How Boring!”  I find it exciting though.  It is my chance to see what other archivists are doing, if there is anything new we can try here at UC, and it allows me to meet other archivists who might be able to answer one of my questions or one of your future questions.  I recently attended the Midwest Archives Conference Annual Meeting in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and learned about some new projects using “participatory archives,” and how these collections can be used in research, teaching, learning, and just for fun.  (To learn a little more about the conference, read Stephanie Bricking’s blog post about her poster presentation on the Sabin papers.) Continue reading Taking Part in Something New: Participatory Archives and the Midwest Archives Conference

Spring 2012 Records Quarterly Now Available

Records Quarterly Cover Spring 2012The Spring 2010 edition of Records Quarterly, the newsletter of University of Cincinnati Records Management, is now available on the records management website at Articles in this issue include:

  • Managing Email Messages as University Records – Learn how to identify record material in your inbox and how to organize and maintain those records.
  • Case Study: DAAP Student Records – See how DAAP was able to streamline student recordkeeping by centralizing responsibility.
  • Records in the Cloud – Discover the world of cloud computing and learn about the special things you need to consider when creating and storing University records there.

You will also find announcements for the spring Information to Records Management workshops and the spring shredding event.

Records Quarterly is distributed electronically via the Records Management website. Subscribers to the Records Management Listserv will receive notification of new issues automatically. You can sign up for the listserv by going to the subscription page, or by sending an email to Please include your name and email address and use “listserv sign-up” in the subject line.