How do you determine the starting date of the University of Cincinnati Libraries when from the university’s founding in 1819, books played an important part in the education of students?
As early as 1875, a collection of books could be found in the various classrooms of University Building (now McMicken). These materials were selected for daily reference use and were acquired through various departmental funds. In 1883, a small working library was established in the Academic Department (College of Liberal Arts). However, it is in 1892 that the Libraries were officially recognized as a distinct administrative unit of the university by the Board of Directors (as the Trustees were called at the time) with the naming of a dean and the establishment of a separate general library apart from small departmental libraries maintained by faculty members. William Everett Waters, professor of Greek and comparative philology, was appointed the first Dean and University Librarian and would serve until 1894. Thus, 2017 marks the 125th anniversary of the University of Cincinnati Libraries.
To mark the occasion of our 125th anniversary, we have compiled an exhibit of photographs of the libraries past and present – from the first library in Van Wormer to the stately Blegen Library to Langsam Library, UC Libraries have changed considerably in 125 years.
The photographs are also on display in the 5th floor lobby of the Walter C. Langsam Library. They are from the collections of the Archives and Rare Books Library and UC Libraries Communications Department.
In 1517, Martin Luther wrote his 95 theses criticizing the practice of indulgences of the Catholic church. He was disturbed by the fact that the faithful were allowed to offer money as penance for their sins. The publication of the 95 theses is considered as the starting point of the Reformation, which marks its 500th anniversary on October 31, 1517, the date long assumed that Luther nailed his theses to the door of the Castle Church at Wittenberg.
A new exhibit on display on the 4th floor lobby of the Walter C. Langsam Library, as well as spread throughout the 4th floor of the library, highlights the complex and multifaceted legacy of the Reformation. It combines publications from the University of Cincinnati Libraries’ collections and the poster exhibition “Here I Stand. Martin Luther, the Reformation and its Results.” Included in the exhibit is a list of other Cincinnati events that commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation (listed below). The exhibit was curated by Richard Schade, professor emeritus of German studies in the College of Arts and Sciences, and Olga Hart, coordinator of library instruction in the Research and Teaching Services Department and German subject librarian. It was designed and produced by Sami Scheidler, summer communications co-op design student from the College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning, and Melissa Cox Norris, director of library communications.
Martin Luther, and the movement he triggered in 1517, remain central topics in the history of the Western civilization. The Reformation forever altered the face of Europe. Century-old institutions disappeared, to be replaced by new ones. Borders changed, national churches emerged and religious tensions erupted into global conflicts. The Reformation’s positive repercussions can be seen in the intellectual and cultural flourishing it inspired on all sides of the schism—in the strengthened universities of Europe, the Lutheran church music of J.S. Bach, the baroque altarpieces of Peter Paul Rubens and even the capitalism of Dutch Calvinist merchants. The exhibit includes images of woodcuts, broadsheets, pamphlets and music that show the transmission of information and opinion during the Reformation. A Reformation Bibliography (PDF) of related library resources can be found at the exhibit and online.
Join us Monday, September 18, 3-5pm on the 4th floor of Langsam Library for an opening reception for the Reformation 500 exhibit. Brief remarks will be given by Dan Gottlieb, interim associate dean for public services for UC Libraries, Richard Schade, Martin Wilhelmy, honorary consulate for Germany in Cincinnati, and Herbert Quelle, consulate general for Germany.
It is a color that has both negative and positive connotations, is symbolic of mysticism, social rank, both high and low emotions, and of serenity and wisdom. Blue is a color that is a signifier of both Hell and purity, of luxury and dignity. There are as many interpretations of what “blue” symbolizes as there are cultures in the world.
And the symbolism of the color is the rationale behind an online exhibit created by Archives & Rare Books Library. Intended to highlight the spectrum of rare books in the collections, the selections show the cultural diversity over the ages of this particular color. Nineteen volumes are represented in the exhibit, with several examples from each of illustrations and bindings, ranging from a 15th century illuminated book of hours to early Qur’ans and Persian poetry. There are botanicals, fairy tales, Art Deco bindings, Asian drawing manuals, pochoir pattern books, and Turkish ebru marbled paper. Each indicates a specific use of blue that depends on religion, technology, or geographical heritage. Continue reading The Mystery and Emotion of “Blue”
“From Greece to Magna Graecia” narrates in pottery the colonization by Greeks of parts of Southern Italy and Sicily beginning with the Euboeans founding the colony of Pithekoussai on the island of Ischia in the 8th c. BCE and the Corinthians Syracuse on Sicily in 733 BCE.
The exhibition, on display in the Classics Library Reading Room, features Corinthian miniature vessels, Attic black and red-figure vases as trading commodities, and Campanian red-figure. There is also an accompanying book exhibition highlighting literary sources on Magna Graecia as well as Greek temples, theaters, tomb paintings, etc., from Southern Italy and Sicily from the 8th to the 3rd centuries BCE.
In addition, there is a display featuring models of Linear B tablets discovered by UC professor Carl Blegen at “the Palace of Nestor” in Pylos. UC alumnus Emmett L. Bennett, together with Alice Kober, published the first definitive list of Linear B signs that formed the basis for Michael Ventris’ identification of the script as an early form of Greek.
Rebecka Lindau, Head, John Miller Burnam Classics Library
The Archives and Rare Books Library is proud to announce our partnership with the Cincinnati Museum Center. The Museum Center just announced their Shakespeare exhibit, which ARB is helping them prepare! Opening August 25th, the exhibit will be centered on Shakespeare’s First Folio (published 1623). The Folio is generously being lent to CMC by the Folger Shakespeare Library, which toured the work throughout the U.S. just last year. The exhibit will explore Shakespeare through time—how his works have adapted, what’s influenced new interpretations, and how appreciation of his work has evolved. There will be a focus on how Cincinnati has interacted with Shakespeare over time. Continue reading Exciting News from the Archives and Rare Books Library!
Beginning in January of 2012, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County (PLCH) and University of Cincinnati Libraries (UCL) began a long-term collaboration to provide conservation and preservation treatments in an equally-managed, staffed, and equipped preservation lab situated in UC’s Walter C. Langsam Library. Employees from both PLCH and UCL work on the general circulating and rare/special collections of each institution.
The exhibit, located on the 4th floor of Langsam Library, showcases the work of the lab as well as educates about the difference between preservation and conservation, what makes an item a “special collection,” and the techniques and tools used in the care of collections. The exhibit also features both before and after images of the treatment done to the objects and explains the process. The exhibit was curated by Holly Prochaska, preservation librarian, Ashleigh Schieszer, lab conservator, and Jessica Ebert, conservation technician, and was designed by Jessica Burhans, communications co-op design student. Continue reading ‘Preserving the Past for the Future’ Exhibit Showcases Preservation Lab
A display on the 4th floor of Langsam Library organized by the Gender-Based Violence Student Education and Outreach (GBVSEO) Team and UC Libraries includes library materials that inform about Sexual Assault Awareness month.
The GBVSEO Team’s mission is to create a safer campus culture by preventing gender-based violence and supporting survivors through education and outreach. The SAAM display in the library does just that! The display encourages students to educate themselves on the issue by taking out a wide variety of books on the topic. The display also directs students to online resources including films about rape culture. Most importantly, the display includes resources for survivors and information about all of the support services on campus for students who have experienced gender-based violence, which includes sexual assault, stalking, and intimate partner violence.
While the GBVSEO Team has many programs planned for SAAM, we feel that the library display plays a particularly important role in our awareness campaign. Sometimes students don’t feel comfortable stopping by a tabling event to get information, but the library display allows them to engage with the material and pick up resources with more anonymity. The display is also located in an area of campus that has high traffic. We hope that students who pass by the display, even if they do not choose to engage with the material, become aware that this month is SAAM.
The Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) library display was organized and designed by Susan Banoun and Mikaila Corday of UC Libraries and the Gender-Based Violence Student Education and Outreach Team, which includes members from the Women’s Center, LGBTQ Center, Student Wellness Center, and the Women Helping Women On-Campus Advocates.
By Erin R. Mulligan, Gender Based Violence Prevention Education Coordinator, University of Cincinnati Women’s Center.