Our latest installment in the Archives & Rare Books Library’s commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War focuses on Benjamin Butler, a controversial Union general whose command of New Orleans earned him the nickname, “The Beast.” As commander of Fortress Monroe, Butler coined the phrase “Contraband of War” to refer to slaves that had crossed over to Union territory and were retained by the Union Army. His successful protection of Baltimore and command of the Department of Eastern Virginia earned him the command of the Department of the Gulf, where he took control of the captured city of New Orleans early in 1862. But the accolades ended here, and the rest of his military career was marked with controversy and strife. Eventually he was relieved of his command in the Gulf and of his subsequent command of the Department of Virginia and North Carolina. Continue reading Civil War History: General Benjamin Franklin Butler
You would probably not be surprised to learn that UC Libraries hold copies of Malcolm X’s biography, Fahrenheit 451, Shakespeare’s Macbeth, and Treasure Island. What might surprise you, however, is that these are all titles of graphic novels. A new exhibit currently on display on the fourth floor of Langsam Library features these and many of the other graphic novels available in UC Libraries’ collections. The exhibit was curated by Janice Schulz, University Records Manager and Archives Specialist, and designed by Cole Osborn, former design student.
Pledging traditions of African-American fraternities are highlighted in an article from the Autumn, 1981, edition of Clifton Magazine, now available on the 1980 and Beyond history page. During the anti-hazing controversies of the early 1980s, long-time pledging rituals practiced by Black fraternities, such as marching and branding, were brought into focus and their legality was questioned. Members defended these activities while outsiders tended to view them with a more critical eye. Continue reading Additions to ARB's Greek Life Exhibit
The Archives & Rare Books Library has digitized some historical Cincinnati maps dating from 1802 – 1929 and has made them available for research on our website. The maps are all located in materials from our Rare Books Collection and are scanned at a high resolution to provide detail for researchers.
The maps provide both geographical and social information about the City of Cincinnati through the years. Several of the maps included keys or labels indicating buildings and landmarks and can show trends in public services and the development of particular communities. Continue reading Historical Cincinnati Maps
The first major land battle of the Civil War was fought near Manassas Junction, Virginia, on the banks of Bull Run Creek on July 21, 1861. It was intended by the advancing Federal army to demonstrate their strength and was expected to bring the war to a swift end. It did no such thing. As the conflict began, both sides had confidence in their own superiority over the enemy. Northern civilians went so far as to travel to Bull Run complete with picnic baskets and parasols to watch their glorious army beat the rebels back. Early on it appeared that the Union would come through victorious, but surprise reinforcements arriving for the Confederacy resulted in a Union retreat. Continue reading Civil War History: The Battle of Bull Run
The 25th annual Authors, Editors and Composers reception and program was held Tuesday, April 12, in the Russell C. Myers Alumni Center. At the event, UC Libraries honored 250 faculty members and their 340 creative and scholarly works published in the year 2010. Participating faculty members represented every UC college plus the Career Development Center, the Division of Professional Practice, the Institute for Policy Research, the Office of Research, and the Libraries.
On April 12, 2011, our country will recognize the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War and to commemorate it, the Archives & Rare Books Library has mounted an exhibit highlighting our materials related to the war and the corresponding time period. Documents in the exhibit have been chosen from several of our collecting areas, including Rare Books, Urban Studies, and Local Government Records.
Examples from our collection of composer Stephen Foster’s material begin the exhibit. With stirring titles such as “Was My Brother in the Battle?” and “Willie’ll Roam No Moer,” his Civil War songs have been published with full color drawings that offer a visual image of their themes, providing a combination that must have appealed powerfully to Northern sensibilities. Continue reading Archives & Rare Books Commemorates the Start of the Civil War
A new exhibit, on display on the 5th floor of Langsam Library, features monthly calendars produced by the Strobridge Lithography Company.
Ranging from 1897 to 1917, the calendar cards are exquisite examples of Art Nouveau design in America, showing the artistry and printing skills of the company. The cards functioned as “home advertising” for the firm and were meant to be displayed on a kitchen or office wall. The color separations are remarkable, and the vivid beauty of the illustrations perfectly captures the collaboration between artist and craftsman.