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Native American Heritage Month

Tuesday, November 6th, 2012

Siletz Tribal Royalty at campus Pow Wow, date unknown.

The month of November is celebrated as Native American Heritage Month across the United States. During this time we honor and celebrate the importance of the indigenous peoples of this continent who have lived on these lands since time immemorial and who continue to thrive across the country today. Some basic background information about the history of Native American Heritage Month can be found here.

Various archive repositories, both local and national, are honoring the beauty of Native American archive collections. National repositories in Washington, DC have a created a web portal devoted to collections, exhibits, as well as resources for teachers. At the University of Oregon Special Collections and University Archives we are honored to be the stewards of various Native American collections that represent the breadth and scope of the tribal communities across Oregon and the greater Northwest. We honor their history and beauty that resonates in the past, present, and future generations.

For a comprehensive list of our Native American collections, see our Tribal Legacies project. The database presents a first step in providing extended access to materials pertaining to Native American ethnography and history in the University of Oregon Libraries. The digital collection brings together information from UO Libraries’ documents, maps, photographs, and manuscript collections.  We previously highlighted this database when we celebrated Native American Day in September; more information can be found here .

Knight Library is also pleased to host an exhibit honoring Jim Thorpe, November 12th through January 31st:  “The Greatest Athlete in History! An Exhibit Honoring Jim Thorpe.” Before Ashton Eaton, Dan and Dave, and Bruce Jenner, there was Jim Thorpe. This exhibit honors the life, legacy and contemporary issues associated with this multi-talented Sac and Fox sports and cultural icon, locating him firmly within Sac and Fox and Native American historical contexts. The exhibit can be seen on the first floor of Knight Library directly in front of the Circulation Desk.

In addition, across the University of Oregon campus there are numerous events being held in honor of Native American Heritage Month. You can see a full list compiled by the Native American Student Union here. The majority of these events will take place at the Many Nations Longhouse on campus.

Please join the University of Oregon Special Collections and University Archives in the important celebration.

Jennifer R. O’Neal
Corrigan Solari University Historian and Archivist

Gallery of Archival Horrors

Tuesday, November 6th, 2012

The Smithsonian put together a photo show of preservation problems in their collection, as part of their celebration of Halloween and of Archives Month. Check it out: When Bad Things happen to Good Collections

When Susan B. Anthony Tried to Vote

Tuesday, November 6th, 2012

Given the Oregon Suffrage Centennial and today’s election, here’s a wonderful summation by Doug Linder (2001) :  The Trial of Susan B. Anthony for Illegal Voting

“Susan B. Anthony is not on trial; the United States is on trial.”–Matilda Joslyn Gage

Don’t forget, if you want to explore primary sources on Oregon women and politics, we have Abigail Scott Duniway papers among others, and through an LSTA grant from the Oregon State Library, we recently posted finding aids to the  Gretchen Kafoury papers and the Nancie Fadeley papers. Through the end of this year, we’ll be completing description of materials related to the Oregon Women’s Political Caucus, and NOW. Stay tuned!

Exhibit: Vintage editorial cartoons about elections!

Monday, November 5th, 2012

The Price of Freedom

Stop by the SCUA hallway today to see some great examples from our collection of original artwork for editorial cartoons. These are poster-sized work, inked onto card stock, from the days when all the drawing, lettering and inking was done by hand.

Many of the visitors to this exhibit come away shaking their heads, because it can seem as if nothing much has changed over the years.  In 1932, Quincy Scott (1882-1965) was worried about Oregon voters who weren’t paying attention to the measures on the ballot. In “The Price of Freedom is Eternal Vigilance,” the background to the conversation shown here has a scene from the Revolutionary War, “1776: We fight for the right to govern ourselves. 1932: We govern ourselves.” Scott  was the editorial cartoonist for The Oregonian from  1931-1949.

We also hold work by Homer Davenport (1867-1912) of Silverton, Oregon, who became the most highly paid political cartoonist of his time. Davenport started at the Portland Mercury, moved to the San Francisco Examiner, and then was hired by William Randolph Hearst for the New York Journal. Davenport’s attacks on the McKinley campaign and their ties to big business. These cartoons enraged his critics so much that they attempted to pass an anti-cartoon bill through the New York legislature in 1897, but Davenport’s public supporters defeated the legislation.

Compare these cartoons to those you see in today’s newspapers, and you’ll see one huge difference: the amount of text. The visual literacy expectations for the public were much lower, so everything was labeled to make sure the meaning was clear. Here you can see that the Ancient Mariner embodies “Depression Complex” and his deadly weapon is “Voting Without Thinking.” (The dead albatross is “Actual Progress Toward Recovery by the Hoover Administration.”) The title of the cartoon is “The Ancient Marine Made a Mistake.”





Votes for Women: A hundred years worth celebrating

Monday, November 5th, 2012

November 5, is the centennial of Oregon women’s suffrage. There are several events, many organized by Century of Action with the assistance of SCUA curator Linda Long.

“What’s Suffrage Got to Do with It” Live Town Hall Debate*
*With special guest speaker Rep. Nancie Fadeley
Monday, November 5 at 6 PM
Presented by Lane County Historical Society
At UO Baker Downtown Center (325 10th Ave., Eugene, OR)
Free event. For more information: Heather Kliever, 541-682-4242

Monday, Nov. 5 at 9 PM
Premiere of  the documentary “The Suffragists

Here’s Your Guide to Celebrating the Oregon Women Suffrage Centennial

In the words of Abigail Scott Duniway, “Yours for Liberty”

CBS News: Historical treasures missing from National Archives

Monday, November 5th, 2012

60 Minutes just did a segment on thefts from the National Archives, and the efforts to recover them. Every repository worries about theft, every single day. We do what we can to instill a culture of caution, of following routines, of avoiding shortcuts “just this once.” But as a public repository, we also have to be welcoming and promote use of our collections. How can you be vigilant and open at the same time? It’s not easy. And successful repository thieves often seem very professorial and scholarly, just the type that university repositories expect are committed to academic rigor and honesty. Next time you have to haul out your ID for us, or check your backpack, please remember that when original documents walk out the door, they are usually lost from the historical record forever. That’s why we have all the rules and regulations–so when you want to use it, it’s still here for you.


Symposium Celebrates Women’s Suffrage Centennial

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

Abigail Scott Duniway, Oregon champion of suffrage

“From Suffrage to Citizenship: Empowering Oregon Women in the Twentieth Century and Beyond, ”a symposium celebrating the centennial of women’s suffrage, is scheduled for Thursday, October 25, from 3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in Knight Library’s Browsing Room on the UO campus. The event is free and open to the public.

Linda Long, manuscripts librarian at the University of Oregon Libraries and organizer of the symposium, says that the event is meant to not only celebrate past accomplishments of women as voters and citizens but to look to the future as well. “Women have accomplished much in the past 100 years,” she says, “but a primary goal of the symposium is to sustain and strengthen their contributions as citizens far into the future.”

From 3 p.m. to 4 p.m., a panel will address the question “How Have Women Changed Politics?” Panel members include:

  • April Haynes, Assistant Professor, UO Department of History
  • Priscilla Yamin, Assistant Professor, UO Department of Political Science
  • Margaret Hallock, Director, Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics
  • Kitty Piercy, Mayor of Eugene

At 4 p.m., Lauren Kessler will deliver a keynote address entitled “Perseverance.” Kessler is a UO journalism professor and director of the UO’s multimedia journalism master’s degree program. She is the author of six works of narrative nonfiction and the founder of online magazine Etude. Her website is laurenkessler.com/.

A reception will follow Kessler’s talk.

Sponsors for the event include the UO Libraries, Oregon Humanities Center, the Center for the Study of Women in Society.

Learn more about Oregon feminist collections in SCUA in Linda Long’s new article “Equality, Politics, and Separatism: The Papers of Oregon Feminists in the University of Oregon Libraries,” Oregon Historical Quarterly.

Catch a cool flick at Home Movie Day!

Friday, October 19th, 2012

Home Movie Day Comes to Eugene Sat., Oct. 20

home movie day projector imageDon’t throw away your old 8mm, Super 8, 16mm, and VHS home movies! Instead, bring them to Knight Library on Home Movie Day, Sat., Oct. 20, from noon to 4 p.m., to view them and learn more about their value as historical and cultural documents. A program of talks and presentations on home movies will begin at 6:30 p.m.

Local film experts and archivists will assess the condition of the film before projecting movies for viewing. They will also offer advice on how to best preserve and protect these film formats from damage. Talks about the phenomenon of home movie making and a screening of some of these older film formats will also be offered as part of the day’s events.

Times and locations of Home Movie Day activities are:

  •   Noon – 4:00 p.m., film inspection and viewing, Studio A and Proctor Classrooms 41 and 42, ground floor, Knight Library
  •   6:30 p.m., “Home Movies as Documentary Film,” Tom Robinson, home movie film expert, Proctor Classroom 41, ground floor, Knight Library
  •   7:00 p.m. “People Near Here” screening and discussion with Ron Finne, Proctor Classroom 41, ground floor, Knight Library

Home Movie Day is an international event intended to help the public learn about, enjoy and rescue films now considered obsolete because of home video.

“Saving our film heritage should not be limited only to commercially produced films,” says legendary director and film preservation advocate Martin Scorsese. “Home movies do not just capture the important private moments of our family’s lives, but they are historical and cultural documents as well.”

“If you’ve kept your older home movies all these years but don’t have a way to view them, here’s your chance to revisit the past through film,” says James Fox, head of the library’s Special Collections and University Archives and coordinator for Home Movie Day in Eugene. “We encourage anyone who has an interest in home movies to attend and take advantage of this rare opportunity to celebrate home movie making.”

UO Home Movie Day  is sponsored by the UO Libraries’ Special Collections and University Archives and Center for Media and Educational Technologies, UO Arts and Administration Program, UO Academic Extension, and Cinema Pacific.

Visit http://www.homemovieday.com/ to learn more about national and international activities planned for Home Movie Day. For more information on the local event, contact James Fox at 541-346-1904, jdfox@uoregon.edu.

Harry Stamper remembered

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

Harry Stamper (1944-2012) was an Oregon longshoreman and a noted musician who combined messages of both labor and environmentalism in his songs. His song, “We Just Come to Work Here, We Don’t Come to Die” is considered a classic in labor and folk song circles, the anthem of the occupational health and safety movement, and is included in the Smithsonian Folkways album, Classic Labor Songs.

The Stamper collection arrived at SCUA recently, and is being processed by a Folklore student, Nathan Moore. SCUA has a close relationship with Folklore’s Mills Archive and the Oregon Folklife Network (OFN), which recently relocated to the UO campus.

Nathan brings more to this processing project than just his academic training. He’s a folk musician, part of the Low Tide Drifters, and he knew and played with Harry Stamper. It’s always fun to see a student get really excited about the collection he is processing!

Harry and Nathan

Nathan’s film about Stamper, We Just Come to Work Here: The Music of Harry Stamper, will be shown at a film festival in Canada this year. You can see the film on YouTube, and please check out the Remember Harry page (from which this great photo is borrowed). Stay tuned; we’ll post as soon as the Stamper collection is available for research.

LGBT exhibit at airport through October

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

Creating Change: Forty Years of LGBT Activism at the University of Oregon

A new exhibit at the Eugene airport showcases the history of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transsexual (LGBT) life on the UO campus and is entitled “Creating Change: Forty Years of LGBT Activism at the University of Oregon.” This year marks the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Standing Committee on LGBT Concerns, and this exhibit is one part of the University’s commemoration of the event.

Did you know… a UO student group, the Gay People’s Alliance, was the very first gay student group founded at any college or university on the West Coast.

The documented history of LGBT life on campus started in 1969 with the creation of a student group, the Gay People’s Alliance. Years later, an atmosphere of homophobia on campus led to discrimination that was eventually addressed by the task force established by President Myles Brand in 1989. The president’s task force was charged with analyzing the degree to which discrimination based on sexual orientation existed on the university campus and, consequently, the way in which it negatively affected the academic or professional lives of students, faculty and staff. The Task Force was also charged with creating a plan to reduce or eliminate intolerance, insensitivity, and discrimination against gays and lesbians on the campus, and to create a more accepting environment.

Photo of Gay Pride parade

The exhibit includes a copy of the presidential Task Force, as well as images from the student yearbook Oregana, posters, photographs, reports, ephemera, and artifacts. A detailed timeline is included in the display which chronicles the history of LGBT history on the UO campus.

You can see this exhibit through the end of October, on the first floor by the baggage claim, across from the car rental counter.