Weekly Assignment #13 (last one)

By midnight on Wednesday, December 13, please locate an archival collection related to your topic. Write an annotation summarizing the collection and evaluating its potential usefulness for your paper. Use any or all the following resources:

An online finding aid, if there is one, will give you a great deal of information about the collection that you can use for your annotation’s summary. You can sometimes find these by following links from the databases, but you can also Google the name of the collection (e.g., “Ernest Hemingway papers”) plus the keywords “finding aid” or “inventory.” You might also try going to the library / repository’s own website and searching their catalog or website.

Also, just for fun, you might want to check out the Wayback Machine at the Internet Archive. If you’re looking for an old website or a previous version of a current one, this is about your only option.

And yes: you can include archival sources (or finding aids to them) in your annotated bibliography!

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16 Comments

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16 responses to “Weekly Assignment #13 (last one)

  1. Aaron Turney

    I searched the NUCMUC; their format for description of collections is pretty comprehensive and easy to follow. I found a really cool Melville collection in Pittsfield, MA (wicked fah to go) but it has some interesting stuff in it such as orignial copies of minor publications,obituaries, family letters, correspondences with other authors, contemporary criticisms (from 19th century, geneolagies, poems, book reviews,essays, and pictures. All sounds like very interesting and useful stuff worth travelling for. In addition, the description of the collection describes it as an ongoing and maintained collection. It’d be great for thesis work because of all the stuff of historical value.
    Also really great is that people-to-contact information is said to be available; so it looks like whoever maintains the collection is interested in keeping it manageable and making it accesible.
    The location is: Berkshire County Historical Society (Pittsfield,Mass.) (AM-205).

  2. Susanna Branyon

    I first searched NUCMUC and got eight different hits for “Flannery O’Connor”. These ranged from the obvious (the really huge collection in Milledgeville, GA where her home was/is) to the unexpected (a collection of correspondence right down the road in Winston-Salem!).
    There were also several collections with really intriguing stuff that had no information about physical location…they were attributed to a person and not a library. One even had a videotape of O’Connor reading and lots of correspondence with her priest. It would be perfect for my topic. But no locale. Frustrating…I felt teased.
    So I turned to the trusty WorldCat and it eased my woes. As it turns out, the collection I was really intrigued by (with the tape) is located at Duke! The record says “access restricted,” but I’m just going to take this as a challenge.
    Another exciting discovery is that there’s a small collection of her correspondence at UNC-Chapel Hill. Again, access is “restricted”. I better start writing some very convincing emails.

  3. E. Ashley Yates

    Barabtarlo, Gennady, photographer. ?Vladimir Nabokov Photographs?, collection name.
    Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library. Collection
    Dates: 1992-1998.
    This collection contains the photographs taken by Gennady Barabtarlo of scenes in Europe and Ithaca germane to the life and fiction of Vladimir Nabokov. Barabtarlo published a small sample of these in his text Nabokov Sights. Barabtarlo is a professor at the University of Missouri, where he chairs the department of German and Russian Studies. These photographs would provide a very useful resource for studying Vladimir Nabokov. Nabokov?s writings are full of rich detail. Seeing the photographs that could have inspired his writings could greatly enrich his texts.
    ?Nabokov, Vladimir Vladimirovich (1899 ? 1977)?, collection name. Library of Congress,
    Manuscript Division, Washington DC. Collection Dates: 1923-1958.
    This collection contains about 800 items from the period 1923 – 1958. Within the collection there are business and personal correspondence letters; document; book reviews; and notes; MSS., typescripts, and annotated galley proofs in Russian, English, and French of Nabokov?s poetry, plays, short stories, and novels, including Bend Sinister, Conclusive Evidence, Dar (The Gift), Eugene Onegin, Invitation to a Beheading, Pale Fire, Podvig (The Exploit), The Real Life of Sebastian Knight, The Song of Igor?s Campaign, Spring in Fialta, The Tragedy of Mr. Morn, and the screenplay of Lolita. The collection is open to investigators under restrictions accepted by the Library of Congress. Of particular interest to me are the book reviews, correspondence letters, and notes. Those items would provide me with a better overview of Nabokov?s life.

  4. Scott Dill

    The Berg Collection at the New York Public Library has an extensive collection of the papers of W.H. Auden. I’m interested in writing a chapter of my thesis on Auden’s interpretation of Falstaff and the collection has notebooks of notes for the Shakespeare lectures at the New School. While Auden has published an essay, “The Prince’s Dog,” on Falstaff, these notes could be very, very helpful. The notes could help me understand the development of his opinions. A student and friend took the notes, so I have no idea what they would look like, but I know that the lectures were published and I think the publication was based on those notes. The notes themselves, however, may have material that was cut out, for whatever reason, from the publication.

  5. Laura R.

    My NUCMUC search for Helen Maria Williams brought up 21 hits. Most of these hits are individual letters in rather obscure locations, but I looked up the collection in California in the papers of Edward Jerningham.
    This collection is located at Huntington Library, San Marino, CA.
    There is not an extensive finding aid, but I could find that Jernigan’s collection has a total of 20 boxes. It says that there is “an unpublished finding aid in the repository,” but this does not help me out much without a trip to CA. His collection includes a variety of correspondance from eighteenth- century correspondants, but there is not a listing for how many of Williams letters are actually in the collection.
    Out of curiosity, I also checked out the letters contained at the Wordsworth “cottage” – two letters were listed on NUCMUC, but only one came up as a hit when searching through the site. Apparently, there is one letter written to Mary Wordsworth by Williams, with no date, but the day “Saturday.” The finding aid provides a numbered description of the piece, which looks to be the indentification of the letter (DCMS 170.56).
    I would love to personally view any letters written by Helen Maria Williams, since my thesis is built directly off her letters which were sent from France to England to record the Revolution. Though these letters are not necessarily the same as those found in the collections, it is still a glimpse into her personal writing, and I’m excited to someday see this correspondance.

  6. Joshua Clements

    Barnouw, Erik (1908-) Repository Name: Columbia University, University Libraries, Butler Library, New York NY Type: Papers
    Collection Dates: 1920-1973
    Extent: ca. 500 items.
    found through ArchivesUSA.
    Erik Barnouw is a seminal documentary historian who has worked in the field for decades. He is currently a member of the faculty at Columbia University. Scouring through his archives would go a long way towards getting a better idea of how he organized his data on the birth of documentary film for his book Documentary: A History of the Non-Fiction Film. Included in the collection are material relating to projects for the U.S. Government, the Indian film industry, radio and television networks, private ventures in the radio and film industries, and Center for Mass Communications, Columbia University. Correspondents include W.H. Auden, Ingrid Bergman, Lynn Fontanne, Ogden Nash, and Roy Wilkins. Gift of Mr. Barnouw, 1974.

  7. Liz Jenkins

    My search for James Joyce in NUCMC got 93 hits, most of which were relevant although many were small collections which had only a couple of letters. One of the bext hits I got included a link to the collection at Cornell University. This finding aid lists everything within their collection which spans 5.5 linear feet and contains manuscripts, letters, documents, photographs, bound manuscripts, galley proofs, and broadsides. There are some really interesting pieces in this collection including early drafts of “Stephen Hero” and “A Portrait” as well as pages from “Ulysses”. The largest part of the collection is letters both to and from Joyce. Most interestingly among the letters are 50 letters written by Ezra Pound. There is an extensive collection of photographs. There are also parts of “Exiles” and “Dubliners” as well as the earliest known completed manuscript of “Chamber Music”. All in all I would love to get a chance to look at this collection.

  8. Jill Taylor

    I searched several of the databases and found several tangentially related collections. The following is actually related to an author of a book that I used for my paper, Arthur Sprague.
    The collection is William Bridges-Adams Letters to Arthur Sprague. It is housed at Harvard University. Bridges-Adams was a British actor and theatrical historian who corresponded with Sprague, an American Shakespeare scholar. His letters discuss Sir Laurence Olivier, the staging of Shakespeare productions, and Sprague’s books on Shakespeare and audience. Sprague donated the letters to Harvard. It consists of forty-one letters. The length of the letters and the dates and locations of the letters are noted, but the individual subjects of the letters are not given.
    Also, the library and archives of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust has numerous Shakespeare-related resources including the archives of the Royal Shakespeare Company and personal papers of the Shakespeare family. Shakespeare’s Globe also has an educational center. Though I thought I had seen a reference to a research center at the theater, I could not find it on-line this time. Still, I think it is very likely that they have archives related to performances at that theater.

  9. s.dunstan

    i had a really hard time finding archived material that was really relevant to my topic. I guess because my field is relatively young, most literature is published and pretty readily available. The closest thing I could find was this:
    Selected files on the Gullah language from the papers of Lorenzo D. Turner held by the Melville J. Herskovits Library of African Studies, Northwestern University, 1988
    This would relate to my topic, as it deals with an African American dialect, and as a minority group, it is often discriminated against.

  10. Nancy McVittie

    Underground Comix Collection, MS-636, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University Library
    Found this collection containing orignal self-published and distributed comics from R. Crumb and Harvey Pekar, among others, on World Cat. I don’t know how directly a collection like this would have benefitted my paper (though I did rely some on having been familiar with the work of the artists being profiled in the films already). Perhaps would be more useful if I decided to expand the paper into something larger in the future.

  11. Emily Rutter

    I found the following through WorldCat:
    Correspondence of and about William Faulkner at the University of Virginia, 1956-1963.
    Publication: 1956-1963
    This collection includes correspondence that discusses Faulkner as a writer-in-residence at Virginia. Although that material may be interesting, it probably won?t be useful. What seems pertinent, however, are
    the records of public readings at UVA which I imagine contain question and answer sessions that may provide some insights into his views on race. Additionally, there are a number of letters in this collection that seem promising.
    Albert Russell Erskine Collection, University of Virginia Library, Charlottesville, Va.
    This collection includes various Faulkner manuscripts, essays, speeches and public letters. The collection ranges from the publication of As I Lay Dying (1930) to Faulkner?s tenure at the University of Virginia. This appears to be a very comprehensive collection that contains pertinent documents to my research.

  12. sowmya bharadwaj

    Title: Robert J. Flaherty project : oral history, 1973-1974.
    Description: Transcripts: 1,200 leaves
    Location:Columbia University. Oral History Research. Office, Butler Library, New York.
    I found this collection in NUCMUC.
    Robert Flaherty was one of the earliest documentary filmmakers and his film Nanook of the North is considered an important work in the field of visual ethnography. This archive would be invaluable for me in understanding his philosophy on documentary films, especially Nanook of the North and the influence his cinematic approach had on other ethnographic documentaries. This archival collection contains transcripts of interviews with his friends and associates who discuss Flaherty and his extraordinary accomplishments as a filmmaker. The memoirs include material on his philosophy in making documentary films, his technical
    contributions and his influence on other filmmakers, which would be very good supporting material for my research paper. Though Flaherty’s film is only one component of my research paper, understanding his approach to filmmaking, would help get a perspective on early ethnographic documentaries.

  13. Summerlin Page

    Faulkner, William. Papers. University of Virginia Library.
    As I am dealing with _Go Down, Moses_, I thought it would be good to find the manuscript. While I got over 100 hits for Faulkner on NUCMC, I got none for that specific book. WorldCat fixed me right up, directing me to this great collection at UVA which includes drafts of stories which are unidentified,drafts and/or fragments of many stories and books, a draft of Mammy Caroline Barr’s funeral sermon, a letter on racial equality, and two maps of Yoknapatawpha County. This could prove very helpful, and will definitely be very interesting.

  14. Daniel Parsons

    Wittgenstein, Ludwig, . (1889-1951.)
    Repository Name: Boston University, Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center, Boston MA
    LC Reference: 99155697
    Ludwig Wittgenstein collection.
    Collection Dates: 1933-1948.
    Extent: 3 linear ft.
    Description: In part, photocopies of originals held by Trinity College, Cambridge. Austrian philosopher and lecturer; taught at Cambridge; b. Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein; interested in analysis and ordinary-language philosophy. Manuscripts and typescripts, edited by Georg von Wright and/or Heikki Numan, chiefly Philosopische Untersuchungen (Philosophical Investigations). Chiefly in German with some English versions. Finding aid in the repository.
    Index Terms: NUCMC
    This collection is mainly in German. The editor of this collection is G.H. Von Wright, who is a major translator/editor of Wittengstein’s work. BU has some originals of the works that I am planning on using for my thesis. The essential thing is that I learn German, and if I do, then if I want to view the original German: this (B.U.) is the place for me to look.

  15. Kimberly Bowers

    Collection: Letters to Virginia Woolf from about 30 correspondents. From 1915-1941.
    Repository name: The University of Sussex Library
    Date of collection: Apr 1983.
    The library has an extensive catalogue of resources dealing with Leonard Woolf, Virginia’s husband. However, they also have this group of letters addressed to Virginia Woolf. I assume there are at least 30 of them, possibly more. I know there is a book with letters written by Woolf, but I’m not sure if there is an organized catalogue of her letters from other people. The information contained in these letters could prove helpful in the general study of Woolf. Also, the letters will show the measure of intimacy Woolf had with her correspondents, hopefully including Vita Sackville-West and T.S. Eliot. Being able to see the way in which Woolf communicated with the people in her life, many of whom were important to her and to the modernist movement, would shed light on the very private author as well.

  16. Glenice Woodard

    I went through the NUCMC site and used the RLG Union Catalog?s Easy Search Form (Word List) and simply entered ?Geoffrey Chaucer? as the search term and submitted the query. The record of most interest to me was ?The Chaucer Research Collection, 15.5 linear feet of papers that contained a manuscript of The Canterbury Tales purchased from the estate of Sir William S. McCormick. Also contained in this collection are photostats of extant manuscripts of the Canterbury Tales, a collated corpus of variants in the extant manuscripts, Basic Life Records, sources of information on Chaucer’s life compiled by John Manly, Edith Rickert, and Lilian Redstone, indexes to the life records, and instructional material to train staff in researching Chaucer’s life records. A note said that there was a finding aid available in the Department of Special Collections, University of Chicago Library. I then went to the University of Chicago?s Library website and found that they actually have 7 different collections that might be of use in Chaucer studies. Of the seven, besides the Chaucer Research Collection, I would also love to take a look at the Frederic Ives Carpenter collection of manuscripts of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. I read that one scholar recently found the identity of one of Chaucer?s scriveners about whom Chaucer had written an interesting little poem touting his incompetence. Despite Chaucer?s publicly attesting to his incompetence, he was one of the scriveners used most often to transcribe the Canterbury Tales. The researcher in question was able to find out about and document the personal life of the scrivener, and all from examining so many different copies of Chaucer?s manuscripts. It is exciting to think that I might one day uncover something fascinating. I have a girlfriend who lives in North Carolina now who is from Chicago. Since she goes back there a couple of times a year, I think I may accompany her some time in the near future and stop by the University?s special collections department to get a look at genuine Chaucerian manuscripts.