Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Ball State University Libraries Digitize Correspondence of Prominent Anthropologist Clark Wissler


Clark David Wissler

The Ball State University Libraries has digitized the correspondence of influential American anthropologist Clark Wissler (1870-1947). The Clark Wissler Collection features over 6,000 letters between Wissler and prominent American and British anthropologists, psychologists, paleontologists, museum curators, publishers, and members of his family from 1906 to 1947. Notable correspondents include Yale University psychologist Robert Means Yerkes; Director of the American Association of Museums, Laurence Vail Coleman; American sociologist Robert S. Lynd; and British anthropologist Beatrice Blackwood.

A native of Cambridge City in Wayne County, Indiana, Clark Wissler served as the curator of anthropology at the American Museum of Natural History from 1907-1942 and was a professor at Yale University from 1924-1940. While at the American Museum of Natural History, Wissler conducted fieldwork and directed numerous projects within the fields of ethnology, physical anthropology, and archaeology, most of which concerned the cultures of North American Indian tribes. Wissler published eleven monographs based on his fieldwork and also wrote the foreword to the seminal 1929 sociological case study by Robert S. and Helen Merrell Lynd, Middletown: A Study in Modern American Culture, in which he described the Lynds' study as a “pioneer attempt to deal with a sample American community after the manner of social anthropology.”

Letter from Clark Wissler and Robert S. Lynd, March 22, 1928
The correspondence that composes the digital collection was selected from a larger manuscript collection (Clark Wissler Papers, 1897-1979) held by Archives and Special Collections that also includes Wissler’s research and lecture notes, projects files, manuscripts, and publications. The digital collection is accessible online in the Ball State University Libraries Digital Media Repository.

For more information about this collection, contact Ball State University Archives and Special Collections at libarchives@bsu.edu or (765) 285-5078.

Friday, March 14, 2014

University Libraries’ New Exhibit Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of John R. Emens College-Community Auditorium

Summer Commencement, 1979
University Libraries invites you to come join the celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Emens Auditorium as we present University Libraries invites you to come join the celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Emens Auditorium as we present “The John R. Emens College-Community Auditorium, 1964-2014: 50 Years Of Arts, Culture, And Entertainment.” The new exhibit is located in Archives and Special Collections on the 2nd floor of Bracken Library and runs from March 10, to May 31, 2014.  



Arthur Fiedler directs the Muncie Symphony Orchestra, 1977

The display highlights the history of Emens Auditorium from its initial construction to recent performances held there and draws from several collections housed in the Ball State University Archives and Special Collections, with some materials also available on the University Libraries Digital Media Repository (http://libx.bsu.edu).  Featured collections are the Emens Auditorium Concert/Artist Series Programs and News Releases, Earl Williams Photograph Collection, Ball State University Subject Files, University Marketing and Communications Publications And Printed Ephemera, and many others.  In conjunction with the 50th Anniversary celebration Archives has also digitized selected materials from the Emens Auditorium collections and placed them on the DMR as the Emens Auditorium Collection


For more information on the exhibit, contact Archives and Special Collections at 765-285-5078 or email libarchives@bsu.edu.


Emens Auditorium Stage House Drawing, 1960

Monday, January 27, 2014

Robert R. LaFollette Papers Digital Collection Documents German Post-War Education Reform

Robert Russell LaFollette
"There were shortages of food and fuel. They sat in wrecked and partially wrecked buildings whose windows were out and whose doors were gone while bread and potato soup kept them alive but not adequately nourished. They sat in overcoats and overshoes with blankets draped around their shoulders as they wrote with gloved hands using their knees as desks."

So wrote Robert R. LaFollette, American historian and educator, when describing the challenges faced by students during the rebuilding of a German education system that had been ravished by both the physical destruction of World War II and by Nazi ideology.

Handbook of education
statistics (U.S. occupied area
of Germany), July 1949
Ball State University Archives and Special Collections has recently digitized a collection of papers documenting LaFollette's career, making it available in the Ball State University Digital Media Repository.  The collection emphasizes materials related to his role as an advisor to the rebuilding of the German education system following World War II.  LaFollette served as the head of the social science department at Ball State Teachers College (now Ball State University) from 1921 to 1961.

LaFollette's direct involvement with these post-war rebuilding efforts began in 1949, when he served as a visiting consultant in teacher education and social science with the Office of the U.S. Secretary of the Army in Bavaria. From 1950 to 1952, LaFollette served as an education advisor to the Education and Cultural Relations Division of the U.S. High Commissioner of Germany, organizing the International Social Studies Workshop in Heidelberg.  In 1952, LaFollette was the chairman of the American-German Historian and History Teachers Workshop in Braunschweig, a conference that evaluated history textbooks and curriculum in Germany.

From 1954 to 1955, he was the social studies specialist to North Rhine-Westphalia Ministry, and later served as a Fulbright lecturer to Germany and visiting professor at Oldenburg Paedogogical University from 1956 to 1957.
Diagram of Bavarian school system, 1949

The collection contains documents related to each of these assignments and includes reports and writings created and collected by LaFollette and his colleagues in their service as advisors to the Education and Cultural Relations Division.  It also includes information disseminated by branches of the U.S. High Commissioner for Germany regarding rebuilding aims and initiatives, including maps, diagrams, and reports.

A more complete biography of LaFollette is available on the finding aid for the Robert R. LaFollette papers collection housed in Ball State University Archives & Special Collections.

For more information about this collection and other materials related to the career of Robert LaFollette, contact Ball State University Archives & Special Collections at libarchives@bsu.edu.




Tuesday, January 21, 2014

New Exhibit in Archives and Special Collections Celebrates Black History Month


The Ball State University African-American Student Experience, 1960 - 2013:
 Activities, Organizations, and Programs

Talent portion of  Miss Black Ball State Pageant, 1976From the Marie Fraser papers and photographs collection. (RG.09.20.10)
 African-American students at Ball State University have a history of unity and action, taking pride in who they are and what they represent.  The outlets for bonding and activities include Greek organizations, black student organizations, alumni reunions, and special programs during events such as Unity Week. This exhibit highlights some of the main platforms African-American students at Ball State have used to come together and enrich their experiences as college students while also forging lifeline friendships and networks. The display includes samples from collections such as the Black Student Association Records, the Allen Williams Black Ball State Alumni Collection, The Robert Foster Papers, and the Marie Fraser Papers and Photographs. 




Gathering at Black Alumni Reunion, circa 1970's, from the Allen Williams Black Ball State Alumni Collection (Electronic Copy only) 



                                


The Black Student at Ball State University booklet section on Greek Life.  From the University Marketing and Communications Publications and Printed Ephemera collection. (RG.09.20.07)                                              


 Also displayed are examples of some of the African-American student newspapers and other publications prevalent at Ball State during the 1970's.   These publications gave the African-American student population a means to communicate across campus and voice their opinions and frustrations of college life and society during that time period. Photographs, documents, and films featuring African-American students and activities can also be viewed online on Ball State’s Digital Media Repository at http://libx.bsu.edu. Please enjoy our look back at the many ways African-American students maximized their experiences at Ball State University as we celebrate Black History Month.

Black Alumni Reunion group photo, 1993.
From the Ball State University Alumni Association photographs and materials collection. (RG.09.02.10) 
The display is located in Archives and Special Collections on the 2nd floor of Bracken Library and runs from January 20, 2014 to February 28, 2014. For more information on the exhibit, contact Archives and Special Collections at 765-285-5078 or email libarchives@bsu.edu 



Tuesday, October 29, 2013

New Archives and Special Collection Exhibit Features Downtown Muncie

“Everything Is Waiting For You, Downtown:” Muncie Stores and Storefronts, 1920-1970     


Corner of Walnut and Charles, FW Woolworth Dime store on NE corner. From the Spurgeon-Green Photograph Collection

In its heyday from the 1920’s through the 1960’s, downtown Muncie was vibrant and vital, with bustling crowds and busy stores and theaters.  As the popular song “Downtown” from the 1960s by Petula Clark said, “everything was waiting for you downtown.”  Indicative of this vitality was the various stores and their elaborate storefronts that displayed their wares to advertise specials, goods, and services and entice customer patronage. Big stores such as Ball Stores and Stillman’s were anchors of downtown business, while many smaller ones came and went through the decades. Also part of the charm and lure of many of these businesses was the architecture of the buildings themselves, such as the McNaughton Building and the Wysor Grand.

Ball Stores (W.A. McNaughton Building) 



Archives and Special Collections has a treasure trove of photographs, advertisements, documents, and drawings that depict images of these buildings and the businesses they housed.   This exhibit about the stores and storefronts of downtown Muncie draws from photograph collections such as Otto Sellers, Spurgeon Green, and W.A. Swift, as well as the Muncie and Delaware County Historic Photographs Collection. All these photograph collections are available to view on the University Libraries Digital Media Repository (http://libx.bsu.edu). Enjoy a trip down memory lane as we reminisce about when downtown Muncie was the place to be, the businesses there were the places to go, and everything was waiting for you. 

Wysor Grand Building, from the Richard Greene Slide Collection

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Muncie Central High School Athletics Films in the Digital Media Repository



Program for inaugural game on Ball Recreational Field, 1950
High school athletic seasons are remembered in Indiana. Some memories of specific shots and tackles in a season may fade over time, but legends are built as the stories of seemingly impossible achievements on the field or court are passed from one generation to the next. We happy few who grew up in Indiana can likely recall in detail the legendary exploits of our high school teams that were handed down by previous generations and lived during our own time. The details of those legends will vary from school to school and person to person. Some tales may end in state championships, others end in an upset of a larger high school or despised rival, and still others are the family legends of a parent who simply put in the hard, consistent work to contribute on a varsity team. The point is, we remember.


Muncie Central players cutting nets after sectional victory, 1950
The new Muncie Central Athletics Films in the Digital Media Repository will help give new life to legends of past athletic seasons for fans and players who experienced them and give others a chance to watch games played by their parents and grandparents for the very first time. This online collection includes digital copies of 16mm films donated by the Muncie Central High School Alumni Association that document portions of Muncie Central Bearcats basketball and football seasons from approximately 1950-1974. Games of particular note for Bearcats fans include the inaugural football game played on Ball Recreational Field, Muncie Central’s 1950 basketball sectional victory, and the first basketball game played between Muncie Central and Muncie Northside. The films in this collection also provide glimpses into the high school playing careers of Bearcat basketball legends such as Bill Dinwiddie, Tom Harrold, Rick Jones, and Tim Kuzma.  

Muncie Central Bearcats vs. Cathedral Fighting Irish, 1965
Fans of Muncie and Delaware County teams, North Central Conference (NCC) rivals, and other Indiana high schools that played against the Bearcats will also discover films of interest in this digital collection. Junior high school basketball games document the athletic development of Delaware County players from Delta, Kuhner, McKinley, and Storer. Burris Owls fans will find footage of their tightly contested 1967 basketball game against the Bearcats. Muncie Northside fans can get a glimpse of the Titans’ strong regular season play during their two-loss 1972-1973 season. Muncie Southside basketball fans will enjoy films of the Rebels’ 1968 defeat of Muncie Central and their overtime victory over the Bearcats in 1973. Fans of Muncie Central's conference rivals such as Anderson, Kokomo, Lafayette Jefferson, Logansport, Marion, and Richmond will find many films documenting the history of tough competition in the storied North Central Conference. Other high school teams are included in this collection and a complete listing of the teams identified can be found at the end of this post. 

Muncie Central Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC), 1950s
While the majority of the films in this digital collection document basketball and football games, there are other topics in Muncie and Delaware County history to discover for those who are not sports fans. Muncie Central High School alumni will find films of a commencement practice and a Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) ceremony from the 1950s. Films documenting historic Muncie buildings, Ball Brothers factory operations, and other community events are also available.

Ball Brothers employees boxing jars in stamping works, 1950s

So as the seasons change in Indiana and games move from the gridiron to the hardwood, take some time to explore memories of Indiana’s high school athletic past preserved in these films. You will discover the athletic legacy of the jump shots and unexpected jump passes, the blocked shots and pancake blocks, and the hard fought victories and defeats that have built high school athletic legends in Indiana. As you explore these films, we encourage you to leave a record by posting stories about your experiences at these games and helping us identify the opponents and dates we could not quite figure out. To do so, please leave a comment or tag at the bottom of the record in the Digital Media Repository.


Contact us at libarchives@bsu.edu or 765-285-5078 if you have any questions about this collection or if you are interested in donating material that documents the history of schools or athletics in Muncie and Delaware County.
  
Teams identified in this collection include the following:
+ (Denotes Muncie and Delaware County Opponent)
* (Denotes North Central Conference Opponent)