This guest post for World Day for Audiovisual Heritage was written by Stuart Wheeler, MA ‘21, who has spent the past several months working with the World Music Archives as well as Special Collections & Archives to help process collections from contemporary American composers including John Cage and Ned Sublette. One of his projects was … Read more
This grim entry in Wesleyan’s Alumni Record, published in 1883, offers a sad glimpse into the tangled web of Wesleyan’s early connections with Africa. Read in context with the Missionary Lyceum logbook (“Curiosities belonging to the Missionary Lyceum”) pictured above, inventories from the Archaeology & Anthropology Collection, correspondence in President Willbur Fisk’s Papers, and other sources, we can piece together a network of personal relationships and events that likely led to Wesleyan’s holding one of the largest groups of pre-1850 cultural objects from Monrovia, Liberia, in an American collection.
Cartes-de-visite, such as this clever little pastiche from the prominent New York studio of C.D. Fredricks, became commonplace in the U.S. in the period just before the Civil War. Here, the giant photographed head of an anonymous man sits atop a pint-sized caricature of his body, the angle of his spindly legs echoing his spectacular handlebar moustache.
Have you been affected by racism? Have you participated in Black Lives Matter activism? Have you worked against systemic racism in other ways? These stories are often not well-documented in university archives. Wesleyan’s Special Collections & Archives seeks to improve this gap in the historical record. To help center Black experiences in our collections, we … Read more
The Wesleyan community has responded in wide, inspiring ways to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is rare that we know what will become a historic moment while it’s occurring, but it’s clear that we are all living and making history right now. As an archivist, I am always interested in recording these efforts so that they … Read more
As we near the end of Black History Month, today’s archival discovery was pretty great. While processing material, a small box of slides was found with a label that made us pause. The yellow slide box said “Selma 1965”. A closer inspection of the material showed a set of color photos of the march on … Read more