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Compass Blue Electrode Article: Discover the Wissahickon in the Digital Library

The latest issue of Compass has a Blue Electrode article written by our own Stephen Spatz.

Check out the piece at:



Dissertations & Theses Full Text Now Available 1997-

Dissertations & Theses Full Text (ProQuest)  (1861- ; Full Text 1997 – )

A comprehensive collection of dissertations and theses with over 2.4 million dissertations and theses included from around the world. Each dissertation published since July 1980 includes a 350-word abstract written by the author. Master’s theses published since 1988 include 150-word abstracts. Bibliographic citations are available for dissertations dating from 1637, and more than 65,000 new citations are added to the database every year. Where available, PQDT provides 24 Page Previews of dissertations and theses. In addition, nearly one million are available for download in PDF format. (Digital dissertations and theses are archived as submitted by the degree-granting institution. Some will be Native PDF, some PDF Image).


Rare Catholic Pamphlets

Villanova University, by virtue of its Augustinian heritage, has benefited from the donation of many traces and reminders of the early Catholica Church in America. These items, once in common circulation, have become rare or have even disappeared in other institutions. Fragile pamphlet literature is especially vulnerable to the tempests of time. These items often document a particular occasion or event, like a trial, a speech or a sermon, and are usually issued with only paper covers. Needless to say, these covers are often ravaged by the enemies of paper – water, fire, vermin and humans.

Special Collections has a large number of these pamphlets in both the Augustiniana and Joseph McGarrity Collections. One pamphlet digitized this week is a particularly excellent printed example of early American history and highlights an individual of significant import to the early republic: Charles Carroll of Carrollton.

Charles Carroll eulogy

Charles Carroll was the only Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence, and eventually became the last living signer. Indeed in current popular culture, Charles Carroll, lives on still – as depicted in the blockbuster movie National Treasure. Here in the recently digitized Eulogy on Charles Carroll of Carrolton delivered before the Academus Society of Mt. St. Mary’s College, December 20th, 1832 , Reverend John McCaffrey provides a brief overview of this revolutionary forefather and political titan.

Another rare title digitized this week that has connection to Villanova is a sermon preached in the Church of St. Augustine, in Philadelphia, on the 31st of May, 1829, at a solemn, religious thanksgiving to Almighty God for the emancipation of the Catholics of Great Britain and Ireland by the Reverend John Hughes. This sermon was preached at the original St. Augustine’s Church which was later burned to the ground in the nativist anti-catholic riots of 1844. The destruction of St. Augustine’s precipitated the relocation to the safer climes of rural Villanova.

Burning of St. Augustine's Church, 1844.

The survival of so many nearly lost treasures can only be ensured by the continued preservation of the original item and by the creation of additional copies; one form these additional copies can take involves the digitization of the original source document according to a set of standards that enables creation of a facsimile edition. The added benefit to digitization over the alternatives such as microfilming, is to enable immediate access and availability to a world of scholars and researchers via the web.


Library's 24-hour lounge

Please remember to present your Wildcard upon entering the Library. The outside Wildcard entrance to the 24-hour study lounge is open after the library closes. (Except for breaks and holidays.)


Print from library's laptops

The Library’s laptop computers are capable of sending work to the Library’s public printers.  A Wildcard is required to borrow a Library laptop.



Last Modified: May 15, 2008