FALVEY MEMORIAL LIBRARY



You are exploring: VU > Library > Blogs > Library News

Water Cooler Talk: Where’s that cool, clear water coming from, anyway?

Depositphotos_31972251_original (1)The water cooler in office suite 235 is a popular spot with numerous daily visitors. When the University changed its water supplier to Deer Park, that name triggered a memory of a small town in the Appalachian Mountains of western Maryland, a town that my family drove through every weekend from May through October. Could the water in my office cooler come from that Deer Park? Well, the answer is yes and no.

Deer Park, Md., in the later 1800s was a summer resort in Garrett County catering to the rich and famous; President Grover Cleveland and his wife, Frances, spent their honeymoon there in June 1882, and three other American presidents – Garfield, Harrison and Taft – visited the resort. A Maryland Historical Society roadside marker says, “This was one of the most exclusive mountain resorts in the East.” What brought these “nationally prominent people” to rural western Maryland, and what does this have to do with Deer Park water?

Screen Shot 2014-07-11 at 11.34.27 AM

The B&O Railroad (Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, now part of CSX) built and operated the Deer Park Hotel and cottages on the hotel grounds. The hotel opened July 4, 1873, and operated until 1911 or 1929 (I’ve found conflicting dates for this). No longer standing, the Deer Park Hotel was razed in 1942.

Untitled-6

Click for links to cool B&O inspired fonts

Affluent people from Baltimore, Washington, Philadelphia and other locations along the route of the B&O stayed at the hotel and its cottages or built their own summer cottages near the hotel, creating the town of Deer Park. These “cottages,” by our standards, were houses, two to three story structures with many rooms, large porches and even servants’ quarters; some are still standing. What drew people to this area was the summer climate, the fresh mountain air, a welcome change from the hot, humid weather in the cities, and the easy access via the B&O. An advertisement for the hotel says evenings are cool and daytime temperatures rarely go above eighty degrees Fahrenheit. (I can vouch for the truth of this statement – in an unheated cottage a few miles away, I slept under a blanket every summer night.)

The B&O owned a spring, locally called the Boiling Spring, in the vicinity of the Deer Park Hotel. The water bubbled up through white sand, hence the name, Boiling Spring. Originally a small rustic building with heavy wire netting sides protected the spring which was surrounded by acres of virgin timber. This spring, said to be one of the finest natural springs in the United States, had a daily flow of about 150,000 gallons. The railroad bottled Boiling Spring water as Deer Park water and served it in the Deer Park Hotel and in the B&O dining cars, but never sold the water. The Boiling Spring also supplied the water for the hotel’s swimming pool and spa.

RS7821_Boiling Spring Edit 2In the 1950s a new pagoda-style spring house replaced the original rustic building, and the spring water was treated by a hypo-chlorinator in a new bottling plant, despite the B&O’s claim that the water was “one of the purest waters to be found anywhere.” Water, labeled as Deep Park Spring Drinking Water, was bottled at the spring for service on the railroad’s dining cars into the 1960s.

In 1966 the B&O sold the spring and the surrounding forest to the Boiling Spring Holding Corporation. This company bottled the spring water and sold it in the New York City area. The Boiling Spring Holding Corporation became Deer Park Spring Water, Inc.

Nestlé Waters North America purchased the spring and approximately 850 acres surrounding it in 1987 and began selling bottled Deer Park® Brand 100% Natural Spring Water. Nestlé Waters NA began in 1976 and at that time sold only Perrier® Sparkling Natural Mineral Water. The company expanded to its current fifteen brands of bottled waters and teas, Deer Park® water among them. This brand is sold in the mid-Atlantic and southeast.

But are we really drinking water from the original spring, the Boiling Spring, located near the old Deer Park resort hotel? According to a 2001 story in the Baltimore Sun newspaper, Nestlé “announced that it was finally turning off the spigot of its Deer Park Mountain Spring Water plant in Garrett County, and shipping bottling elsewhere. … Starting in September, its production will be switched to plants in Allentown, Pa., and Florida, ending its association with the Western Maryland town of its birth.”

RS7830_DeerParkWater Label

The company itself says (in a statement revised in December 2012), “Due to the tremendous popularity of the brand, we have carefully selected additional spring sources in many other areas that will continue to deliver the great taste of Deer Park® Brand Natural Spring Water for many years to come.” The springs used as sources are located in places such as Bangor, Stroudsburg, New Tripoli, Hegins, South Coventry and Pine Grove, Pa.; Hohenwald, Tenn.; St. Albans, Maine; Lake County, Pasco County, Liberty County and Madison County, Fla.; and Oakland, Md. Oakland is the county seat of Garrett County and only a few miles from the town of Deer Park. (Could this location refer to the original spring, the Boiling Spring near Deer Park?)

giphy

Nom nom nom spring water!

So what exactly are we drinking? Spring water, yes, but not necessarily from the Deer Park spring. And as of December 2012, this drinking water contains a variety of minerals: calcium, sodium, potassium, fluoride, magnesium, bicarbonate, nitrate, chloride and sulfate. The pH ranges from 5.6 – 8.3. The mineral content “contributes to the legendary taste of Deer Park® Brand Natural Spring Water. … This … is what gives …[the water] its personality”
Fresh water drawn from natural springs and brought to us in 5 gallon recyclable, refillable bottles set on a cooler: this is what we are drinking. Does it actually have to come from that old western Maryland spring for us to enjoy our conveniently located source of cold water?

Dig Deeper

For information about the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, see
Alexander, J. H. Opinion on a Portion of the Location for the Baltimore and Ohio Rail Road.
Bowen, Eli. Rambles in the Path of the Steam-Horse …
Dilts, James D. The Great Road: The Building of the Baltimore and Ohio, the Nation’s First Railroad, 1828 – 1853.
Harwood, Herbert H. Impossible Challenge: The Baltimore and Ohio Railroad in Maryland.
Hungerford, Edward. The Story of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, 1827 – 1927.
Stover, John F. History of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad.

 

For information about Deer Park water and Deer Park Hotel, see “The Story of the B&O’s Famous Deer Park Spring Water” and “Famous People for Many Years Have Visited Deer Park Hotel


imagesArticle by Alice Bampton, digital image specialist and senior writer on the Communication and Service Promotion team. B&O logo retrieved from http://borhs.org/. Cat gif from Giphy.com. Deer Park logo photo by Alice Bampton. 

Like
1 People Like This Post

Jersey Week: Not exactly July in Wildwood, N.J.

JERSEYPLANE

As temps soared to ninety degrees this week, the Library News blog featured everyone’s second favorite mid-Atlantic state, New Jersey! Now enjoy these reminders from staff photog Laura Hutelmyer that the Jersey shore is beautiful year ’round.

 
Icicles

Roller

Beach

Shadows

Clouds

Laura Hutelmyer is the photography coordinator for the Communication and Service Promotion team and special acquisitions coordinator in Resource Management

 

Like

Jersey Week: Staycationing on Sheehan Beach

JERSEYPLANE

This week the Library News blog will be highlighting everyone’s second favorite mid-Atlantic state, New Jersey! So grab your flip flops and head east with us each day this week.

 

Stay-cationing on Sheehan Beach

We understand, times are tough. The $5.00 toll to ride on the Walt Whitman Bridge can take a heavy toll on your lunch money for the week. Fortunately, stay-cationers, we have a sunny paradise right here on campus on which to to sun your toes and zinc your nose. Sheehan Beach – that lovely expansion of grass and clover leading down to Lancaster Avenue (the view of which is obscured only by a row of tiger lilies,) has been a destination for Villanovans for years now. In fact, let’s let the scribes from the staff of the 1988 Belle Air pick up from here….

SHEEHAN BEACH3


Thanks to Scholarly Outreach Student Workers Bradley Ahern and Matthew Cincotta for digging through the Belle Airs to find the perfect images of Sheehan Beach! Watch for future ‘throwbacks’ curated by Brad & Matt throughout the year!
 

Can I view old Belle Air yearbooks, too?

Yes! These are not digitized, but the library does has paper format only of the yearbooks available for browsing during library hours. Check our home page for hours – which do often vary during this time of year.

Here is the following information on the title and holdings:

Title: Belle-air. Publisher: [Villanova, Pa. : Villanova College, 1922- . Call Number: LD4834 .S75

Available Volume  Holdings: 1922, 1924-1941, 1943-2004, 2006- to present. Ask at Circulation for the specific volume.

 


Joanne Quinn is team leader of the Communication & Service Promotion team.

Like
1 People Like This Post

Jersey Week: Another Bridge to N.J., Another Name Controversy

JERSEYPLANE

This week the Library News blog will be highlighting everyone’s second favorite mid-Atlantic state, New Jersey! So grab your flip flops and head east with us each day this week.

BRIDGE-FERRY_CROSSING_4-5-73
My family didn’t take the Walt Whitman Bridge when we drove to the Jersey shore, at least not at first. My father wanted my brothers, sisters and me to experience crossing the Delaware River on a ferry. He must have known that mode of river-crossing was soon to vanish, for riding the Chester-Bridgeport ferry (pictures, video, map) to and from New Jersey each summer we witnessed the Commodore John Barry Bridge in its various stages of construction. It became the highlight of our commute; in comparison, our subsequent trek across New Jersey on Route 322, the “Black Horse Pike,” seemed interminable.

untitled-1A bridge by any other name?—The fourth longest cantilever bridge in the world, which connects Delaware County, Pa. with New Jersey, opened on February 1, 1974 after nearly five years of construction. Before its completion, though, controversy erupted when its name was announced. Denizens of Chester, Pa. preferred the name William Penn over that of a little-known military figure from the American Revolution. So strong were the objections that one state senator even predicted area residents would reject the name Commodore John Barry and refer to the span as the Chester-Bridgeport Bridge.

An 1801 Gilbert Stuart portrait of Barry.

An 1801 Gilbert Stuart portrait of Barry.

Still, proponents argued that John Barry, aka the “Father of the American Navy,” had ties to Chester. Barry had brought his Navy ship to Chester for repairs. Barry had also arranged for food in New Jersey, destined for the soldiers at Valley Forge, to be transported across the river to Chester. Despite that state senator’s prediction in 1973, people used the bridge’s proposed name (Source).

Cracks form—Mere months after it opened, engineers discovered cracks appearing in some of the bridge’s upright girders. Although the location and size of these cracks did not threaten the span’s safety, engineers added supports to fortify the structure and sensors to monitor it. At that time, people expressed doubts about the bridge’s structural integrity, but now—40 years later—the Commodore Barry Bridge still stands, carrying 35,000 vehicles per day between Delaware County, Pa. and New Jersey (Sources—Commodore Barry Bridge: Historic OverviewCommodore Barry Bridge).

 


Dig Deeper: Commodore John Barry, USN

Letter To Congress from Captain Barry, January 10, 1778.

Contrary to one state’s senator’s opinion, the enduring legacy of Commodore John Barry lives on – not just on the toll plaza of the bridge, but also by Commodore John Barry Hall on our main campus – home to the Villanova University Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps. An even more personal way to get to know the Commodore is through perusing Villanova University’s Digital Library Barry-Hayes Papers. The Barry-Hayes Papers are the business, political and personal papers of John Barry, Captain of the United States Navy, and of his family, especially his nephew Patrick Hayes and grand-nephew, Patrick Barry Hayes. The collection includes correspondence, letterbooks, diaries, logbooks, legal and financial papers related to Barry’s career in the Navy, the business ventures of the Hayes, Keen and Somers families, and their personal lives. This collection brings together materials from the Independence Seaport Museum.

For information about preservation, access, and use of this historic collection visit the Barry-Hayes Papers project page.


Gerald info deskArticle by Gerald Dierkes, information services specialist for the Information and Research Assistance team, senior copy-editor for the Communication and Service Promotion team and a liaison to the Department of Theater. Special thanks to Michael Foight, Special Collections and Digital Library coordinator.

Like

Jersey Week: “I too many and many a time cross’d the river of old …” on the Walt Whitman Bridge

JERSEYPLANE

This week the Library News blog will be highlighting everyone’s second favorite mid-Atlantic state, New Jersey! So grab your flip flops and head east with us each day this week.

 

Walt_Whitman_Bridgetr

There are many river crossings to New Jersey, but if you’re at all of a literary bent, your favorite is probably the Walt Whitman Bridge. If you’re old enough, you may remember the construction and controversy surrounding its naming in the late 1950s. Known as the Packer Ave-Gloucester City bridge during its planning, officials sought to find a New Jersey resident equivalent in stature to Philadelphia’s choice of founding father Ben Franklin, for a second river crossing planned four miles south. The choice of Whitman, who lived the last 19 years of his life on Mickle Street in Camden, raised the hackles of several religious and community groups who disapproved of his bohemian and homosexual lifestyle.

While his poetry was beautiful and iconic—in fact, Leaves of Grass was hailed as the “Declaration of Independence of American Letters”—protests against Whitman were played out in the press via op-eds and editorials and in letter writing campaigns addressed to the Delaware River Port Authority. The name stayed, however, and scholars have since speculated that Whitman would have appreciated the democratic ‘airing of the grievances’ that accompanied his honor.

The kerfuffle inspired a poem by a member of the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association on Long Island:

Well, Camerado, I guess you heard,
There was quite a tussle recently
In the Quaker City of Brotherly Love
About you and a bridge
Joining said city with the other city
Where you lived, talked, peddled your books, and died;
And where your memory is already somewhat perpetuated
By Walt Whitman Canned Tomatoes (a grade A line) and other choice groceries.
Your opposers were the usual public inflicters of private morality
That you were long in life familiar with;
And you were accused of the usual perversions:
Bestiality, immorality, verselessness, and the corruption of the kiddies.
Even another bard was puffed in your place –
Joyce Kilmer, for God’s sake.
Whose leaves are less tall that your leaves, to all
But the shielded eye.
An old story, no doubt.
But the funny thing about this case, Camerado, was
That they lost.
And that sparkling, soaring, two mile span of steel
Is all yours:
The Walt Whitman Bridge.
What do you dream of that, Walt?
Is it for real?

On summer weekends the suspension bridge carries as many as 150,000 vehicles across its seven lanes and full length of almost 12,000 feet, including approaches. The original structure cost $90 million dollars. Its two towers rise to almost 400 feet in the air and are suspended by two 24-inches-in-diameter cables, which support its weight of 36,500 tons. A one-way toll of $5.00 is charged for travellers going westbound from New Jersey to Pennsylvania. The fare from Philly to Jersey is free … as long as you don’t come back.

Dig Deeper:

For more information on the fascinating life of Walt Whitman, visit these links curated by Sarah Wingo, subject librarian for English, literature and theatre.

Biography:
https://library.villanova.edu/Find/Record/535582

Whitman’s life during the civil war:
https://library.villanova.edu/Find/Record/1230039

Cambridge Companion to Walt Whitman (book and e-book):
https://library.villanova.edu/Find/Record/419405

The Walt Whitman Archive (great free to use resource):
http://www.whitmanarchive.org/


SarahDig Deeper links selected by Sarah Wingo, team leader- Humanities II, subject librarian for English, literature and theatre. Article by Joanne Quinn, Team Leader for Communication & Service Promotion

Evening view of Walt Whitman Bridge in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA Photo taken by Jdnrite01 {{PD-author|Jdnrite01]] http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Walt_Whitman_Bridge.jpg;

Sources:
 http://www.phillyroads.com/crossings/walt-whitman/ and

Krieg, Joann P. “Democracy in Action: Naming the Bridge for Walt Whitman.” Walt Whitman Quarterly Review 12 (Fall 1994), 108-114.

 

 

Like

Jersey Week: How many “greatest hits” of these Jersey Boys have you read?

JERSEYPLANE

This week the Library News blog will be highlighting everyone’s second favorite mid-Atlantic state, New Jersey! So grab your flip flops and head east with us each day this week.

 

jersy boys poster.eps

Do you know the Greatest Hits of these Jersey Boys?

Everyone’s talking about “Jersey Boys,” despite the somewhat universal panning reviewers are giving to the theatrical adaptation of the Broadway musical of the story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.

Even at an academic library, we’ve got Jersey Boys of our own. From north to south and past to present, the Garden State has provided fodder for some of America’s most treasured male authors. We’ve assembled about a dozen for you to choose from below. Click on the author’s name to be led directly to their works in VUFind, our catalog. You will find many works on our shelves. Those that are not on site are easily located within a day or two by using our E-ZBorrow system, which gives you access to over 35 million volumes from academic and public libraries in the mid-Atlantic region. Like the tasty treats behind the counter at Carlo’s Bake Shop in Hoboken, you’re sure to find something you like!

Stephen Crane
Born in 1871 in Newark, Crane was sickly most of his life and as a writer was drawn to capturing the trials of those living in impoverished conditions. His disappointment in sterile accounts of the Civil War led him to wonder how soldiers felt in the trenches, imaginings which led to his most prominent work, The Red Badge of Courage.

Harlan Coben
Also born in Newark, Coben is a darling with the crime novel set, with over 60 million books in print. His last seven novels debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. He is the first author to win an Edgar, a Shamus and an Anthony award. His popular series novels, based on fictional sports agent Myron Bolitar, have recently been expanded to a young adult series about Myron’s nephew, Mickey.

Allen Ginsburg
Another Newark resident, Ginsberg is a leading figure in the 1950s counterculture “Beat” movement. Best known for his poem “Howl” which denounces capitalism and conformity in the United States, Ginsberg drew inspiration from the free verse style of another New Jersey resident, Walt Whitman. Outrageous and controversial, he developed his own style that can only be called “Ginsbergian.”

James Fenimore Cooper
Cooper was born in Burlington in 1789. He served in the Navy as a midshipman which greatly influenced his sea-faring stories and the Leatherstocking Tales, a series of five novels featuring Natty Bumppo, a white child raised by Native Americans. The Last of the Mohicans is considered his masterpiece, and is the second title in the Leatherstocking series.

Norman Mailer
Mailer, born in Long Branch, N.J. in 1923, is considered an innovator of creative non-fiction, who, along with contemporaries such as Hunter S. Thompson, Truman Capote and Tom Wolfe, developed “New Journalism.” Novelist, journalist, essayist, playwright, actor and political candidate, Mailer won two Pulitzer Prizes and the National Book Award. He wrote over 40 books, including 11 novels, and founded The Village Voice. He is most acclaimed for The Executioner’s Song and The Naked and the Dead, which is hailed as one of America’s best war novels.

Junot Diaz
Diaz was born in the Dominican Republic and raised in Parlin, New Jersey. He is the author of The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, which won the 2008 Pulitzer Prize, and This Is How You Lose Her, a finalist for the National Book Award. Diaz is a graduate of Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, and appeared at the Villanova Literary Festival in April 2013.

Philip Roth
Must be something in the water in Newark! Also born there in 1933, Roth is known for his irreverent, semi-autobiographical portrayals of Jewish life. Best known for Portnoy’s Complaint and  Goodbye, Columbus, Roth wrote approximately 40 books, and is one of the most award winning writers of his generation.

Joyce Kilmer
Anyone who’s traveled north on the New Jersey Turnpike towards New Brunswick may be familiar with the Joyce Kilmer rest stop – but may not realize that Joyce is actually a “Jersey Boy.” And, of course, anyone familiar with classic American poetry knows the iconic – and often parodied Kilmer line, “I think that I shall never see A poem lovely as a tree …”

Theophilus Gould Steward
This author, educator, clergyman and son of free blacks was born in 1843 and received his formal education in Gouldstown, N.J. Steward joined the 25th U.S. Colored Infantry and served as its chaplain. He was a professor at Wilberforce University and wrote eight books.

George R. R. Martin
Martin, best known for A Song of Ice and Fire, the international bestselling series of novel on which the HBO series “Game of Thrones” was based, was born in Bayonne in 1948. He’s a novelist, screenwriter, short story writer and co-executive producer of the popular television series. A Song of Ice and Fire which is intended to be a series of seven novels, with two still in planning stage. Martin said that the series was inspired by Wars of the Roses and Ivanhoe.

Peter Benchley
Benchley, who lived in Princeton, N.J., wrote Jaws in 1974, still considered by many (and by “many,” I include myself) the best beach read ever. “Jaws” the movie (Benchley was its screenwriter) was the first film to gross over $100 million dollars, creating the summer blockbuster phenomenon. Benchley went on to write several more nautical thrillers, but mostly devoted himself in later years to (re)educating a post-Jaws audience about the beauty and mystery of the sea, including a new understanding of sharks as the oppressed, not the oppressor. With great white shark sightings already in the news this summer (or is it great white hype?)

With this myriad of choices, we know you’ll soon be – as Frankie says – Beggin’ to get your hands on some of these great reads.


Joanne Quinn is team leader of the Communication & Service Promotion team.

Like

Jersey Week: Summer Reading: Books Set at the Jersey Shore

JERSEYPLANE

This week the Library News blog will be highlighting everyone’s second favorite mid-Atlantic state, New Jersey! So grab your flip flops and head east with us each day this week. 

 

 

Summer Reading: Books Set at the Jersey Shore?

Straw hat , book and seashells in the sand

“Where in your library can I find books set at the Jersey shore?” the woman asked. Working at Falvey’s Learning Commons service desk, I searched the library’s catalog for “New Jersey” (as Subject) and “shore” (as All Fields):

Saving New Jersey’s Vanishing Shores

A Naturalist along the Jersey Shore

A Pictorial History of Selected Structures along the New Jersey Coast

Against the Deluge: Storm Surge Barriers to Protect New York City

Chance of a Lifetime: Nucky Johnson, Skinny D’Amato, and How Atlantic City Became the Naughty Queen of Resorts

“No,” she sighed, “I’m interested in summer reading: you know, fiction.”

I thought I’d find ideas for titles on Amazon.com, so I searched it for New Jersey shore fiction. I received 486 hits, including—

Summer’s Point by Margaret Palmer

Shore Stories: an Anthology of the Jersey Shore by Kay Boyle, Robert Pinsky, Stephen Dunn and Christopher Cook Gilmore

Missing by the Midway: An Ocean Grove Mystery (Volume 1) by Heath P. Boice

Murder Down the Shore: A Jersey Shore Mystery by Beth Sherman

Avalon by Gina Miani

Pop’s Place by Ed Buhrer

Shoretown by Dan Milczarski

High Tide by Tom Bruno

Dead and Breakfast (Asbury Dark) by Lori Bonfitto

Moondreams by Dean P. Johnson

The Methuselah Gene: A Science Fiction Adventure Thriller (New Millenium Writers Series) by Sal DeStefano

Wrong Beach Island (a Meg Daniels Mystery) by Jane Kelly

The results also included juvenile books (Nicky Fifth at the Jersey Shore, etc.) and several items related to the “Jersey Shore” television series. I tried avoiding the name of that TV show by changing my Amazon.com search to New Jersey beach fiction. The 479 results included many duplicates from my previous search. It also showed such titles as

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Book 1) by J.K. Rowling and Mary GrandPré

Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy by E L James

What to Expect When You’re Expecting, 4th Edition by Heidi Murkoff and Sharon Mazel

none of which, I suspected, were set at the Jersey shore (or beach).

I also searched flashlightworthybooks.com, which offered Creepers by David Morrell and Dunk by David Lubar. And goodreads.com recommended Chili Pimping in Atlantic City: The Memoir of a Small-Time Pimp by Michael “Mick-man” Gourdine.

“But I was hoping to find a library book,” she clarified. “I’m trying to save some money.”

Remembering that the Delaware County Library System has a branch right down the street, in Wayne, I searched DCLS’s catalog: The Boardwalk Mystery and Black Jack Jetty: a Boy’s Journey Through Grief are both in the children’s section. And Jersey Angel and Touched are listed as “young adult fiction.”

Down The Shore by Stan Parish looks good. I’ll get that.”

I wrote down the book’s call number and handed her the slip of paper: “Let me know whether you recommend it.”
*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *
Got summer reading? Falvey Memorial Library has Popular Reading and fiction to satisfy your need to read something fun.

Like
1 People Like This Post

True colors

Flag

Our U.S. flag has an interesting history. Read about the evolution of the flag here.

This beauty flies at the Freedoms Foundation in Valley Forge.

Happy Independence Day!

Photo by Alice Bampton, visual specialist and senior writer, Communication and Service Promotion team

Like

General Sherman Goes To Philadelphia (Actually Only His Coat Makes the Trip)

SHERMAN-COAT

Walking by Special Collections recently, I noticed that something was missing – General William Tecumseh Sherman’s Civil War frock coat, which had been on exhibit, highly visible from outside Special Collections since 2009. I have a special interest in this garment since it once spent a night in Falvey’s art-history slide collection room, where I worked at the time; it had been returned one evening from the Civil War Museum in Philadelphia and needed to be housed in a secure, temperature-controlled location until Special Collections and Digital Library Coordinator Michael Foight could retrieve it the next morning.

James G. Mundy, Jr., Director of Library & Historical Collections, The Union League, and Sherman's frock coat

James G. Mundy, Jr., Director of Library & Historical Collections, The Union League, and Sherman’s frock coat

The coat is now on exhibit at The Union League in Philadelphia as part of its exhibit, “Philadelphia 1864: The Year of Decision.” The coat will return to Special Collections after the exhibit closes.

expert-judith-giesberg

Judith Giesberg, PhD

How did this coat, worn by General Sherman (1820-91) on his “March to the Sea,” make its way to the Union League’s Heritage Center exhibit, one might wonder? Judith Giesberg, PhD, professor and graduate program director, Department of History, was instrumental in reminding The Union League of Philadelphia’s Director of Library and Historical Collections, James G. Mundy, Jr., of the coat’s existence although he had known about it previously. Dr. Giesberg had been a member of a Civil War roundtable and also had spoken at The Union League several times, which is how she met Mundy. When she learned about the planned exhibit, she told Mundy about the coat.

“Philadelphia 1864…” is the fourth is a series of such Civil War exhibits: “Philadelphia 1861: A Coming Storm,” “Philadelphia 1862: A City at War,” and “Philadelphia 1863: Turning the Tide” preceded the current exhibit. “Philadelphia 1864: The Year of Decision” focuses on major events, such as – the appointment of Ulysses S. Grant as Lieutenant General of the Union Army, – Grant’s Overland Campaign, – General William Tecumseh Sherman’s march through Georgia, – the election of Abraham Lincoln, – the U.S. Sanitary Commission’s Great Central Fair in Philadelphia, and it “will also draw attention to the growing activities of The Union League.” The exhibit includes over fifty artifacts from The Union League’s collections, the Philadelphia History Museum and other institutions. The exhibit will remain open until February 2015. It is open to the public Tuesdays and Thursdays from three until six p.m. and on the second Saturday of each month from one to four p.m.

 

The Union League of Philadelphia was founded as a men’s club in 1862, the first of several Union Leagues created to support the Union and President Abraham Lincoln during the American Civil War (1861-65). RS7820_Union League sign(1)The Union League building, listed on the National Historic Register since 1979, was erected in 1865. John Fraser (1825-1906) was the architect of the original building. In 1909 Horace Trumbauer (1868-1938) designed an annex for the Union League at 15th and Samson Streets.


Article and Union League photos by Alice Bampton, digital image specialist and senior writer on the Communication and Service Promotion team.

Like
1 People Like This Post

Continuum: Collections and Access Make Falvey Distinctive


Darren

In an era when the uniqueness of a library’s collections are distinguished by not only what books it has in the stacks but also what it has in terms of special and digital collections, it is interesting to note a few exceptional examples of rare and unique items that are of interest to scholars: in this case, Latin and Irish manuscripts.

Recently Kenneth B. Steinhauser, PhD, a professor in the Department of Theological Studies at Saint Louis University published a survey of Latin medieval and Renaissance manuscripts he studied at Villanova University. He catalogs the thirteen manuscripts in Falvey Memorial Library and the two in the Augustinian Historical Institute collection. Dr. Steinhauser states in his published article on the subject, “In summation, the manuscript collection at Villanova University emphasizes the Augustinian tradition, specifically works of Augustine himself, Augustinian liturgical material and writings of medieval Augustinian theologians.” See Manuscripta 57.2 (2013): 205-77 (DOI 10.1484/j.MSS.1.103704).

Irish history and heritage is another unique focus of our special collections. A Catalogue of Irish Manuscripts in Villanova University, Pennsylvania by William J. Mahon was published by the School of Celtic Studies, Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, 2007.

Villanova University’s Special Collections and Digital Library assembles, presents and preserves physical and digital collections that support teaching and research of the campus community and the global network of scholarship; the Rare Book Room houses over 15,000 rare and unique physical documents and artifacts requiring special handling and preservation ranging from medieval manuscripts to early popular American newspapers, while online over 20,000 items are available. The historical record of Villanova University is available in the University Archives, which is also in Falvey.

The physical library collection has more than 500,000 printed volumes, including books and historical runs of major academic journals. Web-accessible resources include over two hundred general and discipline-specific research databases, approximately ten thousand full text electronic journals, and extensive microfilm and audiovisual collections. Online collections also include almost 650,000 digital volumes encompassing the corpus of English-language books from the earliest days of the movable type printing press through scholarly literature of the early twenty-first century. Beyond Villanova’s collection, the regional E-ZBorrow system in which Falvey participates provides one-stop searching and access to over 35 million books from 50 college and university libraries in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and West Virginia. In addition, materials can be requested from libraries world-wide through Inter-Library Loan. See http://library.villanova.edu/about/services/illservices/.

DARREN SIG2

Like

« Previous PageNext Page »

 


Last Modified: July 1, 2014