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New Exhibit on Illustrated and Military Maps

Low, David, Caricature of Post-War Europe. [London]: Picture Post, 1952, SMITH VII-49.

Maps do far more than showing us the locations of places. They can persuade viewers and shape their perceptions of the world. They can also offer critical insight that leads to world-changing decisions, especially in times of war.

Art of War: Illustrated and Military Maps of the Twentieth Century, an upcoming exhibition co-curated by Rebecca Oviedo, Distinctive Collections Archivist, and Christoforos Sassaris, Distinctive Collections Coordinator, explores the creation and various uses of illustrated and military maps in the twentieth century. The maps are drawn mainly from the most recent addition of items generously donated to the John F. Smith, III and Susan B. Smith Antique Maps Collection. Several maps from this extensive collection have been digitized and can be viewed on Falvey’s Digital Library. You may also access an audio tour in which Mr. Smith comments on the maps’ significance.

Situation Map to Accompany Subj 5303/3. Münster. Central Europe 1:100,000. G.S.G.S. 4416 Published by War Office 1944. Revised, drawn and photolithographed at O.S. Army Map Service, U.S. Army, Washington, D.C., 1944. Reproduced at the U.S. Army Command and Staff College, 1947. SMITH VII-50.

The maps on view will range from strategic situation maps used by the US military to pictorial maps that implement satire and caricature to influence public perception of ongoing conflicts. Together, these maps shed light on how the spread of information—both textual and visual—took part in shaping major conflicts of the twentieth century.

Art of War: Illustrated and Military Maps of the Twentieth Century is co-hosted by Falvey Memorial Library and the Office of Veterans and Military Service Members, and will be viewable on both the first floor of Falvey Memorial Library and in the Prince Family Veterans Resource Center starting on September 8th through the remainder of the fall semester.

We hope to see you there!


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TBT: Gregor Mendel, OSA

Photo of Gregor Mendel display on Falvey's first floor.

Photo courtesy of Shawn Proctor is Communication and Marketing Manager.


This week’s Throwback Thursday (TBT) celebrates the 200th birthday of Gregor Mendel, OSA, born July 20, 1822. Visit Falvey Memorial Library’s first floor to see the new exhibit “Of peas and bees: Bicentennial Exhibit” celebrating “the Father of Modern Genetics.” The exhibit was curated by Michael Foight, Director of Distinctive Collections and Digital Engagement (DCDE), with text by Laura Bang, formerly of DCDE, and graphics by Joanne Quinn, Director of Communication and Marketing.

For additional information on Gregor Mendel, check out Shawn Proctor’s blog here. Proctor is Communication and Marketing Manager at Falvey Memorial Library.


Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 


 


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TBT: The Bicycle Highwaymen of Coney Island

Old Broadbrim Weekly, no. 30, April 25, 1903. Photo courtesy of the Villanova University Digital Library.

Old Broadbrim Weekly, no. 30, April 25, 1903. Photo courtesy of the Villanova University Digital Library.


On this day in history (June 16, 1884), the first roller coaster in America opened at Coney Island, in Brooklyn, New York. “Known as a switchback railway, it was the brainchild of LaMarcus Thompson, traveled approximately six miles per hour and cost a nickel to ride.” This week’s “Throwback Thursday” (TBT) is a dime novel from Falvey’s Dime Novel and Popular Literature collection. Follow Detective Josiah Broadbrim as he looks to solve a mystery on Coney Island. Read the full story here.


Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library. Her favorite amusement park is Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio.

 

 


 


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Christoforos Sassaris Joins Falvey as Distinctive Collections Coordinator

My name is Christoforos Sassaris, and I recently joined Falvey Memorial Library as a Distinctive Collections Coordinator. In this position, I take part in the Distinctive Collections and Digital collections, lovecraft, joyce, Engagement department’s efforts at preserving rare books, archives, and artifacts. This position is a perfect fit for me, as it nicely combines my interests in cultural heritage and digital technologies. I am particularly excited to digitize sources in the Scan Lab and make them accessible to students, researchers, and the public through Falvey’s website.

I was born in Athens, Greece (where I still visit as often as possible) and moved to the US in 2011. I got my BA in English literature at West Chester University (WCU), where I was both an intern and a research fellow at Francis Harvey Green Library’s Special Collections. These experiences imbued me with a passion for heritage librarianship, which I pursued through additional internships at the Library Company of Philadelphia and the Brandywine River Museum of Art.

Just before joining Falvey, I was a Graduate Assistant in Villanova’s Writing Center and English department while I completed my MA. I also volunteered in two digital projects at Falvey, the Edward T. LeBlanc Memorial Dime Novel Bibliography and Honoring the Fallen: An Interactive Memorial Map. During the past two years, I developed a deep appreciation of Falvey’s collections, which I consulted during my studies.

When I was introduced to these collections, one item that immediately drew my attention was a journal of astronomical observations belonging to horror writer H. P. Lovecraft, whose fiction I examined in my MA thesis. Interestingly, the journal possibly contains the real-world inspiration for the short story “The Colour Out of Space.” I was also drawn to Falvey’s extensive holdings in Irish and Irish-American literature, such as an original copy of James Joyce’s Ulysses. This 1922 modernist novel was the focus of my final capstone paper at WCU, titled “‘A Last Attempt to Retrieve the Fortunes of Greece’: Joyce, Hellenism, and Addressing Arnoldian Attitudes in Ulysses.” I am enthusiastic about preserving and facilitating access to treasures such as Lovecraft’s journal and Joyce’s novel through my work at Falvey.

I look forward to working with the Falvey team and continuing my involvement in the Villanova community in the coming years. Feel free to visit me at my desk in Access Services on the first floor of Falvey, or contact me at psassari@villanova.edu!


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TBT: The Heart of the Antarctic

 

Image of Sir Ernest Shackleton's book, The Heart of the Antarctic, published in 1909.

Sir Ernest Shackleton’s book, The Heart of the Antarctic, published in 1909.


This week’s “Throwback Thursday” (TBT) is part of Falvey Memorial Library’s exhibit “That Fairyland of Ice”: Polar Exploration in Mind and Memory. The exhibit, both in the Library’s first floor display cases and online, highlights the generous donation of a collection of books and items about the Arctic and Antarctic recently given to the Library’s Distinctive Collections by Dr. James Wheeler. The exhibit includes connections to other Library materials as well as current issues affecting the polar regions today.

Sir Ernest Shackleton’s book, The Heart of the Antarctic, published in 1909, is pictured above. The online exhibit provides additional information on the explorer:

“Sir Ernest Shackleton, an Anglo-Irish explorer, made four expeditions to Antarctica between 1901 and 1922, leading three of them. He was third officer on Robert Falcon Scott’s Discovery expedition, 1901-4, before heading his own expedition in 1907 aboard the Nimrod. This expedition, split into two parties, achieved a new record for farthest south of 88° 23′ S; made a first ascent of Mount Erebus, the most active and second-highest volcano on the continent; and were the first to reach the South Magnetic Pole (different from the geographic South Pole first achieved by Amundsen). Shackleton wrote about this expedition in The Heart of the Antarctic, published after their return in 1909.”

“That Fairyland of Ice”: Polar Exploration in Mind and Memory will be available for viewing on the Library’s first floor through June 15, 2022.

The exhibit was co-curated by Laura Bang and Rebecca Oviedo, Distinctive Collections Archivist, with graphics by Joanne Quinn, Director of Communication and Marketing.

Comments or questions? Contact dcde@villanova.edu.


 


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From the Archives: Robert Langran papers

Robert Langran with Women's tennis team

                               Robert Langran with VU Women’s Tennis, undated

The University Archives is excited to announce a newly available collection of papers from former faculty and tennis coach Robert Langran. Langran spent his entire career at Villanova University, where he taught and researched in Political Science from 1959 to 2015. Langran taught civil rights, the study of the Supreme Court, constitutional law, women’s studies, and peace studies. While at Villanova University, Langran chaired the Political Science Department from 1968 to 1978 and from 2008 to 2009. He chaired the committee that devised the University Senate and was the first chair of the Faculty Congress. He was awarded the Best Advisor Award (2001), Faculty Service Award (1997), several Political Science Department Best Teacher Award, and Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching (1972). In 1967, Langran revitalized Men’s Tennis, which had be absent from Villanova for twenty-five years. A year later he was approached by a group of young women wanting to create a tennis team and Langran helped form the first Villanova women’s tennis team and be their head coach for the next twenty-five years.

 

Robert Langran with VU athletics

                                        Robert Langran with VU Athletics

Langran’s family recently donated his tennis files to the University Archives, which includes scorecards and rosters from the Men’s and Women’s tennis teams from 1969 to 2013. As a lifelong VU Wildcats fan, the collection also includes a scrapbook of basketball and football tickets, programs, and season schedules. Langran left a indelible mark on the Villanova community and excited to have early tennis history available in the archives. Contact the University Archives at archives@villanova.edu to view the collection.


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Villanova Featured on Irish National Website

By Rebecca Oviedo

Front pages of newspapers, The Irish Press, The Gaelic American, and The Clan-na-Gael Journal (Digital Library@Villanova University)

 

Villanova University’s well-known connections to Ireland, Irish and Irish American history, and the Irish diaspora has recently led to an invitation to share more about those connections and our collections on Century Ireland, a website hosted by RTÉ, Ireland’s national television and radio broadcaster.

The featured article is distinguished as being the first in a new series on “Global Archives,” which will highlight the rich historical collections available to researchers of the Irish Revolution in archives around the world.

Read the full article here: https://www.rte.ie/centuryireland/index.php/articles/global-archives-villanova-university.

 


Rebecca Oviedo is Distinctive Collections Librarian/Archivist at Falvey Memorial Library.

 


 


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New Exhibit: “That Fairyland of Ice”: Polar Exploration in Mind and Memory

Falvey Memorial Library is pleased to announce the opening of a new exhibit, both in the Library’s first floor display cases and online.

“That Fairyland of Ice”: Polar Exploration in Mind and Memory highlights the generous donation of a collection of books and items about the Arctic and Antarctic recently given to the Library’s Distinctive Collections by Dr. James Wheeler. “In organizing this exhibit, we really wanted to share the depth and range of this new collection,” says Laura Bang, Distinctive Collections Librarian and co-curator of the exhibit. “It was also important that we make connections with our other collections materials as well as current issues affecting the polar regions today such as global warming and climate change. These connections really enhance the relevancy of this collection.”

“The title reflects these themes of ‘imagining’ and ‘remembering’ that are present throughout the exhibit,” says Rebecca Oviedo, Distinctive Collections Archivist and the other co-curator. “Many of the items on display are published narrative memoirs of expedition journeys written for general audiences.” From the exhibit introduction:

While these explorative voyages were scientific in nature, the books satisfied public fascination with the polar regions by visualizing previously unknown territories through word and image. But even as explorers filled in and corrected maps and myths, we continue to imagine and construct—from works of pure fiction to conjectures of lost expeditions. And as we read about “that fairyland of ice” we watch it slowly disappear as dire warnings about climate change threaten what we have come to know of the Arctic and Antarctic—once again to mind and memory.

The online exhibit contains additional materials beyond what is on display in the Library. “We are physically limited by what will actually fit in the cases,” says Oviedo, “and we can only show one page of a book at a time, for example, whereas online we can show several pages or even an entire book if we want.” Links to items that have been fully digitized in Villanova’s Digital Library are included when applicable. The online exhibit includes additional section headings as well as a Q & A with Dr. James Wheeler about collecting and acquiring the eclectic collection that now bears his name.

The exhibit was curated by Oviedo and Bang. Graphics created by Joanne Quinn, Director of Communication and Marketing. Photos courtesy of Kallie Stahl, Communication and Marketing Specialist.


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New Year, New Status

By Rebecca Oviedo

Every year since 2019 we have delighted in reviewing our Distinctive Collections for new titles entering the public domain to scan and bring to you in our Digital Library each new year. For 20 years prior to 2019, new items to the public domain were restricted due to a copyright extension enacted in 1998. Laura Bang wrote an excellent review and round-up of further reading on the blog in December 2019.

This year we’re adding two works that have been included in two of our online exhibits but could not previously be shared in full due to copyright. Alright, well one exhibit is brand new this year, so it didn’t have to wait very long!

Joining nine other titles already in the public domain by Villanova alumnus, poet, and author Thomas Augustine Daly is A Little Book of American Humorous Verse, published in Philadelphia in 1926. Dedicated “to all lovers of the laughing muse,” T.A. Daly has compiled a selection of light verse by American authors ranging from the well-known and enduring Emily Dickinson, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, to his own friends and contemporaries Christopher Morley, Joyce Kilmer, and of course, himself.

Coming soon is our brand new exhibit, “That Fairyland of Ice”: Polar Exploration in Mind and Memory, which includes Arctic explorer Vilhjalmur Stefansson’s 1926 The Adventure of Wrangel Island, from the James Wheeler collection. This copy is inscribed by Stefansson himself to his friend Henry Grier Bryant (1859-1932), a fellow explorer and writer from Philadelphia. Stefansson was a prolific author with 12 other books in the Wheeler collection, many of them also signed copies.

Of course 2022 also brings new additions to our Dime Novel and Popular Literature collection including these newspapers from 1926: a September issue of Chicago’s Blade and Ledger and a May 21st issue of The Cleveland News. Well into Prohibition, catching my eye in this latter issue is an advertisement for Pabst-ett, “the new finer food that’s more than cheese” from Pabst Brewing Company and an article on the front page reporting on the perjury trial of a Broadway theater producer’s “bathtub party” allegedly at which “pretty Joyce Hawley, Broadway model, ‘entirely undressed,’ splashed merrily in a bathtub of bubbling champagne while a score of men drank from the contents of the tub.”  !!!

Other major titles freely available this year include A. A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh and Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises. This past December, The Public Domain Review did a festive advent-style calendar in anticipation of new items in the public domain for 2022. Here’s to a new year!

 


Rebecca Oviedo is Distinctive Collections Librarian/Archivist at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 


 


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New Digital Collection: Irish International Exhibition, 1907

We recently digitized a collection of colorful postcards and other ephemeral materials related to the Irish International Exhibition held in Dublin, 1907. These items are part of a larger collection of Irish postage stamps and postcards given to Falvey Memorial Library by Johan Albert Norstedt (1937-2020). View the items in our Digital Library HERE.

The Irish International Exhibition was a world’s fair held in Herbert Park, in the Ballsbridge neighborhood of Dublin from May to October, 1907. It was typical of expositions of the time which were meant to promote industry, arts, and manufacturing and to stimulate trade and commerce. Featured buildings included a Grand Central Palace, the Fine Art Gallery, the Palace of Industries, the Palace of Mechanical Arts, a Canadian Pavilion, and a Concert Hall and Bandstand. A program for the exhibition details the buildings and features, which also included “an extensive lake with picturesque bridges and islands, … a Water Chute, Rivers of Ireland, Switchback Railway, Helter Skelter Lighthouse, Shooting Galleries, and Somali Village” as “some of the numerous Side-Shows which afford amusement to visitors.” The Somali Village was an ethnological exposition or a “human zoo” and a quite literal display of British imperialism.

 

This is a welcome new addition to our Digital Library where you can also find the full 204-page Official Catalogue for the exhibition in the Joseph McGarrity Collection as well as many references and reactions in our extensive newspaper holdings. One such article appears in The Gaelic American, a newspaper published in New York City devoted to the cause of Irish independence from British rule. The cartoon titled “Irish Anti-National Exhibition 1907” and the article headline says it all: “The International Exhibition Fraud: British Show in Dublin a Mere Loyalist Demonstration – Chief Manufactures on Exhibition are Loyalty, British Officials, Soldiers, and Castle Hacks.”

 


Rebecca Oviedo is Distinctive Collections Librarian/Archivist at Falvey Memorial Library.


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Last Modified: December 1, 2021