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Transcribing History in the Digital Library

By Rebecca Oviedo

 

Distinctive Collections and Digital Engagement is pleased to share a new guide on finding, using, and doing transcriptions in our collections. This resource, Transcribing History in Villanova University’s Digital Library, includes examples of some transcriptions of note, an explanation of how to search and access transcriptions in the Digital Library, and an invitation to join us in transcribing history yourself!

The guide also includes several links and examples for teaching and learning online with primary sources. Especially now, when physical access to archival collections has been limited, the Digital Library provides access to thousands of digitized materials from Villanova University’s Special Collections and University Archives as well as dozens of digital donor and partner institutions. One of the goals of the Digital Library is to transcribe these handwritten documents so that they are more easily searchable and accessible to the public.

 

 


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

 

 


 


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Travel the world through maps!

Many people’s summer travel plans have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but you can still get a taste of places near and far through our newly-launched website, Projecting the World: An Audio Tour of the John F. Smith, III and Susan B. Smith Antique Map Collection. This website provides a virtual tour of the Smith Antique Map Collection, pairing digital images of maps and illustrations with audio commentary from their collector, Mr. Smith. This trip also involves time travel as these materials span the 16th through the 21st centuries.

Map of the Bahamas and surrounding islands

A new chart of the Bahama Islands and the windward passage.

Set sail for the Bahamas in this beautifully colored map from 1749. Besides the islands, the map depicts the shallow areas of the Bahama Bank and the Grand Bahama Bank, which posed a danger to ships.

Map of Europe in the shape of a queen

Map of Europe as queen.

Take a flight of fancy to Europe in this image that rearranges the countries of that continent to resemble a queen. This may not be useful as a map for getting around, but it is certainly an eye-catching image!

Photo of Earth from space

The planet Earth.

You can even do some space travel in this collection! This 2004 image of the Earth from space is one example of how human spaceflight has drastically changed our perspective on our planet.

Map of Pennsylvania

A map of Pennsylvania exhibiting not only the improved parts of that Province, but also its extensive frontiers.

If you want to stay closer to home, take a road trip across this marvelous map of Pennsylvania from 1775. Watch out for the Great Swamp and the Endless Mountains!

These are just a few of the many places you can explore through Projecting the World, so be sure to visit the site for more virtual travel adventures near and far.

This project, like so many things, has been interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and, as a result, the website currently only presents selected materials from the collection for which both an image and a recording are available. To view all of the items in the Smith Antique Map Collection, view the records in the library’s catalog.


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Quarantine Cooking with Kallie: Mendel Macaroni Salad with Lemon Thyme Dressing

Happy birthday, Gregor Mendel, O.S.A.! Instead of making a cake for the Augustinian Friar’s birthday, I decided to make a recipe shared by Access Services Director Luisa Cywinski. The recipe is not from the 19th century, but does feature an ingredient special to Mendel—peas. Mendel’s pea plant experiments with hybridization led to the discovery of hereditary laws ushering in the modern age of genetics. The featured recipe is not part of the Digital Library, however Mendel’s papers on “Experiments in Plant Hybridization” are available for reading. The Mendel Collection features “first editions of Mendel’s papers and earlier works about heredity and the importance of Mendel’s works around 1900 by such scientists as William Bateson, Hugo de Vries, Carl Correns and others.” 

Below is a preview of Mendel’s lecture on his experiments with hybridization of pea plants which he delivered before the Natural Sciences Society of Brünn on Feb. 8 and March 8, 1865.

Image of Mendel's papers on "Experiments in Plant Hybridisation" which he delivered before the Natural Sciences Society of Brünn on February 8th and March 8th, 1865.

Photo courtesy of Villanova University Digital Library.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Luisa Cywinski, Access Services Director, first posted the recipe for Mendel Macaroni Salad with Lemon Thyme Dressing, which she based on a recipe featured on The Cozy Apron.

Mendel Macaroni Salad 

  • 12 oz macaroni pasta, cooked and cooled
  • 1 cup frozen petite peas, thawed
  • 4 oz diced and crisped pancetta (can be substituted with bacon, deli ham, etc.)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, for garnish

“Add the cooked and cooled macaroni to a large bowl, and add in the thawed petite peas and the diced, crisped pancetta; if serving immediately, toss with the Lemon-Thyme Dressing, and garnish with the thyme leaves; if making ahead, prepare all components and keep them separate, then toss the dressing with the pasta/peas/pancetta when ready to serve, to keep the pasta salad moist and fresh; keep cold.”

Lemon-Thyme Dressing

  • ¾ cup mayonnaise
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 ½ tablespoons lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon whole grain Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, for garnish

“Add all ingredients into the bowl of a food processor. Process the mixture until thick and completely creamy; store in the fridge until you’re ready to serve the salad, at which point you can toss the dressing with the pasta. Garnish with sprigs of fresh thyme.”

Check out my cooking tutorial and the finished product below.

Photo of Macaroni Salad.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fore more pea-themed recipes explore Cywinski’s blog post. Additional recipes are also available for viewing in the Digital Library. Questions about the Digital Library, University Archives or Special Collections? Contact the Distinctive Collections and Digital Engagement staff. Check back next month for another quarantine cooking tutorial!


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

 

 


 


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From the Archives: DCDE Adds New Public User Interface for Finding Aids

By Beaudry Rae Allen

Distinctive Collections & Digital Engagement is proud to announce our finding aids are now publicly available and searchable through our VuFind catalog and a public user interface through ArchivesSpace. ArchivesSpace is discovery portal for archival and other unique materials at Villanova University.

This means greater access to our collections, especially for the University Archives, which has not had any detailed content information made public before. As of today, Special Collections’ finding aids for manuscript collections and all the Villanova Presidents’ papers from 1870s to 1980s are publicly accessible. In addition, some finding aids will have links to digitized content in our digital library.

Over the course of the next year, expect to see more University Archives finding aids from other areas of the University published.

ArchivesSpace, new public user interface

ArchivesSpace, new public user interface

The new public interface for finding aids will allow you to search by repositories, collections, subjects, record type, keywords, and dates. However, it is important to note that once you find what you are looking for, you will need to email archives@villanova.edu to request access or get more information about the collection.

These access points are critical to the library’s mission of discovery and access to resources. Searchable finding aids will allow researchers find more of our primary source material holdings and conduct more thorough research with our materials.

What are Finding Aids?

Finding aids are descriptive tools that provide information about the archival documents held in a collection. Researchers use finding aids to help determine whether a collection of archival materials contains the documents, photographs, etc. that they might need to consult for their research project.

A finding aid typically consists of contextual and structural information about an archival collection. This includes information about the collection, such as acquisition and processing; provenance, including administrative history or biographical note; scope of the collection, including size, subjects, media; organization, and arrangement; and an inventory of the items or folder titles.

Guide to James D. Reap World War II collection

Guide to James D. Reap World War II collection

A long time coming

Getting the finding aids online has been a two-year endeavor. Special Collections had finding aids in HTML and PDF formats on its website, but not integrated with the Library catalog system, and University Archives had some partial inventories in a content management system called Archivist Toolkit or in Microsoft Word documents, but nothing comprehensively organized and described, all of which has made access to our information disjointed and incomplete.

The first step was implementing a new content management system, ArchivesSpace, and migrating inventories from the previous system and converting the HTML, PDF, and Microsoft Word documents into XML to be imported into ArchivesSpace.

The new system allowed description to more nuanced and structured in a way for easier user navigation. Moreover, the migration required a lot of clean up of data and standardizing description. Our student assistants, Kamryn Dow and Emma Poley, assisted in cleaning up our metadata.

We also received help from Access Coordinators Mike Sgier and Gerald Dierkes, who are cleaning up the component unique identifiers and folder locations of the University Archives collections. While metadata clean-up has been in process, Library IT Developer Geoff Scholl helped set up the ArchivesSpace public interface for the finding aids, and Library IT Director Demian Katz integrated ArchivesSpace with Vufind.

Catalog list of finding aids

VuFind catalog list of finding aids

This project is just a step in the continued work of DCDE to enhance access to our collections.

 


Beaudry Rae Allen is Preservation and Digital Archivist at Falvey Memorial Library.


 


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100 Seasons of Villanova Basketball Now Available in the Digital Library

By Rebecca Oviedo

This past year, in celebration of Villanova’s 100 seasons of men’s basketball, and in partnership with the Department of Athletics’ External Operations Unit, Falvey Memorial Library’s Distinctive Collections & Digital Engagement has added a significant contribution of basketball-related images and content to the Villanova Digital Library. The items from University Archives include nearly 400 photographs and negatives, and more than 60 additional items, such as media guides, schedules, tickets, and scorebooks.

Since 1920, Villanova Basketball has produced three NCAA national championships and a rich history of outstanding players and coaches. Search and view images of such iconic Wildcats and future NBA stars as Paul Arizin, Larry Hennessy, Bob Schafer, and George Raveling under coach Alex Severance; Wali Jones, Hubie White, Jim Washington, Bill Melchionni, Howard Porter, Chris Ford and Tom Ingelsby from the Jack Kraft era; and, of course, selected images from Rollie Massimino’s 1985 NCAA championship team. One of the most photographed: legendary longtime athletic trainer John “Jake” Nevin.

Negative, Basketball (Jake Nevin/ Trainer and Howard Porter), 1970.

The process to convert these analog materials to a digital environment involved many hands and multiple steps.

The work began last summer, with the help of Erik Sherwood, Laura Davis, and Jessica Leventry, three Penn State students participating in the Villanova Athletic Department summer internship program with Assistant Athletic Director/Marketing Jacob Whitten’s team. The students spent two weeks in University Archives transcribing data from University Negatives Collection envelopes housing the negatives and entering the information into a spreadsheet to be incorporated into University Archives and Digital Library databases. They recorded such metadata as box and folder numbers, names, dates, subject headings, and descriptions for each negative.

Laura Davis carefully examines a negative.

Villanova College Basketball Facts, 30th Season, 1949-1950.

In September of the fall semester, several undergraduate Collections & Stewardship Technicians began scanning the items using the library’s Indus Color Book Scanner and a recently added Epson 12000XL Photo Scanner. These students, trained in appropriate collections care and proper handling techniques for rare materials, included Bernadette Goratowski, Martin Han, Courtney Schultz, and Erin Warren. After scanning materials, the students performed several post-processing steps, including rotating, cropping, and tonal adjustment of the digital images. They logged and tracked their work in the same spreadsheet started by the summer interns. Images were then uploaded to a library server to await further description and metadata by Distinctive Collections staff.

Items were scanned through March 2020, when campus was closed due to the growing threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, and sadly the remainder of Villanova’s 100th season of basketball was cancelled. As much of the world’s workforce transitioned online, I continued my work of describing and entering metadata, now from home, a task that surely could not have been completed had it not been for the careful work of our student employees and interns this past year.

Some images still require additional identification and description. I tried to identify players and add subject headings as best I could, and the media guides proved invaluable for this. If you can identify or date any images lacking this information, please email archives@villanova.edu. We have scanned selected images from the University Negatives Collection through 1974, and there are still several hundred images that have not yet been digitized. The collection spans the 1930s to 1985. If you have a favorite past player, let us know by email or in the comments below.


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

 

 

 


 


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From the University Archives: Celebrate History of Villanova Theatre

By Beaudry Rae Allen

Dramatic Hall, circa 1890s

Dramatic Hall, circa 1890s

 

“…but be not afraid of greatness: Some are born great, others achieve greatness. And others have greatness thrust upon them.”—Shakespeare, Twelfth Night, Act 2 Scene 5

 

Distinctive Collections invites you with a backstage pass to celebrate 150 years of Villanova Theatre with the new digital exhibit “Be Not Afraid of Greatness: Celebrating the History of Villanova Theatre.”

Inspired by the prevalence of Shakespeare in the production history of the Theatre Department, the lines are meant to evoke the profound yet humble legacy of Villanova Theatre, from its earliest days to capturing the essence of what the department is all about: enriching the campus culture and striving for greatness one performance at a time.

Very few may know, but the first appearances of theatre on campus started in 1870, and with this exhibit the University Archives seeks to evoke a sense of celebration of Villanova’s rich history and achievements spanning 150 years.

Take a step inside and explore the many different eras of theatre groups on campus and moments that have helped shape what the graduate program is today.  The exhibit includes many programs and posters from early performances as well as photographs of students in rehearsals from the University Archives. In addition, the exhibit includes special photographs taken by Robert LeBlanc, First Year Experience Librarian, of theater students from fall 2019 and images of costumes on loan from the Villanova Theatre Department.

Rehearsals for Piper-Heidsieck '98, 1950

Rehearsals for Piper-Heidsieck ’98, 1950

Curated by Beaudry Rae Allen and Emma Poley ’21, Villanova Theatre Graduate Student, the digital exhibit is just a snapshot of the physical exhibit that opened March 12, 2020.

 

Poster of Turf and Tinsel Club production, circa 1940s

Poster of Turf and Tinsel Club production, circa 1940s

 

When the University reopens, the main physical exhibit will remain on display.

 


Beaudry Rae Allen is Preservation and Digital Archivist at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 

 


 


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From the Archives: 50th Anniversary of Earth Day

In celebration of the 50th anniversary, Distinctive Collections is excited to announce a mini digital exhibit, “Earth Week at Villanova,” describing how Villanova University participated in the first Earth Day and other activities on campus to advocate for environmental changes over the years. Villanova University hosted a week of activities during the first Earth Week celebrations that were held in 1970.

"Give a Hoot, Don't Pollute" Owl Cartoon

“Give a Hoot, Don’t Pollute” Owl Cartoon 1971

Villanovan, Vol. 47, No. 12, December 8, 1971.

Of particular note, the exhibit includes a recorded interview with the organizers of the March 2019 Climate Strike on campus. All the material presented are from the University Archives and curated by Beaudry Allen, Preservation and Digital Archivist.


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From the Archives: Work From Home Edition

Work from Home | LoFi Study

University Archives Zine: Download Me!

illustration of office

Illustration of my home office

What’s it like for an archivist to work from home? Just like many Villanovans, I’ve been working from home, which offers unique challenges as a majority of my work requires working with materials from the archives. The separation to resources has been an adjustment, but with my favorite coffee, my dog cuddled up with me, and chilled out Lo Fi music, I can focus a lot my time to making information more accessible to public. That usually entails:

– Data clean-up to publish more information and/or digital images in the digital library

-Respond to reference questions

-Work on digital exhibits

-Work on new projects

Like a million other things that have changed, the Spring zine issue is now digital. Typically, our zine runs a limited print to be disseminated to student groups, visitors, and classes. While the issues normally center around the archives, this issue acknowledges the *gestures around* events around us. This issue includes illustrations by Mike Sgier, Access Services Coordinator, and Shawn Proctor, Communications and Marketing Program Manager.

 


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A Celebration of Spring

💐 Our latest digital mini exhibit, “A Celebration of Spring,” is just what it sounds like — a selection of lots of flowery images, as well as some bunnies, and even a bit of Irish music. 🎶 We hope this brings you some joy! 💝

Cover, The People’s Home Journal, May 1907.


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The Shelf List, February 2020

The Shelf List highlights items added to the catalog in the past month. Some of these are new acquisitions and some are items from our backlog. Follow the links to view the full catalog records.

Selection from Happiness: Thoughts of great minds concerning true happiness.

Art Curiosa Collection

Baedeker, Karl. Palestine and Syria With the Chief Routes Through Mesopotamia and Babylonia: Handbook for Travellers. 4th ed., remodelled and augm. Leipzig: Karl Baedeker, Publisher, 1906.

Carleton, L. C. Bullet Head, Or, The Indian Trailer. Cleveland, Ohio: The Arthur Westbrook Company, 1909.

Carleton, L. C. Turkey-Foot, Or, The Chief’s Revenge. Cleveland, Ohio: The Arthur Westbrook Company, 1909.

Chisholm Is Tops for America. 1972.

Coys, Michael. [Shirley Chisholm At South Miami Jr. Dade College, February 24, 1972]. 1972.

Hooght, Everardus van der, Henry Jacob, and Judah d’ Allemand. Sefer ʻEśrim Ṿe-ʼarbaʻah =: Biblia Hebraica : Versibus, Capitibus Et Sectionibus Interstincta ; Notisque Masoretarum Keri Et Chetib, Instructa ; Ad Editionem Hooghtianam Accuratissime Adornata. Londini: Typis et sumptibus Samuelis Bagster, 1823.

Lamorie, Louis. The Death Rangers: A Tale of the Tankawana Valley in 1730. Cleveland, Ohio: The Arthur Westbrook Company, 1909.

Marryat, Frederick. The Sea King: By Captain Marryat. New York: F.M. Lupton, 1893.

The Story of Robin Hood. [New York]: McLoughlin Bro’s New York., 1889.

 

Early American Imprints

Merzbacher, Leo. Seder Tefilah: The Order of Prayer for Divine Service. New York: Thalmessinger & Cahn…, 1864.

 

James Wheeler Collection

Adams, Harry. Beyond the Barrier With Byrd: An Authentic Story of the Byrd Antarctic Exploring Expedition. Chicago: M.A. Donohue & Company, 1932.

Amundsen, Roald. Roald Amundsen–my Life As an Explorer. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, Page & Company, 1927.

Amundsen, Roald. The South Pole: An Account of the Norwegian Antarctic Expedition in the “Fram,” 1910-1912. London : New York: John Murray ; Lee Keedick…, 1925.

Amundsen, Roald, and Geir O. Kløver. The South Pole Expedition, 1910-1912. 1. edition june 2010. Oslo: The Fram Museum, 2010.

Bellinsgauzen, Faddeĭ Faddeevich, and Frank Debenham. The Voyage of Captain Bellingshausen to the Antarctic Seas 1819-1821: Translated From the Russian. London: Printed for the Hakluyt Society, 1945.

Bull, H. J. The Cruise of the “Antarctic” to the South Polar Regions. London ; New York: Edward Arnold, 1896.

Byrd, Richard Evelyn. Alone. New York: G.P. Putnam’s sons, 1938. [2nd copy added]

Byrd, Richard Evelyn. Discovery: The Story of the Second Byrd Antarctic Expedition. New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1935.

Byrd, Richard Evelyn, and Laurence McKinley Gould. Little America: Aerial Exploration in the Antarctic, the Flight to the South Pole. New York ; London: G.P. Putnam’s sons, 1930.

Cherry-Garrard, Apsley, Robert Falcon Scott, and Edward Wilson. The Worst Journey in the World: Antarctic, 1910-1913. Constable & Co.: London, 1922.

Cook, Frederick Albert. Through the First Antarctic Night, 1898-1899: A Narrative of the Voyage of the “Belgica” Among Newly Discovered Lands and Over an Unknown Sea About the South Pole. New York: Doubleday & McClure Co., 1900.

Gould, Laurence McKinley. Cold: The Record of an Antarctic Sledge Journey. New York: Brewer, Warren & Putnam, 1931.

Henry, Thomas R. The White Continent: The Story of Antarctica. New York: William Sloane Associates, 1950.

Mawson, Douglas. The Home of the Blizzard: Being the Story of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914. Philadelphia : London: J.B. Lippincott Company ; William Heinemann, 1914.

Mill, Hugh Robert. The Life of Sir Ernest Shackleton, C.V.O., O.B.E.(Mil.), LL.D. London: William Heinemann Ltd., 1923.

Nordenskjöld, Otto, and Johan Gunnar Andersson. Antarctica: Or, Two Years Amongst the Ice of the South Pole. London: Hurst and Blackett, Limited, 1905.

O’Brien, Jack, Richard Rodgers, and Ben Stahl. By Dog Sled for Byrd: 1600 Miles Across Antarctic Ice. Chicago: Thomas S. Rockwell Company, 1931.

Scholes, William Arthur. Fourteen Men: The Story of the Antarctic Expedition to Heard Island. First edition. New York: E.P. Dutton & Co., Inc., 1952.

Scott, Robert Falcon, and Edward Wilson. The Voyage of the ‘Discovery’ By Robert Falcon Scott: With 260 Full-page and Smaller Illustrations By Dr. E.A. Wilson and Other Members of the Expedition, Photogravure Frontispieces, 12 Coloured Plates in Facsimile From Dr. Wilson’s Sketches, Panoramas and Maps. In Two Volumes. London: Smith, Elder, & Co., 15 Waterloo Place, 1905.

 

Lewis Becker Collection

Happiness: Thoughts of Great Minds Concerning True Happiness. London : New York: Ernest Nister ; E.P. Dutton & Co., 1900.

Journal of the American Irish Historical Society. New York, NY: American Irish Historical Society, 1898.

 

If you are interested in viewing any Special Collections materials, you can schedule an appointment with our staff.


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Last Modified: February 28, 2020