Aug. 23-Dec. 16: Library gifts
UD Library exhibition highlights 'A Decade of Donors, 2000-2010'
9:31 a.m., Aug. 15, 2011-- “A Decade of Donors, 2000-2010,” an exhibition of books, letters, manuscripts, photographs, printed ephemera, artwork and realia, will be on view in the Special Collections Exhibition Gallery on the second floor of Morris Library from Tuesday, Aug. 23, through Friday, Dec. 16.
This most recent decade enjoyed an exponential increase in the number of gifts-in-kind to the University of Delaware Library for Special Collections. Gift-giving is an essential part of collection development for Special Collections. Through the goodwill of its donors, Special Collections has acquired and built unparalleled collections for the teaching and research use of the University of Delaware community and scholars worldwide.
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From its very earliest days, the University of Delaware Library has benefitted from the generosity of both monetary gifts and donations of materials, including rare books and manuscripts. Many of Special Collections’ most unique items have been gifts, and without the munificence of donors, these items could not have been otherwise acquired.
The establishment of the University of Delaware Library Associates ensured the sustainment of this charitable spirit with an annual gift to the Library that enabled the purchase of collections of distinction as well as basic library materials and new technologies. The annual gift, which continues to be made possible through the generous donations of members of the University of Delaware Library Associates, has allowed for the purchase of books, manuscripts and other materials that enhance and strengthen Special Collections holdings.
The exhibition features items donated in the past decade. The materials on display are organized to complement the core collecting areas of Special Collections: Literature, the Arts, History and Delawareana, and the History of Science.
Many donations within the last decade have contributed to Special Collections’ strong holdings in 20th century American, Irish and British literature. Donations of manuscripts, letters, photographs and ephemera include collections relating to the lives and work of authors such as Paul Bowles, Brian Coffey, Alan Kaufman, Marianne Moore, W.D. Snodgrass, Irving Stettner, John Wieners and Angus Wilson. Donations of printed books include early editions and association copies of works by Ernest Hemingway, Samuel Beckett, Ezra Pound, William Everson, Khalil Gibran, T. S. Eliot and others.
The arts in Special Collections covers a wide array of areas including the performing arts, fine arts and book arts. The exhibition will feature original artwork, trade ephemera, posters, set designs and manuscript material documenting artistic processes and movements. Donations on display include examples of early printed works, 19th and 20th century trade bindings, fine press books and literary forgeries.
Gifts related to Delaware and regional history represent a variety of activities of Delawareans, including environmental activism, civic representation in local organizations and historic preservation projects. The previous decade saw an increase in gifts relating to the Civil Rights movement in Delaware and the efforts to desegregate schools, workplaces and neighborhoods in the 20th century. Diaries, scrapbooks, letters and other items give visitors a glimpse into the daily lives and interests of Delawareans, evolving local culture and shifts in national values over time. In addition, there are items relating the experiences of veterans of both World Wars and the Vietnam War.
Special Collections has emerged as a center for Delaware political collections, including the papers of U.S. Rep. Mike Castle, State Sen. Thurman Adams and Gov. Dale E. Wolf. The Library’s most recent acquisition of Sen. Ted Kaufman’s papers in 2010 has further contributed to Special Collections’ ability to support research interest in public policy, national and state legislation, and key issues concerning Delawareans.
The history of science collection reflects the University's academic programs in the sciences with particular emphasis on chemistry, engineering and horticulture. Significant donations in the sciences over the past decade have included the 1726 third printing of Sir Isaac Newton’s Principia, a complete set of the 40-volume illustrated Naturalist’s Library and Robert Pyle’s personal copy of Pierre Joseph Redouté’s 1824 Les Roses.
“This exhibition celebrates the generosity of the Library’s many donors by showcasing a sampling from the numerous donations of rare and unique materials received between 2000 and 2010. Also on display are selected items received in 2011, with which Special Collections looks ahead to the next decade of donors,” said Susan Brynteson, vice provost and May Morris Director of Libraries.
The curators of the exhibition are Maureen Cech, Evan Echols and Alexander C. Johnston, assistant librarians in the Special Collections Department of the University of Delaware Library. “A Decade of Donors, 2000-2010” can be viewed during regular hours of the Special Collections Department, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Mondays through Fridays, and until 8 p.m., Tuesdays. An online version of the exhibition is available.
An exhibition program and reception will occur at 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 26, with a lecture by Robert D. Fleck Jr., the proprietor of Oak Knoll Books and Press, past president of the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America and past president of the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America. Further information about the program, which will be open to the public, will be forthcoming.
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