I get asked all the time what are you majoring in, what are your plans once you graduate, and what kind of career do you want? I used to tell them any other answer than the truth, because for a long time I had no idea what I wanted to do. I had no clue what I wanted in the future because it always seemed so far away. Now I am within a year of graduating Western Kentucky University with a degree in Anthropology and I can finally say the truth. I want to work in a museum, or archives setting, and that is exactly what I have been doing for the last few weeks. I have had the extraordinary privilege of interning in the WKU Archives. I cannot tell you how amazing it has been. Continue reading
Tag Archives: Exhibits
Walter Nalbach left Grand Rapids, Michigan, to become a student in the newly established Industrial Arts program at Western Kentucky State Teachers College at the invitation of L.T. Smith. He earned his B.A. from WKSTC in 1933 and went on to be an instructor at WKU for 37 years- and was department head for 16 of those.
Nalbach was also active in Rotary, the Kentucky Industrial Education Association, and the Calendar Club.
To learn more about Walter Nalbach and see examples of his work, visit the Department of Library Special Collections in the Kentucky Building, Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Click here to access additional photos, oral histories, and catalog entries associated with Walter Nalbach in our online records.
Post written by WKU Archives Assistant April McCauley.
In Library Special Collections, we have been fortunate to have Angela Arvizu from the Folk Studies Department as a graduate student intern beginning in June. Ms. Arvizu added 171 created the metadata records for Arlis O. Harmon’s original compositions of sheet music (which will soon be approved and internet accessible at kencat.wku.edu), researched and documented an exhibit’s contents using Past Perfect Collection Management software, and created a case exhibit which will remain on display until January 26, 2016 in the Special Collections Library of the Kentucky Building.
Of her internship, Angela wrote: “The experience of being an intern at Kentucky Library Research Collections was gratifying….Harmon who died in 1992 was a composer and poetry writer from Kentucky. The work done during my internship organized and protected his collection of compositions. I appreciated the opportunity to work with Sue Lynn McDaniel and the Special Collections Library in this project.”
Often these internships and student work opportunities serve our WKU students well as they seek employment after graduation. Thank you, Angela, for a job well done!
For generations, Raggedy Ann has been an ageless playmate for children and collectors. In 2015, she celebrated her 100th birthday. Now thanks to the inspiration of Lesley Montgomery, the Western Room in the Kentucky Building is exhibiting books from Library Special Collections and the co-curators’ loaned dolls. A total of ten children’s stories written by Raggedy Ann author Johnny Gruelle in the 1920’s are also featured in the exhibit.
Lesley is donating the 1947 edition of Raggedy Ann Stories by Johnny Gruelle (published originally in 1918), a favorite since her aunt gave it as a Christmas present to her as a three-year-old in 1959. Lesley’s loaned pair of “Fifties” Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy dolls sit on the top shelf. Santa brought co-curator Sue Lynn Stone McDaniel’s Knickerbocker Raggedy Ann in 1973. Coincidentally, the child’s soda fountain chair in which Sue Lynn’s doll sits was a
Christmas present to Sue Lynn’s aunt in 1921 and passed down to Sue Lynn before 1977, giving her doll a comfortable chair. Sophie Trent, a Kentucky Museum student employee, is bringing her pair of dolls to join the exhibit after Thanksgiving, once again proving the enduring joy these dolls bring to kids of all ages.
The second case exhibits children’s stories Johnny Gruelle wrote and a book entitled Johnny Gruelle, creator of Raggedy Ann and Andy. Several of WKU Library Special Collections’ books are one of less than ten reported to WorldCat.
We encourage readers to comment on this blog with your own stories about your Raggedy Ann books and/or dolls. The exhibit will be open through December 11, 2015.
An exhibit, “Documenting Tradition: Images from the Kentucky Folklife Program Archives,” will open at WKU’s Kentucky Museum on June 1 and run through October 19. Brent Bjorkman, director of the Kentucky Folklife Archives, wrote the following for the exhibit’s title panel:
For over 20 years the mission of the Kentucky Folklife Program (KFP) has been to responsibly engage with Kentucky communities to document, present and conserve the cultural heritage of the state, most often referred to as folklife. In keeping with this mission, the public folklorists working for the KFP in the field over these years (and into the present) have documented and shared the diverse and dynamic folklife of communities across the Commonwealth who so graciously allowed them entry into their lives.
Last summer the KFP was relocated to Western Kentucky University from its former home in Frankfort, and with it came its archive, a vast repository of images, recorded interviews, and field notes that collectively tell the unfolding story of Kentucky and its people.
The images that make up this exhibit were chosen from the KFP archive by Kentucky Museum staff and encompass a board overview of its rich contents. Click here to view directions and hours of operation for the Kentucky Museum.
The KFP archives is administered by the Manuscripts & Folklife Archives unit of the Special Collections Library. Faculty and staff are excited about adding this extensive resource to our research collections. To view finding aids for collections in WKU’s Folklife Archives click here.
Come visit an exhibit of political ephemera in the Jackson Gallery at the Kentucky Building. Bumper stickers, campaign mailings, former Lt. Governor Stephen L. Henry’s emergency kit for survival of the a 1996 Presidential Election, a Democratic cookie cutter, Republican place cards and other artifacts show a glimpse into the Julius Rather Political Ephemera Collection assessible for research via KenCat, the Special Collections Library & Kentucky Museum OPAC (wku.pastperfect-online.com) The WKU exhibit closes December 15th.
Also of interest to citizens and political scientists is the Kentucky political ephemera exhibit at the Georgetown-Scott County Museum. This exhibit includes numerous artifacts and ephemera on loan from our campus and closes on November 30th.
In the Jackson Gallery at the Kentucky Building, an exhibit of leap year postcards, comic valentines, dance cards, photographs, correspondence and ephemera focuses on American interpretation of leap year customs between 1850 and 1950. Invitations and newspaper accounts depict the concept’s use in 1888 as a focal point for social events. Curator Sue Lynn McDaniel’s interest in American courtship customs first prompted her to collect and then donate many of the early-twentieth century postcards which evince the humorous way single females and males enjoyed the suggestion that usual courtship etiquette was suspended during leap years. The exhibit runs through June 2012. For more information on Library Special Collections’ holdings, see: http://wku.pastperfect-online.com/35749cgi/mweb.exe?request=keyword;keyword=leap%20year;dtype=d
A new section has been added to TopScholar: Kentucky Museum / Library Special Collections Online Exhibits. The site features images of objects, photographs and documents used in exhibits with more background information than is inclued in a typical museum label. The site includes a blog widgets for user comments which will enhance our knowledge of objects and photographs. The Google maps / Google Earth widget allows us place objects and photographs in geographical relation to others.
Currently there are two completed online exhibits. The first is Get on the Bus: 40 Years of Political Activism. Originally created in 2008 as a traveling exhibit to commemorate the Civil Rights movement, this online exhibit focuses on WKU students’ involvement in political causes through the years.
The second is Playing Our Song: Southern Kentucky Notes which highlights the Kentucky Library’s Southern Kentucky Music Collection as well as WKU faculty, staff, student and alumni musicians.
Come and learn more about the Kentucky Museum and Library Special Collections collections.
Southern Kentuckians love music! From the amateur playing his Hawaiian steel guitar to the singers and bands that have put WKU on the map, this region’s musical heritage is rich. Whether you like Country, Classical, Rap or Rock, you will find that Southern Kentuckians are indeed playing your song. Over the years, the Kentucky Library and Museum has collected a significant sheet music collection, photographs, sound recordings, posters, and ephemera illustrating the importance of music to this region.
Including Mary Clyde Huntsman’s Merry Makers, Duke Allen and the Kentucky Ramblers, WKU faculty musicians, Hawaiian steel guitar instructor Freddie Joe Lewis, local DJ Tommy Starr, New Grass Revival, and Kentucky Headhunters, a selection of treasures given by numerous musicians and collectors are displayed. Gospel musicians, including Hillvue Heights Music Group and John Edmonds’ Gospel Truth, and Country musicians, including Jordan Pendley, Cousin Emmy, and the Mighty Jerimiahs, provide evidence of the enduring popularity of all forms of music. Nappy Roots, Government Cheese and the Hilltoppers show the Hill’s influence on our song. Enjoy the exhibit in the Harry Jackson Gallery of the Kentucky Library and Museum during the Spring and Summer of 2010 and search “Southern Kentucky Music” on KenCat to explore the rest of our song.