Monthly Archives: January 2011

Work by Dorothy Grider on exhibit at ERC

Illustrations by Dorothy Grider

Illustrations by Dorothy Grider

Illustrations by Dorothy Grider

Driven to become an artist from the age of eight, Dorothy Grider studied at the Phoenix Art Institute of New York while attending Bowling Green High School (1927-1933) and Western Kentucky State Teachers College (WKSTC, 1933-1936). After college, she moved to New York, staying for a time at the Three Arts Club. Early in her career, Grider supported herself by illustrating holy cards and beauty parlor posters and later designed playing cards and greeting cards. Grider carved out a career as an illustrator of children’s literature and eventually became the favored artist for this material at Rand McNally. During her career, this artist illustrated 100 books, including six that she also wrote, and her work is available today in more than 200 libraries around the world. To learn more about the Dorothy Grider Collection at the Kentucky Library & Museum, search KenCat.

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Filed under New Stuff, Stuff

Welcome to the New ERC

New ERC in Gary A. Ransdell HallWKU Libraries’ Educational Resources Center (ERC) has moved out of the Tate Page Hall to the newly completed Gary A. Ransdell Hall across the MMTH on State Street. You are welcome to visit and use it. If you haven’t been there, here’re some photos of the beautiful new ERC for your preview.

Photo Album

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Filed under Events

Noon Concerts return to Java City

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Filed under Events, Java City Concert, Latest News

A First Responder

West Kentucky Coal Company letter, 1927

West Kentucky Coal Company letterhead, 1927

On August 4, 1917, an early-morning explosion at the West Kentucky Coal Company’s Mine No. 7, near the city of Clay in Webster County, killed 62 miners.  It was the worst accident in more than 20 years, but James W. Meyers was lucky enough to be pulled out alive.  Meyers’ luck ran out, however, on August 3, 1927, one day before the tenth anniversary of the tragedy, when another explosion rocked Mine No. 7 and he was counted among the 15 dead.

A fellow worker, Earl Hamby of Earlington, responded to the call for volunteers to help with the rescue and recovery mission, and the letter of thanks he received from the company is part of the collections of WKU’s Special Collections Library.  “There was no scarcity of men who were ready to risk their lives,” wrote vice president Thomas E. Jenkins to Hamby.  “Your name is numbered in this list.”  Then he made an observation that has been sustained countless times since, in any number of circumstances: “Every disaster which takes a toll of human life brings forth its heroes.”

A finding aid for Jenkins’ letter to Earl Hamby can be downloaded here.  For more resources at the Special Collections Library relating to coal and coal mining, search TopScholar and KenCat.

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Filed under Manuscripts & Folklife Archives

New Art in the Java City Café


Above: “About to Explode”

University Libraries has recently acquired seven paintings by Phoenix Latino artist Julio Cesar Rodarte. These are on display in the café’s lower level. New furnishings have also been acquired with support from the SGA.

The oldest of four children, Rodarte was born in Fresnillo, Zacatecas in 1984. Three years later the family immigrated to the United States. He took his first art classes in high school in Arizona after his psychologist and school counselor encouraged him to take a drawing class after a failed suicide attempt.


Above: Julio Cesar Rodarte in front of his painting, “Constructed Chaos”

At the age of 19 he enrolled at Glendale Community College where he discovered his talent for painting. Since then he’s developed his unique style in which he first develops a sculptural form and then paints on the shapes with colorful repetitive patterns, geometric shapes, forms, silhouettes, and numbers. In 2008 he began showing his art in group shows in Phoenix and had his first solo exhibition “Over and Over” at Arizona State University’s Downtown Campus in Phoenix in 2009.  Since then the 26 year old painter has continued to have solo and group shows such as “Shapes”, a March 2010 solo exhibition and “Arte Latino en la Ciudad”, a May 2010 group show at the Phoenix Center for the Arts.

His art has been collected by corporations and private collectors. He says he continues “to paint with determination” in his studio in Phoenix.

Brian Coutts

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Above, left to right: “Is This Real, What Do You Feel?,” “Sound Waves,” “Constructed Chaos”

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Above, left to right: “Sound Waves,” “The Superhero of Color,” “Is This Real, What Do You Feel?”

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Above: “About to Explode,” “Upside Down”

View more photos on Flickr

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Filed under Acquisitions, Events, Flickr Photos, General, Latest News, New Stuff, People, Stuff

Salem Health Online at WKU Libraries

health_cover2Four Salem Health reference encyclopedias are now freely available online on or off campus at WKU. These award-winning titles (Magill’s Medical Guide, Salem Health: Cancer, Salem Health: Psychology & Mental Health, and Salem Health: Genetics & Inherited Diseases) are also in WKU Libraries’ print reference collection.

To search online, go to TOPCAT (, enter the title, then “search;” select “Linked Resources.”
If you are off campus, first click “Off Campus Login;” then login with NetID/password.
Many thanks to Salem Health for WKU’s complimentary online access.

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Filed under Acquisitions, Events

Haiwang Led Honor College Winter Trip to China

Haiwang is telling his students the history of the Tianjin baozi dumplings.Haiwang has just returned from China. From December 29, 2010 to January 20, 2011 he led 11 students from the Honor College Flagship Chinese Pilot Program on a study abroad tour. It was designed as a colloquium titled “Road to Modern China.”  The purpose of this colloquium was to expose the students to Chinese culture and history while reinforcing their Chinese language skills.

The trip started from Hong Kong and Shenzhen. It then moved from Guangzhou to Wuhan, and from Wuhan to Nanjing, Hangzhou, Shanghai, Tianjin, and Beijing.

Photo Album

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BUWKY Oct. 1938Editor-in-Chief & business manager Lawrence Stone launched the BUKY in March 1936.  The publication statement indicates that it was to be a student magazine published monthly “during the college year except for July and August in the interests of the students of the Bowling Green Business University and Western Kentucky Teachers College.”  It cost $.75 for a year’s subscription and $.10 per single issue. 

The next extant issue May 1936 indicates a change in the title to BUWKY due to a misunderstanding in the pronunciation.  Although published at the BU, there were more Western students on the rolls of reporters in the early issues each with pseudonyms such as Rusty Rhythm and Norothy Nix.  The magazine covers WKU sporting events, alumni of both schools, and highlights BU students and faculty.  The ads are also an interesting component highlighting local businesses of the period as well as national trends.

The University Archives does not hold a full run of the magazine.  Those that are extant 1936 and 1938-1943 have been digitized and are now available on TopScholar.  They are a wonderful view into student life at both schools.  Please contact the University Archivist at if you have more issues of this publication to donate.  Also, check out the University Archives wish list

These magazines and other records regarding the Bowling Green Business University are available to researchers in the Harrison-Baird Reading Room of the Kentucky Library & Museum Monday – Saturday, 9 – 4.

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Filed under Events, University Archives

T ‘n’ T

T 'n' TThe Bowling Green Business University split off in 1906 as WKU was formed. It functioned as an independent business college until 1963 when it merged into WKU and formed the basis of what is now the Gordon Ford College of Business.  In 1948 the students of the BU as it was known, created a monthly student magazine named Towers and Toppers or T ‘n’ T.  Student reporters highlighted faculty and students, tracked alumni whereabouts,  dished the latest gossip and talked WKU sports.

The University Archives holds several issues of the magazine for the 1948-1951 period and these have been indexed, digitized and posted on TopScholar.  Originals are available in University Archives.  We are interested in finding additional issues to make our holdings complete.  Please contact the University Archivist at if you have these or other items to donate.

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Filed under Events, University Archives

Allan M. Trout Collection Now Available

Allan M. Trout, 1903-1972

Allan M. Trout, 1903-1972

Allan M. Trout’s career as a political reporter for the Louisville Courier-Journal spanned more than 38 years.  Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in 1931, he also received the Governor’s Medallion for distinguished public service through journalism in 1959 and 1966.

But Allan Trout had a parallel journalistic career as the author of “Greetings,” a daily column of humor, folklore and “barnyard science” that debuted in the Courier-Journal on January 2, 1939.  Before long, readers all over Kentucky and southern Indiana were sharing their own stories with Trout and addressing him like an old friend.  The first book of collected “Greetings” columns, published in 1947, sold 10,000 copies in two weeks.

When Trout announced his intention to retire at the end of 1967, “Greetings” fans were bereaved.  “Not being able to start the paper with ‘G’ will never be the same, wrote one.  Another counted himself among the “old timers who have read after you these many years” on subjects as perplexing as “skunks and why these varmints invaded this part of Kentucky west of the Tennessee river, the luck of buck-eyes, the protection from evil given by carrying the left hind foot of a Jack rabbit in your pocket, the curative value of a pod of asafetida worn about the neck, [and] why the cock crows at midnight.”

After Trout’s retirement, he gave his collection of papers and artifacts to WKU’s Special Collections Library.  Included were correspondence, speeches, photos, books and curious historical items he had acquired over his long and unique career.

A finding aid for the manuscript portion of the Allan M. Trout Collection can be downloaded here.

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