PACK in Louisville, April 16, 2016
On Saturday, April 16, 2016, the Spring Political Americana Collectors of Kentucky show occurred in Louisville, KY. WKU Alumnus and PACK member Bob Westerman invited Kentucky Museum curator Sandy Staebell and Special Collections Librarian Sue Lynn McDaniel to exhibit items and our online access to the Rather-Westerman Political Collection. Our ephemera and artifact collection is the best worldwide for primary sources on campaigning by national, state, and local politicians in Kentucky.
We set up two computers. One allowed us to do Kencat searches on politicians, types of collectibles, and locations of interest. The second computer played the “Campaigning in Kentucky” gallery of Worth A Thousand Words: Special Collections Galleries in TopScholar http://digitalcommons.wku.edu/pol_camp_ky/. In addition, we brought some of our most unique items in protective display cases to create interest among the members viewing our booth.
The high point of the day was the arrival of charter member Julius Rather who began donating to Library Special Collections and the Kentucky Museum in 1983. Other PACK members rushed to greet Mr. Rather, his wife, daughter, and grandson. Mr. Rather enjoyed seeing other members and getting more familiar with WKU’s online presence of the Rather-Westerman Political Collection. For WKU, the day was a huge success as other members asked questions about making donations and accessing our collection. One vendor donated a stuffed toy donkey with a Democratic candidate’s pin on it to the Kentucky Museum.
Researchers interested in learning more about WKU’s Rather-Westerman Political Collection should visit kencat.wku.edu and search “Rather-Westerman” or the politician, county, or office of their choice. If you need assistance in online viewing, contact our Research Assistance Desk, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. CDT. If you are a potential donor, we would love to talk to you about items you may have collected over the years. For a woman who disliked politics for her first 50 years, I can know say that the “Rather-Westerman Political Collection” and PACK shows are fun!
Cherry Statue Unveiling, 11/16/1937
As archivists we evaluate our collections and process them in order of importance. That importance can be calculated in terms of rarity, pressing preservation issues or research value. We also process collections as researchers use them. This past week we spent time processing the Cherry Statue Committee records for a student working on a capstone project. This is a small collection just 31 folders of documents and one oversize drawing of the statue base. In archives speak a mere .25 cu. ft. or a single box measuring 15 1/2″ x 7″ x 10″.
In using the collection the researcher found information regarding the time capsule placed beneath the statue on November 10, 1937. There were two lists of items that had been placed in a bronze box and sealed inside the base. There was also documentation that indicated a second box had been purchased for duplicates to be placed in the Kentucky Museum. The museum curator brought the box out for the student to see.
Before the box went back to the Kentucky Museum, we digitized everything in it. We also were able to identify a few items that had not been duplicated and created the Cherry Statue Time Capsule online exhibit.
Here you will see most of the items that the Cherry Statue Committee felt important enough to store for posterity. Most of the items reflect Henry Cherry himself and include his two books, several speeches showing his interest in education, agriculture and politics; photographs and program of his memorial service. The Glasgow Normal and Southern Normal Schools are represented in commencement programs and publications. Also included are representations of what Cherry meant to the faculty, staff, students, alumni and community in the lists of donors to the statue fund, resolutions of respect and other tributes. Lastly there are many representations of how WKU had grown and flourished in the 31 years since its founding in 1906 until November 16, 1937 when the statue was unveiled.
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.
Come learn how to research images you can use in your classrooms, publications and work using the KenCat online system and the resources of the Kentucky Library & Museum. Presented by Nancy Richey and Suellyn Lathrop
Date: Jan. 27, 2010
Time: 1:00 – 2:00
Place: VPAL, 2nd Floor Cravens Library
To register: call 745-4793 or email firstname.lastname@example.org