Like many children, my kids are fans of Curious George, that cheeky little monkey brought to life by H.A. and Margret Rey. The Liberty Science Center will soon be closing an interactive exhibition, Curious George: Let’s Get Curious!, on George, his world, and all the fun things little monkeys of both the human and non-human cartoon primate-kind can learn from it. It’s not just fun and games, … Continue reading Finding Aid Friday: Curious George and the Reys
In the early 1900s, one could usually find a boxing exhibition or prize fight on any given Friday night in New York City. Punches would be thrown and dreams would be made and lost among the cigarette and cigar smoke of the crowd. The card held at the Long Acre Athletic Club on October 27, 1911, was one of these shows, with one notable difference: … Continue reading On This Day in 1911: A Prize Fight for Suffrage
I like sticker art, or street art graphics, if we’re going to be fancy. The little graphics stuck onto lampposts, mailboxes, newspaper boxes, derelict phone booths, bus shelters, and other public places where people tend to stand around for more than a few seconds. Those things. Sometimes witty, sometimes punny, sometimes venturing waaaay into weirdo crackpot wackadoo territory. Sometimes they’re political. Sometimes commercial. Many times they’re just plain odd. … Continue reading On Archives I’d Like to See: Sticker Art Archives
I was in Chicago for a six-hour layover and went into total tourist mode, taking pictures of everything. Public art? *click* Office building lobby art? *click* Building preservation in action? *click clickety click click click* My only tourist goal, for the brief period I was to be in the city, was to go to the Museum of Science and Industry and see the Pioneer Zephyr, because I like trains … Continue reading On Chicago’s Central Library: Sexy Like a Prince Album
I usually try to feature a few interesting finding aids with a digital component, related exhibitions, or are just really cool (like the musical Mary Elizabeth Hallock Greenewalt finding aid by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania). This week’s edition of Finding Aid Friday is inspired by the #LIUlockout of faculty at Long Island University’s Brooklyn campus. What follows aren’t finding aids, but a small compilation of archives and library … Continue reading Finding Aid Friday: Labor Union Edition in Support of #LIUlockout
Sometimes a collection’s provenance, the history of ownership and/or physical custody, is very straight-forward: creator -> repository or creator -> donor -> repository. Occasionally, it’s more of a mess. Things leave the creator’s custody without permission, end up somewhere else, things get lost… That’s what happened to the New York State Athletic Commission’s meeting minutes. Some background info: I fell down the research rabbit hole on a … Continue reading On the Provenance of the Commission’s Meeting Minutes: From the Garage to the Hall to the Archives
In time for Labor Day, the very long-form version of my post on gender-based discrimination and its role in the legislative history of the women’s wrestling ban in New York.
Is there a library or archive that collects labels from alcohol bottles? Outside of individual distilleries, vineyards, and hooch factories, of course. An institution with an all-encompassing (or at least a regionally-focused) collection dedicated to the preservation and study of those artistic ads slapped onto the sides of hooch containers. There are menu collections at New York Public Library, Cornell, University of Washington, and Culinary Institute of America — so … Continue reading On Archival Collections I’d Like to See: Booze Labels
Last night, while wrapped in the warm embrace of insomnia, I came across an article on the “Librarian Olympics.” Always one to look over the great LIS divide to see what I can learn from the other side, I wondered what the archivist version would look like. A small part of Archivist Twitter responded and responded brilliantly. In our hypothetical Archivist Olympics, Olympians can participate in technical … Continue reading On the Archivist Olympics: Faster, Higher, Wronger
The New York State Athletic Commission’s history of records management contains as many twists and turns as anything seen in a wrestling ring. Commission meeting minutes, from 1920 to 1977, went missing from the agency’s office in the late 1970s and eventually appeared in the International Boxing Hall of Fame’s collection about a decade later. Neither the Commission nor the State of New York knew about it until 1998.