"How Women Reshaped Virginia in the late 20th Century" is the topic Nov. 20 for the 5th annual VCU Crenshaw Lecture on Women's History.
Megan Taylor Shockley, Ph.D., is the speaker. She teaches history and coordinates the public history program at Clemson University. She is past executive secretary of the Southern Association for Women Historians.
The event is free and open to all and will be held at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 20 at VCU's Scott House, 909 W. Franklin St. Refreshments will be served.
Her newest book, co-authored with Cynthia Kierner and Jennifer R. Loux, is Changing History: Virginia Women Through Four Centuries (2013). Copies will be on sale at the event. She also wrote We, Too, Are Americans: African American Women in Detroit and Richmond, 1940-1954 (2004) and The Captain's Widow of Sandwich: Self-Invention and the Life of Hannah Rebecca Burgess, 1834-1917 (2010).
The Crenshaw Lecture honors Anne Clay Crenshaw, an activist at the turn of the century and a founder of the Equal Suffrage League of Virignia in 1909. It is sponsored by VCU Libraries, the College of Humanities and Sciences and Gender, Sexuality & Women's Studies.
Just as the Girl Scouts of America marked the centennial of its founding in 2012, VCU Libraries secured a significant donation of records and materials from The Girl Scouts Commonwealth Council of Virginia. One of four councils in the state, the Commonwealth Council serves some 12,000 girls and 5,700 adults in 30 counties and the cities of Fredericksburg, Richmond, Hopewell, Colonial Heights, Petersburg and Emporia.
Special Collections and Archives staff has processed and opened the collection for use. Some of the materials soon will be on display on the fourth floor of James Branch Cabell Library.
"Curating Digital Objects" will be the topic of discussion Nov. 21, 1:30 to 3 p.m. at Cabell Library.
Museums, libraries and archives rely on the digital environment to save, manage and provide access to their collections. These organizations also collect digitized and born-digital cultural objects.
Presenters from Richmond cultural institutions will share their experiences and best practices for collecting and curating digital objects. Panelists will include Meg M. Eastman, digital collections manager, Virginia Historical Society; Crista Lembeck LaPrade, digital projects and preservation coordinator at the University of Richmond; Renee M. Savits, Civil War 150 Legacy project coordinator, Library of Virginia; and Wesley Chenault, head, Special Collections and Archives, Cabell Library.
The session, followed by a reception, will be held in Room 250. It is free and open to all but seating is limited.
This event is a part of VCU Libraries' well received Digital Pragmata series.
VCU Libraries has a commitment to collecting with various Richmond communities firmly in mind. Many of these collections are in the arena of new social history--materials, interpretations and scholarship that illuminate the culture, stories and realities of sometimes hidden or ignored people.
"Migrating Archives: LGBT Delegates from Collections around the World" approaches queer history through the vantage points of some 10 individual stories. This innovative show from San Francisco's GLBT History Museum merges art and history, archives and real lives. It combines evocative materials, photos and artifacts that portray the experiences of queer individuals from the past.
One of those stories is about Richmond writer Hunter Stagg. Stagg's papers, housed at Cabell Library's Special Collections and Archives, include correspondence with poet Langston Hughes and the mother of modernism, Gertrude Stein. (Photo of Stagg, VCU Libraries)
Special Collections and Archives Head Wesley Chenault, Ph.D., organized the visit of the exhibition. "Since VCU has a top-tier arts school and because we have permanent holdings documenting Richmond's LGBTQ community, this exhibition is a perfect fit for us. We see students and faculty utilizing our collections almost daily for research and creative expression. This exhibit, then, places these activities within a broader context and history of artists interacting with archives and engaging communities."
Artist and academic, E.G. Crichton curated the exhibition, a travelling version of the original 20-panel show from the San Francisco museum. She is artist-in-residence at the GLBT History Museum. As a professor at the University of Southern California, Santa Cruz, she teaches intermedia and photography in the art department as well as project design studio in the digital arts and new media graduate program.
In her work, she makes use of a range of art strategies, mediums and technologies to explore social issues and specific histories. Archives of one kind or another serve as both starting point and infrastructure, and creative collaboration across disciplines is often a critical component.
Migrating Archives: LGBT Delegates from Collections around the World
- October 21, 2013-December 31, 2013
- First Floor
- James Branch Cabell Library
Artist and academic E.G. Crichton visited Cabell Library for the opening of her visionary exhibit and gave a talk. VCU's Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer David W. Hanson made introductory remarks.
VCU Libraries hosts a wide variety of exhibits throughout the academic year. Some are traveling exhibits, and others are original, featuring materials from our own collections or created by others in the VCU community. All exhibits are free and open to the public, and most are accessible during all normal library hours.
Additional rotating exhibits may be found on the fourth floor of Cabell Library, both in the exhibit area near the elevators and in Special Collections and Archives, and in the Special Collections Reading Room at Tompkins-McCaw Library. Special Collections and Archives also curates online exhibits that can be found on our website.
2013-2014 Major Exhibits
Rams Reaching Out
Through Sept. 30, 2013, at Tompkins-McCaw Library
Photographs submitted by VCU Health Sciences students, depicting their outreach activities and service work from urban Richmond to the faraway shores of West Africa (Details)
Constitution Week Exhibit
Sept. 17-23, 2013, at Cabell Library
Opportunities for library patrons to discover connections between the US Constitution and the constitutions of other nations around the world
Digital Archaeology in the Virtual Curation Laboratory: 3D Scanning and Research at VCU
Oct. 2013, in Cabell Library
Display of student work produced, under project director Bernard K. Means, using state-of-the-art technology
Migrating Archives: LGBT Delegates from Collections around the World
Oct.-Dec. 2013, in Cabell Library
Materials from archives around the world, documenting histories and personal stories of LGBT communities and revealing how institutions work to collect and preserve important cultural objects
Discover Magic: Photographs by Jeanne Schlesinger
Oct. 2013-Feb. 2014, in Tompkins-McCaw Library
Photographs by the director of instructional development for the VCU School of Medicine, featuring closeup views of nature that reveal the magic that is often hidden in plain sight
Girl Scouts of the Commonwealth of Virginia 100th Anniversary Exhibit
Dec. 2013-May 2014, in Cabell Library
Materials from the Girl Scouts of the Commonwealth of Virginia archives, which are now housed in James Branch Cabell Library
Opening Doors: Contemporary African American Academic Surgeons
March 17-April 26, 2014, in Tompkins-McCaw Library
A traveling exhibit highlighting four contemporary pioneer African American surgeons and educators who exemplify excellence in their fields and believe in continuing the journey of excellence through the education and mentoring of young African Americans pursuing medical careers
Historians Brian J. Daugherity, assistant professor of history at VCU, and Brian E. Lee, a doctoral candidate in history at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro, visit the James Branch Cabell Library's Special Collections and Archives for a talk at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 10, about their article "Program of Action: The Rev. L. Francis Griffin and the Struggle for Racial Equality in Farmville, 1963," in the current issue of Virginia Magazine of History and Biography. The talk is free and open to the public, and a reception follows.
In the article the historians make use of several images from a new VCU Libraries digital collection of photographs documenting civil rights protests in Farmville in the summer of 1963. The images in the collection show dozens of Prince Edward County African-American students and others using an array of protest tactics to draw attention to racial discrimination.
The protesters were demanding that local and state authorities eliminate racial segregation in public facilities and reopen the public schools in the county which had been closed since 1959 to avoid integration. Rev. L. Francis Griffin, pastor of First Baptist Church in Farmville, organized the protests. Protesters called their summer of protests a "Program of Action."
Many of these activities are documented in this collection of images. Many of the black and white photographs were taken by J.D. Crute, an amateur photographer hired by the Farmville Police Department, under the supervision of Police Chief Otto Smith Overton, who served 42 years before retiring in 1996. These police surveillance photographs were intended to be used in court as evidence against many of the protesters who were arrested and jailed. Currently the originals are in a private collection.
Tompkins-McCaw Library for the Health Sciences is hosting the traveling National Library of Medicine exhibit, "Every Necessary Care and Attention: George Washington and Medicine." George Washington, first president, Revolutionary War general, plantation owner and businessman, and head of household, had many different concerns and responsibilities from running his estate to ensuring the stability of a new nation. Alongside the traditional demands of political life and military leadership, Washington focused considerable attention on the health and safety of his family, staff, slaves and troops.
Washington's status and wealth gave him--and his community--special privileges. During his lifetime, with the practice of medicine slowly becoming a licensed profession, he could call on a growing class of experts and new knowledge about the spread and prevention of disease. Even so, Washington encountered the limits of medicine when faced with serious illness.
The exhibition is on display in the reading room, Special Collections and Archives, Tompkins-McCaw Library for the Health Sciences, 509 N. 12th St.
Central Virginia author Dale Brumfield is set to launch his latest book this month. And on September 4, he'll be giving a VCU Libraries Presents talk sponsored by Special Collections and Archives at 1 p.m. at James Branch Cabell Library.
The library is a familiar place for Brumfield, who relied heavily on VCU Libraries collection of independent and alternative newspapers, weeklies, zines and magazines to research "Richmond Independent Press: A History of the Underground Zine Scene."
According to publisher notes on Barnes & Nobel website: "During the political and cultural upheaval of the 1960s, even the sleepy southern town of Richmond was not immune to the emergence of radical counterculturalism. A change in the traditional ideas of objective journalism spurred an underground movement in the press. The Sunflower, Richmond's first underground newspaper, appeared in 1967 and set the stage for a host of alternative Richmond media lasting into the 1990s and beyond. Publications such as the Richmond Chronicle, the Richmond Mercury and the Commonwealth Times, as well as those covering the African American community, such as Afro, have served the citizens of Richmond searching for a change in the status quo. ... Brumfield explores a forgotten history of a cultural revolution."
Brumfield draws clear distinctions between the monopolistic mainstream press (The Richmond Times-Dispatch and the Richmond News Leader) and the jaunty, nimble underground papers.
Some observers of the journalistic scene, he says, "may recall the underground press of the '60s and '70s only as a temporary deviation, choosing to emphasize the papers' divisions and their failures while de-emphasizing their successes. Richmond's 1960s underground press may have been short-lived but it did not fail. It achieved its purpose of giving a voice to radical criticism and social change.
"The legacy passed on by those gritty, early papers was the alternative press that rose in the mid-70s and the '80s, leading the way for longer lasting publications such as STYLE Weekly, now in its 32nd year."
Brumfield contributes to STYLE Weekly and the Austin Chronicle. He is the co-founder of ThroTTle Magazine, a Richmond indie publication. A VCU alumnus and MFA graduate student, he also worked on the Commonwealth Times. The book, "Richmond Independent Press: a History of the Underground Zine Scene," is published by History Press of Charleston, South Carolina.
This July here at VCU, the Encampment for Citizenship relaunches its celebrated summer youth program, which has been on hiatus for more than 10 years. From July 1 through 15, high-school students from around the country are gathering to attend special workshops on social and political issues, visit historic sites in Richmond and the surrounding area and participate in activities designed to foster a deeper understanding of democracy.
On Saturday, July 13, the Encampment will host an evening event of lively discussions among the students and alumni from earlier years about their experiences in the program, in addition to special musical entertainment featuring, among others, Jane Sapp, acclaimed singer-songwriter and cultural worker with deep roots in the gospel music traditions of the American South. The event, which will be free and open to the public, will be held at 7 p.m. in the Richmond Salons of the VCU Student Commons, located at 901 Floyd Ave. For details, contact EFCYouthProgram@gmail.com.
The Encampment was started in 1946 by activists Algernon D. Black, leader of the New York Society for Ethical Culture, and Alice K. Pollitzer, a member of the Ethical Culture Movement. The Encampment grew rapidly to a nationally prominent organization, attracting socially conscious youths from all backgrounds, and gained support from the likes of Eleanor Roosevlt, John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. Just a few of the many distinguished alumni of the Encampment are Gale Brewer, Ada Deer, Joseph O. Prewitt Diaz, Barney Frank, William Haddad, David Harris, Allard Lowenstein, Jean McGuire, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Charles Patterson, David Rothenberg, Hal Sieber and Floyd "Red Crow" Westerman. View pictures of past Encampment groups in the Encampment's promotional YouTube video.
Innocence Project co-founder and co-director Peter Neufeld, who spoke at this past spring's VCU Libraries Black History Month Lecture (see the video here), is an alumnus of the Encampment, as is Dr. Edward H. Peeples, VCU associate professor emeritus and VCU Friends of the Library Board emertius member, who has been a lifelong advocate of civil rights. Dr. Peeples describes the Encampment as "the most affirming experience of my life ... The strength for a lifetime of struggle for justice was poured into me. I found that I had become a member of a world-wide communion of other justice seekers and thus was never again to be alone."
Thanks to the assistance of Dr. Peeples, James Branch Cabell Library Special Collections and Archives is now home of the archives of the Encampment. The archives do much to tell the history of this storied educational program. See the online finding aid.
The idea? To collaborate on an innovative, born-digital project called British Virginia, a series of peer-reviewed, open-access editions of colonial documents and printed books. VCU scholars would identify, edit and prepare for publication new documents and books, and VCU Libraries would publish these editions through its digital repository for scholarship at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Three years later, at the end of spring semester, VCU Libraries launched British Virginia. The inaugural digital publication is the first of the "Virginia Company Sermons," which William Symonds preached in London in 1609. The importance of this and the other little-known, early Virginia Company sermons lies in their purpose: to encourage colonization of the Virginia settlement and to instill the ideology of the endeavor in listeners who had heard much criticism of the colony.
Working with the Virginia Historical Society, Eckhardt edited, described and contextualized the copy of Symonds' sermon. Then, with the images of the rare book that the VHS produced for British Virginia, he designed a second edition of the same sermon, a searchable photographic facsimile.
For VCU Libraries, British Virginia marks a significant contribution to a dialogue about the future of academic publishing and how libraries can assist faculty and researchers to find, use, and re-interpret obscure or previously inaccessible documents.
Librarians historically have been on the vanguard of new and emerging technologies and four librarians collaborated to develop the publishing model for this significant digital initiative. The team was: Sam Byrd, Digital Collections Systems Librarian, John Duke, Senior Associate University Librarian, Kevin Farley, Humanities Collections Librarian, and Jimmy Ghaphery, Head, Digital Technologies.
"VCU Libraries is confident that British Virginia will inspire and influence how academic libraries and faculty collaborate to create exciting, innovative digital scholarship," said University Librarian John E. Ulmschneider. "Projects like VCU's British Virginia represent the best of the future of open-access, digital publication for the 21st Century."
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British Virginia is a series of scholarly editions of documents touching on the colony. These original sources range from the 16th and 17th-century literature of English exploration to the 19th-century writing of loyalists and other Virginians who continued to identify with Great Britain. British Virginia editions appear principally in digital form, freely downloadable. The editorial offices sit appropriately at the research university nearest both the falls of the James River and the site of the first English college planned for this side of the Atlantic Ocean, Henricus Colledge.
To contact VCU's digital publishing program: John Duke, email@example.com, (804) 827-3624.