William L. Clements Library


To be announced.

Section Break


Due to the Clements Library’s renovation, the Clements Library 2014 Events and Lecture series will be held at the Harlan Hatcher Graduate Library, Gallery Room 100.

All lectures are free and open to the public, but registration is requested. Please email clementsevents@umich.edu or phone 734-647-0864.

"Crossing the Gulf: Cuba, Louisiana, and the Diaspora of Saint-Domingue/Haiti"

Founder's Day
Thursday, April 2, 2015

4:00 p.m.

Rebecca Scott
University of Michigan Charles Gibson Distinguished University Professor of History and Professor of Law

Despite its famous storms, the Gulf of Mexico has often served as a pathway for the exchange of people and ideas among the colonies and nations on its shores, including the idea that persons could not be held as property, and that all persons are entitled to the protection of the law. Rebecca Scott, co-author with Jean Hébrard of Freedom Papers: An Atlantic Odyssey in the Age of Emancipation, will explore the itinerary of one woman – Adélaide Métayer/Durand – whose journey in the aftermath of the Haitian Revolution illuminates the thin line between slavery and freedom. As she moved from one jurisdiction to another, Adélaïde’s status crossed and re-crossed that thin line, amidst great dangers for the children whose status was contingent upon hers.

"The Body in the Library: Lord Lansdowne and his Nursery for Reform"

Tuesday, April 14, 2015
4:00 p.m.

David Hancock
University of Michigan Professor of History

Historians know about the importance of private libraries to the early Enlightenment and by extension the entire age, but they know little about exactly what happened to them after 1750 and how what existed connected to collectors, collections, the constructed environment encasing them, and consumers.  Professor Hancock will talk about the important private collection of books and manuscripts assembled by William Petty-Fitzmaurice, 2nd Earl of Shelburne and 1st Marquis of Lansdowne (1737-1805), Britain’s first Irish-born prime minister, and housed at his palace in London.  He will examine the design, decoration and furnishing of a space to house them in, their acquisition, use and disposition between 1761 and 1805, and the tastes and thoughts they reflected.  A large private library informed by universal principles like Lansdowne's was one of the prime movers of the late Enlightenment, domesticating and rendering practical that movement and, at the same time, playing an ambiguous, yet undeniably critical role as an instrument of incipient Revolution.