William L. Clements Library

Past Exhibit

Exhibit at the Great Hall of the William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan.

“Fine Tuning a Great Collection: The How and Why of Recent Acquisitions”

June 14—October 8, 2010

Curated by Brian Leigh Dunnigan

Funetune pic
Manuscript plan of Louisbourg, Nova Scotia circa 1740.

A new exhibit at the Clements Library showcases some of the best of its recent acquisitions and uses these rare books, manuscripts, maps, and graphic materials to explain the Library’s policies for adding to its outstanding holdings. “Fine Tuning a Great Collection: The How and Why of Recent Acquisitions” opened to the public on June 14 and will be on display through October 8.

The Clements Library opened its doors in 1923 as the first rare books and special collections library at an American public university. The building and its books were a gift to the University of Michigan by William L. Clements, an alumnus and industrialist from Bay City. The collection was soon broadened to include other primary historical source materials, such as manuscripts, maps, and graphics. Today the Clements Library is one of the great repositories of primary source material on the history of the Americas and welcomes scholars from the university and around the world.

The Library’s holdings have grown steadily since 1923, both in quantity and quality. Materials are acquired by gift and by purchase, and the Library collects actively. The exhibit features a wide variety of items that have been added since 2004, including a circa 1740 plan of the French fortress town of Louisbourg in Nova Scotia, a portrait print of Haitian leader Toussaint Louverture, a letter written by women’s suffrage leader Susan B. Anthony, correspondence from soldiers of the Civil War and War of 1812, selections from the culinary history archive, and a rare, 1856 illustrated atlas of America.

“Fine Tuning a Great Collection” is open to the public in the Main Room of the Clements Library Monday through Thursday from 1:00 pm to 4:45 pm. After September 7 the exhibit will be open Monday though Friday. The Clements Library is located on the campus of the University of Michigan at 909 South University Avenue, Ann Arbor. For further information please call 734-764-2347.