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The “Quick & Unnatural Interludes” of Organist Benjamin Bowen

The “Quick & Unnatural Interludes” of Organist Benjamin Bowen

In the second week of February 2015, longtime Clements Library donor Dr. Duane Norman Diedrich shared a laugh with the Curator of Manuscripts. They had formally added a manuscript letter to the Diedrich collections, pertinent to a hired organist whose upbeat music transcended the solemnity of the congregation where he played in the 1830s. The late Dr. Diedrich was a patron of individual musicians, a lover of sacred and secular music alike, and a man whose eyes often twinkled with a contrarian...

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A Q&A with Graduating Clements Intern, Aleksandra Kole

A Q&A with Graduating Clements Intern, Aleksandra Kole

Aleksandra Kole is graduating from LSA with a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science minoring in Moral and Political Philosophy. She has also been actively involved in LSA Student Government serving this past year as Treasurer.    How did you find the internship at the Clements Library? The summer of my sophomore year, I searched for a job position to utilize my Political Science and Philosophy knowledge. I stumbled upon a processing archivist position for the William L. Clements Library,...

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Celestial Reflections

Celestial Reflections

It’s been said that witnessing an event born of the natural world makes poets of scientists and scientists of poets. Americans will experience a total solar eclipse on Monday, April 8, 2024. Perhaps this will be your first? Maybe you are already an eclipse hunter and travel from place to place to witness these events. People have been tracking and predicting lunar and solar eclipses for thousands of years. While tracking the Sun’s movement in the sky is simple, the moon’s movements can be more...

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Clements Library Acquires Rare American Edition of Phillis Wheatley Peters Poems, Pursues Crowdfunding

Clements Library Acquires Rare American Edition of Phillis Wheatley Peters Poems, Pursues Crowdfunding

The University of Michigan William L. Clements Library has acquired one of the most important American books of the late eighteenth century–the first American edition of the earliest book of poetry published by an African American author. Phillis Wheatley Peters’ publication, Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral is currently on display at the Clements Library as part of the exhibit “The Art of Resistance in Early America.” Paul J. Erickson, the Randolph G. Adams Director of the...

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A Q&A with Clements Graphic Curator, Sierra Laddusaw

A Q&A with Clements Graphic Curator, Sierra Laddusaw

In January 2024, Sierra Laddusaw joined the University of Michigan community as the Curator for Maps and Graphics at the Clements Library. Sierra comes to Michigan from University of Arkansas - Fort Smith where she was the Scholarly Communication Librarian. Previously she was at Texas A&M University, where she spent 14 years as a Library Specialist, Supervisor, Librarian, then Curator. Before moving to Michigan, Sierra received a Master of Library Science from Texas Woman's University, she...

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Apply Today: 2024-2025 William L. Clements Library Research Fellowships

Apply Today: 2024-2025 William L. Clements Library Research Fellowships

Researchers are invited to apply for week-long, short-term, long-term and remote fellowships to support scholarship in the collections of the William L. Clements Library. The fellowship program at the Clements Library facilitates research in the world-class materials housed in the collections, the bulk of which relates to the history and culture of the United States and Caribbean before 1900. The William L. Clements Library will award three new fellowships in addition to those awarded in...

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Donor Stories

The Clements Library is fortunate to have a community of historians, bibliophiles, collectors, researchers, teachers, and students who are willing to come together around this library to support the exploration and examination of history and help make it as accessible as possible. I had the privilege of talking to some of our donors who have set up recurring monthly gifts for the Clements Library. I love hearing about how folks become involved in the library and what prompts them to give.Lisa...

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U-M Clements Library announces online access to popular Revolutionary War manuscript collection

U-M Clements Library announces online access to popular Revolutionary War manuscript collection

The University of Michigan William L. Clements Library has made available volumes 1-11 of the English Series of the Thomas Gage Papers. Thomas Gage was a famed British commander-in-chief in the decade leading up to the American Revolution and also the governor of the Province of Massachusetts Bay from 1774 to 1775. The papers are being digitized through a $350,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to digitize over 23,000 items from one of the Clements Library’s largest and...

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Potato Power: The Magic of Autochromes

One of the most rewarding aspects of working at a place like the Clements Library is that you never know what you might stumble across on any given day. For instance, last summer I noticed a box out of the corner of my eye with the word “Autochromes” scribbled in pencil on the side. I had coincidentally been reading about autochromes a few days prior, so naturally I took this as a sign that I should take a quick plunge down this particular rabbit hole. The autochrome is considered the first...

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Conservation of a 1737 South Carolina Manuscript Document – May 2023

Recently, Clements Library Curator of Manuscripts Cheney J. Schopieray brought Conservator Julie Fremuth a six-leaf manuscript document written on both sides. This document was a generous donation by former Clements Library Director John C. Dann. The manuscript, which measures approximately 20 inches by 26 inches, had been folded in two places for a very long time and was badly deteriorated. Together they discussed treatment possibilities and considerations. Cheney suggested that this...

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