The last time the general public had the opportunity to see the “Plan of the Fort at De Troit” was in 1967 when it was offered for sale at Sotheby’s. Now it will be part of the University of Michigan’s William L. Clements Library collection. Not knowing to whom the original was sold back then, former Clements curator Brian Dunnigan studied the photo included in the Sotheby’s auction catalog to write about this hand-drawn map for his book Frontier Metropolis: Picturing Early Detroit. “This map was executed by noted surveyor and map draftsman William Brasier for General Jeffery Amherst in 1761,” explains Dunnigan, now curator emeritus of maps, who is an expert in early Detroit, Mackinac, Niagara and 18th-century Great Lakes history. “Comparing maps helps to understand the growth and changes taking place in Detroit. This map was drawn just months after Detroit was ceded from New France to Great Britain and depicts the fort that was later attacked by Pontiac and his warriors during the...
Launched online in May 2020, “Adopt a Piece of History” is both a way for the public to learn more about the Clements Library as well as a vivid demonstration of the impacts of donor support. “Adopting” materials at the Clements—giving towards the costs of acquisition, conservation, and digitization—directly supports the work while also recognizing the donor through a virtual bookplate.Before the program was on the website, it was conducted through events where selected items from the collections were displayed. People attended to learn more about the materials and to adopt items if they wished. With the uncertainty of the pandemic, an in-person event has been out of the question.The staff wondered if the same excitement and fun could be achieved through a virtual event and thus the “Adopt a Piece of History” Fest was born. On Thursday, September 9, 2021 at 7:00pm ET this virtual festivity will feature a collage of vignettes highlighting rare historical specimens, stories, music, and...
A Few Collectors who shaped our Collections
Brief Biography: James Stanley Schoff
In 1974, James S. Schoff (1900-1984) donated his substantial collection of unit and campaign histories on the Civil War, as well as funds to purchase additional material, establishing the James S. Schoff Civil War Collection.
Brief Biography: David V. Tinder
U-M graduate, collector, and researcher David V. Tinder (1926-2016) was recognized as an authority on the subject of early Michigan photography. Clements Library Associates Board Member David B. Walters purchased Tinder’s photo collection in 2006 and has been incrementally donating it in honor of Harold L. Walters (U-M Engineering ’47) and Marilyn S. Walters (U-M LSA ’50), establishing the David V. Tinder Collection of Michigan Photography.
One Hundred Selections from the Duane Norman Diedrich Collection of Manuscript Americana, 17th-20th Century
Over a 40 year period, Dr. D. N. Diedrich (1935-2018) provided generous gifts in-kind, funding, and counsel to the Clements Library to form an eponymous collection of over 1,100 individual letters, documents, and other manuscripts, plus nearly 110 bound volumes and archival collections.