News from the Field


Amherst College, Massachusetts, has been given the personal working library of anthropologist Margaret Mead. The collection was donated by Amherst’s dean of faculty Mary Catherine Bateson, Mead’s daughter, who also donated Mead’s collection of films to the Five College film collection housed at Hampshire College.

Amherst has also received collections relating to the life and works of Samuel Griswold Goodrich (1793-1860), who wrote many instructive works for children under the pseudonym of Peter Parley.

Georgia State University’s William R. Pullen Library, Atlanta, has acquired the papers of songwriter, singer, composer, and publisher Johnny Mercer. His widow, Ginger, made the donation to GSU in accordance with her husband’s wish that his manuscripts be placed in an archival repository in his home state. The collection includes correspondence, press clippings, drafts of lyrics, music scores, an unpublished biography, playbills and other announcements, photographs, phonodiscs, audio and video tapes, and some of Mercer’s original water colors. Mercer was one of the most famous of Tin Pan Alley composers. His hits included “Lazybones,” “I’m an Old Cowhand,” and (in collaboration with others) “Moon River” and “On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe.”

Ohio University Library, Athens, has acquired a collection of nearly 500 Civil War letters and other manuscript material pertaining to the Brown and Van Voorhis families, both among the earliest settlers of southeastern Ohio. Most of the letters were written by three family members while serving in the Union armies between 1861 and 1865. The collection is valuable as a record of the day-to-day life of the infantry soldier.

Southern Methodist University Library, Dallas, has received the private collection of distinguished ancient historian and scholar Stewart Oost. Oost, professor of ancient history at the University of Chicago at the time of his death, had served on the SMU faculty from 1948-1959. The collection also includes the books of the late philologist Benedict Einarson, professor of Greek at Chicago.

• The University of Illinois at Chicago Circle has acquired the Lawrence J. Gutter Collection of Chicagoana, an archive of approximately 9,000 items encompassing many aspects of Chicago history. The collection is rich in printed materials relating to Chicago railroads, including an almost complete run of the annual reports of the Galena and Chicago Union Railroad, the city’s first. Other highlights are rare maps, novels by famous Chicagoans or with Chicago as a setting, the works of major Chicago publishers, and materials on the Chicago labor and reform movements. The collection will be open to scholars and researchers late in the spring of 1983.

• The University of New Orleans’ Earl K. Long Library has received an extensive William Faulkner collection. Over 600 items are in the assemblage donated by Frank Von der Haar, a New Orleans businessman. Included are special signed editions, the first trade editions, movie scripts, recordings, and posters.

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, has acquired the archives of the Virginia Academy of Science (1922-81) and the Virginia Junior Academy of Science (194.1- 80). The records consist of approximately 50 cubic feet of material and include correspondence, minutes, photographs, clippings, financial statements, and award-winning research papers.

Western Carolina University’s Hunter Library, Cullowhee, North Carolina, has received the personal collection of Peter N. Witt containing 150 volumes of rare spider literature published in Germany, France, Great Britain, and the United States from 1738 to the present. Witt, the Swiss-born pharmacologist noted for his research on the effects of drugs on spider-web production, also donated some 50 photographs of unusually constructed webs spun in his laboratory by spiders under the influence of psychedelic drugs.


• The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has received a $19,965 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities for a retrospective cataloging project of 20,000 historic photographs in their Southern Historical Collection. The collection contains photographs of early 20th century bridge building in Arizona and Texas; sugar cane plantations in Louisiana; historic buildings in Tennessee; the Sea Islands of South Carolina; sharecroppers’ farms; the Wright brothers’ flight at Kitty Hawk; and much Civil War memorabilia.

• The York University Libraries, Downsview, Ontario, have received a Strategic Grant of $86,300 from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada under their Canadian Studies-Research Tools Program. The two-year grant will enable York to process about 20,000 volumes of French language monographs and serials in a collection of Quebec social and cultural history from the late 19th century through the 1950s.


• The Center for Research Libraries’ governing council, Chicago, has accepted new appointments to its board of directors. Newly elected chairman of the board is Charles Churchwell, director of libraries at Washington University, St. Louis. Maurice Glicksman, provost and dean of faculty at Brown University, was elected vice-chairman. Other appointments include Paul Rosenblatt, acting provost and dean of the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Arizona; and David Bishop, university librarian at the University of Georgia.

Indiana University’s School of Library and Information Science, Bloomington, has announced three new dual masters programs. The programs include a joint MLS-MPA (Master of Public Affairs) with the School of Public and Environmental Affairs, a joint MLS-MA with the School of Journalism, and a joint MLS-MA with the History and Philosophy of Science Department. These dual programs have been developed in recognition of the growing interaction between librarians and information scientists and subject specialists in these disciplines.

• The National Library of Canada has announced a new program that will benefit Canadians with reading disabilities. The service is in response to the federal government’s report of the Special Commons Committee on the Disabled and the Handicapped, released last year. Under the program the library will provide information on special materials for the print handicapped. The library will also hold a registry of reading materials with information on titles in braille and on tape so that other producers of such materials, as well as libraries and educators, can pass the information on to users.

• The New England Library Board, Augusta, Maine, adopted a new statement of purpose, bylaws, and guidelines at its March meeting in Hartford. The statement reads: “The purpose of The New England Library Board is to provide a forum for information and resource sharing development, to provide opportunities for state library agency staff development in each member state, to enunciate a position of member state library agency directors on national and regional matters of common concern, and to act as a communicating body with other regional and national library organizations.” In other action the board eliminated all ongoing programs and services, including the New England Library Equipment Exchange, the calendar of library events, the New England Library Jobline, and the NELB office and staff. The Jobline will now be provided by the Simmons College Graduate School of Library and Information Science. ■■

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