In blocks 7 and 8, two Colorado College classes (Tomi Ann Roberts’s Feminist Psychology of Embodiment and Tricia Waters’s Women and Madness) visited Special Collections to view our mini-exhibition, Books About Sex. (Subtitle: “These books may be about sex, but we can’t promise you will find them sexy”). In addition to the materials in the display, students looked at 16th-century-and-forward health manuals such as the two described here, annual reports of the the Colorado State Hospital, 20th century books on how to please your husband, Rocky Mountain Planned Parenthood pamphlets, and more.
Students imagined what they would highlight if they were doing their own exhibitions. One student noticed that some women, but never any men, were admitted to the then-named Colorado Insane Asylum in the 19th century because of “domestic trouble.” Another student looked for what we would now call “consent” in Marabel Morgan’s 1973 advice book The Total Woman. Yet another student pointed out that the women in the exercise illustrations in Sex Revelations and the New Eugenics (1936) wore high heeled shoes and very little else. We all appreciated the “Remedy for Hysterics (or Mother-Fits)” in John Homan’s 1856 Long Lost Friend: A Compendium of Mysterious & Invaluable Arts & Remedies, which involves pressing one’s thumb against one’s chest and reciting “Matrix, patrix, lay thyself right and safe…”
A possible title for the classes’ imaginary exhibitions emerged: “Useful Tips to Keep You Out of the Asylum.”
Special Collections has moved from Tutt South to the newly renovated Tutt Main (soon to be just plain Tutt). We are currently open by appointment only, hoping to return to regular hours by August 1 or earlier.
It was quite an odyssey getting the books and other materials, including a huge heavy map case, from one building to the other.
Special Collections Coordinator Amy Brooks managed 90% of the move while Curator Jessy Randall was cleverly out of town on a long-planned vacation.
Huge thanks to Amy, Tutt South wranglers Lesley Mackie and Diane Westerfield, and book escorts Sarah Bogard, Chris Curcio, Julia Drescher, Nicole Gresham, Lisa Lister, Annette Magneys, Mike McEvers, Courtney Morgan, Jeremy Nelson, Daryll Stevens, Claire Trissel, and Pam Willock. We could not have done it without each and every one of you. Congratulations to these hard workers and the PSI book movers on a successful and safe move!
Images above show anonymous graffiti written during the move on walls in the soon-to-be-demolished Tutt South. Amy was too tired to even notice:
Pictures of our new digs to come when it’s a bit more photogenic than it is now. Our current view looks like this:
All photos by Tutt Library staff.
Colorado College Special Collections lent 27 postcard collages by Mary Chenoweth to the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center this year.
The postcards were donated to CC by Peggy Marshall and Mike Duffy and dated 1980s-90s. They were on display at the FAC from February 18 – May 21, 2017.
The exhibition was fantastic! The postcards were hung from the ceiling and sandwiched inside plastic so that viewers could see both sides.
In celebration of International Women’s Day, March 8, 2016, we uploaded our finding aids to the collections of the papers of three women:
Lillian de la Torre, 1960
Writer and Playwright
Lillian de la Torre (1902-1993)
Inez Johnson Lewis, undated
Educator, Superintendent of Schools, and State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Inez Johnson Lewis (1875-1964)
Marianne Stoller, 1977
Colorado College Anthropology Professor Emerita
Marianne Stoller (1929-2015)
December 2016: Theatreworks at UCCS is putting on a production of A Christmas Carol this holiday season, and they’ve borrowed a couple of books from CC Special Collections for a display to accompany the show. Shown here: an 1843 first edition of the story and a facsimile of Dickens’s original manuscript.
Special Collections student assistant Anna Wermuth blogged her experience in The History and Future of the Book half block class, January 2016:
That Special Something
Why Art (When It’s Tedious)?
(The dodo and flying squirrel illustrations are from our copy of Willem Piso’s De Indiae Utriusque re Naturali et Medica Libri Qvatvordecim, published 1658. Anna refers to them in her first post, “That Special Something.”)
In December of 2015, Idris Goodwin directed a sold-out production of Ntozake Shange’s choreopoem For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide … When the Rainbow is Enuf at Colorado College. He and the cast (Alexandra Farr, Lyric Jackson, Jazlyn Andrews, Jaiel Mitchell, Justice Miles, Brittany Comancho, Deaira Cooper, and Erica Willard) stopped by Special Collections last week to take a look at a first edition of the book, which was first published in 1975 by Shameless Hussy Press in 1975.
Tunnel books have been made and sold since the mid-18th century in Europe. The earliest one in CC Special Collections, History of the Thames Tunnel (1861), was sold to tourists in England, as was our next-earliest, The Picture-Post Coronation Peep-Show Book (1953).
Our copy of the Thames Tunnel book is quite worn, suggesting that many people looked through its eye-holes over the years before it came to the library.
Our Coronation book, on the other hand, was purchased in kit form and never put together. Luckily, the Journal of Wild Culture offers a photo essay showing what the book looks like from various angles.
Our other tunnel books are artists’ books made in the last two decades. Edward H. Hutchins’s Arizona Wildlife (1999) is made from picture postcards.
Jill Timm’s Falling Leaves (2006).
Laura Russell’s Nocturne (2004) shows a fanciful version of the neon signs on Colfax Avenue in Denver and is a favorite among CC students.
Kyoko Matsunaga’s Aoyama Airport (2013).
For a good overview of tunnel books, see Jean-Charles Trebbi’s The Art of Pop-Up: The Magical World of Three-Dimensional Books (Promo Press, 2012), available at many libraries.
No one had requested our copy of the first edition of The Book of Mormon in at least fifteen years, but that all changed last month. First one request, then another, and then eighty Mormon visitors in one day, broken up into four groups in order not to overcrowd the reading room.
The Book of Mormon, the foundational text of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, was first published in Palmyra, NY in 1830. 5000 copies were printed, of which at least 144 are currently in libraries. Joseph Smith’s text has been reprinted hundreds of times and translated into many languages and alphabets, including Brigham Young’s Deseret alphabet (one of several alphabets developed to simplify spelling in the 19th century, including one invented by Melvil Dewey, yes, he of the card catalog system).
The first edition of the book contains a number of typographical errors, including page 487 printed as 48, and, in some copies (not ours), “rumderers” for “murderers” on page 521. (For a full list, see Janet Jenson’s “Variations between Copies.”) [Addendum, January 2016: volunteer JoAnn Hendershot has discovered that the CC copy of The Book of Mormon also has page 212 printed as 122. She went through Jenson’s list and found no other variations in our copy.]
Book values change with the times, and the monetary value of this book has increased exponentially. According to library records, Colorado College purchased our copy for $250 in 1962. It was one of the first purchases made using the Hulbert Fund, honoring Archer Butler Hulbert, CC professor and scholar of the American West. The book is now worth perhaps $100,000. Our copy, however, is not for sale.
This illustration is from E.P. Tenney’s The New West, published 1878. It shows — or purports to show — the western facade of Colorado College’s Cutler Hall (also known as Palmer or simply “The College,” depending on the date).
Doesn’t it look enticing? A potential CC student could picture herself sitting with classmates and faculty in rocking chairs on that big back porch, talking together about Aristotle as they gazed out at a glorious Pikes Peak sunset.
Except that the porch, indeed the whole western piece of the building, was never built.
Nothing in The New West suggests that this illustration is any less real than the illustration of the building’s eastern facade, and indeed, at the time, they were equally imaginary. In 1878 the college did not yet have a freestanding building and operated out of a storefront in downtown Colorado Springs.
The middle piece of the planned building opened for classes in 1880, looking rather lonely out on the prairie:
Around 1882, wings were added:
But the western-facing bit was never built.