New Acquisitions

University of Chicago Library receives vintage Vivian Maier prints

Nearly 500 photographs to be available for research at Special Collections

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

The University of Chicago Library has received a gift of nearly 500 photographic prints made by Vivian Maier, the master 20th-century street photographer known for her striking images of life in Chicago and New York City.

The prints, given to the University by collector and filmmaker John Maloof, will be preserved and made available for research purposes by the Library’s Special Collections Research Center. The new collection is comprised of vintage prints that have never been published or exhibited to the public, along with one of Maier’s cameras and some of her personal effects.

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

“This collection of prints will help researchers and students to understand Maier as a working photographer,” said Daniel Meyer, director of the Special Collections Research Center. “As a new discovery in 20th-century American photography, Vivian Maier’s work also offers fresh insights into the viewpoints and graphic styles of her contemporaries.”

The UChicago collection is the first of Maier’s work to be held by a research institution, allowing scholars to study her photography and creative process in the city that was her home.

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

Maier’s work became known to the public less than a decade ago. Maloof in 2008 found himself with a trove of more than 100,000 photographs after purchasing the contents of several of Maier’s storage lockers at auction. His investigation into Maier’s life and work was told in the Academy Award-nominated documentary Finding Vivian Maier, which Maloof co-wrote and co-directed.

Maier was born in New York City in 1926. She spent much of her early life traveling the world before finding a home in 1956 in Chicago, where she worked as a nanny to support her photography. It was only after her death in 2009 that Maier’s work was displayed in museums and galleries to widespread acclaim.

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

“Vivian Maier herself is unique as a photographer because of her personal story and the remarkable quality of her work,” said Brenda Johnson, Library director and University librarian at UChicago. “Seeing these prints will help viewers to step back into Maier’s time and place and to explore her perspective.”

Maloof donated the prints to the University to allow for researchers to better explore Maier’s printing process and understand how her work evolved. “There’s more here that she physically created with her hands—that can be studied—than has ever been open to the public,” Maloof said. “This is what made her tick, who she was as an artist.”

Maier’s work will join collections of a range of female photographers held by the UChicago Library, including photo-secessionist Eva Watson Schütze, documentary photographer Mildred Mead, anthropologist Joan Eggan and literary photographer Layle Silbert.

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

The prints in the Maier collection represent the range of subjects she captured from the 1950s to the 1980s. Included in the collections are images of recognizable political, religious and cultural figures, along with the intimate street portraits of anonymous men, women and children. The collection has images—often captured curbside—of John F. Kennedy, Eleanor Roosevelt, Pope John Paul II, Eva Marie Saint and Frank Sinatra, among others. While past exhibitions of Maier’s work have typically featured large-format prints made from negatives by collectors, the UChicago holdings are comprised of prints made by Maier through commercial photo labs or in her own darkroom.

“A lot of the work in this collection has her process visible,” Maloof said. “She’s printing in different ways, she’s cropping in different ways, and you can see her hand in the process. You can study that, and I think that could be important for people to research.”

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

The Maier collection is currently being processed and is expected to be made available to researchers by the end of the year.

Maloof plans to donate additional photographs made by Maier to the UChicago Library.

Press Inquiries and Images

Note: The copyrights in the photography contained in this news release are owned by the Estate of Vivian Maier. The estate grants a limited, royalty-free, perpetual, non-exclusive license to media and press to reproduce the attached images in articles concerning Vivian Maier and/or John Maloof’s donation of vintage prints of Vivian Maier’s work to the University of Chicago. High-resolution versions of images may be used in connection with print versions of articles only. For electronic and online publications, the reproduced images may not exceed 1,500 pixels on the longest side and 72 dpi. Unauthorized reproduction, distribution or exhibition could result in liability under the Copyright Act.

Publication of these images requires use of this notice: “Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier.  All rights reserved.”

To obtain images and for other press inquiries:
Andrew Bauld, News Officer for Arts and Humanities
News Office
773-702-8378
Reserved for members of the media.

Photo by Vivian Maier

Photo by Vivian Maier. Unpublished work © 2017 The Estate of Vivian Maier. All rights reserved.

New online resource: Black Freedom Struggle in the Twentieth Century

Mississippi Subversion of the Right to Vote

Cover of Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) pamphlet published in Atlanta, 1965

Researchers at the University of Chicago now have access to Black Freedom Struggle in the Twentieth Century, a collection of digital primary sources consisting of government documents, organizational records, and personal papers. The resource, which consists of four modules, includes major collections of civil rights records from the Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, and George H. W. Bush presidencies; the Martin Luther King FBI file and FBI files on locations of major civil rights demonstrations; and the records of the American Committee on Africa (ACOA); Records of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters; Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs (NACWC), Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), and the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE). Also included in the collection are the personal papers of Mary McLeod Bethune and Charles A. Barnett.

Global population data available

The LandScan 2015 Global Population Database is now available to access and use on the computers in the University of Chicago Library Map Collection. Find the files in the Map Collection computers’ @work drive in the folder LandScan_2015_GlobalPopulation.
Screenshot of LandScan 2015 Population Database

East View, the data publisher, provides this information about the updated database:

  • Adjusted population totals and distributions for Syria, Iraq and Ukraine to account for refugee and internally displaced persons movements as of June 2016
  • Results from Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s LandScan HD data, (developed at 3 arc-seconds) for certain national and regional areas
  • Output from Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s “Settlement Mapper Tool” (which rapidly delineates and characterizes settlements using high-resolution imagery)
  • Refined urban built-up areas
  • Thousands of additional smaller villages and populated places
  • Improved spatial precision and population distribution values

The library also has the LandScan 2007 Global Population Database.

For assistance or questions about accessing this or other spatial data through the University of Chicago Library, contact Resident Librarian for GIS Taylor Hixson (taylorhixson@uchicago.edu). More information about the library’s support for spatial data and GIS is available in the library’s research guide.

Celebrate the launch of the Uncommon Fund Young Adult Fiction Collection

Celebrate the formal launch of the Uncommon Fund Young Adult Fiction Collection on March 10th from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. in Regenstein Library, Room 122. Refreshments will be served.

Photo of Uncommon Fund Exhibit

Some of the book purchased via the Uncommon Fund Young Adult Fiction Collection. Photo by Rebecca Starkey.

The Young Adult Fiction Collection was funded in 2015 by the Uncommon Fund, which granted $10,000 to create a young adult fiction section for the Library.  Maya Handa, the College student whose application was successful in the competitive selection process, organized the book selection process.

Maya will display selections at the event, and will accept further recommendations for the collection. You may also recommend books using Maya’s GoogleDocs form. Questions about the collection or the event may be directed to mayahanda@uchicago.edu.

For a preview of some of the items from the collection, visit Maya’s display of book covers in the exhibit case located near the Dissertation Office on the 1st floor of Regenstein Library.

The Uncommon Fund is allocated by Student Government to support creative and interesting student projects or initiatives on campus. Its goal is to encourage students to take action on campus in creative and unique ways. Past projects supported by the Uncommon Fund involving the Library include a scholarly symposium on medieval art and a student-focused opening event for the exhibition On the Edge: Medieval Margins and the Margins of Academic Life in 2012, installation of a hot water dispenser in Regenstein in January 2014, and free distribution of print copies of the Chicago Tribune in Regenstein in autumn 2014.

The reception’s refreshments are being provided courtesy of the Uncommon Fund.

Persons with disabilities who need an accommodation in order to participate in this event should contact Rebecca Starkey at rstarkey@uchicago.edu or 773-702-4484 for assistance.

New online resource: Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Biblical Texts

Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Biblical TextsThe researchers at the University of Chicago now have online access to the Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Biblical Texts through Brill. The database includes high resolution images of the biblical texts discovered in the Judean desert along with a side-by-side comparison of Hebrew transcription, English translation and the text of the Leningrad Codex. Until now, this content was only accessible electronically through the CD-ROM version published in 1999. Through the online database, researchers are able to search across the entire content, link between texts and download images of scrolls either on or off-campus. Included at this time is the Revised List of Texts from the Judean Desert (2010) that includes non-biblical texts, though these are currently not available to read online. Since the database is published by Brill, researchers can simultaneously access related databases published by Brill, such as The Context of Scripture online or the Coptic Gnostic Library online. Any questions can be directed to Anne K. Knafl, Bibliographer for Religion and Philosophy.

The display of a fragment from Genesis 19:27-28 from the Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Online.

The display of a fragment from Genesis 19:27-28 from the Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Online.

 

Exploring 125 years of history in the Archives

Janet-Rowley-600p

Janet Rowley in her laboratory. 1980s. University of Chicago Photographic Archive, apf7-01134. Copyright 2015, The Chicago Maroon. All rights reserved. Reprinted with Permission. Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Celebration of the University of Chicago’s 125th Anniversary is drawing increased campus attention to the University Archives this year. The mission of the Archives is to preserve and make available materials documenting the history of the University and the work of its faculty, students, trustees, and friends. Archives collections span many formats, from official reports to publications, photographs, media, and physical artifacts. Faculty papers in the Archives include letters, diaries, field notes, manuscripts, and teaching materials. In all, the Archives collections have grown to 60,000 linear feet, or more than 73 million individual items, and digital files comprise more than 20 terabytes of records in the Library’s Digital Repository.

Bon-Voyage-asas-01557_600p

Bon Voyage. From the papers of Julian and Eva Overton Lewis. Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Important new collections continue to enhance the Archives. Recent acquisitions include the papers of Janet Rowley, the University’s renowned geneticist and cancer researcher and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient. Gary Becker’s papers bring manuscripts, notes, and teaching materials of the 1992 Nobel laureate in economics. The papers of Jean Elshtain document her interdisciplinary work in religion, political philosophy, and ethics. And the papers of Julian H. Lewis, the University’s first African American professor, and his wife Eva Overton Lewis, document an influential career in medical research and the lives of a leading Chicago family.

Julian H. Lewis

Julian H. Lewis, the first African American to teach at the University of Chicago. 1917. Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Recent classroom teaching drawing on the Archives includes Mark Bradley’s seminar on International History. Tara Zahra brought her History Colloquium on Migration and Displacement in Twentieth- Century Europe. Daniel Webb drew on the Archives for his class on America in World Civilization, while Susan Burns brought her class on Doing History. Kathleen Conzen led classes on Chicago and Chicago’s South Side, and Katherine Taylor’s courses examined the University’s modern campus architecture.

Support for research is also central to the Archives mission. Within the past year, projects of University researchers have drawn on the records of the Robert M. Hutchins administration, the Committee on Social Thought, and the University’s Chaucer Research Project of the 1930s. Visiting researchers have examined the papers of Mircea Eliade; the papers of University administrators and faculty involved in the world government movement of the 1940s and 1950s; the field notes and data collected by Sol Tax and other faculty members of the University’s influential Department of Anthropology; and the papers of Ernest W. Burgess, Louis Wirth, Everett Hughes, and other leaders in Chicago sociology.

Sol Tax

Sol Tax, Professor of Anthropology at the University of Chicago. n.d. University of Chicago Photographic Archive, apf1-08219. Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

The Library’s annual Robert Platzman Memorial Fellowships bring visiting scholars from the national and international scholarly community. This year, one Platzman Fellow from the University of Cambridge is examining the papers of Charles Merriam, Harold Gosnell, and others for a study of attitudes toward American public opinion. Using the papers of Ernest Burgess and Robert Havinghurst, a graduate student from Indiana University is researching a dissertation on the Guatemalan Indigenismo movement. A scholar from the University of Oxford is examining the papers of Louis Brownlow, Leonard White, and other faculty for a study of American political science. And a graduate student from the University of Minnesota is using the papers of faculty member A.K. Ramanujan to examine literary debates in nineteenth-century South India.

Visit the online University of Chicago Photographic Archive at photoarchive.lib.uchicago.edu.

Block group paints, 600 block of South Bowen.

Block group paints, 600 block of South Bowen. Mildred Mead, photographer. April 30, 1952. University of Chicago Photographic Archive, apf2-09636. Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

Enabling discovery of the Saul Bellow Papers: A gift from Bob and Carolyn Nelson

2015 marks the centennial of the birth of the late Saul Bellow. The 1976 Nobel laureate in literature, Bellow taught as a member of the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago from 1962 to 1993, immortalizing Hyde Park and the city of Chicago in his novels and making a lasting impression on generations of students. Now, thanks to a generous gift from alumni Bob Nelson and Carolyn Nelson, 2015 is also the year when the processing of the University of Chicago’s Saul Bellow Papers begins.

Saul Bellow

Saul Bellow, signing copies of his book “Humboldt’s Gift” in the university bookstore. September 1975. Photographer John Vail. University of Chicago Photographic Archive, apf1-00516, Special Collections Research Center, The University of Chicago Library.

The Saul Bellow Papers include 145 linear feet of material dating from roughly 1940 to 2003. The collection is currently divided into 71 parts, reflecting a series of gifts, deposits, and acquisitions that began in 1963. Almost half of the Papers—a total of more than 222,000 pages—are manuscripts, letters, and other materials written by Saul Bellow himself.

Because of the generosity of the Nelsons, the Bellow Papers can now be fully reviewed, systematically rearranged into one unified collection, and described in a comprehensive manner for the first time. The collection will be organized into a single sequence of nine archival series: biographical, correspondence, writings by Saul Bellow, writings by others, honors and awards, photographs, memorabilia, oversize, and restricted private letters. After arrangement and description are completed, a guide to the collection with a comprehensive inventory of all materials will be added to the online Special Collections Finding Aid Database, where it can be searched in the context of related collections and discovered worldwide through all web search engines. The fully organized Saul Bellow Papers will be available for consultation by faculty, students, and visiting researchers and scholars in the Special Collections Research Center Reading Room.

“The Nelsons’ gift will be invaluable to scholars on campus and around the world, who will be able to discover comprehensive descriptions of the archives online,” said Brenda Johnson, Library Director and University Librarian.

The increased accessibility of the Saul Bellow Papers, and the scholarship such access will enable, are important to the Nelsons. “Bellow is acknowledged as one of the preeminent novelists of his (and our) time,” Bob wrote. “Processing his papers will advance understanding and appreciation of his work.”

Carolyn and Bob Nelson

Carolyn and Bob Nelson

The Nelsons feel an enthusiasm for the Papers that harkens back to their days as students at UChicago, when they saw Bellow strolling around Hyde Park and enjoyed reading their favorite Bellow novel, Herzog. Graduates of the Humanities Division, Bob, AM’64, and Carolyn, AM’64, PhD’67, are avid collectors of literature who have assembled more than 6,000 books including approximately 300 first editions. Carolyn is a longstanding member of the Visiting Committee to the Library, serving since 2005, and Bob served on the Visiting Committee to the Division of the Social Sciences from 2005 to 2013. Carolyn, whose degrees are in English, is a distinguished bibliographer who worked at Yale University Library updating the foundational Short-Title Catalogue of Books . . . 1641-1700, and launched a groundbreaking companion catalogue, British Newspapers and Periodicals 1641-1700. The Nelsons’ support thus extends Carolyn’s lifelong commitment to enabling the study of literature in English.

Even unprocessed, scholars have begun finding gems in the collection. Benjamin Taylor makes special note of letters from Bellow’s father and John F. Kennedy in our Library’s Bellow Papers in his 2010 volume of Bellow’s selected correspondence. Zachary Leader, author of the 2015 biography The Life of Saul Bellow, relied heavily on our collection for his work. Their initial discoveries speak to the tremendous potential of the Papers as the collection becomes more widely known.

New online resource: IBISWorld

University of Chicago researchers now have access to IBISWorld.

IBISWorldIBISWorld is a database that provides comprehensive industry reports for over 700 industries ranging from biotechnology to pawn shops.  These reports provide strategic insight and analysis which can be used to gain a better understanding of market conditions and forecasts, industry supply chain, and competitive landscape.

The reports include breakdowns of industry performance, outlook, products and markets, major competitors and operation conditions.  In addition to being able to download the complete report, key statistics can be downloaded to excel and specific infographics can be downloaded and inserted into your own reports and presentations.  

Questions? Ask A Librarian.
 

Library purchases access to Met Opera on Demand

Photograph from Les Contes d'Hoffmann

Les Contes d’Hoffmann
Abel; Morley, Gerzmava, Rice, Grigolo, Hampson

     The Metropolitan Opera was founded in 1883, with its first opera house built on Broadway and 39th Street.  One-hundred-twenty-three years after its formation, the Metropolitan entered the digital world with its 2006 release of The Met: Live in HD.  This digital transmission product now reaches 70 countries with live high definition performances.  Later, in 2008, the Metropolitan released Met Opera on Demand.  This online source, to which the Library now subscribes, includes 550 opera performances, some being varying productions of the same work.  Library users can follow the link for Met Opera on Demand to access the resource.  For the website to function properly, users must be certain their personal computers have the most recent version of Adobe Flash Player installed.

The Spirit of the Nation or the War between the Jews and Sanballat: A Gift to the Jewish Studies Collection

Book cover of The Spirit of the Nation in Hebrew

Book cover of The Spirit of the Nation by Kless

Few voices like that of Menachem Mendel ben Hayim Kless have emerged to shed light on the emotional sentiments of the first Eastern European Jews who left their homes and lives behind to venture to Ottoman Palestine in the 1880s during the First Aliyah, a period that saw the emigration of tens of thousands of Jews. His book Ruah ha-Le’om (Kishinev: Tipografīi︠a︡. A.S. Stepanovoĭ, 1890) is one such voice. Thanks to the generosity of Linda Stern, a descendent of Kless, the University of Chicago Library is now one of only four libraries worldwide that holds a copy. The copy donated by Ms. Stern is in excellent condition and an excellent complement to the Ludwig Rosenberger Collection of Judaica. It is available for viewing through the Special Collections Research Center as well as accessible in digitized form through HathiTrust (title page pictured here).

As a participant in the Hibbat Tsiyon (Love of Zion) movement, Kless composed the work as a plea to its readers imploring them to follow their coreligionists out of a continent that had turned against them upon the ascension of Alexander III of Russia. Throughout this short book, Kless employs the metaphor of the opposition of Sanballat the Horonite to the construction of the Second Temple in Nehemiah’s time (see especially Nehemiah 4). Written entirely as an address to the reader and containing within it references to the Bible and rabbinic literature, the Ruah ha-Le’om reads like a well-crafted sermon – a pietistic rallying cry.

: Receipt for money wired from Bella Greenspan in Israel to her brother Leizar Kless

Receipt for money wired from Bella Greenspan (née Kless) in Israel to her brother Leizar Kless, ca. 1900 (image taken by Linda Stern).

Reading Ruah ha-Le’om serves to compliment the reading of more well-known works by the Hovevei Tsiyon (Lovers of Zion), most notably Leon Pinsker’s famous German language pamphlet Auto-Emancipation (1882) as well as the many works by the famed Hebrew essayist Ahad Ha’am. Reading Kless’s work in light of these two thinkers is of particular interest to those interested in the history of the revival of Hebrew as the official language of Jewish settlements in Palestine and eventually as the national language of Israel. When considering the debate between the rival Hebrew and German factions, we ought to consider a work like Ruah ha-Le’om as an influential factor.

Menachem Mendel Kless (1846-1916) was born and lived much of his life in Poland. He wrote Ruah ha-Le’om while he was still in Europe. After arriving to Palestine in 1902, Kless along with many of the Hovevei Tsiyon took up residence in Rishon le-Tsiyon, one of the first pre-state Jewish settlements, where he was a Hebrew teacher. Menachem’s devotion to Palestine was not uniformly shared by his children. According to family letters held by the donor, Linda Stern, we learn that only two children, Bella and Haim, remained in Palestine. Two children, Keila and Fabi, left for Egypt, though Fabi later returned at the end of his life. Keila’s daughter married a British citizen and moved to England after the Second World War. Menachem’s youngest daughter, Nehama, immigrated first to Berlin and then Riga and likely did not survive World War II. Leizar, later Louis, left Palestine early in his life and eventually settled in New York. He is the great grandfather of the donor, Linda Stern.