Archive for the ‘Found in Archives’ Category

#howtotuesday: Prevent Yellow Fever

#howtotuesday: Prevent Yellow Fever

Above: sanitary map of the city of New Orleans

Yellow Fever, sometimes called Yellow Jack or Yellow Plague, is a viral disease transmitted to humans by the bite of female mosquitoes of the Aedes aegypti species. Most cases of Yellow Fever cause mild symptoms including fever, headache, and chills; however, approximately 15% of cases develop into toxic, severe stages of recurring fever, jaundice (yellowing of the skin) due to liver damage, abdominal pain, vomiting, and internal bleeding.

The city of New Orleans was plagued by several epidemics of Yellow Fever during the 19th century, the most deadly in 1853. Sadly, in a single year, 7,849 residents of New Orleans (population: 154,000) succumbed to the illness.

The Yellow Fever epidemic of 1853 led to further study of the viral disease and publication of The Cause and Prevention of Yellow Fever at New Orleans and Other Cities in America, a text investigating “the origin and mode of transmission of the great epidemic of last year, together with all causes affecting the salubrity of the city.”

The publication includes eight foldouts, each employing a map or chart to illustrate data.

Above: chart exhibiting the annual mortality of New Orleans

Local researchers conducted many experiments in an attempt to control the epidemic, including but not limited to, purifying the air by burning tar and firing canons throughout the city (a method only employed once). After identifying mosquitoes as the transmitters of Yellow Fever, efforts were launched to control the breeding of insects, particularly through extensive sanitation–an endeavor largely responsible for ending the crisis.

Interested in learning more about the Yellow Fever epidemic of 1853? Visit us in Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives Monday-Thursday, 9:00-4:30 or Friday, 9:00-12:00 where The Cause and Prevention of Yellow Fever at New Orleans and Other Cities in America and additional texts (like this one) are available for viewing!

I hope each of you have a wonderful holiday weekend (and don’t forget to wear a bit of bug spray)!

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.

Happy birthday, Prufrock

T. S. Eliot’s seminal poem “The love song of J. Alfred Prufrock” was published 100 years ago this month. “Prufrock” made its first appearance in the June 1915 issue of Poetry: A Magazine of Verse. That original publication can be viewed online at Brown University’s Modernist Journals Project. The poem was later published in 1917′s Prufrock and Other Observations and has since been included in most collections of Eliot’s work.

Prufrock

Special Collections has a number of works by Eliot in the Robert Giroux Collection of 20th century American writers. Pictured above is the first page of the poem in Poems 1909-1925.

This particular copy, like many other works in this collection, was signed by Giroux.

Giroux_signature

To see this, and other works by and about T.S. Eliot, visit the Booth-Bricker Special Collections & Archives Reading Room Monday-Thursday, 9:00-4:30 and Friday, 9:00-12:00.

SCA Shelves

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.

Fine Press & Artists’ Books

So, what exactly are Fine Press & Artists’ books?

Artists’ books harmoniously combine content (both the written word and visual imagery), design, and form to share a message. Artists’ books can employ a wide range of forms, including, but not limited to, scrolls, foldouts, accordion style pleating, or loose items contained in a box.

Simply stated, Artists’ books are not books about art—they are art expressed in book form.

A Spring Garden

Similarly, Fine Press books, often valuable and intrinsically beautiful, harken back to centuries preceding the advent of mass production. They are composed of artist-selected content and are created on a small scale, with a limited number of copies.

A Sound Beyond – Un suono al di là

Both Fine Press & Artists’ books are generally printed on high-quality paper using equipment controllable by a single individual, usually a hand operated press.

Interested in learning more? Visit the Booth-Bricker Special Collections & Archives Reading Room over the next seven weeks to view this summer’s Special Collections & Archives exhibition, Recent Acquisitions: Fine Press  & Artists’ Books!

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.

Frankenstein Photos Found!

Today we take a look at a few interesting photographs we found while processing some of our University Archives images. These are from a drama department rehearsal for a production of Frankenstein in 1994.

The performance looks to have been a dynamic interpretation of the classic and fabled story written by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelly in 1818.

I did some preliminary research and was unable to find if a particular play was used for the basis of this performance.

The physicality in these photos does indicate perhaps that the direction was informed by The Living Theater version first performed in 1965.

The Living Theater production was known for being created collectively by the performers as well as for its inventive staging using a large scaffold.

Do any of our former drama students, faculty, or alumni remember this production? If so, please let us know in the comments.

Remember to check out our Research Guide for Theater and Dance and feel free to come check out the Special Collections and Archives this summer from 9-4:30 Monday through Friday and if you would like to see more images of Loyola’s past please visit our Digital Archives 24 hours a day.

“The dislocation of man in the modern age”

He was a novelist, a philosopher, a scholar, a professor, and a legend.

Walker Percy, born in 1916 in Alabama, didn’t begin his life as any of these things.  In fact, in 1937, he graduated from the University of North Carolina with a B.A. in Chemistry and went on to graduate from the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University in 1941.

walkerpercy2

Twenty years later and his still-lasting legacy was born with the publication of his first novel, The Moviegoer, which won the National Book Award for Fiction.

He moved to Covington, Louisiana with his wife and went on to write a handful of books, fiction and nonfiction, ranging from topics of philosophy to semiotics to religion to science to life in the South.

walkerpercy3

However, “the dislocation of man in the modern age” was what Percy called the overarching theme of his works.

While balancing his fight with tuberculosis, and eventually cancer, with his career as a published author, Percy taught and mentored young writers here at Loyola.

During his time here, he was one of the key members in getting John Kennedy Toole’s novel A Confederacy of Dunces published in 1980, more than a decade after Toole’s death. The novel went on to win the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

After the passing of both he (1990) and his wife, Mary (2012), a special collection was started in Monroe Library’s Archives dedicated to the life and works of Walker Percy.

walkerpercy1

Including everything from handwritten notes and speeches to collected articles he authored to correspondents with other noteworthy authors to the checks he and his wife wrote on a daily basis, the entirety of the compilation spans across five different collections donated to Archives by both loved ones and collectors.

walkerpercy4

walkerpercy5

Novelist Francine du Plessix Gray called Walker Percy, “our greatest Catholic novelist since Flannery O’Connor.” Many since agree.

If you’d live to find out for yourself and check out any of the Walker Percy collection, all of the materials are available for viewing in Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives Monday-Thursday, 9:00-4:30.

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.

This post was compiled by student worker Mary Graci.

World’s Worst Singer?

“Some may say that I couldn’t sing, but no can say that I didn’t sing.”

So said Florence Foster Jenkins, considered by some to be the worst soprano the world has ever seen. The brief celebrity of the “Diva of Din” was a pre-American Idol example of the public ironically supporting the less-than-talented. Though the facts of Jenkins’ early life are much debated, what is known is that she was a wealthy socialite who funded her own debut at Carnegie Hall in 1944. 5,000 people showed up for a 3,000 seat venue, and scalpers were able to sell their two-dollar tickets for $20. Her triumph was short-lived as she passed away only a month later.

In 1946, the Melotone Recording Studio published a brochure about Jenkins written by Milton Bendiner. The brochure includes quotes from the press as well as Jenkins’ supposed complete discography.

One excerpt in the brochure details Earl Wilson of the New York Post discussing Jenkins with her PR rep.

“I asked her personal representative, Sinclair Bayfeld, ‘Why?’

‘She loves music,’ he said.

‘If she loves music, why does she do this?’ I asked.

He said she uses proceeds to assist young artists and, incidentally, she walked away with about 4 G’s last night. Maybe the joke’s on us. None of us walked away from that with anything except a dizziness, a headache, and a ringing in the ears.”

Just how bad was Florence Foster Jenkins? You be the judge. Two of her most “famed” performances were of Mozart’s “Queen of the Night” aria and Delibes’ “Bell Song.” You can also listen to Jenkins’ album The Glory (????) of the Human Voice through Loyola’s Naxos subscription.

Jenkins’ life has inspired two plays, Souvenir and  Glorious!: The True Story of Florence Foster Jenkins, the Worst Singer in the World, and an upcoming movie starring Meryl Streep.

This pamphlet can be viewed in Special Collections & Archives or in the Louisiana Digital Library.

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.

Tiny texts, powerful prayers.

Today we glimpse into one of the smallest objects in Special Collections & Archives, a miniature volume measuring a mere 12 cm (4 13/16 in.). The devotional text entitled “Prières au saint sacrement de l’autel pour chaque semaine de l’année: avec des méditations sur divers psaumes de david” or “Eucharistic Prayers for Every Week of the Year with Meditations on Diverse Psalms of David,” was published in Tours, France in the year 1848.

The book contains four small, engraved illustrations, each measuring only 6.8 x 4.4 cm (2 11/16 x 1 3/4 in.).

Until approximately the 1870’s creating book illustrations required two steps: first, an artist produced a composition or design on paper; subsequently, an engraver transferred the desired picture to wood or cooper for printing. Therefore, beneath each illustration within the 1848 publication are the inscriptions “L. J. Hallez del.” and “A. Oleszczynski sc.” identifying Louis-Joseph Hallez, a French author and illustrator, as delineator or designer of the composition and Antoni Oleszczynski, a Polish engraver best known for his work as a portraitist, as sculptor, or in this case, engraver of the image.

Without further ado, below is a transcription of this week’s Eucharistic Prayer (as translated into English by Rachel Masters):

Week XXII

Only Son of God, who are one with your Heavenly Father, who want your disciples to be one with you, all formed of the same blood, who yourself have opted to unite with this blood, we present here the same earthly bread outside, the same heavenly bread within, so that you are in each of us, and each of us complete in you, and together a single body with you! Oh! How can you suffer amongst your brethren, amongst your children, even amongst your members, such fatal divisions? Sacrament of peace, sacrament of union, will you handle the matter of our wars and our discords? It is not just, Lord, that you descended from the cross to convert those who do not believe in you; their hardness is an obstacle to make them see your miracles. The miracle to do, Lord, for them and for us, is in their heart and in ours. Covert these hearts of stone into hearts of flesh, these hearts of flesh into hearts of spirit, and filled with your spirit, and then, Lord, we will worship you together at your alters and in your church, as your Angels worship you in heaven.

This and many other miniature books are available for viewing in Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives Monday-Thursday, 9:00-4:30.

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.

Summer Fun

Summer classes are in full swing, but hopefully Loyolans are still finding time for some fun this summer.

The original versions of these photos, and many more, can be found in the Loyola University New Orleans Photograph Collection.

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.

#ForgottenBookmarks : Ask Dad, he knows

Today, Library Lagniappe is tracking the origin of one of our forgotten bookmarks.

When I first came across this 1.5 inch x 2.5-inch card between the pages of a German Bible months ago, I figured it was advertising something related to religion – possibly a hand out from a church service. A Google search months later revealed that the phrase ”Ask Dad, he knows” was actually an advertising tagline for a once popular brand of cigarettes called Sweet Caporal. As I researched further I found that this phrase was a key plot point in the Frank Capra film It’s A Wonderful Life.

The phrase can be seen on a sign hanging on the wall during the pivotal scene where George Bailey discovers his boss has accidentally mixed poison into a customer’s prescription.

Stay tuned for future #ForgottenBookmarks finds and other cool stuff found in our archives and be sure to come check out the Special Collections & Archives in person, Monday through Thursday 9-4:30.

And in the spirit of finding the wonder in the world, enjoy this musical lagniappe:

Be a Bachelor (or Bacheloress) in New Orleans

#howtotuesday: Be a Bachelor (or Bacheloress) in New Orleans

With the arrival of summer holidays, pleasure-seekers descend upon New Orleans in full force. Whether you are an “unattached gentlemen or lady of spirit visiting” or perhaps a long-time “resident in the Paris of America,” The Bachelor in New Orleans provides a candid guide to the Crescent City. The charming handbook, printed in 1942 and illustrated with vibrant block prints throughout, launches directly into heart of the matter with “Chapter 1: Of Drink and the Devil,” a guide to New Orleans’ most potent beverages and notable bars (many of which are still in operation today).

Additional chapters provide the Bachelor with instruction on fine dining (“be kind to your food, and it will love you…so will the chef”), curing loneliness, surviving Mardi Gras, and my personal favorite, how not to be a tourist.

According to The Bachelor in New Orleans, in order to avoid the horror of being mistaken as a tourist, one should keep the following don’ts in mind:

  • Never, never kick garbage cans! This is a cardinal sin for Bachelors in New Orleans.
  • Never stand and stare at any happening, no matter how rare, outrageous, unseemly, or unconventional it may strike you. If an unusual happening is pleasant or gay, a New Orleans Bachelor unobtrusively takes part in it; if it is unpleasant, the Bachelor in New Orleans unobtrusively takes part in something else.
  • Never raise your voice above Martha Raye’s level. People across the river and in adjoining parishes have to sleep. In the French Quarter, of course, no one could sleep if a sudden quiet fell in the streets. Bed-occupiers would sit bolt upright, in a cold sweat!
  • Never ask an interesting looking individual if he is an artist. He might be one, in which case he will resent you. And if he is not, he may cause you some embarrassment.
  • Do not attempt to direct traffic or dance bands while over-intoxicated. You will not do your best job if you have had one too many, and a most remarkable and unpleasant snarl may result.

And finally,

  • If you are a male Bachelor, never make what could be considered the first pass at any woman you have not known all your life. If she is interested, or can be satisfactorily interested, she will make the first pass—and if you are a Bachelor in New Orleans, you will know when it happens. This rule does not apply to female Bachelors in New Orleans: being females, they have their own rules about these matters and do what they’re going to do anyway.

At any rate, don’t be a tourist.

For further tips on thriving in 1940’s New Orleans, visit the Special Collections & Archives to peruse The Bachelor in New Orleans in full.

Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.