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Notable acquisitions 2019

By December 13, 2019September 16th, 2023No Comments

Andersen Horticultural Library

Phytographie médicalePhytographie médicale

A generous gift, Phytographie médicale is a beautifully illustrated 19th-century, two-volume account of medicinal, narcotic, and poisonous plants, including mushrooms. The author, Joseph Roques, was a French botanist and physician. With 180 exquisite color plates of medicinal plants, it is a fine example of color printing a la poupée (literally, “with a doll” or wad of cloth), with careful hand finishing.

Borchert Map Library

Map of Scandinavia (1730)Map of Scandinavia (1730)

The Borchert Map Library has acquired a hand-colored example of Herman Moll’s map of Scandinavia, printed circa 1730, with a large inset map and five vignettes, including a very early example of skiing. The map, titled A New Map of Denmark and Sweden According to the Newest and Most Exact Observations by H. Moll Geographer, includes fascinating notes on “the Laplanders being the most remarkable people in Europe.”

Children’s Literature Research Collections

Jamie Lee Curtis archiveJamie Lee Curtis Papers

Actor and author Jamie Lee Curtis has donated her drafts, proofs, correspondence, and related production material for a dozen of her picture books for children, including the best-selling Today I Feel Silly.

Jill McElmurry Papers

Donated by illustrator Jill McElmurry’s husband, Eric Webster, the collection contains original artwork, including gouache illustrations, sketches, and related items for works in the beloved Little Blue Truck series of picture books, as well as materials related to other titles illustrated by McElmurry.

See page 15 photo: Original gouache illustration for
The Little Blue Truck
, written by Alice Schertle and illustrated by Jill McElmurry.

Givens Collection of African American Literature 

The House Servant’s Directory, or a Monitor for Private Families: Comprising Hints on the Arrangement and Performance of Servants’ Work

This new addition to the Givens Collection is a first edition, published by Monroe & Francis in 1827. The book is written by Robert Roberts, making it the first cookbook by an African American author, and one of the first books by an African American author on any subject to be printed by a commercial publisher. Roberts was the maitre d’ for Christopher Gore, Governor and Senator of Massachusetts. This book was a standard reference for cooks and caterers of all races in the major Eastern cities for over a hundred years. 

Gorman Rare Art Book Collection

Photo of three images from 21st Editions collection.21st Editions Collection

In 2018, the University of Minnesota Libraries acquired the complete 21st Editions Collection and its foundational 21st Editions Archive. The 63 handmade books, along with The Journal of Contemporary Photography that make up this collection, offer a history of photography and the printed image through the art of the book. The archives include process prints, correspondence between the artists and publisher, sketches, and detailed production notes. The University of Minnesota and the National Gallery of Art are the only two institutions with a complete 21st Editions Collection.

Immigration History Research Center Archives

Tometaro Kitagawa PapersTometaro Kitagawa Papers

This new addition to the Immigration History Research Center Archives (IHRCA) is mainly comprised of diaries written by Tometaro Kitagawa each year between 1918 and 1960. These serve as primary sources on family and business life of a Japanese American living primarily in Minnesota. In addition, they provide insight into a family’s experience during World War II when President Roosevelt passed Executive Order 9066, ordering what many now recognize as the mass forced removal and incarceration of all Japanese Americans on the West Coast. 

James Ford Bell Library

Skizze meiner ReiseSkizze meiner Reise nach Brisilien von Nanette D’Erouvray. Meinen Freunden und Bekannten gewidmet. [Sketch of My Journey to Brazil by Nanette D’Erouvray. Dedicated to My Friends and Acquaintances.]

This manuscript on paper, circa 1831, was written by Nanette d’Erouvray, daughter of the head gardener at Schleissheim castle in Bavaria. D’Erouvray volunteered to accompany 17-year-old Princess Amélie de Leuchtenberg (1812–73) to her new home in South America when she wed Emperor Pedro I of Brazil. D’Erouvray, then in her mid-20s, left her native home on August 3, 1829. She recorded her travels both across the Atlantic and in Brazil in this spirited and informative journal. Travel narratives from the perspective of lower status people, women in particular, are quite rare and offer a unique perspective to life abroad and on board ship.

Performing Arts Archives

Dominick Argento PapersDominick Argento Papers

The archives of Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Dominick Argento include letters, score manuscripts, signed photographs, and several rare recordings. The materials illustrate the composer’s impressive creative output as well as his collaborative relationships with other Twin Cities musicians and musical groups, including Philip Brunelle and VocalEssence, Dale Warland and the Dale Warland Singers, the Minnesota Opera, and beloved tenor Vern Sutton.

Minnesota OperaMinnesota Opera

A treasure trove of new archival materials from the Minnesota Operate includes a rare reel-to-reel video recording with snippets from the Minnesota Opera’s very first production, Masque of Angels (1964), by local composer Dominick Argento. The new acquisitions document the opera company’s more than 50-year commitment to staging new works — from its early work with Argento to its more recent collaborations with Pulitzer Prize-winning composers such as Kevin Puts.

MSP Film Society

Minnesota’s foremost film society, the Film Society of Minneapolis St. Paul is dedicated to promoting film as an artistic medium. The Film Society is best known for the annual Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival (MSPIFF). The collection documents the organization’s long history of creating a local community for international cinema.

Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra RecordsSaint Paul Chamber Orchestra Records

The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra (SPCO) is widely recognized as one of the finest chamber orchestras in the world. The collection, spanning 180 boxes, documents the entire history of the ensemble, which is now in its 60th season. The collection includes programs, press clippings, touring files, guest artist files, and administrative records dating back to the earliest days of the chamber orchestra.

Tretter Collection in GLBT Studies

The Mary Zubrzycki Papers

Zubrzycki’s papers document her work as the founder of a path-breaking class for gay and lesbian parents in the Twin Cities during the late 1980s. As Zubrzycki notes in her donor’s statement: “In the fall of 1988 we advertised in the Minneapolis Public Schools [Early Childhood Family Education] bulletin for a new class called Alternative Parenting … At that time, there was very, very little written on anything about being a gay or lesbian parent … [So] we generated our own topics for discussion.” The collection includes flyers, curriculum plans, research materials, correspondence, and audiovisual recordings.

The Records of Dignity-Twin Cities and Rainbow Sash Alliance USAThe Records of Dignity-Twin Cities and Rainbow Sash Alliance USA

This collection, donated by Brian McNeill, contains administrative records of Dignity-Twin Cities and Rainbow Sash Alliance USA — organizations that offer space for LGBT Catholics, their families, and friends. The collection, which spans the years 1990-2013, includes correspondence, newsletters, press clippings, court documents, song sheets, photographs, administrative records, and liturgies, among other materials.

The finding aid for this collection is available online at

The Records of PFLAG-Red WingThe Records of PFLAG-Red Wing

This small collection documents the work of a Parents and Friends of Lesbian And Gays chapter located in Red Wing, Minnesota, that was active from 1993-2018. It includes administrative documents, clippings, T-shirts, and photographs.

Upper Midwest Jewish Archives

American Jewish World NewspaperAmerican Jewish World newspaper

The Upper Midwest Jewish Archives recently accepted over 100 years of the American Jewish World, a local newspaper dating back to 1915. The American Jewish World has served as the important news resource for Jewish communities across the state of Minnesota. Published weekly, each issue covers national and local politics, information on Jewish social life, community and synagogue news, and various social announcements. This new collection will be vital to researchers interested in the goings on in local Jewish life.

Upper Midwest Literary Archives 

Women Writers ArchiveWomen Writers Archive

The Upper Midwest Literary Archives welcomed several collections from women poets, teachers, and editors. Collectively, the archives document the creative and collaborative relationships present among women poets, editors, and publishers working in the Twin Cities, and highlight the role women play in building and supporting a literary community. Collections include the Morgan Grayce Willow papers, the Deborah Keenan papers, and records from small press publishers Paper Darts and Sing Heavenly Muse.

Wangensteen Historical Library 

English Medicine 

This manuscript pharmacopeia, circa 1807, includes 135 recipes containing directions for making various drugs, medicines, and domestic remedies. Unusual in this type of volume, it contains dosage requirements for patients by age and disease for cures such as “Spermaceti Draft for a Cough” and “Turnip Soup for Consumption.”

Recettes de Remedes Eprouvés: Manuscript 

This 1770 manuscript of medicinal and culinary recipes was written for military use. A number of the recipes are for remedies related to military combat.

English Cookery and Medicine 

Multiple handwriting samples suggest that several writers contributed to this work, written circa 1830.It includes directions for approximately 130 medicinal, veterinary, and domestic recipes. Examples include fever powder, softening oil for bruises, and cow’s foot cooked in milk and sugar “for a delecate (sic) child.”

Mark Engebretson

Author Mark Engebretson

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