History in the Rough–Pondering the Imponderable

Clement Winston was an economist who worked for the United States Bureau of Budget—which doesn’t sound too exciting, right?  WRONG!  It turns out “Clem,” as he was known, is one of the most delightful fellows out there!  A Russian immigrant who arrived in the United States as a youngster, Clem considered himself an American through and through; yet, somehow America did not necessarily agree.  Because of his Russian heritage, Winston was questioned at a hearing before the Loyalty Board for the Department of Commerce in the early 1950s.  Despite this immensely stressful time in his life, Clem was full of creativity, humor, and love for his family.

Join Kislak catalogers at History in the Rough, a pop up exhibit on December 6, from 11:30 to 1:30 in the main floor lobby of Van Pelt Library, to become acquainted with Clem!

History in the Rough–100 years after the Armistice

100 years ago, in 1918, at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the armistice was signed between Germany and the Allies, bringing World War I to an end.  The war had gone on for four years resulting in around 40 million casualties (about 20 million dead and 20 million wounded).  Across the world, the news was shared, entries were made in diaries, and events to celebrate and memorialize the dead were organized.

Join Kislak catalogers at History in the Rough, a pop up exhibit on November 12, from 11:30 to 1:30 in the main floor lobby of Van Pelt Library, to rediscover the moments that led up to that historic day and its aftermath as societies healed.

History in the Rough–Are Computers Newsworthy?

Today, almost everyone walks around with a tiny and powerful computer in their pocket … but in 1946, when John Mauchly and J. Presper Eckert invented the first all-electronic computer, the ENIAC, right here on Penn’s campus, it took up the entire basement of the Moore School.  Until his death in 1980, Mauchly worked in this emerging field and reduced the size of a computer down to “a computer in a suitcase.”  In 1962, he predicted that business folk would be carrying computers in their suit pockets!

The Kislak Center holds the John Mauchly papers which demonstrate the man and the evolution of computing technology over the past 72 years.  Join Kislak catalogers at History in the Rough, a pop up exhibit, November 8, from 11:30 to 1:30 in the main floor lobby of Van Pelt Library, to see a few documents (both fun and technical) from the collection of a man who truly changed the world.

HISTORY IN THE ROUGH

The Special Collections Processing Center is excited to introduce History in the Rough, a series of Pop-Up Exhibits to be held on the main floor lobby of the Van Pelt Library.

Special Collections ARE History in the Rough—they are the raw material of our past—unpolished, un-edited, and un-interpreted.  We know that history is written by the victors and Napoleon Bonaparte said “history is the version of past events that people have decided to agree upon.” Special collections provide a fuller spectrum of our past—you will find the good, the bad, and the ugly—but it will be someone’s truth.  Archival collections hold letters, diaries, photographs, speeches, and articles by people who lived during historic (and not so historic) events.  Rare books demonstrate the views of the writers and issues of the time—some were even banned.

In the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts, you will find thousands of stories … all of which tell part of our larger and collective history.  Come to History in the Rough … discover just a few of these stories!