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December 19, 2006

UAlbany Libraries Announce Acquisition of Congressman Sherwood Boehlert’s Papers

M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives Adds to Significant Collection

ALBANY, NY (December 19, 2006)--The University at Albany’s Libraries have acquired the papers of U.S. Congressman Sherwood Boehlert (R-24th District). Mr. Boehlert recently retired, after serving in the U.S. Congress since first elected in 1982.

Congressman Boehlert’s papers will add significantly to UAlbany’s New York State Modern Political Archive. His papers include approximately 500 boxes, and stand as record of a long and productive career serving the people of New York. Among Mr. Boehlert’s many achievements was his chairmanship of the House Science Committee; he also served on committees on Transportation and Infrastructure. By appointment of the Speaker of the House, Congressman Boehlert served for eight years as a member of the Select Committee on Intelligence, where he was on the front line of important intelligence decisions faced by Congress. Early in 2003, the Speaker appointed Boehlert to serve on the newly created Select Committee on Homeland Security.

In addition to being a leader on science issues, Boehlert’s legislative experience and seniority made him one of the most influential Members of Congress. National Journal featured him as one of a dozen "key players" in the House. Time Magazine highlighted Congressman Boehlert as a power center on Capitol Hill. Congressional Quarterly regularly named Boehlert one of the 50 most effective lawmakers in Washington.

The New York State Modern Political Archive includes the papers from 23 former New York Congressional members and 41 legislators who served in the New York State Legislature. According to Brian Keough, head of the Libraries' M.E. Grenander Special Collections and Archives, “This acquisition was completed to strengthen scholarly research and to support the long-term preservation and access to New York’s political history in one central location.� Contact Brian Keough for detailed information: 518-437-3931 or bkeough@uamail.albany.edu.

Albany’s University Libraries are ranked as one of the top 100 research libraries in the United States by the Association of Research Libraries. The Libraries serve the University’s community, the citizens of New York State, and scholars and researchers from around the world. For up-to-date information about the University’s Libraries, see the Website: http://library.albany.edu.

December 18, 2006

Student Projects Using the Department and Collections

Every year hundreds of students from the University at Albany and other institutions from around the world use the Department of Special Collections and Archives' collections. Most of these uses are thought of as fairly traditional-theses, dissertations, papers, oral history interviews, an occasional exhibit, etc. A couple graduate students happened to send me links to their projects over the weekend that used the Department or its collections in some way this semester and I thought I would share them here.

"The Journey of a Curious Doll" was created by Jenn Russell as part of her IST 659: Digital Imaging & Web course. (It isn't displaying properly for me using Mozilla Firefox, so take a look using IE or another browser.) Jenn's project used the Department exhibit "The Secret Lives of Toys and Their Friends," as well as the entire Main Campus, as its setting and you will note that a few of the books from the exhibit are featured. Please note that I will not be letting every doll that asks spend time in our exhibit cases.

One of Charles Schlesinger's postings at his blog includes images from equipment and collections in the Department of Special Collections and Archives as well as our neighbor here on the third floor of the Science Library, the Preservation Department.

December 15, 2006

Subject Guides: Athletics and Sports and New York State Modern Political Archive

Subject guides for manuscript collections and record groups related to Athletics and Sports and for the New York State Modern Political Archive are now available. The Grenander Department's Subject Guides bring together collections from each of the distinctive manuscript and archival collections - the Archives of Public Affairs and Policy, Business, Literary, and Miscellany Collection, German and Jewish Intellectual Émigré Collection, and University Archives.

Over thirty Subject Guides are available on the Department's Website with more added on an ongoing basis. If you are interested in collections related to a topic not listed on the Subject Guide page, contact a member of the Department's staff for assistance.


Manuscript collections and record groups in the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives are arranged in a number of ways on our Website including by topical subject heading, collecting area, and alphabetically. There is a brief description of each manuscript collection or record group and, when available, a link to a finding aid (an in-depth description and inventory) for each collection. For reference queries or information about subjects not listed here, please contact the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives reference staff or (518) 437-3935.

December 13, 2006

UAlbany Libraries Announce Acquisition of Papers from Congressional and Legislative Leaders

From the press release available in PDF format here.

The University at Albany's Libraries have added another, varied collection of political papers to its important archive, New York State Modern Political Archive.

The collection, received from Syracuse University Libraries, includes the papers from 22 former new York Congressional members and 41 legislators who served in the New York State Legislature. This acquisition was completed to strengthen scholarly research and to support the long-term preservation and access to New York's political history by placing the materials at the University at Albany Libraries' premier political archive, which includes more than 300 collections from advocacy groups, poliitcal activists, and legislators integral to New York State's public policy.

According to Brian Keough, head of the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, "The continued development of the New York State Modern Political Archive will better serve scholars and students of modern political history by making accessible a comprehensive archive available in one centralized location."

A celebration of the collection as well as to honor donors will be held in April 2007. Contact Brian Keough for detailed information: 518-437-3931 or bkeough@uamail.albany.edu.

December 12, 2006

New Finding Aids

Finding aids recently added to the Department of Special Collections and Archives' Website are briefly described below. Be sure to visit the finding aid for additional information about the collection.

Duncan Blanchard
The papers of Atmospheric Sciences Research Center scientist and professor Duncan Blanchard include manuscripts and correspondence.

William Kennedy
The inventory for the papers of William Kennedy continues to be updated with the most recent additions including the series for Kennedy's O Albany! and Charlie Malarkey books.

National Organization for Women--Albany (N.Y.) Chapter
The collection includes correspondence, minutes, by-laws, financial reports, subject files on women's issues, and printed materials pertaining to NOW with particular strength in documenting the Albany and New York State chapters. The records of this women's organization pertain to sexual discrimination in education and employment, reproductive rights, gay and lesbian rights, the Equal Rights Amendment, and other gender-related issues.

Alexander Semmler
The inventory for the papers of composer Alexander Semmler is also now available online. Semmler was active in radio and film, serving as staff conductor and pianist fo rthe CBS Orchestra and as composer and conductor for films released by RKO Pathe. Semmler's compositions include opus numbers as well as numerous songs and other short works. These include works for orchestra, string and chamber orchestra, chamber groups of all sorts, piano, organ, and voice.

December 6, 2006

Intersession Hours

The last evening the Department of Special Collections and Archives will be open during the Fall 2006 semester is Wednesday, December 13th. The Department will be open Monday-Friday 9am-5pm from December 18 through January 19. The Department will be closed on December 25-26 and January 1 and 18.

The Department's complete hours can be found here.