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A Monument Man at SUI

Two collections in the Iowa Digital Library, University of Iowa Alumni Publications and University of Iowa Yearbooks include over 40,000 pages of campus history.  Locating a specific name or event would be a challenge, but Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology allows the collections to be full text searchable.

The name George Stout has been in the news a lot lately as the basis for the lead character in the movie Monuments Men.  A 1921 graduate of what was then the State University of Iowa (SUI), he also makes several other appearances in the both the yearbooks and alumni publications.

George Stout, Hawkeye Yearbook, 1921

George Stout, Hawkeye Yearbook, 1921

Stout is listed among the artists of the humor publication Frivol, which while unfortunately not digitized, is available in the University Archives’ Student-produced Publications and Newsletters Collection.

Frivol 1920

Frivol, 1920

Stout - Frivol

Frivol Staff, 1921

Stout is also mentioned in the March 1921 issue of the Iowa Alumnus for delivering a short address for Foundation Day, the UI’s 74th birthday.  While there’s no accompanying picture for this event, the IDL collection Iowa City Town and Campus Scenes includes several photographs from earlier Foundation Days.

Foundation Day speech, The University of Iowa, 1910s?

Foundation Day speech, The University of Iowa, 1910s?

Finding information in Iowa Digital Library text collections is made simple through OCR and word highlighting.

Iowa Digital Library Image & Text Viewer

Iowa Digital Library Image & Text Viewer

Enjoy more than a million digital objects created from the holdings of the University of Iowa Libraries and its campus partners. Included are illuminated manuscripts, historic maps, fine art, historic newspapers, scholarly works, and more. Digital collections are coordinated by Digital Research & Publishing.


Remembering the Gettysburg Address

Today is the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. The Iowa Digital Library includes over 1000 items digitized from the archives of Lincolniana collector James Wills Bollinger.

View additional items from the Bollinger-Lincoln digital collection.

This is Abraham Lincoln, Page 14

This is Abraham Lincoln, 1941, Page 14 | The James W. Bollinger Digital Collection

This is Abraham Lincoln, Page 15

This is Abraham Lincoln, 1941, Page 15 | The James W. Bollinger Digital Collection


Lincoln, a story in poster stamps, 1939 | The James W. Bollinger Digital Collection









The Gettysburg Speech, Bernard Wall etching, 1924 | The James W. Bollinger Digital Collection.


Dada/Surrealism re-launched


We are very excited that after a hiatus of over twenty years, the journal Dada/Surrealism has been relaunched. It is a peer-reviewed, open-access electronic journal sponsored by the Association for the Study of Dada and Surrealism and published by the International Dada Archive, University of Iowa Libraries, with managing editor Tim Shipe.

The newest issue focuses on Surrealism and Egypt.  Issues in process will focus on Dada, Surrealism, and Romania and on Dada and Surrealist Exhibitions.

The University of Iowa Libraries hosts the journal in our institutional repository, Iowa Research Online. The software provides peer review software for the editors as well as a good display for each issue. Each article is available as a PDF and also in html.


Bon Voyage, Christine!

We in Digital Research & Publishing sadly bid fond farewell to Christine Tade. Christine’s involvement in DRP extends back almost to the beginning of the department, to a 2006 professional development internship, where Christine learned the ins-and-outs of applying descriptive metadata to Iowa Digital Library materials. Afterward, Christine was the point person for digital collection metadata in the Cataloging department, training and supervising staff there, finding ways to bend the software to her will and making more archival collections usable online.

"A thoroughbred" 1907

Christine officially joined Digital Research & Publishing in 2012, six months after the launch of DIYHistory, the Libraries crowdsourcing transcriptions project. While continuing her digital collection work, Christine transitioned into the role of chief correspondent with transcribing participants, answering questions and also transcribing and reviewing many manuscripts herself. In July, DIYHistory reached a major milestone, 35,000 pages transcribed.

Automobile crossing a bridge on a dirt road, Iowa, 1922

Christine has contributed greatly to the success of many projects and collection initiatives. We wish her the very best in her retirement!


Remembering Chinua Achebe

Chinua Achebe (1930–2013) never came to Iowa City, so our connection with him in our collection is slight. However, since he recently died and given the importance of his work, I wanted to highlight a few items in our digital collections.


Pictured are: (from left) Louis Lomax, Bill Kelley, Esther Walls, John Killens, Chinua Achebe, Leroi Jones

The Esther Walls papers include 3 pictures of him at the Countee Cullen Branch of the New York Public Library in May, 1963. He was part of a black writers panel, moderated by Esther Walls. Other panelists were Louis Lomax, Bill Kelley, John Killens and Leroi Jones.


Esther Walls moderating a panel of black writers. Pictured are: (from left) Bill Kelley, Chinua Achebe, Louis Lomax, Esther Walls, Leroi Jones (obscured), John Killens

We of course also have many books written by him; reading his works is the best way to remember his legacy.


Happy birthday Bram Stoker

Here are some items from our collection that would make appropriate reading for Bram Stoker’s 165th birthday:

Perry, Dennis R.. “Whitman’s Influence on Stoker’s Dracula.” Walt Whitman Quarterly Review 3 (12 1986), 29-35. http://ir.uiowa.edu/wwqr/vol3/iss3/5

Explores the hitherto neglected topic of Whitman’s potential influence on his admirer, Bram Stoker, emphasizing the writers’ mutual fascination with death, with the boundaries of body and self, and with the connectedness between things; explicates Stoker’s “nightmarish inversion” of Whitman’s themes.

Havlik, Robert J. “Walt Whitman and Bram Stoker: The Lincoln Connection.” Walt Whitman Quarterly Review 4 (Spring 1987), 9-16. http://ir.uiowa.edu/wwqr/vol4/iss4/3

Describes the importance of the recent discovery of the University of Notre Dame Stoker/Lincoln manuscript and relates its importance to Stoker’s encounters with Whitman and the evolution of their relationship; suggests that Whitman may have influenced Stoker’s views on Lincoln.

Howe, Kathryn. “Vampire Boot Camp: Students Sunk Their Teeth into a Summer of Dark Literature” Iowa Alumni Magazine 59 (February 2006), 16-17. http://digital.lib.uiowa.edu/cdm/ref/collection/uap/id/23694

Butler, Erik. “Writing and Vampiric Contagion in Dracula.” Iowa Journal of Cultural Studies 2 (2002): 13-32. http://ir.uiowa.edu/ijcs/vol2/iss1/4/

Chambers, Samuel A. and Williford, Daniel (2004) “Anti-Imperialism in the Buffy-verse: Challenging the Mythos of Bush as Vampire Slayer,” Poroi: Vol. 3: Iss. 2: p. 109-129. http://ir.uiowa.edu/poroi/vol3/iss2/6
Nelson, John S. (2003) “Cowboys or Vampire Killers? The Bush Gang Rides Again, or American Figures in Foreign Affairs,” Poroi: Vol. 2: Iss. 2: p. 104-117. http://ir.uiowa.edu/poroi/vol2/iss2/7
Buscemi, Nicole Desiree. “Diagnosing narratives: illness, the case history, and Victorian fiction.” dissertation, University of Iowa, 2009. http://ir.uiowa.edu/etd/282.

Little Village archive

We recently added the back content of Little Village magazine in our repository, which will ensure this important local title will remain widely accessible (http://ir.uiowa.edu/littlevillage/). Many of the contributors are current or past University of Iowa faculty, students and employees.

Several months ago, Little Village staff contacted the University Archives to scan back issues of the magazine. Our Digital Preservation Librarian advised the LV volunteer regarding the digitization. DRP staff then advised another LV volunteer on the data needed to upload the items. This was a very successful collaboration with LV, especially from my perspective since they did so much of the work!

Our site includes all the issues, from July 2001 to the current issue (Sept./Oct. 2012). Each issue can be downloaded as a PDF or can be viewed on screen. Each of the covers displays, making the issues easily browsed.  You can search the back issues on our site, or you can use Iowa City Public Library’s Local News Index to find articles of interest.

We hope you enjoy looking at the last decade of Iowa City news and arts.


Winet new director of Digital Studio for Public Humanities

Jon Winet, Director of the Digital Studio for Public Humanities at the University of Iowa

Jon Winet has been named the inaugural director of the Digital Studio for Public Humanities at the University of Iowa.

The new Studio is a campus-wide initiative based in the Main Library that will encourage and support public digital humanities research and scholarship by faculty, staff, and students, including those involved in “Public Humanities in a Digital World,” one of the interdisciplinary faculty “clusters” that have been established so far under the UI Cluster Hire Initiative.

Provost P. Barry Butler Professor stated in a note to faculty late last week:

“Winet has long been a strong advocate and practitioner of public digital humanities and art.  Many of you may know him as one of the driving forces behind the online art and literature project The Daily Palette.  He directs The University of Iowa UNESCO City of Literature Mobile Application Development Team, which last fall launched ‘City of Lit,’ an iPhone app that highlights Iowa City’s rich literary history.  He has engaged in a series of collaborative projects around politics, art, language, and image in the Information Age, including ‘Novel Iowa City,’ an experimental community writing project created and presented via Twitter during the 2011 Iowa City Book Festival.  He is currently in pre-production on ‘First in the Nation,’ a New Media documentary project on the run-up to the 2012 Iowa Caucuses.  In 2007, he received the UI President’s Award  for State Outreach and Public Engagement.”

The Libraries is excited to have the Digital Studio located on the first floor of Main Library and we look forward to partnering with Jon and others on this exciting initiative. You will hear more about the Digital Studio in the months ahead, as it gets up and running under Jon’s leadership. Welcome, Jon!


Digital humanities director search underway

"Plenty of talent. What they need is a director" (Nov. 20, 1917) Editorial Cartoons of J.N. "Ding" Darling

After a series of digital humanities faculty hires, the University is now seeking an internal candidate to head the new Digital Studio for Public Humanities, to be housed in Main Library. We in DLS are excited about this latest development, and we look forward to building on recent experimental digital project collaborations with faculty members and ITS staff through a more coordinated approach led by the Provost’s Office.

Call for Applications-Director of the Digital Studio for Public Humanities

The University of Iowa invites applications for director of the Digital Studio for Public Humanities that is being developed in conjunction with the “Public Humanities in a Digital World” faculty cluster.  We seek a distinguished, dynamic, and visionary senior University of Iowa faculty member whose experiences—including interdisciplinary collaborations, technological innovations, public engagement, research, and teaching—will help the University launch this exciting new venture.

The Office of the Provost—in collaboration with the Office of the Vice President for Research (OVPR), the University Libraries, Information Technology Services (ITS), and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS)—is already at work creating and staffing the Studio in the Main Library.  The Provost will further support the Studio by providing three years of start-up funding, and the OVPR will offer competitive seed grants for faculty projects.  ITS and the Libraries also offer competitive awards to support imaginative uses of technology for teaching. The successful candidate will have expertise in the digital humanities, success in engaging public audiences, experience in administration, strong evidence of academic leadership, demonstrated ability to work effectively and inclusively with a wide range of constituencies including students, and an established research agenda.

For more information, contact the Office of the Provost.


Digital humanities faculty searches underway

At Digital Library Services we are excited to see the new job postings for four faculty positions in support of a cluster initiative in Public Humanities in a Digital World. The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is searching for the first three of an eventual six positions under this initiative. The new School of Library and Information Science director will be an active participant in the initiative as well.

“All positions in this initiative require interest in engaging collaboratively with communities and organizations across and outside the university.  New hires under this initiative will actively participate in exploring the role of digital practices on the production of scholarship and creative work in projects central to the humanities,” according to the job descriptions.

 For more information on the cluster hires, see the recent news release.

—Nicole Saylor
Head, Digital Library Services