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Next weekend is UConn’s Alumni Weekend and we are celebrating with two very special exhibits that we will highlight all next week right here on our blog.

Athletic Event, circa 1948

Athletic Event, circa 1948

Photographs from university activities and events are a significant portion of our collections, as is true with many archives in higher education institutions.  They are incredibly important in documenting life on campus.  But all too often the images are a result of staff photographers employed to take official pictures.  We often see a different idea of what was important when students are taking the images.  

The exhibit “Something Important Happened Today: Student Photography on Campus” is a special exhibit for us, as it is from the photograph collection of Carl Brandt, Class of 1949. While on campus in the late 1940s — a period of remarkable change on the Storrs campus — Brandt took thousands of photographs and this exhibit presents a selection of Dr. Brandt’s images, complemented by his memories.

A View of South Campus, circa 1947

A View of South Campus, circa 1947


Did you miss the Chris Shays lecture last month on staying true to yourself and your constitutents while in Washington?  It was a great lecture and you can view it on CT-N by clicking on the image below.

Chris Shays

Chris Shays

Summer vacation for school children around the country will soon be upon us, a time when we look forward to the excitement that summer brings.  It is also a good time to reflect on the importance of our educational instutions, and today we will do that with a brief look at the Montessori school system.   

Copyright Cowles Magazines and Broadcasting, Inc. publishers of LOOK Magazine

Copyright Cowles Magazines and Broadcasting, Inc. publishers of LOOK Magazine


Nearly 100 years ago Dr. Maria Montessori, an Italian physician, inspired the birth of this worldwide educational movement. Dr. Montessori, one of Italy’s first female physicians, became interested in education while caring for mentally challenged children in a psychiatric clinic in Rome. There she combined sensory-rich environments and hands-on experiential techniques in the hopes of reaching children previously labeled “deficient and insane.” The experiment was a resounding success and with it the start of what today is a network of nearly 1,200 schools across the country that have incorporated core elements of her model—multi-age classrooms and early childhood education.

The Dodd Center holds the records of the American Montessori Society, which was founded in 1960 and since that time has succeeded in reviving the Montessori method in the United States and gaining recognition for it as a valid educational system. The society has become the foremost resource in America for Montessori education and teacher training. Check out more information at


An excerpt from Connecticut Campus, May 9, 1945.

So in this moment of triumph in Europe, when human nature practically compells us to feel that the worst is over and apathy is now in order, let us stop and consider. If ever America and the world needed moral, physical, and financial support – it is now.  Now is the time to dig in the hardest for there is a long torturous road ahead.

It is so easy to delude ourselves into feeling anything we could do would make no perceptible difference, but if anything we can do even helps shorten the war by one second and save one boy’s life – it should not have been in vain.

On Monday, May 4, 2009, at 2:30pm Ms. Thea Guidone will present the results of her research in the Northeast Children’s Literature Collection housed at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center.  A recipient of the James Marshall Fellowship, Ms. Guidone is a children’s writer who lives in Hamden. At the University of Connecticut, she studied Children’s Literature with Francelia Butler, and Creative Writing with Matthew Proser, Elaine Scarry and Feenie Ziner. She earned her master’s degree at Yale University.  An active member of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, Ms. Guidone won Connecticut’s 2006 Tassy Walden Award for New Voices in Children’s Literature and is the author of Drum City (Tricycle Press, May 2010). She is at work on a middle grade novel set in New Haven in 1925.

Ms. Guidone will discuss subtext in schoolbooks and novels for girls, circa 1920’s, that informed and reinforced attitudes about wealth, privilege and class.  The presentation will take place in the Dodd Research Center’s conference room 162 and is free and open to the public.

Published by Kent Popular Press and Kent Left Studios Forum in 1980.  Cover Photo from the Kent State University Archives.

Published by Kent Popular Press and Kent Left Studios Forum in 1980. Cover photo from the Kent State University Archives.

On this day in 1970, the Commons at Kent State University was the place 500+ students gathered to rally against the invasion of Cambodia the day before.  This started a train of events over the next few days that culminated in the death of 4 students and 9 others wounded on what is known as the May 4 massacre.  

What is has become a powerful and pervasive symbol of many things to different people, it is at very least a fascinating event for research.  The strength of the Alternative Press Collection at the Dodd Research Center pertains to the Vietnam era and related unrest with alternative tabloids from the 1960s and early 1970s include Georgia Straight, The Berkeley Barb, and East Village Other.  It’s a great resource to learn more about the anti-war struggle that sparked the events of May 1.