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1938 Thanksgiving Proclamation Friday, November 22, 2013

Posted by capittsley in Archives, digital collections, history, New Resources @ CSL, updates.
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Governor Wilbur L. Cross

In 1936 Governor Wilbur L. Cross penned what is widely regarded as one of the most lyrical Thanksgiving Proclamations ever written. A former English Professor and Dean of Graduate Studies at Yale, Cross was elected as Connecticut’s 71st Governor in 1931. He served four terms and was defeated by Raymond E. Baldwin in 1938.

While the 1936 Thanksgiving Proclamation is a familiar piece today, in years past some of the other Thanksgiving Proclamations were equally well known. A Hartford Courant editor wrote in 1968 that “…the late Wilbur Lucius Cross in 1935 issued a Thanksgiving Proclamation that remains one of the classics of American prose.” His 1931 proclamation was noted for being one sentence of 176 words. He was quoted in a November 6, 1936 Hartford Courant article as having said “I wrote the proclamation in one sentence so that it would have to be quoted in full, if at all.”

It was his 1938 proclamation however that is a real treasure, as he was filmed reading it on December 9, 1938. It was the first time a Connecticut Governor had ever appeared in a sound film.

The Connecticut State Library is proud to bring you that historic film and all eight of Governor Cross’s official Thanksgiving Proclamations. The film can be viewed on our YouTube channel and the proclamations can be viewed in our Flickr collection.

On behalf of the staff and board of the Connecticut State Library, Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Connecticut State Library Receives Grant for Newspaper Digitization Friday, July 26, 2013

Posted by kabery in Archives, digital collections, genealogy, history, New Resources @ CSL, newspapers.
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NewspaperThe Connecticut State Library is pleased to announce that it has received an award of $274,034 from the National Endowment for the Humanities for a two-year National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP) grant to digitize historically significant Connecticut newspapers. The digital images will be included in the Library of Congress’ newspaper site: Chronicling America.

Following the NDNP guidelines, the $274,034 grant will allow Connecticut to add 100,000 pages, digitized from microfilm of newspapers published in the state between 1836 and 1922. An advisory committee consisting of an historian, journalist, educator, librarian, and archivist will select the newspapers to be scanned.

“This is a great honor for Connecticut – a state where newspapers have always been important,” said State Librarian Kendall Wiggin.  Wiggin noted that while Connecticut boasts the nation’s oldest continuously published newspaper, the Courant, by 1875, there were 78 newspapers being published in the state, including 17 dailies and 51 weeklies.

This project builds upon the earlier Connecticut Newspaper Project (1991-2002) which inventoried the state’s newspaper repositories, cataloged the newspapers and preserved over 1,000,000 pages of 437 newspapers on microfilm. The State Library has already worked with digitizing newspapers through its Newspapers of Connecticut project.  This has short runs of 86 titles from 1821-1929, for a total of 3,243 issues from 31 towns.

John N. Barry, Chair of the State Library Board noted that “This grant will allow the State Library to continue its work in providing easier access to the significant issues and events of our history.  Connecticut’s newspapers are irreplaceable sources of obtaining knowledge, and this digitization grant will continue the modernization of preserving Connecticut’s rich history.”

Herbert Randall Survey of New Haven and Environs, 1880-1920 Now Available in State Library Digital Collections Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Posted by aramsey in Archives, digital collections, history.
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The Connecticut State Library has recently completed the digitization of a portion of the photographs from the Herbert Randall Survey of New Haven and Environs, 1880-1920 (PG 380), which is now available in its digital collections.  This collection consists of approximately 141 black and white photographs of New Haven and surrounding areas.  Most of the photographs are street scenes from the downtown area.  Herbert Randall (1850-1926) was born in Massachusetts and lived in Ann Arbor, Michigan before opening a studio in New Haven in 1894.  He served as a contributor and later as president of the Connecticut Magazine and sought to promote public awareness of the history of Connecticut.  From time to time the Connecticut State Library hopes to add to this collection.

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Hyman’s Store

State Library presents “The Life and Times of William Webb: An African-American Civil War Soldier from Connecticut” Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Posted by kabery in CSLmade, genealogy, history, Museum, updates.
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CONNECTICUT STATE LIBRARY “3rd THURSDAY OF THE MONTH”BROWN BAG LUNCH SERIES

inageThe Connecticut State Library will present Kevin Johnson as William Webb, an African-American Civil War Soldier from Connecticut at the Connecticut State Library, 231 Capitol Avenue, Hartford, Thursday June 20, 2013 from Noon to 12:45. Private Webb was an actual soldier, a native of Hartford. He was recruited in 1863 and served in the Twenty-Ninth (Colored) Regiment, Connecticut Volunteer Infantry in several battles in Virginia. Johnson’s portrayal of Webb is told from an emotional and exciting first-person perspective that vividly illustrates the struggle of the African-Americans in the Colored Infantry during the Civil War. He tells of his early life in Hartford, his recruitment and training, and the traumatic final battles of the Civil War. The presentation is based on extensive research in the collections of the Connecticut State Library and the Museum of Connecticut History.

Johnson’s presentation is part of the State Library and Museum of Connecticut History’s Third Thursday BrownBag Lunchtime speaker series which features a variety of speakers on various aspects of Connecticut history. All programs are free and open to the public. Attendees are welcome to bring and enjoy their lunch during the presentation.

Thursday, June 20, 2013
Noon – 12:45 p.m.
Connecticut State Library ~ Memorial Hall

About the Speaker: Kevin Johnson is an employee of the State Library’s History and Genealogy Unit. He has been presenting William Webb for more than twelve years and has given 506 presentations in schools, libraries, historical societies and other venues around the state.

About the State Library: The Connecticut State Library is an Executive Branch agency of the State of Connecticut. The State Library provides a variety of library, information, archival, public records, museum, and administrative services to citizens of Connecticut, as well as the employees and officials of all three branches of State government

“Follow the Blue Blazes”: Connecticut’s Hiking Trail System Exhibit Now Open Friday, May 31, 2013

Posted by aramsey in Archives, history, Museum.
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“Follow the Blue Blazes”: Connecticut’s Hiking Trail System exhibit opened this month in Memorial Hall at the State Library’s Museum of Connecticut History, 231 Capitol Avenue in Hartford.  The exhibit documents the Connecticut Forest and Park Association’s role in creating, maintaining, and making hiking trails accessible to the general public through programs like Connecticut Trails Day.  Included in the exhibit are maps, trail folders, patches, trail signs, booklets, and photographs.

The Connecticut Forestry Association, later named the Connecticut Forest and Park Association, was founded by a group of concerned citizens who met at the Weatogue home of Reverend Horace Winslow on December 30, 1895.  The association’s leadership voted on October 5, 1929 to establish a Trails Committee to administer the trails system.  Today, the Blue-Blazed Hiking Trail System is approximately 825 miles of trails maintained by hundreds of volunteers working in cooperation with many public and private landowners.  All of the items in the exhibit are part of RG 169:007, Connecticut Forest and Park Association records which were donated by the Connecticut Forest and Park Association to the Connecticut State Library on December 17, 2012.

The exhibit may be viewed Monday through Friday 9:00 to 4:00; and Saturday 9:00 to 2:00 through August.  All exhibits are free and open to the public.

Hurricane Sandy: Record, Remember, Rebuild Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Posted by capittsley in Archives, digital collections, history.
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Connecticut State Library is proudHurricne Sany: Record, Remember, Rebuild to announce our participation is the newest Historypin project, Hurricane Sandy: Record, Remember, Rebuild. Together with Google, the Metropolitan New York Library Council, the Society of American Archivists, and the American Association of State and Local History, the project is a shared online collection of local history as captured by individuals and cultural heritage institutions alike. Connecticut State Library has pinned our oblique aerial photos showing the damage from the Hurricane of 1938. These images give a great sense of what the shoreline and river communities looked like almost 75 years before Sandy.

You can read more about the project on the Historypin blog. If you want to get involved you can share your own stories, find out how to set up a school or community event, or add an institutional collection to the Hurricane Sandy project.

To see the rest of Connecticut State Library’s content visit our Historypin Channel. If you have questions about our Historypin channel or content please contact Christine Pittsley at christine.pittsley@ct.gov

 

April 2013 CONNector Newletter Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Posted by kabery in CSLmade, history, updates.
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The April 2013 issue of the CONNector Newsletter is now available in pdf format at:  http://www.ctstatelibrary.org/sites/default/files/13aprildraftfinal2.pdf

This latest issue of the Connecticut State Library’s newsletter includes the following:

  • Surprises at the State Library by Ken Wiggin
  • After Thirty Years: Visual Surprises from the State Archives by Mark Jones
  • Publication of Volume XX, The Public Records of the State of CT, 1819-1820 by Douglas Arnold
  • Cryptographic Curiosity from the Connecticut State Library by Bonnie Linck
  • Across the Cataloger’s Desk by Bill Anderson
  • 10 Myths about CT Public Libraries by Tom Newman
  • Gems by Jenny Groome
  • Adoption of the Regulation concerning Real Property Electronic Recording by LeAnn R. Power
  • Third Thursdays at the Connecticut State Library

Ella Grasso: Connecticut’s Pioneering Governor – Third Thursday Talk at the Connecticut State Library Friday, May 10, 2013

Posted by kabery in CSLmade, history, updates.
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CONNECTICUT STATE LIBRARY “3rd THURSDAY OF THE MONTH”BROWN BAG LUNCH SERIES

image Professor Jon Purmont will discuss his new book Ella Grasso: Connecticut’s Pioneering Governor at the Connecticut State Library on Thursday, May 16, 2013 from Noon to 12:45. Purmont, who served as Grasso’s executive assistant when she was governor, draws on his diary from that time, research in Grasso’s archives, and interviews with Grasso’s family and friends, to give us a rich and intimate portrait of this political pioneer. When Grasso ran for governor of Connecticut in 1974, she had not lost an election since she was first voted into the state’s General Assembly in 1952. She was the nation’s first woman to be elected governor in her own right capping a long and successful career dedicated to public service, effective government, and the democratic process. During her tenure as governor, Grasso’s leadership was tested in the face of fiscal problems, state layoffs, and budget shortfalls. The daughter of Italian immigrants, she endeared herself to her constituents during the great Blizzard of 1978, when she stayed at the State Armory around the clock to direct emergency operations and make frequent television appearances.

Thursday, May 16, 2013
12:00 – 12:45 p.m.
Connecticut State Library ~ Memorial Hall

Purmont’s talk is part of the State Library and Museum of Connecticut History’s Third Thursday BrownBag Lunchtime speaker series which features a variety of speakers on various aspects of Connecticut history. All programs are free and open to the public.

About the Speaker: Jon E. Purmont is a lifelong resident of Connecticut. He received a B.S. degree from Georgetown University, a Masters Degree in Education from Southern Connecticut State University, and a Doctorate in the Teaching of History from Teachers College, Columbia University. In 1979, he became Executive Assistant to Governor Ella Grasso and also served on the staff of Governor William O’Neill. In 1992, he joined the History Faculty at Southern Connecticut State University and taught courses in Connecticut History, Colonial U.S. History, and served as the Department Coordinator of the Teacher Certification program. He retired from the University in 2009. Wesleyan University published his recent biography of Ella Grasso entitled Ella Grasso Connecticut’s Pioneering Governor.

About the State Library: The Connecticut State Library is an Executive Branch agency of the State of Connecticut. The State Library provides a variety of library, information, archival, public records, museum, and administrative services to citizens of Connecticut, as well as the employees and officials of all three branches of State government. The Connecticut State Archives and the Museum of Connecticut History are components of the State Library.

Frederic Collin Walcott: Conservation Pioneer – Third Thursday Talk at the Connecticut State Library Friday, April 5, 2013

Posted by kabery in CSLmade, history, Museum, updates.
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CONNECTICUT STATE LIBRARY “3rd THURSDAY OF THE MONTH”BROWN BAG LUNCH SERIES

imageState Archivist Mark Jones will deliver a talk at the Connecticut State Library on Thursday, April 18, 2013 from Noon to 12:45 on Frederic Collin Walcott and his career as a conservationist. Walcott’s political career began as a member of the Connecticut State Senate representing Norfolk from 1925-29, serving as president pro tempore from 1927-1929. Governor Trumbull appointed Walcott to the Board of Fish and Game Commission as its President and as the first President of the new State Water Commission, 1927-1929. In 1928, he was elected to the United States Senate and served as the first chairman of the Special Committee for the Protection of Wildlife Resources. On this committee, Walcott passed on to the Senate a favorable report on a bill creating a duck stamp, required of all persons with hunting licenses, the proceeds of which went to wetlands reclamation for wildfowl migrating in the spring and fall. Today the Duck Stamp funds many programs of the Federal Wildlife Service.

Walcott was defeated for reelection in 1934 and served as head of the Department of Public Welfare from 1935-1939. Although Walcott never left memoirs, his letters and later speeches made in 1941 and 1942 to wildlife conservationists show his take on the conservation movement in the first half of the twentieth century.

Thursday, April 18, 2013
12:0o p.m. – 12:45 p.m.
Connecticut State Library ~ Memorial Hall

About the Speaker:  Mark Jones has been working on Frederic Collin Walcott for several years. On May 31st of this year, he shall retire after thirty years as the State Archivist, and one of his activities will be writing the biography. He has used resources here in the State Library, the large Walcott Collection at Yale University, other smaller collections at Stanford University and at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library in West Branch, Iowa. He has also received assistance and encouragement from Walcott’s surviving granddaughter, Alexandra (Sandy) Walcott, who annually comes up from New York City and opens up the house which her grandfather built in 1909 for the spring, summer and fall. She has graciously invited Jones to visit the house, exchanged stories about her grandfather and lent him photographs and manuscripts that are not in the collection at Yale.

About the State Library: The Connecticut State Library is an Executive Branch agency of the State of Connecticut. The State Library provides a variety of library, information, archival, public records, museum, and administrative services to citizens of Connecticut, as well as the employees and officials of all three branches of State government. The Connecticut State Archives and the Museum of Connecticut History are components of the State Library.

Author of The Indian Great Awakening to Speak at the Connecticut State Library Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Posted by kabery in CSLmade, history, Museum, updates.
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CONNECTICUT STATE LIBRARY “3rd THURSDAY OF THE MONTH”BROWN BAG LUNCH SERIES

IndianGreatAwakening Dr. Linford Fisher, Assistant Professor of History at Brown University, will be at the Connecticut State Library, on Thursday, March 21, 2013 from Noon to 12:45 to discuss his new book, The Indian Great Awakening: Religion and the Shaping of Native Cultures in Early America. Using a variety of court documents, land deeds, letters, material culture, and church records, he traces the selective adoption of Christian ideas and practices by Native individuals prior to and during the Great Awakening, and the subsequent emergence, post-awakening, of a distinct Indian separatism and partial rejection of Anglo-American religious institutions in response to growing proto-racism. Dr. Fisher provides a new framework for understanding religious conversion and he brings together Native history that is not often considered together: religion, land, use of court system, and local intra-tribal politics. He argues that the Great Awakening was not as formative in the lives of Natives (or as widely embraced) as previously assumed. Dr. Fisher did considerable research at the State Library. Fisher’s talk is part of the State Library and Museum of Connecticut History’s Third Thursday Brownbag Lunchtime speaker series which features a variety of speakers on various aspects of Connecticut history. All programs are free and open tot he public.

Thursday, March 21, 2013
Noon – 12:45 p.m.
Connecticut State Library ~ Memorial Hall

About the Speaker:  Linford D. Fisher is Assistant Professor of History at Brown University.  Dr. Fisher received his doctorate from Harvard University in 2008. His first book, was an in-depth study of long term cultural and religious change among American Indians in eighteenth-century Rhode Island, and Long Island, N.Y. Dr. Fisher has published essays in Ethnohistory, the New England Quarterly, and Harvard Theological Review, and has received fellowships from Harvard University, the American Antiquarian Soceity, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, the American Philosophical Society, Brown University, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Dr. Fisher’s current book project is a study of indentured servitude and slavery among the African and Indian populations of colonial New England and the Atlantic world.

About the State Library:  The Connecticut State Library is an Executive Branch agency of the State of Connecticut. The State Library provides a variety of  library, information, archival, public records, museum and administrative services to the citizens of Connecticut, as well as employees and officials of all three branches of government. Visit the State Library at http://www.ctstatelibrary.org

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