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Nancy Langston

Toxic inequities: risk, regulation, and environmental justice in the Great Lakes

Join us as we welcome Nancy Langston, environmental historian at Michigan Technological University, as she gives a lecture in the Program in the History of Medicine’s lunchtime lecture series on her current research on environmental health and environmental policy in the Great Lakes region. 
Turtle tattoo.

About a turtle tattoo

I’ve been meaning to write an article about tattoos inspired by our University Libraries collections for some time now. My intention was to tell a fun and light-hearted story, but along the way I met Jason Herbert and it all got a lot more interesting. Read how Jason's divorce began a reevaluation of his life and now his tattoos have grounded him in his personal history.

#ColorOurCollections goes Underwater

We’re exploring humans, health, science in watery spaces for this year’s #ColorOurCollections event. We’ll unveil one coloring page each day with from the depths of the ocean and will showcased completed artwork throughout the week. Keep watching to catch some great art.
Love is in the Air At the Libraries

Love is in the air at the Libraries

Join the Libraries as we celebrate our love of a good book, swoon over our new makerspaces, and pledge our love with heart tattoos inspired by our archives. Activities are planned from February 5 - 16.
Cheesy Pretzels

Our historical take on football snacks

As the Twin Cities prepares for the 2018 NFL championship game many locals are busily planning their party menus. We’re taking an old approach to current favorites with some historical recipes that are ready for a comeback: chicken wings, cheese straws, pretzels, and bacon-wrapped shrimp. 
Underwater Online Exhibit

Go online to take a dive Underwater

We are happy to announce that the Underwater exhibit from the Wangensteen Historical Library - which explores humans, health, and science in watery spaces - is now available online. The exhibit is filled with eye-catching images and text that illustrate the history of navigators, oceanic research, and water in cities and on shores. So grab your coffee and a beach towel, and join us Underwater from the comfort of your home.
Premodern Food Potluck

Potluck explores the history of premodern food

It turns out that a potluck is a perfect way for ending a semester of discussion on the history of premodern food. The Premodern Food Laboratory - a part of the Consortium for the Study of the Premodern World - visited the Wangensteen Historical Library to examine handwritten recipe books and share homemade historical recipes.

Weathering winter throughout history

As Minnesotans, we are experts at weathering winter weather, though we are not the first to marvel about the cold and ice. Here are some excerpts from the Wangensteen Historical Library’s collection that illustrate early thoughts about thermometers, the polar bear plunge, and frozen fish.
Health Sciences Libraries 2017

Health Sciences Libraries 2017

The Health Sciences Libraries are celebrating 2017 with a look back at the year’s most-read news stories. It has been a memorable year, highlighted by underwater exhibits, research sprints, blind dates with books, and new talent! Thank you for a great 2017 – filled with customized information solutions from the Health Sciences Libraries.
Pharmacy boxes from the Wangensteen artifact collection.

A Shakespearean recipe for Witch’s Brew

As Halloween nears, staff at the Wangensteen Historical Library are finding inspiration from a Witch's Brew recipe written in Shakespeare's Macbeth, which included "eye of newt" as an ingredient. While gathering other ingredients to fill our cauldron, we quickly found that the eye of newt was not to be taken literally but in fact a common name for mustard seed. This was true for some of the other ingredients as well.


Rare books in the exhibit feature striking images of aquatic natural history, various technologies, and experiences of water and health. The exhibit is open September 11, 2017 through May 18, 2018 during regular library hours at the Wangensteen Historical Library of Biology and Medicine, 568 Diehl Hall.

Unwrapping a new medical receipt book at the Wangensteen Historical Library

Receiving a new acquisition is like opening a much-anticipated present. Earlier this year, the Wangensteen Historical Library of Biology and Medicine purchased a French manuscript recipe book written in the 1770s. Watch as Curators Lois Hendrickson and Emily Beck - along with their colleague, French historian Margaret Carlyle - open the book for the first time and rediscover informative content and hidden treasures.
Preview of coloring page from a 1634 book by Ambroise Paré.

Go ahead – #ColorOurCollections

Sharpen your pencils and dig out your crayons! It’s time for the second annual #ColorOurCollections event. During February 6-10, the Wangensteen Historical Library will unveil one coloring page each day with an image from their rare book collection. Artists are encouraged to participate and to share their final artwork.
Health Sciences Libraries Year in Review 2016

Health Sciences Libraries 2016

The Health Sciences Libraries are celebrating 2016 with a look back the year's most-read news stories. It has been a memorable year, highlighted by chocolate bars, edible books, fabulous new spaces and services, research at the Minnesota State Fair, and innovation acceleration! Thank you for a great 2016 – filled with customized information solutions from the Health Sciences Libraries.
Medical Exchanges Exhibit

Medical Exchanges: Mapping the Human Body in Japan and China

Texts from the unique and richly illustrated history of early modern medical knowledge and healing in Japan and China are on view for the first time in a fascinating exhibition from the Wangensteen Historical Library of Biology and Medicine.