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From the Archivist

Occasional posts related to University history

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The 1927 Report of the Comptroller featured a detailed outline of the University’s General Accounting System, including a description of how tabulating or punch cards are used.

The Power of the Punch Card (and the Punch Card Operator)

Machines and people have been working together for decades, perhaps more than you had thought, to keep University information technology systems running. The people operating punch card and tabulating machines, the majority of whom were women, most likely did not see their role as one of managing information technology.
U of M Radio On Your Historic Dial with retro radio icon

Women on the Air: People Worth Hearing About

The program series People Worth Hearing About originated with The Minnesota School of the Air director, Betty Girling. The series first aired in 1969. In this episode, a feature on Maria Sanford is highlighted along with the behind-the-scenes decisions on how to produce the script.
Destroyed woods south of Automba, Minnesota, 1918. Photographer: T.J. Horton.

The fires of October 12, 1918

On the afternoon of October 12, 1918 in northeastern Minnesota, several forest fires killed over 450 people and decimated 2,000 square miles of forests, homesteads, and townships. The University of Minnesota Forest Experiment Station, known today as the Cloquet Forestry Center, survived the fire. The Center’s archival collection contains photographs that document the aftermath of the fires in the region.
U of M Radio On Your Historic Dial with retro radio icon

Women on the Air: Eugenie Anderson

This episode features a woman who achieved many notable firsts, a political leader who used her voice to better her community, implement and sustain diplomacy, and develop her own potentiality: Eugenie Anderson, the first woman to be named a United States Ambassador. A profile of Eugenie’s personal and professional life was featured on KUOM on “Minnesota Honor Roll,” a program of The Minnesota School of the Air - a series of educational radio programs designed for school-age children to listen to in the classroom.
Forrest O. Wiggins, 1947. Hired by the University of Minnesota as an instructor in Philosophy, Prof. Wiggins was the first African American to teach at the University of Minnesota. Dismissed from the University in 1951, Wiggins believed the reasoning was directly related to his socialist ideology.

Portraits of the Past

A preview of Calling to Question: 150 of Liberal Education at the University of Minnesota (opening March 4, 2019) is currently on display in the Katherine E. Nash Gallery. This preview is composed of two display cases within On Purpose: Portrait of the Liberal Arts. The preview compliments the style of the portrait exhibit by showcasing retrospective portraits of the College of Liberal Arts alongside the personal accounts of the people involved in these historical snapshots.

Latest News from the Libraries

Image with green letters and numbers falling vertically over a black background.

Endangered Data, Data Ethics, and ‘Vulnerable’ Populations

We live in a world where both an overabundance and a paucity of data coexist, and members of vulnerable populations (such as undocumented immigrants, prisoners, and transgender folks) can be at risk from either end of this spectrum. Too much data can dangerously reveal someone’s status or identity, and an absence of data can undercut the creation of infrastructure required to support a group’s needs.

The ABC of It: Why Children’s Books Matter

Whadya Want to Know? or also known as frequently asked questions.  When Can I Visit the Exhibit? The exhibit will be open Now - May 31, 2019....

The ABC of It: Why Children’s Books Matter

The exhibit is up! And we are pretty darn proud.  The exhibit will be open Now - May 31, 2019. Hours correspond with regular Andersen Library...