Category Archives: exhibits

Changing Arctic Landscapes: Then and Now

You’ve seen Ken Tape photos on level 5 of Case-Geyer, now read all about it. We currently have a display of government documents about the Arctic dating from 1879-2013 on level 3 behind the Research Services Desk. More government publications and books are available: simply search the library’s catalog and government documents databases.

Trailblazing Palaeontologist celebrated by Google Doodle and Colgate Libraries

220px-Mary_Anning_paintingOn May 21, 2014, Google Doodle celebrated the 215th birthday of trailblazing palaeontologist, Mary Anning, a leading British fossil collector. A scientific pioneer, Anning excavated  and identified the first ichthyosaur skeleton. This discovery, and many others, formed the foundation for the science of palaeontology  in spite of her era’s prejudices against her gender, class and religion.


Learn more about Mary Anning at  London’s Natural History Museum.

Explore an interactive exhibit at BBC- Primary History

Colgate Library remembered Mary Anning too! Check out some of these related materials in the Colgate University Libraries collection.

The fossil hunter : dinosaurs, evolution, and the woman whose discoveries changed the world

Emling, Shelley

New Photo Exhibit on Tanzania

Stella Yoh, Class of 2014 has curated a wonderful exhibit of the African photography of Peter Stanley. To quote from her introduction: "Hapa na Pale (“here and there” in Swahili) is an exhibition aimed at challenging the preconceived notions of “Africa,” by focusing on one African country, Tanzania, and honestly reflecting the authentic daily lives of the people. Captured in photos by freelance photographer Peter Stanley, the exhibition delivers a non-distorted version of Tanzania. The photos can be divided into mainly 4 categories: the urban scenes of the capital city Dar es Salaam; the rural scenes of Inner Tanzania; photos of the Masaai tribe; and photos of the Island of Zanzibar." The exhibit can be viewed on the fifth floor of Case Geyer. While you are here check out the exquisite display of John Gould’s images of hummingbirds from around the world. That exhibit is on the second floor of Case Geyer.

Spring exhibit: Gould’s Hummingbirds

If the return to campus life after a few days away (hopefully someplace sunny) are getting you down, may we suggest the Special Collections exhibit as a potential cure, or at least a temporary lift. This spring we’re showcasing some images from our collection of the 25 volume set, A Monograph of the Trochilida, or Family of Hummingbirds. John Gould, the naturalist who compiled this set, worked in the 19th century, around the same time as John James Audubon. In this set, his most reknowned, he captured images of hummingbirds from around the world. The images are on display in the cases around the central staircase on Level 2 of Case-Geyer. These little creatures, bright and light, are a sweet reminder that there’s hope for warmth and sunshine yet to come! We hope you enjoy them.

The Mexican codices on display at the library

This fall Special Collections has prepared an exhibit of our high-quality facsimile productions of several Mexican codices. The codices are early books from around the time of the Spanish conquest. They document the daily life, religious beliefs, year cycles, and, in some cases, the astronomical maps to the skies of the native peoples through pictograms and hieroglyphs. They are stunning and colorful and in some cases, gory (can you find the image of the guy being knifed in one of the codices?).

The page shown here and on the exhibit posters, from the Codex Mendoza, depicts the founding of the Aztec city, Tenochtitlan (the ruins of which lie at the center of present-day Mexico City).  The hieroglyph in the center – of a stone with a prickly pear cactus perched on top – represents the name of the city. The eagle signifies the prophecy that the Aztecs (a wandering tribe up to that point) would build a great city in the place where they found an eagle devouring a snake while perched atop a cactus. The eagle perched on a cactus later became a part of Mexico’s official seal.

 The exhibition is located on Level 2 of Case-Geyer, in the cases near the central stair. Please stop by and visit.


Wish you were here : Early colored postcards of Colgate University

The Special Collections department invites you to check out our Summer 2010 exhibit of early postcards of Colgate (on Level 2 at Case).

It’s interesting to note that these are printed color images of Colgate, a technology that was not common to American postcard publishers until around 1930. All of the cards in this exhibit date from prior to or just after the First World War — that is, prior to 1919. How is this possible? As it happened, German printers were far ahead of the rest of the printing world in their ability to print colored cards. The original images for each card were obviously made in Hamilton, then shipped to Germany to be transferred to linen cards.

The postcards depict a Colgate both familiar and foreign. Whitnall field has stood the test of time, but what happened to the old Gymnasium that used to stand next to it, where J.C.C. is now? Are those bushy things next to Taylor Lake the same towering willows we walk past today?

We hope you’ll stop by and enjoy the exhibit, explore the images and find out what strikes you as the biggest change, and what has remained the same on our beautiful campus.

New Special Collections Exhibit – Victoriana: Classicism, Aestheticism and Decadence (1837-1901)

The new exhibit on Level 2 of Case-Geyer includes books, photographs, letters, and illustrations from the Victorian age. There are some Aubrey Beardsley illustrations, and Oscar Wilde letters, a 1st edition copy of On the Origin of the Species with a photogravure of Darwin by Julia Margaret Cameron, and many fine examples of the book arts.

There are two new movies coming out this Spring about this time period, Creation (about Darwin and the theory of evolution) and The Young Victoria. If you’re interested in them, you might check out the exhibit to immerse yourself a little further in Victoriana.

Special Collections Exhibit: A WRITER & HIS IMAGE – George Bernard Shaw

Photographs, cartoons, and other ephemera of George Bernard Shaw, all taken from the Richard S. Weiner Shaw Collection.  The exhibit features photographs taken by Shaw, one of his many photographic diaries, photographs by noted photographers such as Steichen and Karsh, cartoons by Max Beerbohm, and other amusing items, including a photograph of Shaw and William Crawshaw, former Colgate dean and professor of English.  It will be on view at Case Library and Geyer Center for Information Technology from October 15th until December 1.

A corresponding article on Shaw appears in the Colgate Scene, Summer 2009,  based on materials from Special Collections along with an interview with Carl Peterson, Head of Special Collections and University Archivist.

The attached photograph is Shaw and Sir Robert Ho Tung (right), the Hong Kong industrialist and philanthropist, and grandfather of Colgate alumnus and benefactor Robert H.N. Ho ’56.

New Special Collections Exhibit – Edward S. Curtis – Photographs of Native American Women

Mrs. James C. Colgate was one of the original 500 subscribers who helped finance Curtis’ decade-long expedition in the American west and northwest.  She gave this collection to Colgate in the 1950’s.  The set consists of 20 encyclopedia volumes, all on display, along with 20 portfolio volumes of larger photogravures.  A selection of these larger images is currently on display at the Picker Gallery.

Elections in Hamilton, 1828-1964 – Special Collections Display


Carl Peterson, Special Collections Librarian, has created a display in the cases outside of Special Collections on Level 2 of Case-Geyer of election materials over the years with a particular look at the Theodore and Franklin D. Roosevelt campaigns.