Digital Scholarship @ CUA: If Librarians Were Honest

Happy end of your semester, academic year, or college experience from your CUA Librarians! Happy summer and visit a library!

No one spends time here without being changed.

From “If Librarians Were Honest” by Joseph Mills

“… a book indeed sometimes debauched me from my work….”!!!!
– Benjamin Franklin
If librarians were honest,
they wouldn’t smile, or act
welcoming. They would say,
You need to be careful. Here
be monsters.
They would say,
These rooms house heathens
and heretics, murderers and
maniacs, the deluded, desperate,
and dissolute.
They would say,
These books contain knowledge
of death, desire, and decay,
betrayal, blood, and more blood;
each is a Pandora’s box, so why
would you want to open one.
They would post danger
signs warning that contact
might result in mood swings,
severe changes in vision,
and mind-altering effects.
Read the whole poem in The Artist’s Library by Erinn Batykefer and Laura Damon-Moore: p54

News & Events: May 2, 2016

FINALS WEEK – For finals week, we are pleased to provide:

  • 24-Hour Access – Mullen Library will be open around the clock Monday through Friday. Saturday, Mullen will be open 9 am to 5 pm.
  • Coffee, Tea, and Snacks – Visit the May Gallery in Mullen Library for refreshments.

ATTENTION GRADUATES – If you will be graduating this semester, please make sure your library account is in good standing before May 13. You may do this by logging into My Library Account to check for any outstanding library loans or unpaid fines. Unpaid fines or overdue items will result in a hold on your account and prevent graduation. If you have any questions regarding your library account, please call Access Services at 202-319-5060.

NOT IN OUR LIBRARY? REQUEST IT! – Mullen has a lot of books, but we don’t have everything. If you find a book you’d like from another WRLC library, this video will show you how to have it brought to Mullen for you to check out.

 

Have a great summer!  ·  Congratulations graduates!

The Archivist’s Nook: John Mitchell – Apostle of Labor

Contemporary newspaper depicting the people and events of the Anthracite Coal Strike, 1902. John Mitchell Papers, American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives.
Contemporary newspaper depicting the people and events of the Anthracite Coal Strike, 1902. John Mitchell Papers, American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives.

May First is a date full of meaning as ‘May Day’, a traditional European spring festival, the Feast Day of St. Joseph the Worker for Roman Catholics, and International Workers’ Day for leftists. However one marks this day it is certainly an appropriate time to note one of the most important figures in American labor history, John Mitchell, whose archival papers, including an online digital collection of his photographs, are housed at Catholic University. If Terence V. Powderly can be called ‘Labor’s American Idol,’ Mitchell was widely recognized as The Apostle of Labor after he led the fledgling United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) union through one of history’s most significant strikes, the Anthracite Coal Strike of 1902. He also wrote two books, Organized Labor (1903) and The Wage Earner (1913), arguing capital and labor could work together if both were linked in prosperity.

Mitchell was born 4 February 1870 in the coal mining village of Braidwood, Illinois, to poor Irish immigrants. Orphaned at a young age, he had little opportunity for education, and by age 12 was working in the coal mines. He joined the Knights of Labor in 1885 and in 1890 was a founding member of the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA). He became an international union organizer in 1897, working alongside the celebrated “Mother” Mary Harris Jones, before being elected UMWA Vice President that same year, and President in 1899. Union activity in this era was a risky business as coal operators controlled the mines, coal towns, and coal miners who were forced to endure horrible conditions and long hours. Miners were often paid with coupons that could only be redeemed at company stores at inflated prices and had to buy tools and supplies such as dynamite for blasting and oil for lamps. As UMWA president, Mitchell, with his priestly mien, worked to incorporate new workers from various immigrant groups, mostly Catholic, who showed their affection by nicknaming him ‘Johnnie da Mitch.’   Continue reading “The Archivist’s Nook: John Mitchell – Apostle of Labor”

News & Events: April 25, 2016

SN-TN3LIFEGUARDLIBRARIAN ON DUTY – From Monday, April 25 through Friday, April 29, between the hours of 9 am and 5 pm a librarian will be on duty in the MERIC classroom (1st floor, Mullen Library) to provide special help with finding information, using databases, and citing sources. All questions are welcome! For help anytime, stop by the Information Desk in Mullen Library’s lobby or use the Ask a Librarian IM Service.

ONGOING TRIAL  Architectural Digest Magazine Archive is available through May 4. Each issue in the Architectural Digest Magazine Archive is presented in its entirety, including the front and back covers and its high-quality photo spreads. All articles and advertisements have been indexed with subject terms to allow users to find relevant results quickly, as well as research and analyze trends in topics and advertising materials. With over 90 years’ worth of issues available, the Architectural Digest Magazine Archive is a valuable resource for everyday design enthusiasts, researchers of architecture and interior design and those interested in the history of business, advertising and popular culture. To access the trial, visit http://proxycu.wrlc.org/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?authtype=ip,uid&profile=ehost&defaultdb=ada. Please provide any feedback to Anne Marie Hules at hules@cua.edu.

GRADUATING NEXT MONTH? – If you will be graduating this semester, please make sure your library account is in good standing before May 13. You may do this by logging into My Library Account to check for any outstanding library loans or unpaid fines. Unpaid fines or overdue items will result in a hold on your account and prevent graduation. If you have any questions regarding your library account, please call Access Services at 202-319-5060.

The Archivist’s Nook: Stirring the Irish Cauldron

“The Cork Landlords Stirring up a Devil’s Cauldron.” United Ireland, October 3, 1885. From the Irish Home Rule Political Cartoon Collection, American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives.
“The Cork Landlords Stirring up a Devil’s Cauldron.” United Ireland, October 3, 1885. From the Irish Home Rule Political Cartoon Collection, American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives.

This week’s post is guest authored by Marielle Gage, a CUA graduate student in History.

Saint Patrick’s Day is a beloved holiday, but for many Irish-Americans their heritage intersects with their daily lives more than once a year. Whether you grew up amused or irritated by a certain cereal leprechaun, or found that friend who couldn’t tell the difference between a Mc- and a Mac- adorable or infuriating, life as an American of Irish descent is filled with constant awareness. Or, at least, my own has been. I think I knew about the Potato Famine before the American War of Independence, and I still have an instinctive, furious reaction if anyone ever dare suggest that Oliver Cromwell ever did a good thing in his life.

Interest (as well as pride) in Irish heritage and history is nothing unique or special about me; it has a long and rich tradition in the Irish-American community. Here, at the American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives, we house several historical collections directly dealing with Irish and Irish-American history. A particularly fun collection is the Ancient Order of the Hibernians (founded 1836), but in deference to the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising, a seminal moment in the march towards an autonomous Irish state, I will direct your attention to our various exhibits in honor of Irish Independence.

Prison Pass, April 6, 1869. Thomas C. Luby Papers, American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives.
Prison Pass, April 6, 1869. From the Thomas C. Luby Papers, American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives.

First, we have our physical exhibit, organized by our wonderful Katherine Santa Ana, “Sworn to Be Free: Irish Nationalism 1860-1921,” currently on display in the May Gallery of Mullen Library (first floor). The exhibit shows a selection of items from our holdings: letters, Gaelic alphabet cards, political cartoons, photographs, medals, and more. “Sworn to Be Free” looks at the cause of Irish Independence from an American Irish viewpoint: some of our records come from Irish immigrants, but most come from first or second-generation descendants who still maintained keen affection and concern for their motherland. When the struggles for independence became fraught, Irish republicans often looked to their American brethren for material, intellectual, and spiritual support, and the exhibit highlights several Americans offering that support. For those unable to visit “Sworn to Be Free” in person (and if you can, you really should), there is an online version of the exhibit available.

United Irish League of America 5th Biennial National Convention Delegate Ribbon, September 7-28, 1910. From the Terence V. Powderly Papers, American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives.
United Irish League of America 5th Biennial National Convention Delegate Ribbon, September 7-28, 1910. From the Terence V. Powderly Papers, American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives.

To complement the online exhibit,  we are offering a document-based online exhibit, “Exploring Irish Nationalism with ACUA: An Academic Resource”, for use of teachers, students, and the interested public who might wish to explore Irish independence (and CUA’s connection to it) deeper. Offering certain, select examples from the James Aloysius Geary Papers and the Thomas J. Shahan Papers, both housed at ACUA, this second online exhibit is intended to provide background for the Easter Rising and later War of Independence. Included in Geary’s papers, for example, are minutes and publications of The Friends of Irish Freedom, an American group that watched the Rising and subsequent events with great interest. Shahan preserved several issues of the Irish Bulletin, a publication of the Irish State during the war with Great Britain which often dedicated its pages to illustrating the crimes the English had committed against the Irish people. Impartial news it may not be, but they do serve as a reflection of very real opinions and attitudes present both in Ireland and in sympathetic Irish-Americans.

Neither exhibit is — or claims to be — the whole picture of Irish nationalism and Irish-American sympathy with it. But we have tried to highlight interesting individuals, events, and organizations. We hope our exhibits will not be the end of your curiosity, but the beginning.

Digital Scholarship @ CUA: Rushing to the End of the Semester?

Image of a brain Last week, CUA Research Day had interesting research on mindfulness. As we all gear up (pay heed to that motion metaphor!) for the end of an academic semester, here are some readings on note taking and attention; mind mapping; and the art of slow!

Attention, Students: Put Your Laptops Away

And there are two hypotheses to why note-taking is beneficial in the first place. The first idea is called the encoding hypothesis, which says that when a person is taking notes, “the processing that occurs” will improve “learning and retention.” The second, called the external-storage hypothesis, is that you learn by being able to look back at your notes, or even the notes of other people. [Source: Mueller, Pam A. and Oppenheimer,  Daniel M. 2014. “The Pen is Mightier than the Keyboard:
Advantages of Longhand Over Laptop Note Taking.” Psychological Science OnlineFirst,. doi:10.1177/0956797614524581. ]

Thinking through Comics with Nick Sousanis’s Grids & Gestures

Having briefly thought about this, I want you to take a single sheet of paper (any size, shape will do) and drawing with a pencil or pen, carve it up in some grid-esque fashion that represents the shape of your day. It can be this day, a recent day, a memorable day, or a typical/amalgamation day. And then inhabit these spaces you’ve drawn on the page with lines, marks, or gestures that represent your activity or emotional state during those times represented. The emphasis here is to do your best to not draw things. (You can always do that later!) And also, you can leave space blank on your page – but that has to mean something. This isn’t writing where you can finish a final sentence mid-page. Every inch of the composition is important in comics – so be aware of that as well. Finally, when I do this in class or with groups, I give people about 5-10 minutes to do it, so they have to make decisions quickly. Try to give yourself a similar limit. [Source: Salter, Anastasia. 2016. Thinking through Comics with Nick Sousanis’s Grids & Gestures. http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/thinking-through-comics-with-nick-sousaniss-grids-gestures ]

‘Slow Professor’: Challenging the Culture of Speed in the Academy

In a corporate university, argues Slow Professor, “power is transferred from faculty to managers, economic justifications dominate, and the familiar ‘bottom line’ eclipses pedagogical and intellectual concerns.” But slow professors nevertheless “advocate deliberation over acceleration” because they “need time to think, and so do our students. Time for reflection and open-ended inquiry is not a luxury but is crucial to what we do.” [Source: Berg, Maggie and Barbara Karolina Seeber. 2016. The Slow Professor: Challenging the Culture of Speed in the Academy. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. And, Flaherty, Colleen. “‘The Slow Professor’.” https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2016/04/19/book-argues-faculty-members-should-actively-resist-culture-speed-modern-academe, accessed April 19, 2016.]

 

News & Events: April 18, 2016

SCI-FI CLASSICS FILM SERIES – Join us  in the May Gallery Wednesday, April 20 at 7 pm for the final film in our series of science fiction classics: Solaris, the brilliantly original 1972 Soviet film that challenges our conceptions about love, truth, and humanity itself. Popcorn and soft drinks are provided! The film can be viewed anytime from Kanopy Streaming. To request accommodations for individuals with disabilities, please call Joan Stahl at 202-319-6473 or email stahlj@cua.edu.

LIBRARIAN ON DUTY – From Monday, April 25 through Friday, April 29, between the hours of 9 am and 5 pm a librarian will be on duty in the MERIC classroom (1st floor, Mullen Library) to provide special help with finding information, using databases, and citing sources. All questions are welcome! For help anytime, stop by the Information Desk in Mullen Library’s lobby.

ONGOING TRIAL  Architectural Digest Magazine Archive is available through May 4. Each issue in the Architectural Digest Magazine Archive is presented in its entirety, including the front and back covers and its high-quality photo spreads. All articles and advertisements have been indexed with subject terms to allow users to find relevant results quickly, as well as research and analyze trends in topics and advertising materials. With over 90 years’ worth of issues available, the Architectural Digest Magazine Archive is a valuable resource for everyday design enthusiasts, researchers of architecture and interior design and those interested in the history of business, advertising and popular culture. To access the trial, visit http://proxycu.wrlc.org/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?authtype=ip,uid&profile=ehost&defaultdb=ada. Please provide any feedback to Anne Marie Hules at hules@cua.edu.

HELP AVAILABLE – We’re here to help connect you to the information and resources you need!

The Archivist’s Nook: Taking Flight in DC – The Story of Albert Zahm

Albert Zahm seated in a Curtiss Model D. (Courtesy: Wright Bros. Aeroplane Co.)
Albert Zahm seated in a Curtiss Model D. (Courtesy: Wright Bros. Aeroplane Co.)

Between 1910-1914, the world witnessed a true clash of the titans. On one side were the Wright Brothers and on the other was Glenn Curtis. The dispute centered on aviation patents. During this lengthy courtroom battle, a certain Dr. Albert Zahm acted as an expert witness on Curtiss’s behalf, testifying for a month. Being a pioneer of early aeronautics and long-time adviser to the Wrights, Zahm’s testimony on behalf of their rival added an additional layer of drama to the already-complicated dispute.

But let us back up a minute here. Who was Albert Zahm and what does CUA have to do with him? Not only was Zahm a CUA professor of Engineering and Mechanics from 1895-1908, he also constructed the first experimental wind tunnel in the United States on the campus, a building that still exists to this day. Continue reading “The Archivist’s Nook: Taking Flight in DC – The Story of Albert Zahm”

Digital Scholarship @ CUA: Research & Libraries

2016RESEARCHDAYPROGRAM-1Join us on Friday, April 15 for the inaugural CUA Research Day!

What do all the CUA Research Day presenters and poster participants have in common? They started with a question and they did research!

The recently published Ithaka S+R US Faculty Survey 2015 findings include that while the discovery process has many access points, faculty still rely heavily on the library web site and catalog; faculty need more information about data management and repositories; monographs are favored over ebooks; and traditional scholarly outputs – journal articles and books – still reign supreme.

The most important finding for libraries may be:

Interest in supporting students and their competencies and learning outcomes shows signs of surging. Since the previous cycle of the survey, there has been an increase in the share of faculty members who believe that their undergraduate students have poor research skills and a substantial increase in the perceived importance of the role of the library in helping undergraduate students develop research, critical analysis, and information literacy skills.

We will see you Friday, April 15 at CUA Research Day! Look for these poster presentations from the library:

Comparing Religious Studies and Theology Faculty Citations and Library Holdings, 2002-2012: an Update

Digital Toolkit: Essentials for the Researcher of Today and Tomorrow: What we can learn from #HamiltonMusical!