Friday, December 8, 2017

Interview follow up

Student who interviewed me a couple weeks ago for class project had a follow up question to do with deaccessioning etc., have emailed her a response.

Rocco Salomone

Football coach here many years, died 2015. Athletics staff were looking for a few images of him. Was hunting thru Jim Dusen digital shots c2001, 2002, and found a couple good images finally. Had some problems though opening some of the contact sheets, they are .psd files so would think should open ok, but wouldn't. Had to plow thru dozens of images which only have numeric file names. Makes me wonder if some of these photo CD's are bad, or are those such old Photoshop .psd files they won't open in newer Photoshop...?

Tuscarora author

John Maier stopped by, researching Tuscarora author Ted C. Williams. Williams is supposed to have been a student here c1970, but is not a grad. John had a lead where someone recalled Williams playing soccer, but I didn't see him in the 1968-71 rosters. Need to look some more, but that's a tricky era, lots of growth, many people here then transferring etc.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Herbert Bramley

Someone researching their family history, asking about Bramley, who was on the "Board of Visitors" in the Normal school era. Will dig for some info when back in archives from the desk. Bramley Hall, he was on the board, it was the trustees essentially, during the '30s when Hartwell was here I believe.

Update: found more detail, scanned a group photo from his file in RG26, located his obit in the Brockport Republic, shared that, that a hall is named after him etc.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Chemistry 50th

Another 50th anniversary, this one for Chemistry, got a call from Marcus Hoffman today. The reunion they're planning is this coming April 28. Will start looking for photos, articles etc. as I can.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Honors Program

Donna Kowal, current head of the program, and a student from it, visited the archives this morning. They are interested in the history of the program, honors classes at Brockport, celebrating the history of it through a web page, slideshows etc. I shared what I know, what resources I have... To be continued!

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

President's office

Got a call from President's office, they had a call from an older gentleman, he'd been a campus school kid here many years ago, some other connections with the college and the community - he is an Elwell, so imagine he may be related to AB Elwell 1899, who was friend's with Buzz Guelf etc. Am going to contact the family, see what he is looking for, listen to his story...

Another intern!

A student from Anthro/Public History stopped by, looking into an internship for this spring. We chatted, she has some interesting experience, digitization/scanning work, will look forward to working with her. Like all interns there's a process, went over it...

Update: she came back, we filled out her papers for Dr. Spiller, she will be doing a 3 credit internship this spring. So as of now have two students doing 3 credit internships, and one doing a 1 credit.

Interns update

Working to catch up with interns, make sure projects etc. are followed through on and that I have them before the end of the semester!

Interviews with adapted PE profs

A grad student in KSSPE did some video interviews with adapted PE folks and is coming today to share those with me. Will need to make sure of permissions etc.


Have been contacted by a community member who was at my one presentation at Mornings with Profs and who has questions about handling/preserving a scrapbook. Apparently some of the material is from family members who attended the old Normal in the 1920s. Replied with some advice, links, and suggested some times they could come to the archives, something they said they wanted to do.

Monday, November 27, 2017

EOP history

Spent much of today digging into the history of the EOP. I have various primary docs here, but never had occasion to go through them. Interesting history, would be an excellent internship research project! The question came from the EOP office, it was 50 years ago that the EOP program was first set up in NY. Our Brockport program was started it seems in the 1969-70 academic year. A David Henderson was the director in the early years, and a Ray Coley was assistant director.

Sent an email back, with some scans and text info, will continue working with them.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

History of basketball at Brockport

A pretty big subject really, long history, but to start off recommended searching Cherishing this Heritage, and the Stylus in Explained how to access, use etc., said will be happy to have them visit the archives if they wish.

Monday, November 20, 2017


A student coming in this afternoon to interview me, as part of her career prep to go to library school. She is particularly interested in archives and museums.

More History Dept. 50tth

Prof Spiller and Bekah, the dept. intern, are coming over to look through primary sources. Got out Dedman retirement book, catalogs, faculty bulletins etc.

Thursday, November 16, 2017


Student emailed me about history of gymnastics here. Shared link to, tips on how to search Stylus, and invited her to let me know if she wanted to visit the archives in person.

Smith dissertation

The Smith dissertation on the early history of Brockport is in high demand for Spiller's HST390, but somehow the 2nd part got lost or I thought it was up on Digital Commons but wasn't. Found original pdf, added, is OK now. This would be an excellent document to get retyped in Word, then made a pdf. The pdf of it I was given from Syracuse U. is huge, 200mb, it is hard to resize these pdf's once they are done.

Pres Yu & fire dept

Advancement asked about a photo of President Yu with local fire department officials, presenting a check from the college. Found a reference in Stylus for Feb. 1998, with photo. Looked in Dusen negatives for '98 and did not see any from him. I don't have any Stylus photos here. One project for future interns would be to work on the Dusen photo list document, it really needs a lot of attention.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

The Crypt

This is different, a student came by who'd done an internship before, looking to research the Crypt, the coffee House that was at St. Luke's Episcopal in Brockport. It started in 1964, end date I am not sure. Shared the little I have or know, got them started in nyshistoricnewspapers. The novel twist to this is that the student is hoping to revive the Crypt for a one night special event!

Interns update

Interns are all doing good things. Lyndsey Richard's work on early gay liberation here in the '70s was very useful to a student researcher in yesterday. Some of the works scanned are getting many hits, e.g. the Cornes manuscript Tyler worked on. Being done with earlier projects I have both Tyler and Lyndsey working on organizing, relabeling and more clearly identifying the portrait photos that Jim Dusen took of staff, faculty and some others c1985-95. There are 3 thick binders full, a treasure trove of images of many of the staff of the last 50 years.

Art/photography student

A student from Kitty Hubbard was in, had scheduled a visit to look at images for a project in which she needs to revisit the current scenes of older photos. Gave her a tour of photo collections, made some suggestions, e.g. the Guelf 1913 All Brockport photos etc... She soent a couple hours, downloaded some pics to her flash drive, will likely be back.

Monday, November 13, 2017

HON112 student

A student in Kerfoot's HON112 that I met with recently made appointment and then came in today to learn about the Gay Liberation Front etc. Discussed that era with her, made the files and power point the student intern on the project had assembled available...

Marion Schrank

Query re Marion Schrank, was she first woman VP in SUNY? Not sure about that, no way to know really, but did share that:

Marion (Turturro) Schrank was Class of 1969. She worked at the college from 1972-2002. She worked in Student Affairs in various capacities and in 1986 was made the Assistant VP for Student Affairs. I really can’t say if she was the first in SUNY, but she would have been an early such office holder. She was active in many other areas as well, e.g. chair of the campus committee on women’s issues etc.

Update: I'd forgotten this, but Ken O'Brien and Bruce Leslie mentioned a Vera King Ferris, who was probably the first woman VP here, in the 1970s. She seems to have left c1979 when there was a big administrative reorganization.

Fred Gravetter

Had a request for photos of Fred Gravetter, but unfortunately was unable to find any in Jim Dusen's photos.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Gymnastics history

HON112 student that was here last week contacted me interested in gymnastics history. Explained how to search the Stylus online, and invited her to visit next week.

Photo help

Photography student contacted wanting old images to look at, take pics of the same sites today, compare, contrast... Am meeting her next week after NYLA.

Dedman - history of History Dept

Have been spending time at different points with a History Dept intern who is researching their departmental history. She was in today and we spent an hour together scanning materials from a recently received scrapbook about Wayne Dedman's retirement in 1977. Many photos of founding department members, letters of reminiscence etc.

Monday, November 6, 2017

1974 soccer team photo?

Sometimes what you want is there, sometimes not... In the files we have a '72 and a '76 photo, but nothing in between, not that is labeled anyway. There are some unidentified photos that might be from the period, but there was no year book that year to help verify. There is a gap in the campus photographer collections in the early, mid-70s, because of staff turnover etc. So, had to say sorry, but no luck! (There were lots of Stylus articles, they won a big championship that year, but no pics, and the person needed a team photo specifically.)

Thursday, November 2, 2017


Two students doing an interview for a communications class on spaces on campus. Talked about the library, where it was when it was Drake I, in Hartwell, how libraries have changed...

Stylus reporter

Spent an hour with a Stylus reporter exploring the archives, the college history, in particular the post WWII expansion. She is looking at writing on that, as well as other topics, perhaps a series of things.

HON112 class

Had Kerfoot's HON112 class in, to tour the archives, learn something about the school and it's history, the archives, with a focus on stories, artifacts etc. they could write about.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Honors program history

Donna Kowal, current director, called asking about the history of the program, seeking to make some connections with a digital project they are interested in... Emailed her back, there is a nice HST691 paper from '99, a number of primary materials etc. Offered general assistance, to host her and students for a visit...

Janette Reynolds photo help

Met with Greg Lawrence, an area photographer and digital guru, who in his retirement is doing some amazing free work for local historical societies and archives. I gave him the original of the Janette Reynolds (Class of 1873, first professional librarian here,) photo. As can be seen in this thumbnail, she was shot wearing a dark dress against a dark background, the photo is scratched etc. I could do some of the scratches, but doing something about the contrast and background is well beyond me. Greg is going to scan at very high resolution, work it out pixel by pixel, am looking forward to seeing it.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Phil Hunsinger '67

Jeanette Banker '53 (and Education emeriti) connected me with Phil Hunsinger '67 who has been in town for the recent 50th reunion of his class. They came to the archives and I did an oral history interview with him. Fascinating, positive man, and many interesting memories of Brockport. Am uploading to filecty2, and need to get back to having transcripts made, adding to the existing student reminiscences on Digital Commons.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Emeriti seeking conservation advice

Emeriti seeking advice re their church wanting to build or buy a display case to exhibit materials. Shared some suggestions, links to specs for same, vendors... As always in these things I try to be pragmatic, recognize that state of the art isn't always affordable, or even necessary to be honest, and that doing better than the current level of housing is always a step forward...

Alum family seeking sports articles

An alum of '67 family member contacted me, seeking Stylus articles about his sports days here. I found some in NYS Historic Newspapers, downloaded, edited in Photoshop, and sent to her as images she could print out as is, insert in Word etc.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Dedman materials

Surprising phone call came to the circ desk while I was walking by. The caller was looking for the archivist, I took the call, and it turned out to be someone who had know college historian & history prof Wayne Dedman and his wife well. The caller had lived in an apartment in their house c1980 while going to college, and apparently had had a role in cleaning the house out after their deaths. He has some of the materials still, and wants to give them to me, some items re the old Normal school and so on. He's coming up from the Southern Tier next week.
 (John Kohena '80.)

Update: amazing collection of materials, some of great interest:

One standard box of materials. Some may not keep, e.g. a history of University of Rochester, but there is much of value. One particularly interesting item is a notebook from Wayne Dedman’s retirement in 1977. Text of a speech by Jack Crandall, many notes and cards, a vivid capture of some senior faculty of the time as they reflected on not only Wayne’s career, but the career of the college and their department over the previous decades of expansion. His personal copy of his history of the school, Cherishing This Heritage has many cards and notes of congratulations on its publication. Also a metal stamp for imprinting the name of the Collegiate Institute on paper, along with "P. J. Williams," who was Principal of the BCI 1861-1863.

Oral history

A prof teaching an oral history class this coming spring asked about what I have done, equipment etc. Shared links to the student oral histories in Digital Commons, referred to other oral histories I have digitized of Bruce Leslie's, described tech tools library has...

Sandwich signs/advertising Brockport

A researcher looking for images of sandwich signs and advertising in Brockport turn of last century. Shared a couple of the Guelf photos, links to 1913 All Brockport Supplement...

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Archives Fair

This event is tomorrow, in Rochester. Each participating archive is at a table, the theme is novel/interesting/spooky things you may have. I am bringing a table display on the campus ghosts, giving a 10 minute talk on them...

Class of '67

Completed scanning various docs and images, created slideshow, sent via Dropbox to Advancement to use at the luncheon etc.


Musical done here late '80s. Someone looking for playbills, images etc. Had to say was so busy right now it might take a bit to search for this, but would get back to them asap.

Update: managed to find time finally to dig out some negatives of this play, it was in 1990 actually, and to scan and send some to them.

Interns update

Much activity with the four interns, so busy couldn't even finish this the other day! Have four, 3 credit interns, each doing great work. Some have projects where they can go along pretty independently much of the time, but even they need me to spend some time with them, and others are doing things that can call for me to spend a few hours or more in a week with them.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

History of Hartwell Society

A '67 grad playing a role in this year's induction of her class contacted Alumni Affairs about the Hartwell Society, what the background to it is etc. I responded, sharing some history, that it started in 1994 with the induction of the Class of 1944, that Peg Hare Browne '44 was the driving force behind it etc.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Modern Greek societies

Contact from Greek Office on campus. They're doing a 25th & 50th anniversary for a couple of the groups in late Nov., are looking for pics etc. I'll have to look, but off hand doubt I have much at all, not like files etc. There may be some pics in the Dusen photos, but none of the groups are listed in the index, I'll have to look in Stylus for events, dates, then surf the negatives as well as catching the Stylus pieces for use.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Homecoming history

Got a question about the history of homecoming here, and in particular did our homecoming start earlier than some other schools or...? Our started in 1947, our rivals at Geneseo started theirs in 1953, so that's good, lol. That was from checking the student newspapers in  The general story is that homecoming, from it's inception in the pre WWI era, was closely linked to college football, and Teachers Colleges generally didn't have much in the way of football teams until after WWII, when enrollments grew, especially of men.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Bob Hellman manuscripts

Bob Hellman, botanist emeriti, came today with two manuscripts. Very enjoyable experience meeting him! He had two manuscripts, one a memoir of his life as a naturalist, one on evolution, that he wanted to see about publishing. After discussion with Kim Myers and I, he decided to work with us. We'll digitize his typed manuscripts, place on Digital Commons, link to Creat Space & Amazon etc.

Class of '93 Stylus writer

Alum from '93 asking about where to access the Stylus, if is online... Answered that it is, 1928-2014, gave her the link, explained how to search, browse by issue...

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Ghosts and Strasser

Some pieces and info needed for The Port. One was a piece on Rose Strasser, the other was about the ghosts of Hartwell. Ran across a ghost thing I'd forgot, the photo a student sent me c2000 or earlier of a "ghost" she saw in the fountain by the library!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Trees on campus

Jason Dauehhauer from Social Work stopped by, he is involved with a lot of local/college history efforts, and is part of the planning for the renovations at Alumni House. They are cutting some trees down, and then going to have them milled into planks. He wanted to know if I had any information on the trees in between Alumni House and Hartwell.

I found some documents, including an 1894 Brockport Republic piece that mentioned a number of trees being planted on campus by a local landscaper, and another by Dobson from 1954 reminiscing about the trees around campus pre WWII. Some older aerial shots were of interest too.

Hickerson questions

Doug emailed with some college history questions for a project he is doing, e.g. when was the old Normal torn down etc. Emailed back the answers.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Erie Canal "Lab"

The recent meeting about the Erie Canal "lab" or interdisciplinary group led to contact with a new botany prof in Environmental Science and her grad student, who were interested to hear about the 1899 herbarium in the archives. Perhaps it will lead to a project sometime, comparing plants now and then...

Campus school reunion - Plattsburgh

Interesting, a couple from Plattsburgh, contacting me re doing a campus school reunion there. They wanted to know if there was a SUNY central archives that might have materials. I said there wasn't, not really (not that is staffed and accessible anyway.) Suggested they contact the folks at Plattsburgh State, see what they have, also put out calls in local media for info, old lists, class photos etc. If Plattsburgh is like Brockport, I imagine there are many campus school alumni in the area there.

Robert Tuttle 1938

His son contacted me, re donating his dad's old yearbooks. Said would be glad to have them, and also took the opportunity to see if he is related to the Ray Tuttle whose local history columns I put online recently.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Knapp Museum scanning

Sue Savard from the local Knapp Museum brought over a folder of fragile newspaper articles etc. she wanted scanned. Some interesting materials, especially the one on Mary Jane Holmes. One had to do with the Cornes family, prominent here in the 19th century. One member of the family wrote a series of articles reminiscing about Brockport in the antebellum era, which I have only seen quotes from, they may have been run in the Democrat. Sue has a typed set of the original articles, am going to borrow from her, scan, and add to Digital Commons. Great engagement with the community stuff!

Monday, September 18, 2017

President Brown memorabilia

Some memorabilia of President Brown (recently deceased,) is coming to campus, given by the family to Advancement. They have asked if I can house it until decisions are made as to what to do with it. His uniform from military service, Special Olympics medals...

History of History Department

Jamie Spiller called, is bringing over an intern of theirs who is to work on a history of the department, especially the last 50 years since we became a comprehensive liberal arts college. Have pulled some materials to show them, will work with her...

Bob Hellman

Was contacted by the Provost, who had met up with Hellman (Biology-Botany) at an emeriti event recently. Bob was a botanist in Biology 1960s-1980s. He developed the arboretum at the Fancher campus among other activities. He is 87 now, and has some materials he wants to give to the archives, and also has a book he is interested in publishing. The Provost thought it would be something Kim Myers and I could help with. I am going to contact Bob asap.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Class of 1967

They're up for Hartwell Society induction this year. Just started researching for slideshow and talk which will be on 10/20.

Mortimer and Gay Freedom League & Fiction

Spent time with each of three current interns today. Lyndsey is turning up some very interesting material on the 1970s Gay Freedom League, Samantha found a neat point in Mortimer's career I wasn't aware of, namely that she had taught at Elmira College when it started in the 1850s for a year or two, so she was involved in several start ups of higher ed for women. Brittany has been making some good discoveries in Doris Bird's student teaching notes, so good work all around!

Hickerson update

Doug and his wife Diane stopped by, to collect his scrapbooks of Suburban News articles, which I've digitized, they are a treasure of local history, personalities, scenes... They will be uploaded to Digital Commons soon. I gave them a flash drive of the jpgs of all the scans and helped Diane load onto her laptop, showed her how to edit in Photoshop, insert into Powerpoint for a talk Doug is giving... Great community engagement opportunity!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Intern update

Right now have three interns, each doing a 3 credit internship. Have spent a fair bit of time with them this last week, getting them situated and started on their respective projects. Great topics, all of them, Mary Mortimer bio, creative fiction based on Doris Bird '39, and the Gay Freedom League of the 1970s.

Update to the update, am adding a 4th intern, a 3 credit one also.

Bruce Biondi

Star wrestler in early '70s, going into Hall of Fame, athletics staff wanted some info on him. Found several articles in Stylus that were helpful, saved pdfs, edited in Photoshop etc. and sent to them. Update: turned out they wanted a photo too, which was tough, since photos from the early '70s are few in number, mostly lacking ID etc. Yearbooks weren't much help either, but found a halfway decent headshot online, from a SUNY Farmingdale student paper article on him (he later transferred here.) Edited and cropped that for Athletics to use.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Name for new dorm

Got a call  re building names, they are thinking about possible names for the new dorm being constructed on the west side of the Allen-Drake complex. I listed some of the names that have been "retired" so to speak, Reynolds, Chriswell, Vanderhoof..., and then suggested as another option the new building be named after Fannie Barrier 1870.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Bud Meade - Veterans Project

For his project on college staff/veterans, Bud needs a number of photos, has supplied a list. Will look through the collection and see what I can find, then scan, email to him.

Freshman Record

Had a call about this, it was a short lived effort, a mini-yearbook, meet the freshman sort of thing. I only have it for 1979 - 1981, the caller thought there had been another year or two, but I don't have any. It was not digitized with the Saga, maybe I should add it in (- an intern project!) I have multiple copies, am going to mail her one each. She asked about charge, I said was none, always makes people happy to hear that :-)

Library school visitor

Someone getting their MLS from Syracuse stopped by recently, they're interested in the archives track there, and are coming in next week for a tour and talk with me. Will spend an hour or two showing them around, discussing archives basics and issues...

Update: she came, we spent a morning together, she had many good questions and comments. Part of her assignment was to make an assessment, and she will be sending me some suggestions for software to accession and create finding aids etc.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017


Had two before, now have four it looks like, each three credit. Topics vary: creative writing/historical about Normal era, bio of Mary Mortimer, Gay Freedom League, and another is doing a mix maybe, assisting me in various work...

Monday, August 28, 2017

Merce Cunningham Dance

Had a query from a prof at UC Irvine re this company appearing here in 1972. to the rescue, lol. Turned out wasn't much in Stylus, but it did have brief notices, and they were here '73, not '72. However searching the whole site found some great articles from NYC papers etc.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Kerfoot - Hon112

Am in contact with Alicia Kerfoot, re bringing her class her for a visit this fall to the archives, as part of possible research projects etc. Class will be 11/2, details being worked out.

Dedman donation

Another donation, someone has a framed photo of Wayne Dedman, author of Cherishing this heritage etc., and a couple other items. They gave to someone in Advancement who is bringing them to me. Will add to the collection on him in the archives.

Sports photos

Athletics needs 4 head shots of student athletes for Hall of Fame. They gave me names, but I emailed back asking if they have their team #s. I can't find the #s here, and without those it is close to impossible to find them in the photo collections, which generally do not give individual names, simply "Fall 2000 football..."

Framed commencement photos

BASC commencement office contacted me re framed photos they have, would I like them, said sure, and am asking too about their back run of programs, as I am missing a few.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Herman Burlingame grave

Question from the president's office re the location of Herman Burlingame's grave. (He is the 19th century math prof whose former home is now the president's house.) His grave is what was originally Beach Ridge Cemetery, plot I-82. He died in 1891. (In latter years they expanded the cemetery and called the whole complex Lakeview...) Also attached his obit and photo.

Confederate statues, plaques...

Was just contacted by campus communications director, who in turn was responding to a query from SUNY Central, seeking to identify any Confederate statues, plaques etc. on SUNY campus. I replied that there are not and never have been to my knowledge. If this search turns up any I would presume that they are going to be removed given contemporary sensibilities...

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Fred Hill

Query as to whether he was a local school superintendent or not. Per a 1927 Brockport Republic article he was. The local "Hill school" is named for him, he was one of those early pioneers of centralizing school districts in the state.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Summer Arts Festival

Had a voice mail from someone looking for the dates of some Summer Arts Festivals that they participated in back in the '80s. Luckily we do have some of those programs, and was able to find her name in three of them.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Caroline Parker

Interesting, had a retired prof interested in this woman, a Seneca of the 19th century, sister of Ely Parker, and now another researcher has contacted me about her for a biography she is working on. I shared what I know, plus some links to Dedman's book, Butler's thesis... It's a challenging time to research, the 1840s, the college records are limited, the village newspaper of that day no longer exists...

Jessie Hillman update

Heard back from the library assistant at the Fredonia archives who inquired about Jessie Hillman, she compared the image I sent with some they have there and is quite sure it is her! That's great, so I sent her a high res image via Dropbox, and shared some more about which she hadn't been aware of.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Public History class

Was contacted by Jamie Spiller, he is taking over from Bruce Leslie who is stepping down on the Public History class. We're getting together, talk over the presentation I do, the internships...

Stylus online

Was told someone had called re the Stylus, accessing back issues. Called the person, got their email, sent them an email with the link to, how to use it...

Alumni House archives committee

Met with Cathy Applebee and Karen Owen yesterday. They are the two members of the Alumni House archives group still around. (The committee was actually disbanded c2016.) The committee was started back in the very early '90s after the Alumni Association had acquired Alumni House, the former residence of the presidents thru Tower, restored it etc. I worked a lot with George Rich '54 on getting things organized, accessioned and so forth. He and I traveled together some to archives workshops being held back then by a now long defunct historical association.

Anyway, their document archives may end up coming here, as the space is wanted for other things. The house may become less of a house museum, more of a center for Advancement...

Hickerson columns

As mentioned in early June, Doug Hickerson, an emeriti, who has in retirement written many local history and feature articles for the Suburban News, brought me his files to be digitized. Four large scrapbooks, covering some 20 years, it is taking some time to scan them, then will need to merge, add a list of contents etc.., but once on Digital Commons it will be a great additional resource for local history. The Brockport Post, and it's predecessor, the Brockport Republic, are long gone, and the SN is one of the few remaining sources for local news.

Fall 2017 interns

Already had 2 interns lined up for this coming fall, may have a 3rd! All 3 credit internships, one is working on the bio of Mary Mortimer, another is a bit novel, she wants to do creative writing based on some of the student scrapbooks we have, which should be interesting.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Daniel Holmes

Faculty member stopped by, doing some research on Daniel Holmes, husband of Mary Jane, the author, and we talked for a bit. Showed him some resources that are online, including the merged file of Brockport Republic articles a student assembled as part of an internship a couple years ago.

Jessie Hillman 1878, 1882

Interesting, query from archivist at Fredonia about her. Apparently altho from Fredonia, she went here, for the music then advanced English course, then went on to teach at Fredonia Normal for many years. They have an annual opera program there named in her honor, and were looking for a photo of her from her time her.

A long shot, but in the small collection of 1870s student photos I have, there was no identified photos of her, but there was one unidentified photo that I am fairly sure is her, comparing to a photo they helpfully added to their email. Looking forward to seeing if it is her!

Dorothy Reister

Had someone checking if she was the sculptor that did those concrete relief pieces in the courtyard at Cooper. It was her, c1966, she died a few years ago, but her legacy continues at the Stone Hill Quarry art center near Cazenovia. We have a book about her.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Bruton - genealogy

A query about whether an ancestor had attended here c1870. They are not in the list of Normal school grads for that era, and skimming the old registration book did not see the name in the lists c1868-1873.


Have someone coming by this afternoon with three boxes of materials for the archives, and another person bringing some things as well. Don't always list these in here, but it is how we get most of our materials, an office is cleaning out, brings back files in, or a retired person realizes that there is an archives nowadays and wants to give materials from their time here...

Monday, July 17, 2017

History of International Ed, foreign students...

An emeriti had brought this up as a topic worthy of research in the past and mentioned it again. I said I do have it on my list of possible topics for interns, but just haven't had any takers, and added that I will put in a plug for it again this coming year. It's one of the many things I'd enjoy researching myself but just don't ever have the time!

Marion Patterson & Collegiate Institute

Someone was referred by staff at UofR to me with their question as to whether a man named Marion Patterson attended the old Collegiate Institute c1856-1862. We do have a name list that is online, that was compiled from the surviving catalogs. Unfortunately there are some gaps, e.g. we don't have 1860 & 1861. The name didn't appear in the list, and didn't come up in some various searches in NYS Historic Newspapers. Will let the questioner know, recommend contacting Clarendon Historical Society, since that is where Patterson was said to be from.

Thursday, July 13, 2017


Someone asked about this college publication, saying there had been an article by retired staff Nick Mascari in it. The only title of that name I know of is the old UUP Connection, which ran c1990-2000. I only have one issue in the archives, suggested they contact the UUP office.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Civil War - Canada - Confederates

Received an inquiry from PhD candidate researching NY, Canada, Confederates going up there etc. Interesting topic! There isn't anything relevant in the archives, but I did suggest, which has a number of Civil War era papers online, for counties bordering Canada or Lake Ontario.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Quonset Huts

Had a query about the Quonset huts of yore, where they came from etc. Took some time to track this down in more detail, via old Faculty Bulletins, Stylus, Middle States... The key point is that the Quonset huts were not, as the person asked, from Hamlin Beach, the old CCC/POW site. A 1947 Stylus article clearly states that they came from a naval base in RI to be used for classroom space. In that same era however other "temporary" structures were set up, for veterans housing. I haven't found written confirmation, but was told once that they may have been from the Hamlin site, former CCC/POW barracks.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Canal Conference request

President Macpherson asked for some background & thoughts re the Erie Canal, it's history, connection to the college etc. as part of prepping for opening a conference on canals this summer. Shared some info and thoughts...

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Local history - gas lighting history Brockport

Student writing a paper for Moyer in History, development of gas lighting in the village etc. Showed him some of the things online, like Elwell's columns, the 1913 supplement, etc. Sent email to him while he was here with various links, encouraged him to stay in touch.

Migrant Education "TASC"

Got a call from the current permutation of the old Migrant Education office. They focus more on professional development etc., not so much the childhood education etc of the earlier version. They have some boxes of materials they'd like to archive, had questions about what to send, what to dispose of, how they would be handled once in the archives and so on. Am working with them now on all this. Better find some more space on the shelves!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Bud Meade "Updates"

   From an email sent yesterday to The Port editors:

   I just uploaded a consolidated version of Bud Meade's "Updates" onto the Digital Commons, see link below. If you aren't familiar with them, they're an amazing collection, an email newsletter emeriti Bud Meade has been doing for many years. It has collected and distributed and connected so many college retirees. It was something Bud started on his own initiative too, if he hadn't done it it just wouldn't have happened. It's invaluable in part because it documents so many of the people who built the college up in the years after we transitioned away from being a Teachers college to a comprehensive liberal arts school.

Tom Buntich 1970

From Athletics, he was a two sport star (wrestling & football,) is being nominated for hall of fame, want info. Will go thru Stylus, find, merge some articles and send to them.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Ray Tuttle columns

Recently finished digitizing the manuscripts of Ray Tuttle's local history columns from the '50s and '60s. Great stuff, posted about it on Facebook, the document has been downloaded over 50 times already!

Vietnam era activism

Design and Production staff wanted higher res images of some I'd sent over a while back, scans of pictures in the 1970 Saga. Rescanned the relevant pages at 400dpi and saved as .tiff files, sent via Dropbox. Wish I had the original negatives, some great shots there, but other than the old 4x5s from the '50s, early '60s, have never come across Saga, or Stylus, original photos.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

NY Archives Conference

Was away part of last week at the NY Archives conference in Utica. One interesting presentation was on "resurrecting" college archives that had been neglected, closed... An intriguing aspect of that was the attention given to the history of the archives themselves, where they had been and so forth. I need to write up something on that for these archives!

Something else that came up was the history of the conference itself. By coincidence I was exchanging emails with Karl Kabelac, a retired area cataloger and local history person (Karl worked at Drake a few years in the '60s, then went to Univ Rochester.) Turned out that Karl had been at the first conference in 1969! I checked with Debra Kimok who is current president and they had not actually had the fact the groups 50th is coming up in 2019, so that is something to help with.

Doug Hickerson columns

Doug Hickerson is a retired college staff member who has for a number of years written articles for the local Suburban/Westside News on all sorts of topics of area interest, the restoration of the Methodist church clock tower, area personalities etc.

We've talked and he is bringing me his portfolios of his articles, 20+ years worth. I am going to digitize them and place them in Digital Commons, they should be a wonderful local history resource for years to come.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Phillip Hewitt

Received phone call from someone at US Geological Survey inquiring about Phil Hewitt, who was here 1967-1997. Hewitt was founder of the Geology/Earth Sciences department when we were transitioning from a teachers college to a comprehensive liberal arts school with separate departments, degrees etc. RG26 file had some info, found some more in Stylus, GeoRef...

Friday, June 2, 2017

Clock tower

Reporter working on story on Methodist church tower clock needing a more printable version of the 1914 Brockport Republic story. Edited same in Photoshop and sent to him as a pdf.

Painting restoration

Contacted by village Knapp Museum asking who restored the ee cummings paintings. Wasn't sure, am asking around, they are looking to restore some of those Hastings paintings they've discovered.

Photo request

Athletics, looking for images of 7 football players who were All Americans c2000-2015. Off to the photo archives I go!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

PEARL program

An advancement staffer emailed, saying they'd been in contact with an alum of the '80s who was mentioning something called the "PEARL" program, and wanted to know more about it. Hadn't run across it before, but found a series of articles in the Stylus, including a nice piece on it from 1982. Joe Franek started it in 1979, it had some parallels to GEP, and was run in Briggs Hall. I didn't pursue it to the end, but it seems to have run through the 1980s at least.

Clara Stern 1937

While communicating with someone at U of R's special collections about a question I had, they had a question of their own, concerning a grandmother who they believed had attended the old Normal school. She did indeed, Clara Stern, Class of 1937. Loved the little descriptor of her under her senior photo, She fed her spirit with the bread of books, and slacked her thirst at all the wells of thought.

Methodist church clock tower

Doug Hickerson, who writes for the Suburban News, asking for info about the 1914 clock in the tower of the Methodist church on Main Street. Sent him the documents I sent the Rotary member, and also a Guelf image of the church c1910, showing the tower without the clock.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Dorothy Riester - Cooper Hall Sculptures

Good news the other day, there is a committee working on a plan to clean up the area in front of Cooper where the bas relief sculptures are. Those were done by Dorothy Riester, a well known sculptor and artist c1965. She was a prominent artist for many years, and her work and name live on at the Stone Hill Quarry Art Park in the Cazenovia area.

Writers Forum

Marsha Rivers in Advancement is working on fundraising to support the digitization of more of the Writers Forum interviews. Sent her a history of the program, a set of letters between Phil Gerber, who was chair of English at the time, and Greg Fitz Gerald, who started the program. Also photo of Stephen Spender visit in '67 which really started off the program, and a photo of Greg.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Hazing paddle!

Got a call from an alum of 1968, wanting to know if I wanted a hazing paddle that was part of Homecoming Parade one year! I said of course, what a great display item and comment provoking artifact of our history, and he generously offered to ship it to me. It always catches the attention of students, and many staff too, when I mention the fact that hazing of freshman by sophmores was a fact of life here for many years c1945-1970.

Alan Kartstetter

Was asked about his dates, they are: English & Speech prof, 1955-62. Apparently was also Class of 1949. Then realized that this was in response to a request from his son, looking to celebrate Karstetter's 90th birthday, and took a look for photos. Unfortunately didn't find anything in the original faculty photos of the '50s, but there were a few yearbook shots that I could scan and send to him, he and his colleagues etc...

Monday, May 1, 2017

1970s Stylus

Grad of 1978 called, left message asking about seeing copies of the Stylus from his time. Called back and left message that it is online, he should email me, will send link.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Color Day - Spring Day - Daisy Chain

Here is the history of these various spring events in a nutshell:

In brief, the original spring thing was Color Day, c1902-1938. (Hartwell closed it down in his era, thought it was getting out of hand!) Color Day was a sort of May Day, and I think some years coincided with Apple Queen events etc. The day was more or less as follows: a baseball game, a pageant (girls dancing around a May Pole, costumed students playing Rip Van Winkle...) a picnic, and a dance in the evening. I actually have 40 minutes or so of digitized home movie footage of Color Day in the '30s.

   I think what followed that up at some point in the '40s was "Spring Day," which was at least in part, if not largely, a student recruitment event.

   The Daisy Chain was a separate thing, I think it ran c1947-1964, something like that. That was where a group of junior women carrying daisy chain garlands preceded the seniors as they paraded to Hartwell Hall for graduation, I think many years they started at the Roxbury, or Baptist Church.

   Then of course there was the famous, or infamous, Spring In of the '70s, the Genny beer trucks on the mall etc.!

Fall 2017 interns

Met with a prospective intern for this coming fall. She wants to do something different, an internship that will use historical sources in the archives as a basis for creative writing, writing a fictional piece for example about a student here in the 1920s. This is an exciting new wrinkle on internships, it will be fun to work with her on this.

Ghosts of Hartwell

A student read the combined papers on this phenomenon in the Digital Commons and emailed me with some questions about the background etc.

Adriane Livingston...?

Staff member working on transcripts of Writers Forum materials asked about this name, supposed to be a member of the African American Studies department c1982. She's not in the staff spreadsheet, will have to add, but there is an Adriane M. Livingston listed in that department as a lecturer in the 1981-83 catalog. Probably not here more than a few years. Searching for this reminded me of the dilemma, what will researchers 30 years from now do, given that there is no longer an accumulating run of catalogs and staff directories...?

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

High res images of campus growth

From a student researcher, sent a folder of aerial photo jpgs, c1946-78, to a zip file, and shared with him via Dropbox, also giving a little narrative background in the email.

Brown & Yu

The Port needed images of these two past presidents for the upcoming issue. Retrieved, scanned, and sent some of each.

Mary Mortimer - The Port

Wrote a short bio piece and supplied an image of this pioneering woman educator to The Port for the next issue.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Northampton Park

A student in biology contacted me, they are doing a research project concerning Northampton Park, and she wanted to learn more about the land use and history of the site. I scanned and sent her sections of the 1902 plat maps for Ogden and Sweden which cover what later became the park, referred her to NYS Historic Newspapers etc.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Yearbook request

Member of class of 1972 looking for a yearbook. Unfortunately it's hit and miss, some years I have many extra copies I can give one of, but many years I only have 2 or 3 copies and feel I need to keep them. The yearbooks are online though, and I shared that information.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Barn researcher

A researcher into a particular type or make of barn, those built by John Talcott Wells in the Scottsville area, was at a preservation conference not long ago and on mentioning that she wanted to scan some larger size drawings etc. she has was told that we have a large book scanner here. She inquired asking if I could scan some things for her and I replied that after the semester ends I'd be happy to get together and see what I can do to help.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Women's basketball 2007-08

That team is being honored at a banquet this weekend, found and sent via Dropbox two folders of images, one of individual players, the other of a game against New Paltz in December '07.

Student photography researcher

Had a student photography researcher in yesterday from one of Kitty Hubbard's classes, spent some time showing her the photo collections I have, discussing organization, preservation, digitizing etc. She is coming back to spend more time with the Dusen photos, and wants to do a little scanning etc.

Methodist church clock tower & Capen Hose

After last nights presentation at Morgan Manning on the reaper business, which went well, was approached by a couple of people wanting help with projects. One is a Lions member, they are looking at sponsoring the restoration of the clock in the Methodist church, and he is looking for history on the clock. I said I'd see what I can find, and also suggested the Knapp Museum.

Another person is a member of the Capen Hose museum, and we on the Brockport Community Museum have started to work on a historical panel for them. He had some other questions, and I offered what I knew, and said would look for more.

Update: heard from both, sent the one some images of Capen Hose, for the Lions club member I searched a bit, found an Elwell column on the clock, and a 1914 Brockport Republic article detailing the clock and its installation, saved and sent to him.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Morgan Manning House presentation

After Mornings with Professors Tuesday morning, am doing a presentation Tuesday evening at the Morgan Manning House on Seymour & Morgan and their reaper business. Going through various secondary sources, scanning some of the old patents we have, sales brochures, looking at other primary sources like local newspaper...

Mornings with Professors

Spending a lot of time here and there working on a slideshow for the talk I am giving this coming Tuesday morning, which will focus on the lesser known early history of the school, the Collegiate Institute and Normal school eras.

Women's Center 20th display

Spent a good bit of time preparing a display for this event tomorrow. Also in assisting Rachael Fort, a student from the program, who did a very good deed and found a box of Women's Center materials I'd been given but have not yet added to the collection, what with moving this past year etc...

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Canal & Master Plans

The current interest in the canal is part of an expanded master plan development that will focus on not just the college but it's place in the surrounding community. Am reviewing the old master plans, which go back to 1946, as well as other records and documents to aid in illuminating the college's visions concerning our physical properties, their use, the impact on the local community...

History of Clarkson

Someone stopped by interested in researching the history of Clarkson. Showed them the materials I have in Digital Commons, the plat maps, history books etc., and showed them NYS Historic Newspapers too. Explained how to use, offered to help further if needed...

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Guelf photos of canal etc

Have been working with Norm Frisch of the Brockport Community Museum on some local history projects that are making use of the historical glass plate negatives taken by George "Buzz" Guelf" a century ago. The photos were digitized and added to NY Heritage a few years back but the digital files need to be better organized, a project for the future, but they are worth going through, they are remarkable photographs.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Dance, Art dept dates

Query re start dates of these departments: both were 1967. Also shared link to the digital commons page for the dance archives.

Monday, April 3, 2017

1973 yearbook

Grad of that year, had lost hers, was looking at online copy, but apparently Part II isn't there, need to check on that! But I have some extra copies, offered to mail her one, she was very happy about that.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017


A student running for an office in the Association of Latin American Students wanted info re the origins of the group. Their history has come up before, and sent him a merged file of Saga and Stylus entries about the early years of the group.

Gordon Hall

Students from a "mobile journalism" class emailed me about the history of Gordon Hall. Sent link to web page of building histories, offered to meet today if they wanted.

Math & Physics 50th anniversaries

Sanford Miller in Math contacted me, they are having a joint party with Physics to celebrate their 50th anniversaries as distinct departments. (In the old Teachers College they were part of a big "Science" unit. In 1966-67 the old large units were broken down into a number of separate, independent units, math, economics etc.) Needs pics etc., by end of week. Will search and send what I can.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Helen Hastings

A couple students came by, researching Helen Hastings for this art exhibit coming up, and for the village museum. Shared a photo of her, links to her books we have online, Old Houses of Monroe County etc. Talked about how she was related to William Seymour, founded the village museum...

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Mary Heddon Brown 1945

Nice surprise to get an email from someone in the class of '45! She said she wrote for the Stylus back then, and was interested in seeing some of it. I sent her links to NYS Historic Newspapers, explained some of how that works, and also a link to the yearbooks online. Asked if she was local, that I would visit if she liked to explain these things better, or she was welcome to visit the archives...

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Nancy Vuolo 1990

Request for info on her from reporter in Hudson Valley, working on a story about athletes from Columbia Greene Community College who went on to play at 4 year schools. Nancy and her sister Linda both played on our softball team. Found and sent him a page of her stats.

Bergen Swamp films

In 1969-70 Jean Bobear (pictured left in 1956) and Jay Reese of this college produced a set of four films on the unique environmental site known as the Bergen Swamp. The films chronicled the changing seasons of the swamp, it's environment etc. Unfortunately at some point it was decided at the college to keep only the latest versions of many of our films, and so the original 16mm was discarded, and only the VHS kept. The VHS is not the best quality, but it was all we had.

Recently however original film footage was found, and it is apparently in quite good condition. The Bergen Swamp Society people have it, and I have been in contact with them. They are going to have it digitized at Eastman House, and will share the files with us. Very exciting news, it will be wonderful material for the Digital Commons!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Womens Center History

Very curious, they are having the 20th anniversary of the Womens Center soon, and an intern of theirs was here to look for some information. Showing her how to search the Stylus online, we were surprised to see that there was some earlier Womens Center, in the 1980s, that grew out of a Womans Coalition of the late 1970s. More to their history than they, or I, had realized!

Chemistry Departmental Scholars

Emory Morris wants to put together a list of Chemistry Departmental scholars. Will look through Honors Convocation programs, not sure where else off hand.

Portraits & Photos of Principals and Presidents

Helped Matt Yeoman lately, finishing this am, with a project to supply and identify all known images of heads of the school. The earliest known image we have is of Malcolm MacVicar, the 1866 photo from Alumni House. For most of the latter folks they are going to go with photos of their portraits. The portraits themselves, which for many years were hung on the 7th floor in Allen, are currently in a secure room in Tower, awaiting funding for restoration.

Scholarship names

Barbara Power in Advancement, working with someone else, who is doing a slide show on some of the scholarships, and wants short bio statements and pics of the people. I have most, all probably, and by happy coincidence Lyndsey Richards is working on this very area for her internship this spring.

Roland "Sandy" Sandberg '59

Worked with his widow, Doris, before. He was part of the top notch soccer team we had then. She is working on having him added to his high school athletic hall of fame, and wanted to check on the year he was made part of the All NY Soccer Players. I found a record, it was 1958.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Library history

Wrote article for the Friends newsletter "The Scroll" on the early history of the library, up thru Janette Reynolds, Normal school era.

Friday, March 10, 2017


Some might wonder why do this still, in the digital era, but actually microfilm is still very important. In this case, I sent out the last 4 semesters of the Stylus to Biels to be microfilmed. I also have the newspaper bound into volumes. So I'll have paper copy, microfilm, and at some point the microfilm can be digitized, and added to NYS Historic Newspapers, where it already is held 1928-2014.

So why not just digitize, and skip the microfilm? Well, the print copy won't last forever, although I have some bound newspapers from 40, 50 years ago that aren't too bad. Digital is very accessible, but also very potentially ephemeral. A server goes out, files get corrupted somehow, software and format changes led to materials that can no longer be opened...

Microfilm on the other hand will last easily a century or two, takes up little space, and can always be utilized. In with the new, but keep some of the old one might say. Pictured here is the microfilm room in 1971 in the "old" Drake, when we were in what is now Rakov.

Twitter account

After FLC meeting with social media staffer Dave Tyler decided that in addition to Facebook work I do, with the Rose Archives page there, posts in Remembering Brockport etc., that I would set up a Twitter account. I did, as BrockportArchives, @BrockportArch1. Have posted a couple times, see how it goes!

Activism on campus

John Fallaco asked about activism on campus, researching a story for The Port. Sent him link to Vietnam era study done by student John Butz in '91, also some other suggestions and resources.

Women's Center 20th

Am doing a table display at their 20th anniversary 4/14. Also am going to work with one of their students who wants to do some sort of slide show.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Canal Project - College

Emailed some with Beau Willis yesterday and today re the canal, the college development of its frontage... He shared an updated slide show that incorporates some of the elements I had shared with him before, clips from the Stylus etc.

Helen Hastings

Query from student (Nikqufa Pryce,) part of small group researching her. Had communicated briefly with her before, sent her more today, Hasting's obit, founding of museum, links to her books online...

Ken O'Brien - photos

Even though out sick, the archives keeps getting questions, luckily can do some via email! Ken O'Brien needed permission to use some archival images, and also I think is going to want some higher res images.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

1977 Wrestling team

Query from an alum looking for a team pic, that was the first year the team won the national title. I had one scanned already and emailed to him.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Ted Williams '77

John Maier from English has been doing some research with and on this grad, a Tuscarora Indian. Wanted to see yearbook etc.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Building names

Val Dimino, editor of The Port, called Friday afternoon, their one story lead dropped out, and she wanted to know if I could do something re Reynolds Hall, building names former and present etc. Said sure, will work on it this afternoon.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Ambrose Corcoran

He was in in the old Art & Industrial Art program 1945-81. Got a call from someone who said they have an art piece of his, and wanted to know a little more about him. Very interesting, will call back today, want to ask if I could get a digital image of the art piece. Found I did not have a folder on Corcoran, so am making one up now.
Update: Brad Schrieber, Advancement, emailed me re the Daily Eagle piece I ran on this Corcoran story. C's daughter Penny has maintained some contact with the college, and he was asking about putting her in touch with the fellow who has the pastel artwork.
Latest Update: the fellow in NJ sent me some pics of the reframed piece, said is interested in talking to us about the college having it, and is happy to talk to someone from Advancement and Corcoran's daughter, so am connecting them all, see what happens.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Credit hour definitions

Peter Dowe from Registration came over. Was looking for the statement made some years ago re definition of credit hours. Found in a 1992 Faculty Handbook, was not online. Scanned and sent to him for his reference.

College Senate materials

Tracy Daniels contacted me, apparently "they," the current president of senate and some others, are wondering if I'd like to take some of their materials for the archives. I'll have to go look, see how much there is. The extra space I got in the move is going fast!

UPDATE: in emailing Tracy, current president etc., mentioned that a student intern is researching the old Student Faculty Association, that ran c1946-66. By coincidence they are looking at what they can do to increase student involvement, and were very interested to hear about this earlier incarnation of the college senate.

Gene Orbaker '53

Doug Collier contacted me about Gene, who is an alum, and taught here c1958-95, PE. Wants me to find some pics etc from Gene's days on the soccer team here. Will scan some of what I have, not sure ID on some, maybe Gene can help. Will get some Stylus articles etc. too.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Sarah C. Smith

This student came up again. She was here a term or two c1872, and then went on to become a missionary in Japan with the Presbyterian church, where she helped found Hokusei Gakuen University in Japan. Interestingly enough, Kazumi Nakano, Mathematics, who just passed away, was a graduate of that college.

A fellow there is researching the history of the school, and has asked for some more help. Will see what I can send, I don't have much, her name in register, a flyer for BSNS... Will look some more in NYS Historic Newspapers too.

Roxio, where did it go???

Had told Bill Hullfish's wife I could digitize some audio cassettes for her, for his birthday party coming up, but went to do it today and discovered that in one of the various recent tinkerings with PCs in the archives that software was removed. I do still have the CD, but not the product key, which seems to be missing... Sigh, wish when they are fiddling with PCs they would put back everything that was there, since of course I had it all there for a reason!

Well, my 6th intern is trying to chat with Roxi, also downloaded Adobe Auditions that IT said we could use, see if that works. UPDATE: Jake was able to get Adobe Auditions going, digitized one cassette, so we're up and running!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

"Spring Day"

Query re "Spring Day," from an intern in Advancement, response below.

what you’re asking about has quite a history actually. There was a “May Day” sort of event that was very big here for years, c1902-1938, called Color Day. (See attached photo.) I even have some film footage, digitized, of several 1930s Color Days. Then later, in the ‘40s and ‘50s, they had a “Spring Day,” which was a student recruitment sort of thing. Later still, in the ‘70s, there was a spring event that was basically a big beer party with bands on the mall…


   Let me know more what you all need, what you’re planning, and I’ll see what I can find.

Fannie Barrier

Researcher wanting information on FB, sent her the obit, Lee's letter, the"autobiography" article...

Six interns!

Am picking up a 6th intern, Jake, who will do a 3 credit internship in the archives. He'll start by helping me digitize the Hullfish tapes, then go on to do a popular culture study by tracking student musical interests via the Stylus and Saga.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Low Bridge High Water

More canal interest; this celebration is annual, but special this year, as it is the bicentennial of the start of the canal construction. I am working with folks from the Brockport Community Museum on their contribution to this. My part will likely include sharing the Guelf images of the canal and of its expansion c1914. Someone from the Union was interested in this too.

Canal & College

VP Willis contacted me asking for a list of college connections, events etc. with the canal. Supplied a list of Stylus references c1930-1985, events along canal, activities, concerns re pollution... He replied back that the list was helpful, and related that they are looking at enhancing the college property along the canal. I had never thought of it, but we are actually the only SUNY located on the canal, we have 800' or so of frontage.

I will look for more material in old master plans etc. and share with them.

SUNY Central policies re promotion

Specifically for c1998. Good question, hard to answer. I have scattered UUP member docs in archives, Jennifer Smathers found these when she was trying to help a patron, but I also have Faculty Handbooks, which aren't for '98, but there is a '92, and online I found a '01, none of which seemed to vary much. Scanned relevant pages from the '92, emailed, noted that part of the problem is that there isn't actually a SUNY archives, for the system as a whole.

   Never has been, the materials that exist languished for years in various places, including a warehouse in the Albany area. Ken O'Brien and Bruce Leslie of our history department have pushed for years to get an archives set up for the system, and they think that there may be someone appointed in the near future. This would be wonderful, it is so unfortunate that the system has lacked in this area all these years.

Tuttle & Tuttle

A little question, but made me do some research: someone commented on the Rose Archives page on Facebook, asking about Tuttle building, was it named for their gr-uncle, Ray Tuttle, a local politician and local historian of years ago. I knew the building was named for Ernest Tuttle, PE prof here c1937-65, but found myself unsure re any connection between the two men. Long story short, after a little digging, found that Ernest Tuttle was from the Watertown area, and as far as I can tell not related to Ray Tuttle.

Bill Hullfish

His wife contacted me, they are having a birthday party the end of the month for this emeritus of the former Music Department, and she was hoping for pics, audio... I found some images I could send, both photos, Stylus articles etc., but no audio. Then she got back to me, had found some cassette tapes. So she dropped them off today, tomorrow I need to see if I remember how to run the digitization of them on the one PC!

Dorm & building names

Shared the pic of Janette Reynolds, first librarian with Dave Tyler, who posted on Facebook. That got a response from someone who said they had lived in "Reynolds Hall" in the '60s. Dave asked if I knew of that hall, and at first I was thinking it was some sort of mistake, but then found an article in the Stylus about it! The question has prompted me to revisit the issue, something that has nagged at me a few times, the issue of dorm and building names. It seemed like some names had "moved," some were dropped etc., but was never too clear about the details.

So am digging a little now, one thing I found was that they named buildings almost literally by halls, so Morgan at one time in the '50s had four names for the four "halls." One of those was Thompson, which was "moved" as it were to be the name of another building. The quad dorms of today, MacVicar etc., were once not only MacVicar, but Chriswell and Reynolds. Confusing, and a shame too, to name things, then lose those names. Reynolds should have had Drake named after her!

Update: am looking into this more, the plaque for Edwards hall came to the archives, a big bronze item, gift of Class of 1958. The original set of dorm "halls" were Edwards, Perry, Neff and Morgan, I think, I need to research to be more clear. I have 1950s photos labeled Edwards, it looks like in the section that was demolished in '90s when they extended the mall into the back of Hartwell.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Alpha Delta history

A query came in about this sorority, which was started here in March 1888, it still continues at Geneseo, and that is where the questioner is from. Sent some images, the following note:

"Hi Theresa, I have a fair bit of material for Alpha Delta here in the Rose Archives. It did start here, in March 1888, and later established chapters in other of the Normal schools, including Geneseo, where they still continue. Here at Brockport though all the old Normal school fraternities and sororities were closed out in 1938-39. They had had rooms in the old building, a new complex was built, and the then principal of the school didn’t include rooms for them, essentially shutting them down, so they all ended here in 1939. If you’d like to visit sometime and look at the materials I have that would be fine, let me know."

History African & African American Studies Dept

Request from visiting prof in that department asking about its history, prompted by my Daily Eagle post recently on the establishment of departments in the '60s. There is some material in the archives, in brief the story is that one of the demands of the Black Student Liberation Front of the late '60s was the establishment of a "Black Studies" department. That unit was started in 1970-71, with Felix Okoye as founding member and chair.

Sent her a Stylus article from '71, advised what materials we have etc. One suggestion was that Ena Farley is still around, an early and long time member of the department, an oral history interview with her would be a great thing to do.

Thursday, January 26, 2017


Attended this RRLC archives special interest group today for first time. Nice bunch, seems like will be informative and useful. Meeting was at U of R, which is an amazing facility and large staff compared to my poor little archives, lol.

Janette Reynolds original photo!

Very happy discovery this morning. Met Rosie Rich and Kathy Goetz at Seymour Library, where they're going through boxes of Eunice Chesnut's files from MM House. Quite a few good things there for the college archives, including the discovery of a folder which had the original of a blurry copy shot in the old 1899 yearbook of Janette Reynolds 1873, the first real librarian at Brockport!

Little Library and Stylus

Contacted by Stylus reporter re little library piece in Daily Eagle. Replied with pics, some info, offered to meet with them...

Update: just met with reporter Siomara Germain. She conducted an in depth interview with me about the project, and seemed quite interested by the Friends group.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Jacob Tooker, Principal 1846-1848

Was surprised today by an email from the Albany Institute of History and Art in a couple of ways. The first was that the writer said they had a bible with an inscription inside the cover noting it as a gift from the students of the Brockport Collegiate Institute to Jacob Tooker, who was principal for two years. The writer asked if I'd like it for the archives, since it has no connection to Albany etc. and of course I do. The other thing is that the writer asked if I'd gone to high school in Delmar NY, which I had, I recognized his name, younger brother of a girl I dated 40+ years ago!

History of adapted PE

A student looking to start a thesis on the history of adapted PE contacted me, wanting to use the archives. This is great, have been hoping someone would show interest in that area. Joe Winnick, who is such a significant figure in the field, is still around, and I may see about having this student interview him.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Rosie Rich

Rosie Rich is helping Kathy Goetz go through things from the Morgan Manning house, essentially they have been dismantling the massive local history collections and files Eunice Chesnut built over the years. I am getting a lot of college related material, other stuff is going to the Emily Knapp Museum etc. The MM House itself is going to concentrate on the history of the house, family, reaper company etc.

It makes sense really. When the whole thing was set up in the '60s, there weren't many local historians or groups around. Eunice in many ways became de facto historian for Brockport and the area. But now that there has been an active college archives for years, groups like the Brockport Community Museum, a revitalized village museum and so on it probably makes good sense for the house to be more of a house museum, and not do all this other.

Update: got first batch from Rosie the other day, some amazing stuff, e.g. a transcript of an oral history interview with Floy DeLancey, who recounts coming here with her husband Blaine in 1934!


Need to check in with some folks, it is going to be a full house this spring, I think I am going to have four students each doing a 3 credit internship this semester!

Writers Forum

Val from The Port wanted photos of Writers Forum for a collage for the February issue. Had some scanned, scanned a few more, some nice '70s shots in that set of slides.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Bergen Swamp films

Exciting discovery, secretary from Env Science called, she is member of Bergen Swamp Society and apparently they discovered some 16mm films that sound like the original films of the swamp c1969 that we only have VHS tapes of. The president is going to contact me, re digitization, copyright issues... Wonderful discovery, the VHS are poor quality copies, but if these are in decent shape, very significant stuff. Jean Bobear was the prof here who made them, are copyrighted by the college.

Roy Bubb '53

Brad Schreiber from advancement asked about him. He is not only a grad, but was a professor in Education c1961-1985, and supports a scholarship. I couldn't find a lot on him, some basic bio info, but then I did discover a folder of his hand written letters to his professor Dorothy Foster relating his student teaching experiences at the old "Clarkson Grammar School," which would have been in the brick academy building by the Clarkson church on Ridge Rd.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Baseball box score

Part of the fun of archives, one question is on a 19th century principal and his background, the next is about baseball scores for a particular game in 1970-71! Will search athletics files, Stylus... The player was Ernie Kittelberger '74.

Update: I just can't find anything. The Athletics records I have are pretty extensive, but focus primarily on varsity, not junior varsity level teams. For the period in question all the baseball records are of the varsity team. Nothing in Stylus either for '71 frosh baseball games.

Charles MacLean query

Had another query from the historian of Gamma Sigma re MacLean and his background. He was particularly interested in when MacLean graduated from University of Rochester (he went there after Clarkson Academy and our Collegiate Institute, c1850s.) Part of his interest was wondering if while at U of R MacLean had been part of the "Delphic" society there, and had been inspired by that to start Gamma Sigma at Brockport in 1870.

Have contacted U of R archives, am looking through some things here...

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Lynda Cochrane, Dance

Was a response to the Daily Eagle post re 50th anniversaries, wanted to know more about her department (1967). They actually have some of their own archival materials scanned and in Digital Commons, sent her a link. Also shared some other info.

Pictures of 5 championship wrestling teams

From Athletics, for a request they received from an outside group. Found some, still looking for a couple, it is hit and miss with athletics stuff. Some years Jim D. shot pics of all the teams, some years not, some were done by free lancers and we may not have the photos...

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Pieces for next issue of The Port

Wrote two little pieces, a paragraph each, on establishment of Collegiate Institute by local citizens, and history of living on campus. Supplied a couple images too.

EDI435 from 1992

Catalog course description request, from a prof here via Logan. Scanned and sent to them.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Physics Department

Eric Monier emailed re my Daily Eagle post about 50th anniversaries. Apparently Dick Mancuso had t-shirts made up some years ago for the department with the date 1974 on them, and Eric wanted to reconcile that date with the c1967 date in my post. I checked, and in the '67-68 catalog there was a department of physics, so that supports my post, and the schedule from the '66 plan I sent with it. Not sure what the '74 date meant for Dick. Checked that catalog, and nothing special for physics there that I saw, I thought like some other departments they might have had a masters in the works, and just no longer do, but I didn't see that.

Friday, January 6, 2017

50th anniversaries

Nicole Dumbleton called from Advancement, asking about 50th anniversaries of departments, something we and others there have discussed in the past. I'd said before I'd do some sort of list or statement on that, and said I would do it now.

It's one of those things where I had a general idea of the story, but not all the details. After a few hours digging I had a better idea, the 1966 academic plan was especially helpful. As it said there the college for many years had been a "one-purpose" school, to train teachers, but when President Brown came in 1965 we got the nod to move from Teachers College to College of Arts and Science, to expand from having essentially two massive departments, one for "GE" and the other for "PE," and to go to something very much like what we have today, a wide range of autonomous departments offering many different subject degrees.

In that same era, 1965-68, many other long standing groups came into being. It's when the old Faculty Student Association was broken up into the Faculty Senate and the Brockport Student Government, when we went from having a small group of "watchmen" to having a professional police force etc. It is really when the college of today first took shape.

More old Normal

Gordy had some more questions about the layout of the old Normal school. I scanned some pictures from the first Saga yearbook, 1929, and the one time effort from 1899. Some interesting images there, wish I had the original prints, or even the negatives!

I sent him those, along with the map from the inside of the 1934 Saga. I wish years ago when starting this work I had sat down with some of the surviving Normal school grads and gone over some photos of the building, getting a better feel for it. It did come up incidentally in oral histories, but I never thought to focus on it so.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Port

For next issue, am doing two little pieces, one on establishment of the BCI by local people, and another on where students lived over the years.

Color of the old Normal school?

From Gordy Fox, who is building the model BSNS "little library." I sent him a color post card of the building c1907. Said from what I know it was built of Medina sandstone, some quarried on Canal Rd where Holley goes across Redman. That stone is a greyish color with hints of red.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Mary Jane Holmes

Email from local teacher and Morgan Manning House board member who is researching MJH for a presentation and wanted to know some things, including whereabouts of any of her physical possessions. Gave him Sarah Cedeno's email, said the MJH room in the village museum has the most of whatever survives of her things.

Cathy Craft, history school

She's a media specialist here, works with Dave, was looking for material on the earlier history of the school, so to start sent her email outling BCI history, links to some docs in DC, images like those from the MacVicar photo set and so forth.