March 2015
(Best viewed on-line)

In this issue:
  • New Exhibit 
  • Local History Conference
  • Upcoming Speaker
  • Michigan Digital Newspaper Portal Updates
  • New on the Blog
  • Spring Break Hours

Speaker Susan Stan at Opening of New Exhibit

On February 19, retired CMU Professor Susan Stan opened the Clarke Historical Library’s newest exhibit, International Children's Books: Celebrating Recent Gifts, with a presentation on the value and importance of international children’s literature. Professor Stan, a noted scholar in the field, began her presentation with a provocative question – why should the Clarke Historical Library devote funds, space, and energy to collecting international children’s books? Why does it matter?

ver the course of the next 45 minutes, Professor Stan made a persuasive case for the importance of studying international children’s literature because of the cultural insights it gives us. International children’s books show us both what we share in common, but also how cultures across the globe see the world differently. 

Read more about Professor Stan's presentation on our blog.
Local History Conference

In March, the Clarke will be traveling to two conferences to spread the word about our collections. March 13-14, we will be at the Michigan Local History Conference, held in Sterling Heights this year, where we will talk about our historic newspapers and our efforts to make them accessible on the web. March 14-15, we will be at the Midwest Fly Fishing Expo, taking place in Warren this year, where we will be providing attendees with information about our wonderful and extensive angling collection. 

Exhibit Item of the Month

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, by J. K. Rowling (UK), in multiple languages

In the eighteen years since the release of the first book, the Harry Potter series has already become a classic. The seven books in the series are popular with young and old and have spawned a lucrative film franchise. Worldwide, 450 million copies of the books have been sold. The first book has been translated into 74 different languages, including Ancient Greek and Latin.

The Clarke holds American first editions of the complete series and a British first edition of the fifth book in the series, Harry Potter and the Rise of the Phoenix. In addition to English, this title has been translated into 54 languages. Pictured here are the British (left) and American (right) first editions. The ten translations also featured in the exhibit are Italian (2003), 
Russian (2007), Polish (2004), Arabic (2008), French (2007), Portuguese (2003), Chinese (2009), Spanish (2006), Hindi (2007), and German (2009).
Upcoming Speakers

On March 24, J. Kevin Graffagnino, director of the William L. Clements Library will speak about the Library’s history and treasures. Founded in 1923 on the campus of the University of Michigan, the Clements Library collects primary source materials in all formats relating to early American history. Its collections of rare books, pamphlets, maps, prints, photographs, and manuscripts shed light on North American history from Columbus through the 19th century, offering researchers a wealth of unique resources. On almost any aspect of the early American experience – military history, politics and government, religion, gender and ethnicity, culinary history, the creative arts, travel and exploration – the holdings at the Clements Library are among the best in the world. Notable strengths of the Library include the early exploration and settlement of North America, the American Revolution, and the American Civil War.​

Updates to Michigan Digital Newspaper Portal

The Michigan Digital Newspaper Portal, available through the Central Michigan University Online Digital Object Repository (CONDOR), is always being updated with the latest information about digital newspaper archives with historic Michigan newspapers. Now, the Newspaper Portal features an interactive map that allows researchers to click on a geographic location, find all of the digital historic newspapers from that area, and then click on the links to access those newspapers. Check it out!

New on the Blog

The month of February brought some great new posts to the News and Notes blog. For Valentine's Day, we highlighted some of the Valentine's Day personal ads that appeared in the CMLife newspaper over the past 40 years. Some were sweet and some were funny, but all were a good way to show someone they were on your mind.

We recapped the presentations of two impressive speakers - Professor Susan Stan opening our exhibit and Professor Hope May, who spoke about former Central president Eugene Warriner and his role in the WWI-era peace education movement (pictured is Professor May sharing some of President Warriner's papers with the Peace Palace Library in the Netherlands).

Marian Matyn also wrote of an interesting discovery that was made among the Bliss Lumber Company records - Asbestos. To learn more about what she found and to stay up on other interesting finds in the Clarke, check in on the Clarke News and Notes blog

Spring Break Hours

CMU's spring break begins this weekend (March 7-15). The Clarke Historical Library will be closed on Saturday, March 7 and Saturday, March 14. We will be open Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm during the week of spring break (March 9 - March 13). Saturday hours will resume March 21.

Contact us via phone (
989-774-3352), e-mail (, or stop by to view our exhibit or conduct research.