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American Culture Folklore and Oral History Archives, 2005-2009

13.5 linear feet (in 31 boxes) — 1 videotape (8mm videocassettes) — 1 videotape (mini-DVs) — 4 videotapes (VHS (TM)) — 132 audiocassettes (microcassettes) — 97 audiocassettes — 9 USB thumb drives (3 4GB, 3 2GB, 2 512MB, and 2 128MB) — 10 floppy disks (3.5") — 1 optical discs (mini DVDs) — 10 optical discs (DVD-Rs) — 1 optical discs (Hi-MD (MiniDisc)) — 2 optical discs (MiniDiscs) — 1 optical discs (mini CDs) — 27 optical discs (CD-RWs) — 220 optical discs (CD-Rs)

Archives of folklore collected by students in the course "Survey of American Folklore" offered by the University of Michigan Program in American Culture and first taught by Bruce Conforth in 2005. Collected folklore reports compiled by students in American Folklore course based on oral interviews with informants. (Interviews are included on a variety of physical formats--cassettes, microcassettes, CDs, VHS tapes). Reports include essays, transcripts on topics ranging from popular folklore to campus legends and traditions.

The American Culture Folklore and Oral History Archives consists of folklore collection reports prepared by undergraduate students in the American Folklore course offered by the University of Michigan Program in American Culture. Prior to the transfer to the Bentley Historical Library, the folklore reports were organized according to general topics by students in the course and placed in archival folders and boxes under the direction of the professor. That order has been retained. Very often the media and objects included in the report have remained. The collection is meant to directly serve students who may take the Survey of American Folklore class in the future, and indirectly to those who, years from now, may re-discover and research aspects of American folklore that were pertinent during present day.

There is considerable overlap in subject matter between the categories of collecting topics. In the collection, folders for the first set of reports in a series are ordered according to their pre-assigned number (which can be found in the Administrative Files series) and not according to the last name of the student or title. For the second set, however, where no such number exists, the reports are ordered by surname of the student. In this finding aid, only the student's name and title of the report is listed. Further in the series names will appear to be in alphabetical order when the pre-assigned numbers were not continued.


Casa de Unidad records, 1980-2006

7 linear feet — 1 oversize folder — 93 MB (online)

The records of the Casa de Unidad Cultural Arts and Media Center cover the organization's efforts to promote, develop, and celebrate Hispanic and Latino arts and traditions in Southwest Detroit. The record group consists primarily of correspondence, board minutes, grant proposals and reports, newsletters, event and program budgets, event flyers, educational workshop reports and audio material.

The records of Casa de Unidad cover the period between 1980 and 2006. The collection consists primarily of correspondence, board minutes, grant proposals and reports, newsletters, event and program budgets, event flyers, educational workshop reports and audio material. The majority of the material is in English, though a small number of flyers, newsletters, and audio recordings are in Spanish. The collection contains the following series: Administrative Material, Educational/Artistic Activities, Unity in the Community Festival, and Audio Material.


Dick Posthumus papers, 1972-2002 (majority within 1982-2002)

7 linear feet

The Dick Posthumus papers (1972-2002) consist of materials related to his political career as state senator, Senate Majority Leader, and Lieutenant Governor and his campaign for governor. The collection includes correspondence, campaign literature, media advisories, newspaper clippings, speeches, radio and television appearances and photographs.

The Dick Posthumus papers (1972-2002) consist of materials related to his political career as state senator, Senate Majority Leader, and Lieutenant Governor and his campaign for governor. The collection includes correspondence, campaign literature, media advisories, newspaper clippings, speeches, radio and television appearances and photographs. The papers are organized into eight series: materials related to his political career as a state senator, Senate Majority Leader, and Lieutenant Governor and his campaign for governor: Campaigns, Correspondence, Media Advisories, News clips, Speeches, Topical Files, Other Media, and Photographs.


Frederick Gilbert Bourne collection, 1901-1918

0.5 linear feet

The Frederick Gilbert Bourne collection is made up of correspondence, photographs, printed items, and ephemera related to Bourne, president of the Singer Manufacturing Company and commodore of the New York Yacht Club, and to his son-in-law, Ralph Strassburger, who served as consul general to Romania, Bulgaria, and Serbia in 1913.

The Frederick Gilbert Bourne collection is made up of 73 letters, 11 telegrams, 9 photographs, 1 photograph album, 17 invitations and pieces of ephemera, and 22 printed items related to Bourne and to his son-in-law, Ralph Strassburger.

The Correspondence series (84 items) comprises the bulk of the collection, and is arranged by author and recipient. Bourne composed 45 letters to his daughter May and her husband, Ralph Beaver Strassburger, offering financial advice and sharing news of his social and leisure activities near his Long Island home and during his vacations on Jekyll Island, Georgia. These vacations often included hunting trips and yachting excursions. Several letters composed in 1912 and 1913 reflect Strassburger's time as a diplomat in Eastern Europe, with content respecting his father-in-law's efforts to secure him a reassignment following a local cholera outbreak. Bourne commented on the 1912 presidential election and controversial office appointments made by the outgoing Taft administration.

Incoming correspondence to Frederick Gilbert Bourne documents the social lives of his wealthy friends and family members in the early 20th century. Additional correspondence includes personal letters addressed to Ralph and May Strassburger and to Mrs. Emma Bourne from various acquaintances. The telegrams (11) contain messages between members of the Bourne family, most related to travel arrangements.

The Photographs series includes 9 individual photographs and one photograph album. Nine silver gelatin prints and real photo postcards depict Frederick Gilbert Bourne; "The Towers" on Dark Island, New York; and Indian Neck Hall, Bourne's estate in Oakdale, Long Island, New York (including 1 panoramic photo). The photo album, ca. 1904-1914, contains over 100 images of yachts and automobiles, as well as scenes from Jekyll Island, Georgia, and the leisure activities of wealthy Americans (including sailing races).

The Printed Items and Ephemera series includes 6 visiting/calling cards, a menu, 10 invitations, 7 picture postcards, 13 newspaper and magazine clippings, a magazine, and a book. The calling cards and invitations pertain to the activities of Frederick and Emma Bourne; the postcards depict the Bourne's estates and other buildings; and the clippings, magazine, and book concern Frederick Bourne (including yachting articles from The Rider and Driver and The Illustrated Sporting News). One of the calling cards is personally addressed to Bourne by J. Pierpont Morgan. The book is Henry H. Klein's Dynastic America and Those Who Own It (1921). The series also contains a reproduction of a document commending Bourne's lengthy service with the Singer Manufacturing Company (March 7, 1906) and a composite image of Frederick Bourne working in various occupations.

The Media series is comprised of 6 compact discs containing digital images of the Frederick G. Bourne family, the Jekyll Island Club, and Airy Hall Plantation, the South Carolina plantation owned by Robert George Elbert, another of Bourne's sons-in-law. The series also includes a VHS tape with filmed views of Bourne's estates and of Ralph Strassburger's home, transferred from a 28 millimeter reel from 1918.


George Lincoln Rockwell sound recording, October 13, 1964

0.1 linear feet

George Lincoln Rockwell was the founder and leader of the American Nazi Party. This sound recording is from a speech he gave at Hill Auditorium at the University of Michigan in 1964. Everett M. Dirksen was a member of Congress from Illinois. The sound recording also includes a speech he gave on the state of union.

The George Lincoln Rockwell sound recording consists of a single tape reel. The recording consists of a speech George Lincoln Rockwell gave at Hill Auditorium on October 13, 1964. Rockwell's appearance was part of a speakers program sponsored by the Special Projects Committee of the Michigan Union. It stirred considerable controversy on campus on the nature of the American Nazi Party, the limits of academic freedom, and the role of the university in society.

The recording also includes a 1964 speech from Illinois Senator Everett M. Dirksen on the State of Union.


Michael Ranville papers, 1953-2008

3.5 linear feet (in 4 boxes) — 2 oversize items

Author and political consultant from Charlotte, Michigan who wrote a book on the Milo Radulovich Case; records include interviews, correspondence, newspaper clippings, Radulovich military records, research notes, and documentation relating to the writing and publication of To Strike at a King: The Turning Point in the McCarthy Witch-Hunt.

The collection consists of six series: Milo Radulovich Research materials, Writing and Publicity, Later Milo Radulovich materials, Other articles, Video materials, Sound materials, and Posters. The collection's strength lies in Ranville's interviews with Milo, his sister, and other's involved in Radulovich's Air Force Security Hearing, as well as in the other accumulated research materials.


Michelle Krebs papers, 1984-2009

17 linear feet — 3 oversize items — 77.6 GB (online)

Topical files and writings of Michelle Krebs, a Detroit-based freelance automotive writer who served as editorial coordinator and contributing editor for various publications of the automotive industry as well as contributing journalist for newspapers and general-interest magazines.

The Michelle Krebs collection includes her writings, in the form of newspaper and magazine clippings, as well as research materials collected as part of her professional work as analyst and journalist for the automotive industry. The papers are arranged in the following series: Writings, Topical Files, and Promotional Materials, Press Releases, and Publications, and Miscellaneous Audio Visual Materials. The 2012 accession contains additions to the Topical Files, Promotional Materials, Press Releases, and Publications series.


Michigan Historic Preservation Network Records, 1980-2004

9 linear feet (in 17 boxes)

Statewide organization established in part to create an awareness of Michigan's cultural heritage and architectural history and to encourage the preservation and stewardship of important state historic resources. Records document the administration and programs of the Network, including conferences, publications, training sessions, and awards given for local preservation achievements.

These records were assembled and processed in 2004 in preparation for a conference marking the organization's 25th anniversary. The records are organized in five series corresponding to the creators of the records.


Naomi Long Madgett and the Lotus Press Papers, 1937-2004 (majority within 1970-2003)

14 boxes and one oversize box (approximately 16 linear feet) — Photographs in box 14 and scattered throughout the collection (see contents list). — Visual material in box 13. — Audio material in box 13. — Books by Naomi Long Magdett and Lotus Press, and books from Madgett's personal library, have been catalogued separately. Some chapbooks appear in the General Correspondence series, where such material were enclosed with a letter to Madgett. See the Writings and Author Files series for materials from the production of some Lotus Press books.

Naomi Long Madgett is a prominent poet, educator, and editor, recognized for her significant contribution to African-American letters. Since 1972 she has run, single-handedly, Lotus Press, which publishes poetry by African-Americans and others. The collection documents Madgett's career and the operation of Lotus Press, through correspondence, manuscripts (both by Madgett and by authors published by Lotus Press), ephemera, audiovisual material, and photographs.

The Naomi Long Madgett Papers document the prominent career of Ms. Madgett as a poet and a teacher, and her operation of Lotus Press, which Madgett has run single-handedly for more than 30 years. Thus, the collection makes a good source of insight both into Madgett's own writing and aesthetic sensibility, and into the cultures of lyric poetry and African-American letters in the latter decades of the 20th Century. The bulk of the material covers the 1980s, the 1990s, and the first few years of the 21st century, with Madgett's activities in the 1970s being fairly well represented as well. From the correspondence collected here a vivid picture emerges of Madgett's relationships with some of the authors whose work she published--such as James Emanuel and Gayl Jones--as well as with other authors, such as Gwendolyn Brooks. In addition, correspondence and ephemera evidence the growth of Madgett's own reputation, documenting her many professional activities, awards, and honors over the years. While manuscripts by Madgett herself do not comprise a large part of the collection, the fortunes of one of her most famous poems, "Midway," are documented in detail, and an unpublished autobiography ( Pilgrim Journey) provides an extensive synthesis by the author of her own influences and career (a section of which has been published by Gale's Contemporary Authors' Autobiography Series). Finally, the collection provides a close look at the daily operation, from its inception, of a small literary press.

The Naomi Long Madgett papers have been arranged into nine series: Personal, Writings, General Correspondence, Workshops and Events, Author Files, Business Records, Ephemera, Photographs, and Audiovisual. Books published by Lotus Press, as well as other books and periodicals from Madgett's library, have been catalogued individually and are shelved by call number in the Special Collections Library. Within the collection, however, much material is available from the production of certain Lotus Press books; see below Writings and Author Files.


Nichols Arboretum (University of Michigan) records, 1921-2006 (majority within 1995-2004)

3 linear feet — 3 drawers

The Nichols Arboretum consists of 123 acres of land adjacent to the University of Michigan's Central Campus. This collection of the Arboretum's records dates mainly from the latter half of the 20th century, and features publications and printed materials from the 1990s. It also includes written histories from the early 20th century, several files of administrative materials from the late 1960s, and materials pertaining to proposals for the Arboretum grounds in the 1990s

The Nichols Arboretum records comprise of 3 linear feet and 12 oversize folders of materials spanning the years from 1921 to 2006. The bulk of the collection dates from 1995 to 2004. The records document a brief period of the arboretum's administration from the late 1960s, plans and proposals for the arboretum grounds from throughout the late 20th century, and publications and events at the arboretum from the mid-1990s to the very early 2000s. The records have been divided into ten series: Administrative, Correspondence, Display Materials, Events, Friends of NA, Projects, Publications and Printed Materials, Topical Files, Maps, and Plans and Proposals.