Collections : [Central Michigan University Clarke Historical Library]

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Glass-plate negatives, undated [1880-1920]

2 cubic feet (in 4 boxes)

Collection includes 264 glass-plate negatives of people, some identified as living in Clare or Isabella County, Michigan, and some miscellaneous images, undated [1880-1920].

Collection of 264 glass-plate negatives measuring either 4 inches x 6 inches or 4 inches x 5 inches, mostly unidentified, and all undated [1880-1920]. Included in the collection are portraits and group images of men, women, and children, as well as some buildings, instruments, a band, camping with tents, and horses and buggies. A few identified images are Godon Ripenburg of Clare, Michigan, the Clare Bakery, two Fish family gravestones of Isabella County, Michigan, John D. Oren of Michigan, and the ferry "Manistee." The creator is unknown. There are also two positive images, one of a seated woman cut down into an oval shape on a broken glass plate. The other is a small, partial black and white print of a church and factory taken from negative #97.

Federal census for Michigan show John D. Oren (born about 1868) lived in Duplain, Clinton County, Michigan, in 1910 and in Seneca, Lenawee County, Michigan, in 1930; David Fish (born about 1833) lived in Denver Township, isabella County, Michigan, in 1900; and Gordon Ripenburg (born about 1883) lived in Clare, Michigan, from 1910 to 1918.


Charles Conn Michigan Railroad Collection Negatives, undated

3 cubic feet (in 3 boxes)

Charles Conn Michigan Railroad Collection Negatives includes negatives of Michigan railroads and other Michigan-related topics, as well as people, scenic views, and buildings in Michigan.

This collection, 3 cubic feet (in 3 boxes), undated, is the 2018 addition to Charles Conn’s Michigan Railroad Collection. As far as we know this material has not been digitized and therefore is not part of the Charles Conn Michigan Railroad Database. Box 1 of the collection includes negative pages with one page or more of a specific Michigan city or county with image subjects such as buildings, businesses, people, and scenic views. Box 2 is a continuation of city and county negatives, with multiple locations in each page of negatives. At the end of Box 2 begins negatives categorized by specific railways in Michigan. Lastly, Box 3 includes miscellaneous railroad negatives, logging negatives, and unidentified negatives of people and buildings. Two folders of interest are glass-plate negatives (2), undated, of a blacksmith and equipment on a flatbed car, and Railroad index, undated, which appears to index items in Conn’s other collection. The collection is organized alphabetically and by topic. It is housed mostly in the original negative sleeves provided by Conn.


Earl Clifton Beck Papers, undated

.5 cubic ft. (in 1 box, 1 Oversized folder)

The papers include biographical materials of Beck, poems, ballads, and recordings of lumbermen songs.

His undated papers include typed copies of shanty-boy type songs, folk ballads, poems, and music that Beck collected, possibly in the 1930s, as well as two cassette recordings of his group singing lumberjack songs.

Two audiodisc recordings (ca. 1960?) of Beck talking about, singing and reciting various songs, and the three 2005 CDs made from the recordings, are also included. The recordings include a spoken introduction to each section by Beck who then sings or recites the songs. Tracks 1 and 2 are from Audiodisc #1 and Tracks 5 and 6 are from Audiodisc #2. Please note that only the CD labeled “Unprocessed Recordings of Earl C. Beck” plays in a CD player. The other two CDs apparently were used to create the playable CD.

Track 1: Ballads: ‘Barbara Allen’ (short and long versions) and ‘Little Mohee’ (11:11); Track 2: Ballads: ‘Barbara Allen’ (long versions) and ‘Little Mohee’ (10:14); Track 3: Miscellaneous chorus; chipmunks (Chip N Dale)? (0:22); Track 4: distorted voices (0:37); Track 5: Lullabies: ‘Little Old Sod Shanty’; Michigan Lumber Jack Songs: ‘Shanty Boy’ and ‘Pete Batiste’ (both recited) (7:37); Track 6: American Cowboy Songs: ‘Railroad Corral’, ‘Old Saddle’ (recited), and Round Up Time This Fall (verses recited, chorus sung) (8:52).


Central Michigan University. Global Campus History Collection, Collection, 1963-2019, and undated

.5 cubic foot (in 1 box)

This unofficial history collection of CMU Global Campus includes newspaper clippings (copies), photographs, posters (copies), a Certificate of Appreciation to Central Michigan University (CMU) from US. Air Force. Carswell Air Force Base.

This unofficial history collection of Central Michigan University (CMU) Global Campus includes newspaper clippings (copies), photographs, posters (copies), and a Certificate of Appreciation to CMU from Carswell Air Force Base. Newspaper clippings (copies) are mostly from the Bay City Times. Photographs include commencement of CMU graduates at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and Dyersburg State Community College, 2005-2012, CMU classrooms and offices at Carswell Air Force Base, 1993, Dr. Nikkari’s EAD 564 class, 1974, and undated group photographs of unidentified people in Mount Pleasant, Michigan and in the CMU University Center. The photographs are either black and white or in color and some are taped together. The collection is in good condition and organized alphabetically and chronologically. Researchers may be interested in multiple collections in the Clarke documenting the history of the above-named CMU units.

Processing Note: Five cubic feet (tenant renovation drawings, acidic clippings) was withdrawn during processing.


Z. Z. Lydens Notecards, circa 1966

1 cubic foot (in 3 small boxes)

Notecards on research topics for Lydens' book, the Story of Grand Rapids, Michigan (1966).

Notecards on research topics for his book, the Story fo Grand Rapids, Michigan (1966), a copy of which is available in the CMU libraries.


Grace M. Kelly Photographs and negatives, circa 1930, 2015, and undated

2.25 cubic feet (in 5 boxes)

Photographs, negatives, and war papers of a Catholic nurse from Adrian (Mich.) who served in World War II in Sydney and Brisbane, Australia, and Bureaun, The Philippines. Also documented are her family, friends, medical staff, a convent and nuns in Louisiana.

The original part of the collection (Boxes 1-4) is organized into two series, Negatives and Photographs and then alphabetically by topic. The images are mostly undated, but date from the 1940s through the 1960s.

The majority of this part of the collection (1.25 cubic ft.) consists of undated Negatives, mostly of Grace’s relatives. There are many images of a family with four girls playing, eating, celebrating birthdays, going to school, being baptized, preparing for First Holy Communion, with Easter baskets, on vacation, and with extended family. The family traveled overseas, as well as to camp and enjoyed speed boating and fun with a jeep, during the 1950s-1960s. A family dog is in several negatives as well as the girls’ swing set. There are a number of images of a family with two boys, probably also relatives, playing, at a summer camp, and with family members.

There are numerous negatives a nun, who was a family member, first as a novice, and later as a professed nun, by herself, but more often with other nuns or family members, most often the four girls, their parents, and probably the nun’s mother, at church, the convent, visiting shrines, and at family gatherings. A number of the photographs clearly show the address of the convent as 717 Orleans Street. She was a member of the Holy Family Convent in New Orleans (Louisiana). [This information is from an e-news article in the Clarion Herald (the) Official Catholic Newspaper of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, Vol. 42, No. 14, July 2, 2003. According to the article, the convent moved to another location in 1955 after 80 years at 717. A convent, novitiate, and high school, St. Mary’s Academy, were once located at 717.]

Grace’s niece wrote to the archivist that a close family friend, Sr. Mary Matthew (a black nun) was from New Orleans. Francis’ daughter, Margaret Kelly’s sister, is also a (white) nun, Sr. Ruth Anne Kelly, an Adrian Dominican.

A priest is often in the family photographs, particularly with the family of four girls and with the nun. He may have been a family member as well.

Older negatives show the four girls’ Grandma, a boy often wearing knickers, and other senior family members wearing 1920s-1930s era clothing. Grandma apparently lived in her house, as the four girls visited her there with their parents. Grandma’s backyard, with her birdhouse and swing, with numerous large family gatherings, is featured in many negatives.

One folder of negatives shows Grace and various men in military uniforms with family members before leaving to serve in World War II. A common element in the negatives is the large pile of concrete blocks in the backyard.

Additional negatives show animals, buildings, trips, cars, and flowers, trees, etc.

The rest of the collection consists of Photographs (.5 cubic ft.). Most of the Photographs date from World War II and document Lieutenant Grace Kelly’s nursing experience and training at Fort Custer (Battle Creek, Michigan), in October 1943, in Brisbane and Sydney, Australia, in 1944, and in Bureaun, the Philippines, in 1945. The barracks, housing, operating room and equipment, island natives, nurses (working, relaxing, fooling around, on ship, in trucks, hauling equipment, and sightseeing), doctors, medical corpsmen, soldiers, prisoners, patients, animals, scenic wonders, as well as vehicles are documented.

Other photographs document later family barbecues and children in August 1960, and there is one photograph of a nun (Grace’s sister?) with a little girl (Grace’s niece?), dated September 1956.

A few additional, undated photographs of crowds at a Grand Stand, and people in an arena or stadium with loud speakers complete the collection.

All of the negatives that match photographs have been filed with the appropriate photograph.

The 2015 addition, Box 5 (.5 cubic feet) to the collection is a mix of incomplete materials, mostly papers, including U.S. Army special orders and other forms regarding Kelly’s enlistment, transfers, equipment, leave, hospitalization, demobilization, and clearance forms, receipts, and an application for pension. There is also information about how to set up a hospital and what equipment and supplies are necessary for such a hospital. There are some maps of hospital camp layouts, including one that is unidentified and one of Leyte Bay. There is a newspaper article about Kelly, which probably dates from the end of the war. There is also a newspaper image with text about the Angels of Bataan, nurses who were POWs of the Japanese. Kelly was not a POW. Also of interest are some poems, clearly authored by Americans serving in the Pacific. One poem is from a newsletter. Authorship of the poems is unknown.

It is likely that most of the photographs and pamphlets were the property of at least one of her brothers as they are European in nature. Most of the photographs are unidentified and only three are dated, all 1945. The photographs are pretty general in nature and include various civilian buildings and people, soldiers, planes in formation high overhead, various boats, and tents. Several photographs are identified as images taken in England, near the Elbe, along the Rhine, and in Munich. There is one photograph of an unidentified group of nurses. Ralph Kelly, who served in Bavaria, is identified in two images. There is an interesting sequence of four images showing several men practicing a life boat drill.

One item that is definitely that of Francis P. Kelly’s is an invitation to Eisenhower’s inauguration (copy), 1953.

Processing Notes: Many of the forms and the inaugural invitation were extremely acidic and were copied. Originals were removed from the collection. Also removed from the collection were several general publications about the war.


Slides of Grove Gardens, Saginaw (Mich.), circa 1907

.25 cubic feet (in 1 box)

Collection includes 21 glass slides of the Grove Gardens of Saginaw, Michigan, circa 1907.

Beautiful, colored, homemade, glass lantern slides (21) of classical gardens in bloom in spring in the Grove district of Saginaw, Michigan. Each slide measures approximately 3 inches x 4 inches. The slides are undated, but annotation in the original listing states that the last three lantern slides were taken using the autochrome process, which was marketed to the public in 1907. The slides probably date from circa 1907. The slides are in the original numerical order. Images of the following gardens are included: Will McClelland, Mrs. Harwood Gilbert, G. H. Boyd, R. Judd, R. S. Montague, Treanor, C. L. Ring, Fred Buck, Mrs. Herman Zahnow, and Mrs. Blumbes. The slides are in excellent condition.

All of the gardens documented in the collection were very large and gorgeous, including classical architecture, fountains, and extensive grounds bordering on Lake Linton. Clearly the owners of the gardens were very wealthy Saginawians. According to Saginaw Images, at (viewed February 5, 2009), Saginaw received 125 acres on September 5, 1905 from the Honorable Ezra Rust for a large park. This included property in Hoyt's Subdivision and the area known as the Middle Ground, which had previously been the site of many lumber mills. Lake Linton, also known as Rust lake or Wright's Bayou, ran behind the Grove mansions located on the west side of South Washington Avenue in Saginaw. In 1907-1908 Ojibway Island was built, swamp land was dredged, and lowlands were filled in. In 1924 Lake Linton was cut in half by Ezra Rust Drive which was constructed by a boat being sunk and covered with dirt. Additions to the park continued until 2000.


Lewis M. Ward Glass-plate negatives, circa 1905

3.5 cubic ft. (in 3 Oversized, flat boxes, 1 box)

The negatives, and some modern prints made from them, document the Lewis M. Ward family, animals, logging, nature, people, and possibly locations in Charlevoix, Michigan, New York (State), and Niagara Falls.

Glass-plate negatives, circa 1905, of the H. E. Ward family and farm, Max and Carrie Ward, Two Rivers area, people, logging, animals, and nature. Some images may be of Charlevoix or New York (State), or of Niagara Falls (New York and Ontario, Canada).

The negatives are in their original order and boxes, inside of larger, acid-free boxes (1-3) for support. The negatives are both very fragile and very heavy, and should be lifted and handled with care by researchers.

Box 4 contains prints made from the negatives in Boxes 1-3 in December 2000 and January 2001. The folders note from which box of negatives the prints were created. They are in order by large box number and then negative box numbers within each box. All the boxes are also numbered.


Norman E. Clarke Michigan Upper Peninsula Glass-plate Negatives Collection, circa 1870-1880

2 cubic ft. (in 4 boxes)

The collection includes negatives of various sizes with images of Round Island Light House, Le Cheneaux Hotel, Great Lakes ferries,people, and miscellaneous, on or near Mackinac Island, and, possibly, in Saint Ignace, Michigan.

The collection was originally inventoried as including Saint Ignace and Les Cheneaux Island, Michigan, glass plate negatives, 1870-1880. Actually, most of the images are of Mackinac Island, Great Lakes ferries, and people, some of which may be from Saint Ignace and Les Cheneaux Island. The glass plate negatives measure 5x7 inches, 8x10 inches, 6.5x8.5 inches, and 8.5x10 inches. The photographer or photographers are unidentified. Items were identified as much as possible from labels, slips of papers, notes on original boxes, and on/in the negatives themselves. Negatives with damage, such as fading, spotting, oxidation, cracks, broken or missing pieces, and deteriorated, or flaking emulsions have been noted on the sleeves. The images are duplicated in the Saint Ignace-Mackinac Photograph File in the Clarke Historical Library’s Photograph Vertical Files Collection. Boxes 3-4 are Heavy and should be lifted with care.