As friends and colleagues know, I do a lot of teaching in Clark’s Archives and Special Collections. I am fortunate to have an amazing collaborator, Fordyce Williams, Archives Coordinator extraordinaire. Co-teaching a hands-on class like this is a lot of work but also extremely rewarding. Every semester we teach the course, we cap off the year with a Rare Book Open House, where students create an interactive exhibit with books mainly from the uncatlogued Jonas Clark collection.
Fordyce and I are particularly lucky to have an amazing collection of early books with which to teach courses like The Book in the Early Modern World, where students learn about early printing and book history hands on. Students do extensive lab work, much to the surprise of the humanities majors (English, History, Ancient Civilization, Art History, to name a few).
All of this has been made possible by a large collection of early hand press books donated by Jonas Clark, but the holdings of Archives and Special Collections contain many other wonders and rarities. This pdf of an article from the spring ’15 issue of Clark Magazine provides an excellent overview of collection highlights:
The article is full of wonderful photos of books and objects (from miniature books to original Sigmund Freud letters to vintage gym equipment), some of which even I didn’t know we had.