Special Collections Research Center: Collections

  • Photo of cookbook cover.
    The Janice Bluestein Longone Culinary Archive brings together a rich and diverse body of materials on the American culinary experience, shaped by the donation of titles collected over many years by Janice and Daniel Longone.  Our collecting interests are the production, promotion, preparation, presentation, consumption and appreciation of food & drink in America, plus related aspects of domestic and commercial life, such as entertaining and marketing. The bulk of the collection is from the 18th to the early 21st century, with key titles from throughout the 16th and 17th centuries. Collection strengths include 19th and early 20th century cookbooks, charity cookbooks, and food-related advertising ephemera.
  • Painting of boats.

    Children's Literature

    Approximately 25,000 published volumes are complemented by several collections of archival material containing the artwork, correspondence, manuscripts, and other material created or collected by a number of notable authors and illustrators.

  • Photo of books

    English and American Literature

    In addition to an impressive array of literary first editions, notable holdings include one of the world’s best collections of editions, translations, adaptations, and spin-offs of Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe (first published in 1719) and Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels (first published in 1726); manuscripts by Algernon Swinburne and Anthony Trollope;  hundreds of feet of material related to the University of Michigan's renowned Hopwood Awards program; the papers of authors and poets including Victor Bockris, Nicholas Delbanco, Judith Guest, Marge Piercy, Anne Waldman, and Nancy Willard; and the records of small publishers including The Alternative Press, Broadside Press, and Hanuman Books.

    Image by Brenda Clarke/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

  • Map of Europe

    European History

    The political upheavals of 17th-century Europe are well documented in significant collections of political and other pamphlets from England, France, and the Netherlands. The Special Collections Research Center is home to hundreds of pre-1800 books on European military history as well as thousand of pamphlets from the Weimar Republic and Nazi Germany.

    Image by rosario fiore/Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0)

  • Detail from the Galileo manuscript.

    History of Astronomy

    The collection documents the early history of the field in hundreds of pre-1800 publications including works by Copernicus, Kepler, and Euclid. A manuscript in Galileo’s own hand illustrates his discovery, sometime between 1609 and 1610, of the four moons of Jupiter.

  • Illustration by Vesalius.

    History of Medicine

    The collection contains about 8,500 medical works of scholarly significance. The material historically ranges from a collection of 52 medical magical amulets from late antiquity (Campbell Bonner Collection), to medieval and Renaissance manuscripts, early printed books, and American medical literature from the early 1800s. It includes some important named collections on early European medicine such as the Lewis Stephen Pilcher Collection, the Le Roy Crummer Collection, and the George E. Wantz Collection.

  • Photo of Islamic manuscript.

    Islamic Manuscripts

    The collection consists of 1,095 volumes (and a small number of single leaves) dating from the 8th to the 20th century CE and carrying roughly 1,795 texts chiefly in Arabic, Persian, and Ottoman Turkish. The collection offers a vast range of material for philologists and historians of various disciplines, including Islamic social history, knowledge transmission and acquisition, manuscript production and ownership, and the arts of the book, and ranks among the largest and most significant such collections in North America.

  • Image from the Szyk Haggadah

    Jewish Heritage Collection

    The collection, a gift made jointly to the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies and the University Library, paints a vivid, lasting, and unique portrait of the Jewish experience. In addition to more than 1,500 books, the collection consists of approximately 1,000 works of art (drawings, paintings, engravings, woodcuts, lithographs, and other types of prints); 700 pieces of ephemera (cards, calendars, clippings, postcards, and mementos); and approximately 200 objects ranging from ritual items (menorahs, groggers, and yarmulkes) to everyday objects including toys, candles, and serving trays.

  • Image of an ornate manuscript.
    Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts

    Manuscript holdings from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance consist of over 250 volumes largely devoted to religious topics as well as single leaves, some of them of extraordinary historical relevance such as the collection of 20 parchment leaves containing works of the Coptic writer Shenoute of Atripe. Together these illustrate the art and craft of manuscript production in several parts of Europe and the Mediterranean region.

  • Photo from the Philippine History collection.

    Philippine History

    The collection consists of published works, manuscript items, and photographs documenting many aspects of Philippine history, with particular emphasis on the period between 1899 and 1913, when Worcester served as a member of the United States Philippine Commission and as secretary of the interior for the Insular Government of the Philippine Islands.

  • Anti-nuke poster from Labadie collection

    Joseph A. Labadie Collection

    The collection is one of the oldest and most comprehensive collections of radical history in the United States, bringing together unique materials that document past as well as contemporary social protest movements. Collection strengths include anarchism, labor movements, civil liberties (with an emphasis on racial minorities), socialism, communism, colonialism and imperialism, American labor history through the 1930s, the Industrial Workers of the Word, the Spanish Civil War, sexual freedom, women’s liberation, gay liberation, the underground press, and student protest movements.

  • Shepard Fairey illustration of John Sayles' face.

    Screen Arts Mavericks & Makers

    U-M is home to extensive archives and materials documenting the careers of American filmmakers known for coloring outside the lines: Robert Altman, Ira Deutchman, Alan Rudolph, Nancy Savoca, John Sayles, and Orson Welles. Together they make U-M a major destination for research on these American maverick filmmakers.

  • Photo of a train

    Transportation History

    Rich in printed, archival, photographic, and graphic materials, the Transportation History Collections include thousands of volumes on railroad history, roads and automobile travel, bicycling, bridges, ballooning, canals, and steamships.  Archival collections include the records of the Lincoln Highway Association, the Pierce-Arrow Motor Company, and the Detroit United Railway, and the papers of Charles Ellet, Jr., who designed and built several major wire-cable suspension bridges in the United States before he was killed in the Civil War. Other notable holdings include a 27-volume photographic journal documenting the building of the Panama Canal and extensive graphic material depicting pre-20th century modes of transportation.

    Image from geograph.org.uk (CC BY-SA)

Page maintained by Martha O'Hara Conway
Last modified: 04/15/2018