All posts by Kate Collins

Meet our Interns

Every fall the Rubenstein Library welcomes a new group of graduate student interns from Duke and other area universities.  Maybe I just have a soft spot for our interns since I was once one, but I think anyone at the Rubenstein would tell you that our interns are an integral part of the work we do, helping us with processing collections, creating finding aids, answering reference questions, coordinating events, and much more. I’d like to introduce you to some of the interns who are working with the Research Services department this year:

Dominique Dery, Research Services Intern

What she’s studying: I’m currently a PhD student studying Political Theory and Religion and Politics in the Political Science department at Duke. My dissertation links historical accounts of civic friendship with contemporary theoretical and ethnographic work on civic engagement and community service.
What’s she’s been working on at the Rubenstein Library: As the Research Services intern, I serve patrons at the front desk of the Rubenstein, and I also respond to queries from researchers who can’t make it in to the library themselves. So far I’ve searched through and ordered reproductions of letters, sheet music, and pamphlets.
What she likes to do when she’s not with us: When I’m not writing or at the Rubenstein, I love to help out at a friend’s farm in Rougemont and hike along the Eno.
Most interesting thing she’s come across in our collections:  The most interesting thing I’ve come across so far has been the correspondence between Carson McCullers and Tennessee Williams while on the hunt for mention of another writer in McCullers’ papers; I love McCullers’ fiction and it was fascinating to get to see some of her letters to her dear friend Tennessee (also known as ’10’ in some of the letters).

Williams to McCullers Letter
Letter from Tennessee Williams to Carson McCullers


Danielle Lupton, Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising & Marketing History Intern

What she’s studying: I am a sixth year graduate student in Political Science at Duke University. I focus on international relations, and my work looks at how leaders interact during international crises.
What’s she’s been working on at the Rubenstein Library: In doing research for patrons, I have come across some really neat old advertisements, including some fascinating ads from the turn of the century. I am also doing research for the Hartman Center on Pan American Airlines. Both my parents are pilots, and my father flew for Delta Airlines, who bought out Pan Am. I really feel a connection to the material.
What she likes to do when she’s not with us: In my free time, I am an avid tennis player.
Most interesting thing she’s come across in our collections: I came across this beautiful advertisement from 1896 for Liberty Bicycles on the back of a Kodak ad I was searching for. I think as a political scientist the tag line really resonates with me, and the artwork is a beautiful example of Art Nouveau in advertising.

pan am
1987 Pan Am Billboard


Mary Mellon, University Archives William King Intern

What she’s studying: I’m a library and information science student at UNC-Chapel Hill.
What’s she’s working on at the Rubenstein Library: Various projects for the University Archives, including the Chapel sermon recordings digitization project (some of the recordings are being used in the Great Black Preachers of Duke Chapel series on iTunes U), and creating information pages about members of the Duke family.
What she likes to do when she’s not with us: Outside of work and school, I love knitting, baking, and Duke basketball!
Most interesting thing she’s come across in our collections: A 1958 Duke Law School banquet program signed by “Dick Nixon.”

Richard Nixon Signature
Signature of Dick Nixon, Sometime President of the Duke Bar Association


Claire Radcliffe, Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History & Culture Public Services Intern

What she’s studying: I’m working on a dual masters degree; I just finished my MA in Public History at NC State, and I’m working on my MSLS from Chapel Hill.
What she’s working on at the Rubenstein Library: I’ve been working on a range of things: migrating the website to Drupal, migrating subject guides to LibGuides (and revamping some of them), assisting with remote reference and reproduction, assisting with preparation for classes, helping out with 25th anniversary events, and processing zines.
What she likes to do when she’s not with us: Outside of school and work, I’m interested in photography, old movies, traveling, baking, dance fitness classes, and used bookshops. Although there is distressingly little time outside of school and work.
Most interesting thing she’s come across in our collections: Two of the most interesting things I’ve come across were the pink corset book  and a picture of Kathy Acker with the Spice Girls.

Kathy Acker and Spice Girls
Kathy Acker, third from left, with the Spice Girls

Video Killed the Research Woes

With the Fall Semester well underway, we wanted to let you know about a couple of videos that can make your research at the Rubenstein Library even easier.  For example, not sure where to find us since we moved?

Know that you know where we are and you want to come do research, check out our other videos:

Author Waldo E. Martin Jr. to speak on the Black Panther Party

Bloom&Martin_compREV.inddDate: Thursday, October 3, 2013
Time: 4:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Location: Rubenstein Library, Perkins 318 (PDF Map)
Contact: John Gartrell,

Black Against Empire: the History and Politics of the Black Panther Party traces the rise and fall of the Black Panther Party against the backdrop global revolution. Co-authors Waldo E. Martin Jr. and Joshua Bloom argue that the Black Panther Party rejected fighting for full citizenship within the U.S. and instead, joined the global struggle against U.S. imperialism. In this comprehensive overview, the authors examine why so many young black people across the country risked their lives for the revolution, why the Party grew most rapidly during the height of repression, and why allies abandoned the Party at its peak of influence.

Dr. Waldo E. Martin Jr., joins us to discuss and sign copies of his new book, Black Against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party, co-authored with Joshua Bloom.  




Catherine Nicholson

Sinister Wisdom
Sinister Wisdom, the journal Nicholson co-founded

With great admiration, the Rubenstein Library pays tribute to Catherine Nicholson (1922-2013), theater director/producer, and pioneering co-founder and editor of Sinister Wisdom, who died June 16, 2013. Nicholson’s papers, which are held by the Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture, document her life as a scholar and activist. Beth Hodges, former contributing editor, honored Nicholson with an obituary to be published in the fall issue of Sinister Wisdom. Hodges writes, “Friends remember Catherine as a dedicated lesbian feminist cultural worker, gifted writer, thinker, teacher, conversationalist, and a steadfast friend. Catherine possessed exceptional abilities, vision, and creativity and was also unusually motivated and self-disciplined. She chose to do her best in whatever she undertook, be it acting; directing; editing and publishing a women’s journal; [and] teaching theater and producing the world-premiere of a Monique Wittig play.”

With her partner, Harriet Ellenberger, Nicholson founded Sinister Wisdom, subtitled “A Journal of Words and Pictures for the Lesbian Imagination in All Women.” Hodges writes, “Sinister Wisdom became Catherine and Harriet’s life, took over their house, determined they would drive a truck rather than a sports car, even decided where the couple would live. The job of ‘creating a women’s community on paper,’ as one woman put it, was all-consuming.” Michelle Cliff and Adrienne Rich were the next editors to take the helm of Sinister Wisdom, which continues to be published today under the editorship of Julie Enszer.

Several students from the Duke Women’s Studies Senior Seminar class “Feminist Theory: Durham 1960-1990,” taught by Professor Kathy Rudy during spring, 2013 used this collection in their research on Durham’s activist community of the 1960s-70s. One of those students, Chantel Liggett, received the Middlesworth Award for her paper “Divergent Priorities, Diverging Visions: Lesbian Separatist versus Gay Male Integrationist Ideology Surrounding Duke in the 1970s and 80s.”

Post contributed by Kelly Wooten, Research Services and Collection Development Librarian, Sallie Bingham Center

Vesalius and Football

As Curator for the History of Medicine Collections, I never thought I’d type the words “Vesalius and Football” together. But last week I had the opportunity to showcase De Humani Corporis Fabrica (1543), Andreas Vesalius’s landmark atlas of the human body, in a Sports Illustrated photo shoot featuring Duke football player Kenny Anunike. I wonder how many of my colleagues working in historical medical collections have had collection material featured in SI?!?

Behind the scenes during the SI photoshoot
Behind the scenes during the SI photoshoot

Kenny, a senior biological anthropology and anatomy major and Duke defensive end, will be featured in the upcoming college football preview issue of SI in a story highlighting academically-renowned universities that experienced a resurgence in football last year, such as Duke, Stanford, and Northwestern.

As I pulled out our eighteenth-century dissection kit, Kenny talked about some of the dissections on human legs he performed in class. While the photoshoot entailed books rather than instruments, the illustrations in these phenomenal texts detail dissection and other aspects of anatomy quite vividly. The book that Kenny is holding was actually published in 2005, reprints from the original work of J.M. Bourgery’s Atlas of Human Anatomy and Surgery. The History of Medicine retains the nineteenth-century work by Bourgery that contains these highly detailed, stunning, and graphic illustrations. And for those of you unfamiliar with Vesalius’s work, I recommend the National Library of Medicine’s Turning the Pages site, in which they have digitized portions of De Humani Corporis Fabrica. We are so fortunate to retain this amazing book from the sixteenth century in our Collections.

Kenny with the Athletic Department's skeleton
Kenny with the Athletic Department’s skeleton

And the skeleton? Unfortunately not part of the History of Medicine Collections. It belongs to the Athletics Department and is used in their health and fitness training of student athletes. But we like to think of it as a symbol of Kenny’s “bonified” academic and athletic success.

Post contributed by Rachel Ingold, History of Medicine Curator 


Spot the Difference?

Recognize this place?

Old Reading Room during Renovation


Maybe if it had tables full of researchers and some lovely teal carpeting?

Reading Room Pre-Renovation


That’s right, it’s our old reading room! As you can see it has undergone quite a change since renovation began earlier this summer.  Not only is that teal carpeting gone, but steel bracing has been installed for extra structural support. Check out theRubenstein Library Renovation blog for more pictures and updates on our ongoing renovation.

What’s that sound?

Workers are removing shelving and hazardous building materials from the rear entrance of Rubenstein Library.
Workers are removing shelving and hazardous building materials from the rear entrance of Rubenstein Library.


Visitors to the Rubenstein Library may notice things are a little noisy in the library as renovation work begins. In the next few weeks interior demolition of our former space will continue and  the tower crane for the renovation project will be installed.   Since we’re on the other side of the building now, it shouldn’t be too loud in our reading room, but, as always, we’ll have foam earplugs available for researchers.  Further details and updates are available on the Rubenstein Library Renovation blog.

Mad Men Monday – The “Outtakes” Blog, Take 2

Mad Men Mondays logo

Mad Men brought us many great moments this season, and so did our weekly search for vintage ads to accompany the episodes each Monday morning.  In the process, we discovered more interesting ads than we could post.  We decided to share some of those in two final blogs that were calling our Mad Men Monday Outtakes.

This week we give you ads that almost made the cut for our earlier blogs.  For instance, on April 22, we chose a more traditional picture of Avon than we offer here in an ad we really liked for bath products.  Others we chose in anticipation of possible themes or references on future episodes, but as always, Mad Men kept us guessing. If the season had extended to December, 1968, we were certain there would be some reference to the Elvis comeback concert.  And we found Seagram’s warning about hunting accidents one week too late.

We hope you’ve enjoyed Mad Men Mondays as much as we have.  Don’t forget that you can still find all of our Mad Men Mondays picks on Pinterest and Flickr.


Avon Beauty Bath






Suzy Homemaker






Election Option




Congratulations to this year’s travel grant recipients!

The Rubenstein Library’s three research center annually award travel grants to undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and independent scholars through a competitive application process. Congratulations to this year’s recipients, we look forward to working with all of you!


John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture Travel Grant Recipients

Dr. Richard Bell, Associate Professor, Department of History, University of Maryland, College Park; Project: “Slavery’s Market: A Microhistory.”

Dr. Frederick Carroll, Instructor, Department of History, Norfolk State University; Project: “Race News: How Black Reporters and Readers Shaped the Fight for Racial Injustice, 1910-1978.”

Ms. Mandy Jolly, Undergraduate, Department of History, Lenoir-Ryhne University; Project: “Journalistic Racism from Early Travel/Exploration Logs from the 19th and 20th Century.”

Dr. Phillip Misevich, Assistant Professor of History, St. John’s University; Project: “On the Frontier of Freedom: Abolition and the Growth of Atlantic Commerce in Southern Sierra Leone, c1790s to 1880s.”

Ms. Marie Stango, PhD Candidate, Department of History, University of Michigan; Project: “Antislavery and Colonization: African American Women in Nineteenth Century West Africa.”

Dr. Shirley Thompson, Associate Professor of African and African Diaspora Studies, University of Texas at Austin; Project: “No More Auction Block for Me: African Americans and the Problem of Property.”

Dr. Charlotte Walker-Said, Theodore W. Lentz Fellow in Peace Studies and Human Rights, Webster University; Project: “Traditional Marriage for the Modern Nation: Family Formation and the Politics of Religion in Colonial and Postcolonial Africa.”

Mr. James Wall, PhD Candidate, Department of History, University of Georgia; Project: “Redefining Success: The Strule for Freedom Rights in Southwest Georgia, 1945-1985”


John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising & Marketing History Fellowship and Travel Grant Recipients

Zoe Sherman, a Hartman Center grantee, uses the Outdoor Advertising Association of America Records
Zoe Sherman uses the Outdoor Advertising Association of America Records

FOARE Fellowships for Outdoor Advertising Research:

Elizabeth Semler: History of Science, Technology and Medicine, University of Minnesota, “’Got Milk?’: Dairy Advertising and Scientific Authority in the late 20th Century”

Zoe Sherman: Economics, University of Massachusetts – Amherst, “The Commodification of Audience Attention in the US, 1865-1920”


John Furr Fellowships for JWT Research:

Ai Hisano: History, University of Delaware, “A History of Food Color in the United States, 1880s-1970s”

Cristina Sánchez-Blanco: Media Management, University of Navarra (Spain), “Advertising Account Planning in JWT”

Hartman Center Travel Grants:

Francesca Russello Ammon: American Academy of Arts & Sciences, “Culture of Clearance: Waging War on the Landscape in Postwar America”

Leslie Anderson: University of California – Merced, “The Politics of Domesticity” (Senior Thesis)

Mary Bridges: International Studies, Yale University, “Global Infrastructure of US Business Activities in the Interwar and World War II Periods”

Jessica Burch: History Department, Vanderbilt University, “Soap and Hope: culture, Capitalism, and Direct Sales in World War II America”

Dr. Andrew Case: Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin – Madison, “Dear Friend: Direct Mail Marketing and the Transformation of Buying and Selling in Postwar America”

Kristi Whitfield Johnson: Baton Rouge, LA, “Canning Foods and Selling Modernity: The Canned Food Industry and Consumer Culture, 1898-1945”

Dr. Richard K. Popp: Journalism, Advertising and Media Studies, University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, “Direct Marketing, Communication Networks, and the Remaking of consumer Culture, 1960-2000”


Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture Travel Grant Recipients

Valerie Behrer, English, University of Minnesota, for dissertation research on the connections between girls’ subjectivities, autobiographical practices, and the development of American radical feminism from the late 1960s to the 1970s.

Erin Leigh Durban-Albrecht, Gender & Women’s Studies, University of Arizona, for a set of related projects—including a film and her dissertation—that use Kathy Acker’s Kathy Goes to Haiti to explore racialized gender and sexuality, cultural production, and U.S.‐Haiti relations in the 20th and early 21st century.

Dr. Lauren Gutterman, Center for Gender and Sexuality Law, Columbia Law School, for a book that will examine the personal experiences and public representation of American wives who desired women, 1945 to 1979.

Monica Miller, English and Women’s & Gender Studies, Louisiana State University, for dissertation research on the use of ugly women as characters that defy the stereotype of the beautiful belle in the work of 20th century Southern women writers.

Michelle Pronovost, Fashion Institute of Technology, for research on the confrontational fashion of riot grrrls in zines from the 1990s.

Dr. Andrea Walton, Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Indiana University Bloomington, for research supporting an article and book chapter on philanthropist Eleanor Thomas Elliott.

Kelly Weber, History, Rice University, for dissertation research related to the politics of daughterhood in the New South, 1880 to 1920.

Stacy J. Williams, Sociology, University of California, San Diego, for dissertation research on how social movements have affected feminist discourse about cooking, 1874 to 2013.

Dr. Mary Ziegler, St. Louis University, for a book about how abortion providers helped define lay understandings of the constitutional, statutory, and common law concerning abortion in the United States.


Eleanore and Harold Jantz Fellowship

The first recipient of the Eleanore and Harold Jantz Fellowship is Chunjie Zhang, Assistant Professor of German at the University of California, Davis.  Dr. Zhang is a graduate of Duke (PhD 2010). Her project is “Representations of non-European cultures in the German discourse in the eighteenth century.”

Mad Men Monday – Episode 11 “Favors”

Mad Men Mondays logo

The title of last night’s show accurately sums up a major theme seen in the episode.  Many characters need or give favors, though not without consequences.  The SC&P staff realizes that they are competing for two similar clients, Sunkist and Ocean Spray, so one will have to be resigned. While talking to Peggy, Pete’s mother claims she is in love with her nurse Manolo, and implies that their relationship is sexual. Sylvia and Arnold are afraid because their son Mitchell is reclassified 1A by the draft after dropping out of school and sending back his draft card in protest. Peggy tells Pete what his mother said to her over a friendly post client meeting dinner.  Later Pete argues with his mother about Manolo. Don awkwardly brings up Mitchell’s draft status at a client dinner with Chevy. Peggy calls Stan to remove a dying rat from her apartment but he refuses to help. Sally and her friend Julie stay at Don and Megan’s apartment while attending the Model UN. They meet Mitchell in the lobby and swoon over him.  Ted gets mad at Don for the uncomfortable moment during the Chevy dinner.  He offers to help get Mitchell into the Air National Guard if Don will agree to drop Sunkist in favor of Ocean Spray.  Don agrees and calls Sylvia to tell her the good news. Julie signs Sally’s name on a love note slipped under Mitchell’s door.  Sally returns to retrieve the note from the Rosen’s apartment, only to find Sylvia and Don about to have sex. She runs away and Don tries to follow. Bob tries to reassure Pete about Manolo and touches his knee to Pete’s suggestively. Pete rebuffs Bob and fires Manolo. Don comes home drunk and Megan tells him that he is the “sweetest man” for helping Mitchell. Sally shouts “you make me sick!” and runs off to her room.  Don tries to talk to Sally but makes up a weak excuse.

Episode nine’s plot referred to Post cereals, whiskey sours, rat traps, tea, and Ocean Spray, among other things.  Here is a selection of ads that illustrate some of the products and cultural references mentioned in Sunday night’s Mad Men.  A gallery of our highlighted images may also be found on Pinterest and Flickr.

Bigelow tea-1968 - Blog
whiskey sour1968 - Blog
d-Con-1968 - Blog
Post cereals-1968 - Blog

Prell and earrings1967 - Blog

50 Drinks and Toasts, Manhattan-1968 - BlogGet a Haircut-1967 - Blog

Purina1968 - Blog