Monday, October 15, 2012

Current Exhibits: The Geometry of War and Proclaiming Emancipation

Main Room of the Clements Library:
The Geometry of War: Fortification Plans from 18th Century America
October 15, 2012 - February 15, 2013


The 18th century was a time of intensive military activity in Europe and in the Americas. Much of this centered on fortified towns or positions. The period from the 1680s to the French Revolution has been called the “classic century of military engineering,” a time when earlier forms of artillery fortifications were perfected and frequently tested in battle.

Designing, constructing, and recording fortifications was the job of the military engineer. He followed well-tested principles of design, based on geometry, to construct fortified places. These were recorded in detailed plans, many of surprising beauty and complexity. The Clements Library is rich in examples, manuscript and printed, and offers a sample illustrating the science of fortification in 18th-century America.

At the Harlan Hatcher Graduate Library:
Proclaiming Emancipation: Slavery and Freedom in the Era of the Civil War
October 15, 2012 - February 18, 2013 


Timed to coincide with the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 Proclamation, “Proclaiming Emancipation” examines the historical memory of this provocative event. This exhibit, conference, and classroom forum is produced by the University of Michigan’s William L. Clements Library and Law School Program in Race, Law & History, in cooperation with the University of Michigan Library. The exhibit is co-curated by Professor Jones and Clayton Lewis, Curator of Graphics Material, Clements Library. The objective is to encourage critical analysis of this complex moment in the history of slavery and emancipation in the Americas.

The Audubon Room exhibit will emphasize the material culture of abolition and how the story of emancipation has been recorded through different material genres. Included will be an array of manuscript documents, original photographs, sketches, printed broadsides, books, illustrated magazines, and memorial statuary.

A related symposium will take place on Friday, October 26 in the Room 100 Gallery and at the Law School. Conference schedule.

Proclaiming Emancipation has been made possible through the generous support of Faith (AB ‘69) and Stephen (AB ‘66, JD ‘69) Brown, and at the University of Michigan: College of Literature, Science and the Arts, Office of the Vice President for Research, Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, Rackham Graduate School, Institute for the Humanities, Law in Slavery and Freedom Project, and the Understanding Race Theme Semester.

For a complete list of current exhibits from the Clements Library, visit our website.

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