Friday, August 23, 2019

Latest Quarto: Our Favorites

The Summer-Fall 2019 Quarto is now available. The Quarto is a semi-annual magazine published by the William L. Clements Library and sent to the Clements Library Associates. Terese Austin, Head of Reader Services, has taken the helm as editor with support from outgoing editor Brian Dunnigan. Dunnigan, who retired from the Clements Library this summer, has been named curator emeritus of maps by the Regents of the University of Michigan.

This issue of The Quarto is titled "Our Favorites." Clements curators, catalogers, and other staff were tasked to write about a favorite item, collection, or particular aspect of collecting that stirs their interest and affection.
  1. "A Commonwealth of Beavers," by Mary Pedley, Assistant Curator of Maps. Explores the symbolism of the beaver, used as a cartographic design element, in thinking about early American communities and frontier boundaries. 
  2. "Historical Anomaly: An Elizabethan Ruffian in the American Archive," by Louis Miller, Curatorial Assistant. Places into context a surprising piece of 16th-century correspondence with connections to settlement in New Florida and famous English diarist Samuel Pepys.
  3. "A Russian on the American Front," by Oksana Linda, Rare Book Cataloger. Illuminates the life and military career of Russian immigrant and Civil War hero General John B. Turchin.
  4. "Yeoman Farmers and Princes of Land Jobbers," by J. Kevin Graffagnino, Randolph G. Adams Director of the Clements Library. Explains the significance of a colorful 1780 map in the boundary feud between New York and a group of independent-minded colonials who would eventually form the state of Vermont. 
  5. "Fairy Flowers from Childhood's Garden," by Jayne Ptolemy, Assistant Curator of Manuscripts. Notes the delicate footprints left by children in the historical record, both through the written observations of attentive parents, and the words of the children themselves.
  6. "'Hur Book': Artifacts of Ownership," by Emiko Hastings, Curator of Books. Reveals the quiet but certain presence of women as readers and book owners demonstrated by evidence left in volumes in the Clements collection.
  7. "Sweet Tooth," by Brian Leigh Dunnigan, Associate Director & Curator of Maps. Explains the elements of a remarkably detailed map of a sugar plantation in Haiti, including depictions of slave quarters, processing equipment, and various plantation outbuildings.
  8. "'Temperance, Exercise, & Cheerfulness': The Letter Book of John Hughes," by Cheney J. Schopieray, Curator of Manuscripts. Focuses on the ill effects of mental illness and alcohol abuse experienced by John Hughes and his family in a rare first-hand account of an early nineteenth-century life in turmoil.
  9. "Go and Live Among Them," by Jakob Dopp, Graphics Cataloger. Follows artist and explorer George Catlin as he creates his vibrant and evocative depictions of Native American life on the Great Plains in the mid-1800s.
  10. "Developments," by Angela Oonk, Director of Development.
  11. 2019 Fellowships Awarded. Welcomes the twenty-three Clements Library fellows who will visit and research the collections this year.
  12. Celebrating Brian Dunnigan. Honors the life and career of Brian Leigh Dunnigan, Clements Library map curator and valued colleague, with details of his June 11, 2019 farewell event.
  13. Announcements. Clements Library receives $10M gift, Directorship and Rare Book Room Named; Exhibitions, "Things I Like Most About the Clements Library: Brian Leigh Dunnigan Retrospective," May 3 - October 25, 2019; What's in Your Attic?, September 15, 2019.
This issue of The Quarto can now be accessed and read online. Our donors, the Clements Library Associates, receive a high-quality print of the publication by mail. You can support the Clements by making a gift online or by contacting Anne Bennington-Helber at or 734-764-5864.

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