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New Collections and Highlights from 2021

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Two-panel cartoon. The 1867 panel shows a proper Victorian family -- father, mother, and little girl -- in their parlor, taking tea. The 1917 panel shows a riotous party in a restaurant with champagne corks popping, a man dancing on the table, two men playing leapfrog, and a heavy lady in a strapless dress drinking champagne.
“A happy New Year 1867 – a happy New Year 1917,” Rea Irvin, November 9, 1916, Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress.

As the year draws to a close, it seems like a good time to look back and highlight some of the political, social, cultural, military, and scientific manuscript collections and resource guides that the Manuscript Division has recently made available for researchers to explore. We’re already hard at work acquiring, arranging, and describing the historical treasures we hope to share with the public next year.


Rita R. Colwell (1934- ) is a microbiologist, Distinguished University Professor at the University of Maryland at College Park and at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, and former director of the National Science Foundation. Professor Colwell’s papers, which document both her administrative work and her research in global infection diseases, water, and health, are now fully processed and described in a new finding aid. This substantial collection will be of interest to researchers in science policy, microbiology, public health, and environmental history, and offers a fascinating window into the research, advocacy, and global network of an influential scientist and policymaker. Finding Aid

Head and shoulders portrait of Elizabeth Lummis Fries Ellet
Elizabeth Lummis Fries Ellet, 1818-1877, head and shoulders portrait, facing left, no date, Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress.


Elizabeth Fries Lummis Ellet (1818-1877) was a well-known nineteenth-century writer, poet, and historian. She is most recognized for being the first historian to write about the contributions of women to the American Revolution in her three-volume work, The Women of the American Revolution, published in 1848 (vols. 1 and 2) and 1850 (vol. 3). Ellet corresponded with more than 100 individuals during the research for her book in order to obtain information from the relatives of Revolutionary women. This remarkable grouping of Ellet’s incoming correspondence offers a rare and important glimpse into the research and writing processes of a woman historian writing women’s history during the antebellum period. Finding Aid


Among the last of the Manuscript Division’s Civil War Sesquicentennial digitization projects to become available online, the papers of naval officer Louis Malesherbes Goldsborough (1805-1877) consist of 8,000 items of correspondence, military records, financial papers, printed material, illustrations, and other papers concerning Goldsborough’s long career in the United States Navy. In addition to the military appeal of the Goldsborough Papers, extensive family correspondence documents relationships among the extended family of Goldsborough’s wife, Elizabeth Wirt Goldsborough, and the maintenance of Goldsborough’s own familial ties while stationed around the world. Especially poignant is his June 16, 1866, letter to his wife from Portugal expressing his anguish at the “terrible blow” of learning of the death of his beloved daughter, Lizzie, whom he loved “with my very soul.”  Finding Aid


For over three decades, Dr. Jerome Jaffe (1933- ) proved one of the leading innovators and administrators of drug addiction treatment programs in the United States. Selected by President Richard Nixon to head the Special Action Office for Drug Abuse Prevention (SAODAP), the first federal agency of its kind, Jaffe led the administration’s efforts to treat drug addiction, particularly for heroin. Though SAODAP material predominates, items pertaining to his directorship of the influential Illinois Drug Addiction Program (IDAP) can also be found in the collection. For researchers exploring the arc of federal and state drug addiction treatment policy, the Jerome Jaffe Papers provide a critical window into this history. Finding Aid


The European Mission and Cooperative Acquisitions Project series of the Library of Congress Archives documents the Library’s acquisitions efforts to collect materials, initially in Germany, and subsequently throughout Europe in the immediate post-World War II period. The primary goal of the mission was to revitalize the book trade with Germany and other countries that had been occupied. European Mission members worked at collection points set up by Allied forces to gather and sort a multitude of material, found by U.S. military personnel and hidden in salt mines, castles, and other locations. The new resource guide offers researchers improved access to the records documenting Library of Congress efforts to acquire publications in Europe during and after World War II and the resources available for further study at the Library of Congress. Finding Aid

Photograph of explosion
Blowing up of “Koreetz” at Chemulpo. 9 Feb. 1904, William Alexander Marshall Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress.


The papers of U.S. naval officer William Alexander Marshall (1849-1926) migrated to a new digital platform this year. The collection chronicles the Battle of Chemulpo in Korea on February 9, 1904, at the beginning of the Russo-Japanese War. Marshall commanded the gunboat USS Vicksburg, which deployed to Chemulpo to protect American interests in Korea as tensions in the region escalated between Japan and Russia. The collection, consisting of 367 images, includes correspondence, reports, a personal log, photographs, and printed matter documenting events surrounding the naval battle and the opening phases of the war as witnessed from the Korean peninsula. Due to the collection’s relatively small size by archival standards, no finding aid was prepared, but biographical and contextual information was added to the digitized collection.

Photograph of group of six family members standing in the snow in front of a house
Photograph of the Naseef family in the snow in Buffalo, N.Y., undated. Box 1, Naseef-Page Family Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress.


The American Colony in Jerusalem was a non-sectarian utopian Christian collective founded by migrant Americans in the Old City in 1881. It attracted multinational residents and immigrants to its membership and over time expanded through three generations.  The Manuscript Division has personal papers stemming from the founders, their descendants, and other members of the collective. Member Otis S. Page (1848-1918) was born in Vermont and immigrated to the American Colony with his wife, Elizabeth Roth (circa 1852-1888), and daughter, Florence “Flora” Page (1873-1946) with the first wave of colonists. Florence married fellow second-generation Colony member Fareed Naseef (1879-1931) in 1904 and they had three children. Received in 2016 as a gift of Margaret Kindred, the Naseef-Page Family Papers follow the Naseef family as they broke from the Colony and relocated to the United States in the 1920s.  Finding Aid


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