Department Blog

Special Collections

New exhibit: California in Song

October 8th, 2015 by Sara Gunasekara

We are pleased to announce that our latest exhibit, California in Song, has just been installed in the exhibit cases outside of Special Collections. This exhibit, created by Music Librarian Michael Colby, draws on the sheet music collections in Special Collections.

As long as there has been a California, and even before it became known by that name, it has inspired song. Through songs about the Golden State, we hear about its history—from the Gold Rush to the San Francisco earthquake, its places—from the St. Francis hotel to the city of Sacramento, and the dreams it has inspired of a better life in a wondrous place at the edge of the continent.

The first music in what is now known as the state of California was made by its first inhabitants, the Native Americans. Following its discovery by Europeans, the discovery of gold in the hills precipitated a massive influx of fortune seekers. Even the 1906 San Francisco earthquake inspired song.

The natural beauty of California inspired song, but so did many of its man-made creations, even the St. Francis Hotel! While the city of San Francisco inspired many a song, even Sacramento got a song, written by Eden Ahbez, who adopted a “hippie” lifestyle years before San Francisco celebrated the Summer of Love in 1967. Ahbez is best known for composing the Nat King Cole hit, “Nature Boy.”

California has inspired many dreams in its history, from the get-rich-quick dreams of the Gold Rush, dreams of escape from the Depression dust bowl, to dreams of Hollywood glamour, and the Aquarian Age dreams of Haight Ashbury in the 1960s.

California continues to inspire songwriters, beyond the examples given here. While the Beach Boys extolled the charms of “California Girls” of 1965, in 2005 Gretchen Wilson asked “ain’t you glad we ain’t all California girls?” Katy Perry’s 2010 “California Gurls” returned to the more common theme in keeping with the California dream.

The exhibit will run through Winter Quarter 2016 and can be viewed anytime that Shields Library is open.

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Third group of materials digitized by CAVPP now online

October 8th, 2015 by Sara Gunasekara

We are excited to announce that the next group of audiovisual materials digitized through our participation in the California Audiovisual Preservation Project (CAVPP) are now online at the Internet Archive. The recordings include a panoramic view of the UC Davis campus from nearly sixty years ago, early footage of the UC Blackwelder tomato harvester, and audio recordings from a number of the UC Davis oral history interviews that were conducted with faculty and community members in the 1970s.

Here is the list of items with links to the digitized versions:

 

Audiovisual Collection

Panoramic View of the UC Davis Campus

 

Roy Bainer Papers

Windrow Loader at George Wilson’s Place, Clarksburg, Calif.

 

Blackwelder Manufacturing Company Records

Almond Harvest

Fordson Cultivator

Harvesting Operation with the University of California; Johnson, Hume, FMC

UC Blackwelder Tomato Harvester

 

UC Davis Oral History Office Records

The College Cowboy–Reuben Albaugh: Interviews

The Engineering of Abundance: An Oral History Memoir of Roy Bainer

Adventurer in Animal Science–Harold H. Cole: Interviews

Earl Coke Oral History: Reminiscences on people and change in California Agriculture

Chemical Weed Control Researcher, Alden S. Crafts

James P. Fairbank: Engineer on the Land

An Old Professor Ruminates: Interviews With Max Kleiber

William J. “Bill” Kuhrt, Dean of California Marketing Programs

Ben A. Madson, Pioneer in Agricultural Education

John O. Rowe:  Johnnie Shorthorn: Interviews

The World is My Campus: Interviews with Knowles A. Ryerson

Henry Schacht and the Art of Agricultural Communication: Interviews

Bernie Sisk in the House: An Oral History

An Heir To a Land Grant: Julius Trescony

C. John Tupper

Henry A. Weinland:  Recollections of Forty Years Work with California Farmers as County Farm Advisor

 

From Interviews With Persons Involved in the Development of the Mechanical Tomato Harvester:

Gordie C. Hanna

Coby Lorenzen

Eugene Winters

Mel Zoble

From Selected Recollections of the Founding & Early Years of the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine:

Ronald Bolstad

Donald R. Cordy

Donald E. Jasper

Logan M. Julian

Stewart H. Madin

Margaret Meyer & Paul D. DeLay

October is American Archives Month

October 2nd, 2015 by Sara Gunasekara

Archives Month is a collaborative effort by archivists around the nation to highlight the importance of historical records. More information about Archives Month events in California is available on the California Archives Month website.

Special Collections is celebrating Archives Month by participating in the fifth annual Sacramento Archives Crawl on Saturday, October 3. We’ll have a table at the California State Library. Stop by and say hello.

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