Sunday, January 30, 2011

USM Special Collections

     Last week my LIS class visited McCain Library's special achieves. Upon arriving, the host librarian had already chosen various pieces to show the class. The pieces ranged from numerous versions of "Little Red Riding Hood" from the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection to Civil Rights era artifacts to cultural documents from the Mississippia Collection. 

     My favorite pieces shown were from the collection of documents pertaining to former Mississippi senator and governor Theodore Bilbo. The librarian shared with the class that special collections hosts over 2,500 boxes of documents pertaining to Gov. Bilbo and his affairs. Though I most certainly do not agree with the principles, or lack there of, that Gov. Bilbo stood for, he was without doubt, an interesting character. The host librarian read various documents donated by Gov. Bilbo's children back in the 1960s. The pieces ranged from official government documents about everything from war to Italians to personal "hate mail" he received as well as their bold replies from Gov. Bilbo himself. One example of a "hate letter" was sent from a Northern couple. Apparently Gov. Bilbo appeared in an article for Time magazine sometime earlier that and the Northern couple had a few disparaging words for Gov. Bilbo. Attached with the letter was the photo that appeared alongside of the article. It pictured Gov. Bilbo standing near a donkey in front of what appeared to be a barn. The couple wittily asked which of the two pictured was the "jackass." I just thought that was hysterical. 

   I throughly enjoyed visiting the special collections here at USM. I will most definitely revisit to read more on Bilbo's antics when I need a good laugh.

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