Manuscripts Finding the Diamond in the Rough Images courtesy of the St. Louis Mercantile Library @ UMSL unless otherwise noted
Learning how to find them and how to use them can be very enlightening and rewarding Dead ends can come back to life with a little work and creative thinking
What are manuscripts? • Why are they important? • How do I find them? • How do I use them?
The Diary of Horatio Nelson Taft, 1861-1865. Volume 1, January 1,1861-April 11, 1862 Courtesy of the Library of Congress
GEORGE CALEB BINGHAM Daniel Boone Escorting Settlers Through the Cumberland Gap, 1851-52 Oil on canvas, 36 1/2 x 50 1/4" Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, Washington University in St. Louis. Gift of Nathaniel Phillips, 1890
KARL BODMER Boston Lighthouse Courtesy of The New York Public Library. www.nypl.org
KARL BODMER Herds of Bisons and Elks on the Upper Missouri Courtesy of The New York Public Library. www.nypl.org
GEORGE CALEB BINGHAM The County Election, 1852
KARL BODMER Capture of the Daughters of Daniel Boone and Richard Callaway by the Indians Courtesy of Yale University
Now that I know more about their life, where would the information be?
Think Outside the Box • Historical Societies • Libraries • Churches • Local Government • Current Local Population • (basements, garage sales)
Institutional Information • Protocols • Services • Restrictions to Access • Content of Collections • Links to Other Collections that Relate
Handling One-of-a-kind Material • Paper Records • Remove folders from boxes for review, rather than “fingering” through the documents in the box • Devote extra time to carefully turning individual sheets • Pick up a document with two hands • Documents should be fully supported on desks or tables • Avoid writing on paper on top of the record material • Bound Volumes • Be careful when turning leaves in a volume, especially if it is weak, brittle, or extremely large • When available, use book cradles and supports for bound material
Citing and Quoting • [item], [folder title], [series title], [name of collection], [accession or manuscript number], [name of curatorial unit], [name of institution] • Make sure to include box numbers or folder titles where appropriate (if not recorded, the item may be difficult, or impossible to locate again) • Specific institutions may have required citations. Make sure to check.
Through the use of manuscripts not only will you learn about the world your ancestor lived in, but you may even find your ancestor.
Contact Information Deborah E. Cribbs email@example.com