home Special Collections and Archives, Support the Libraries Giving Day 2018: Special Collections Classroom Project

Giving Day 2018: Special Collections Classroom Project

Did you know that Mizzou Libraries Special Collections reaches thousands of students across hundreds of classes and research projects each year? This Mizzou Giving Day, help us improve their learning experience with a new classroom space.

In Ellis Library, the Special Collections and Rare Books department houses rare and unique materials that span over four thousand years. It’s a great place to do research, explore exhibitions, or teach a class.  Last year alone, Special Collections taught 2,200 students across 165 classes! With a dedicated classroom space, they could teach even more students. The Special Collections librarians have been teaching out of a research space, and are in desperate need of a dedicated classroom space.

#MizzouGivingDay is a 24-hour crowdfunding campaign to gather donations for Mizzou projects. Giving Day starts at noon on Wednesday, March 14 and runs until noon on Thursday, March 15.

Please consider giving to the MU Libraries Special Collections Classroom Project. Even gifts as small as $10 are greatly appreciated!


home Ellis Library, Special Collections and Archives, Support the Libraries Giving Day 2018: ULSAC Special Collections Outreach Contest

Giving Day 2018: ULSAC Special Collections Outreach Contest

This Mizzou Giving Day, the University Libraries Student Advisory Council is working hard on an outreach campaign to support the Special Collections Classroom Project.

Every org participating in the contest needs to email their point totals to ULSAC advisor, Grace Atkins atkinsge@missouri.edu by 10am on Thursday, March 15.

Points can be earned 4 ways

  1. Repost/Retweet from the @MizzouLibraries accounts – 1 POINT
  2. Tweet/Post original message about giving $10 to the Special Collections Classroom Project2 POINTS
  3. Send direct ask to someone to give $10 to Special Collections Classroom Project5 POINTS
  4. Participate in the Giving Day social media challenges10 POINTS

Outreach contest prizes include

  • If every org participates, ULSAC will have a permanent meeting space in Special Collections.
  • The org with the most points gets $400 donated in their name to the classroom project and a special thank you prize from Special Collections.
  • And, if MU Libraries is the unit with either the most donations or the most participation, Special Collections will win thousands of dollars in extra bonus funding!

ULSAC is made up of the following joint session student orgs: Association of Black Graduate and Professional Students (ABGPS), FourFront, Graduate Professional Council (GPC), lnterfraternity Council (lFC), Latino Graduate and Professional Network (LGPN), Library Ambassadors (LA), Legion of Black Collegians (LBC), Missouri lnternational Student Council (MISC), Missouri Student Association (MSA), Multicultural Greek Council (MGC), National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC), Panhellenic Association (PHA), and the Residence Hall Association (RHA).

home Cycle of Success, Special Collections and Archives, Staff news Welcome to John Fifield, Special Collections Librarian

Welcome to John Fifield, Special Collections Librarian

The University Libraries are pleased to announce that John Fifield has been hired as special collections librarian. John has a joint Master of Library and Information Science and Graduate Certificate in Book Arts and Book Studies from the University of Iowa and a Bachelor of Music from Oklahoma State University. He is coming to us from the University of Iowa, where he worked as the Robert A. Olson graduate research assistant in special collections and university archives. During his graduate studies at Iowa, John also worked with the Biblioteca del Convento de la Recoleta in Arequipa, Peru.

home Resources and Services, Special Collections and Archives John Tinney McCutcheon Editorial Cartoons

John Tinney McCutcheon Editorial Cartoons

The University of Missouri Digital Library contains a wealth of treasures, all freely available to anyone around the world online. One of the newest treasures is the John Tinney McCutcheon Editorial Cartoons collection.

John Tinney McCutcheon (1870-1949) is known as “the Dean of Cartoonists.” He traveled widely and frequently served as a correspondent during those journeys. For example, during the Spanish-American War, he was embedded with the U.S.S. McCulloch in the Philippines. McCutcheon was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1931 for his cartoon “A Wise Economist Asks a Question” and spoke at Journalism Week here at Mizzou in 1939.

Most of the editorial cartoons in this collection are original pen and ink drawings done for the Chicago Tribune between 1903 and 1944. Social issues, economics, politics, the Great Depression, and both World Wars are just a few of the subjects McCutcheon’s cartoons speak to. Click on any of the images below to enter the Digital Library and find out more information about the cartoon.

City Pigeons
New Members of the Club
New Members of the Club













Why the U.S. Must Be Strictly Neutral
An Exciting Finish to the Missouri Senatorial Race
An Exciting Finish to the Missouri Senatorial Race














The originals are located in Special Collections in Ellis Library, thanks to a generous donation from McCutcheon’s widow, Evelyn Shaw McCutcheon, in 1955. For those outside of Columbia, though, the Digital Library makes the collection available to anyone with an Internet connection.

Keep your eye on this digital collection. More images will be uploaded and additional information added soon. Additional details and a collection inventory can be found in the online guide on the Special Collections website.


home Special Collections and Archives, Workshops Workshop on Books of Hours by SEC Faculty Visitor Cynthia Turner Camp

Workshop on Books of Hours by SEC Faculty Visitor Cynthia Turner Camp

March 8, 2018, 3:00 – 5:00 pm
Special Collections and Rare Books, 401 Ellis Library

What is a Book of Hours? And why should you — whether you work in medieval literature, history, art history, or religion — know how to navigate them?

Books of Hours were ubiquitous from the fourteenth century into the Reformation. These prayerbooks, almost always in Latin, would have been found in nearly every literate layperson’s home, and they would have shaped the laity’s reading experiences and devotional life in ways we still don’t fully appreciate. Frequently studied for their often-exquisite illustrations, Books of Hours are also a treasure trove of texts. Few Books of Hours contained exactly the same sets of prayers; rather, they’re best considered “prayer anthologies” that are often tailored to specific devotional tastes. Prayers for Mary, the Passion, saints and angels; indulgenced prayers and mass prayers; scriptural passages and overwrought meditations; even personalized devotions and readers’ marginalia: the varied texts found in these manuscripts can provide insight into every aspect of late medieval spiritual life. However, their texts are rarely edited in full, and even “standard” prayers can vary significantly from one manuscript to another. As a result, Books of Hours are best studied in their original manuscript contexts — and this workshop will get you started with the tools you need to do that.

In this workshop, Dr. Cynthia Turner Camp of the University of Georgia’s English department will give you a crash course on Books of Hours. She’ll cover how they were used (and by whom), how they evolved from the monastic opus Dei, what their contents are, how they were made, and most importantly how you might approach these prayerbooks from different disciplinary standpoints. She’ll have resources for getting started with this manuscript genre and for advanced textual research, and you will spend as much time as possible examining full codices and single leaves from the Special Collections Library’s holdings.

Dr. Cynthia Turner Camp is Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator in the English department at the University of Georgia. Her first book, Anglo-Saxon Saints’ Lives as History Writing in Late Medieval England (2015), considers the historiographic impact of Middle English saints’ lives, and her current project examines liturgical and memorial practices in English nunneries. She teaches regularly with the manuscripts in the UGA Special Collections Library, and is the principle investigator on the Hargrett Hours Project, a multi-semester, classroom based, student led research project that investigates the medieval manuscripts held at UGA.

Kelli Hansen

Kelli Hansen is head of the Special Collections and Rare Books department.

home Engineering Library, Events and Exhibits, Special Collections and Archives On Display at the Engineering Library- Texts & Tools: A History of Engineering

On Display at the Engineering Library- Texts & Tools: A History of Engineering

The Engineering Library & Technology Commons is now showcasing Texts & Tools: A History of Engineering. This display features five historical engineering books from Special Collections & Rare Books and four tools from the Mizzou Museum of Engineering (ZOUME) used by engineers in the early 1900s.

Exhibit Highlights:

Theater of Machines by Heinrich Zeising, 1621

The oldest text on display is Theatri Machinarum Erster Theill or Theater of Machines by Heinrich Zeising. This book is believed to have been published in 1621. It features designs for over 150 machines invented or refined by Ziesing, from cranes to watermills, to portable expanding bridges.


Polar Planimeter by Keuffel & Esser Co.,1915


Another item on display is an American made polar planimeter from 1915. Polar planimeters are mechanical devices used to accurately measure the area of any plane figure, regardless of its shape or irregularity, without calculation. Keuffel & Esser Co. produced this particular model between 1901 and 1927. A book published by the company described the planimeter as “one of the most valuable of the Engineer’s mechanical assistants” (Wheatley, 1903).

Check out these items and others at the Engineering Library & Technology Commons. This exhibit will run throughout the Spring Semester.

home Special Collections and Archives Color Our Collections 2018

Color Our Collections 2018

#ColorOurCollections is a week-long coloring fest on social media organized by libraries, archives, and other cultural institutions around the world. Using materials from their collections, these institutions are sharing free coloring content with the hashtag #ColorOurCollections and inviting their followers to color and get creative with their collections.

We’re joining the fun with a book of coloring pages based on the John Tinney McCutcheon Collection, a group of original editorial cartoons drawn by McCutcheon between 1904 and 1944. Most of the cartoons were published daily in the Chicago Tribune. Others were submitted to the Tribune for publication but were never printed in the newspaper, and have not been accessible outside of the library until now. These cartoons are in the process of being made available online in the MU Digital Library.

Download this year’s coloring book below, or browse our offerings from previous years.

Political Cartoon Coloring Book

Share your work with us online through FacebookTwitter, or Instagram. #ColorOurCollections was launched by The New York Academy of Medicine Library in 2016. Check out colorourcollections.org for coloring sheets from a variety of libraries and archives.



Kelli Hansen

Kelli Hansen is head of the Special Collections and Rare Books department.

home Resources and Services, Special Collections and Archives University Archives Closed Feb. 5-7

University Archives Closed Feb. 5-7

The offices of University Archives in Lewis Hall will be closed to researchers and patrons Monday, February 5 through Wednesday, February 7, 2018.

We will reopen to the public on the 7th floor of Lewis Hall on Thursday, February 8 at 8 a.m.

Information requests can be left at 573-882-7567 and muarchives@missouri.edu during that time.

home Resources and Services, Special Collections and Archives University Archives Closed During Move

University Archives Closed During Move

The offices of University Archives on the 7th floor of Lewis Hall will be closed to researchers and patrons Friday January 12th through Wednesday January 17th, 2018.

We will reopen to the public in Room 101 on the 1st floor of Lewis Hall on Thursday January 18th at 8AM.

Information requests can be left at 573 882-7567 and muarchives@missouri.edu during that time, and we will respond as soon as we can.

The Archives will be somewhat limited in providing full reference services as some of the collections and the audio-visual viewing equipment will be inaccessible until we return to the 7th floor.

home Cycle of Success, Special Collections and Archives Cycle of Success: Grant Elementary School

Cycle of Success: Grant Elementary School

Although the Cycle of Success typically focuses on the relationships among the Libraries, faculty, and students, the Libraries also contribute to the success of all the communities Mizzou serves. The Libraries are an integral part of Mizzou’s mission “to provide all Missourians the benefits of a world-class research university, no matter their age. The fifth graders from Grant Elementary School recently visited the Special Collections Department to get an in-depth look what the department has to offer.

Matt Kuensting and John Nies, fifth grade teachers at Grant Elementary, recognize the importance of community connections, and five years ago, revised their practice to focus on community connections. Since their revision, they have taken their students into the community to observe and cultivate their interests, and one of those stops is to Special Collections. Kelli Hansen, Tim Perry and the Special Collections staff, took the students through three stations based in the evolution of technology, map making, and historical botany books.

“Ellis Library is one of our first places we visit, and many kids favorite place. These experiences are very impactful for us because our students are currently studying observing organisms like plants, they are making maps of their own imaginative worlds, and technology is one of the biggest integrations in our community project.”

We asked John Nies what advice he would give for those interested in using the library: “[The] advice I would give to those interested in using the library is… GO!  Spend some time walking around the displays in the main hall, visit the Special Collections, and wander a bit. The staff has always been helpful. The building itself is fascinating and it holds an eternity of interesting materials.”

Cycle of Success is the idea that libraries, faculty, and students are linked; for one to truly succeed, we must all succeed. The path to success is formed by the connections between University of Missouri Libraries and faculty members, between faculty members and students, and between students and the libraries that serve them. More than just success, this is also a connection of mutual respect, support, and commitment to forward-thinking research.

If you would like to submit your own success story about how the libraries have helped your research and/or work, please use the Cycle of Success form.



Taira Meadowcroft

Taira Meadowcroft is a Health Sciences Librarian at the University of Missouri. She focuses on quality improvement, reference, and marketing for the University of Missouri Libraries.