Browse Exhibits (63 total)

Edward E. "Ted" Kaufman Papers <span class="subtitle">at the University of Delaware Library</span>

For the last 2 years, he was a Senator’s Senator, giving his all, beholden to no interest, serving the people of Delaware and the United States with competence, character, courage, and I might add, with rock-solid integrity.

- Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA)

In 2008, Governor Ruth Ann Minner appointed Edward E. "Ted" Kaufman to fill the U.S. Senate seat left vacant by Joseph R. Biden, Jr., who had just been elected Vice President of the United States. Senator Kaufman agreed not to seek re-election, noting that he had not raised money to become a Senator and would not fundraise to remain one. Kaufman fulfilled his promise, representing the state of Delaware only until a 2010 special Senate election was held, but he left the Senate with a reputation as a courageous and competent leader.

In his brief twenty-two month term, Kaufman became a knowledgeable advocate for financial reform, confronting the causes of the 2008-2009 financial crisis head on. As the only engineer serving in Congress, he was an active promoter of the expansion of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education, and he worked to procure funds for research and extension grants for women and minorities in STEM fields. Kaufman’s service on the Senate Foreign Relations and Armed Services committees took him on several trips to the Middle East, and he actively promoted international human rights and freedom of the press issues.

In 2010, the University of Delaware Library acquired the Edward E. "Ted" Kaufman papers, which document the time Kaufman spent as a United States Senator, with additional materials related to his earlier political career and post-Senate activities. This website accompanies the opening of the papers for research.

A biographical sketch of Senator Kaufman and his long career in service to Delaware is found on the "about" page. The exhibit, 22 Months: Ted Kaufman in the U.S. Senate, highlights Senator Kaufman’s work during his short but distinguished term as a U.S. Senator. The “research” page is a gateway to the Edward E. "Ted" Kaufman papers finding aid and additional resources to help scholars, students, and the public in their research.

All content found on this site is located in the Edward E. "Ted" Kaufman papers, Special Collections, University of Delaware Library. Rights information is displayed with most items, but conflicting information should be sent to askspecref@winsor.lib.udel.eduPlease contact the library with questions about materials and information about visiting Special Collections to view the papers. 

This site was created by Danielle Emerling and Tammi Kim, Assistant Librarians, Manuscripts and Archives Department; and Audrey Hamelers, Assistant Librarian and Digital Humanities and Web Services Librarian, Library Information Technology User Support Department. It uses Omeka, a project of the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media, George Mason University. 


60 at 60


In the fall of 1957, a group of University of Delaware Library supporters met to discuss ways in which they could provide financial assistance to enable the Library to acquire books, manuscript and other material to support research and teaching.  The result of this meeting was the founding of the University of Delaware Library Associates, which, in April 1958, was formally established as a not-for-profit organization whose mission was to help build the research collections of the University of Delaware Library.  The work of the University of Delaware Library Associates has had a profound impact on the growth of all areas of the University of Delaware Library over the past six decades, but perhaps the organization's most enduring contribution has been the support it has provided for the University of Delaware Library's Special Collections. From the very outset, the Library Associates identified the development of the Library's research collections as a top priority. In particular, the Library Associates sought to enrich the Library's research holdings in some of the fundamental disciplines of the humanities, notably English, American, and Irish literature; art and architecture; history; the history of science and technology; horticulture and landscape design; and all aspects of history and life in Delaware.

The exhibition “60 at 60” celebrates the sixtieth anniversary of the University of Delaware Library Associates by presenting sixty books acquired between 2008 and 2018 with financial assistance from the University of Library Associates.  Curated by Timothy Murray, Head of Special Collections, the exhibition includes a broad range of material on a multitude of topics reflecting the breadth and depth of the University of Delaware Library’s holdings.  By focusing on a single decade of acquisitions made between 2008 and 2018, “60 at 60” offers a remarkable sample of the magnificent research collections the University of Delaware Library Associates have helped develop over the past six decades.  The Library staff who have had the opportunity to work with these collections have strived to remain true to the original goal of the Library Associates to acquire primary research material in a broad range of humanities disciplines and make it available to the faculty and students of the University of Delaware and to the world-wide scholarly community.

<!--Southern Voices: Southern Authors Respond to the Civil War--!>

February 7 – August 14, 2019

The exhibition “Southern Voices” explores the response by Southern authors to the most virulent and bloody period in American History.  An estimated 750,000 soldiers died during the Civil War, more than any war in U.S. history, and the fundamental issues that were central to the conflict--slavery’s economics and political control of that system – are the root of many of the problems we face in American today.  “Southern Voices” examines the work of southern authors from three distinct periods.   During the Civil War era there was a significant amount of poetry and fiction by supporters of the Union and the Confederacy.  This exhibition displays work from some of the South’s most strident defenders, but also from writers who spoke on behalf of abolition and the Union cause.   During the Reconstruction period, southern literary figures began to refer to the Civil War as “the lost cause,” and portrayed Confederate soldiers and political leaders as figures protecting a noble way of life.   Finally “Southern Voices” displays work from late-19th century authors, through the Jim Crow era of the twentieth century, and even beyond.  These range from depictions of a romanticized antebellum South which ignored the immorality and brutality of slavery, to efforts which portray a more realistic, unvarnished view of this divisive era of American history.

 “Southern Voices” features work by a variety of authors including Augusta J. Evans, Margaret Junkin Preston, and Bill Arp, all of who were ardent supporters of the Confederacy and twentieth century Southern authors Margaret Mitchell, Allen Tate, William Faulkner, and William Styron.  Also included in the exhibition are books by Southern-born African American authors who spoke out passionately against slavery, notably Frederick Douglass, William Wells Brown and Frances Ellen Watkins Harper.

Animal, Vegetable, Mineral:<br> <span class="subtitle">Selections from the University of Delaware Library<br> Natural History Collection

Natural history can involve the study of living things, but also includes earth sciences such as geology, mineralogy and paleontology. Research in this area has produced some of the most remarkable books in the history of printing. “Animal, Vegetable, Mineral” features an eclectic selection of such works, from the early 16th through the 19th centuries. While many are remarkable for their physical features and illustrations, as a group they also document the rise of the very idea of modern science.

For example, late medieveal and Renaissance natural histories relied on descriptive traditions and ancient authorities such as  Pliny the Elder and Aristotle.  In many of these texts, real animals and plants coexist with creatures of fantasy. In the 18th century Karl Linnaeus’s system of classification established distinctions between large groups of plants and animals based on shared characteristics. Also, Linnaeus's method called for researchers to establish whether plant and animal species were accounted for based on previous observation.

Based on the work of Linnaeus and others, 19th century botanical and zoological texts detailed an ever increasing number of plants and animals in many countries. At the same time geological works such as Charles Lyell's Principles of Geology discussed the features and age of the earth with increasing sophistication.

Through the important books it features, "Animal, Vegetable, Mineral" seeks to suggest how various areas of scientific activity converged over time to produce a conception of the natural world that persists today.

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Insect Societies and Their Influence on Human Societies

September 2, 2014 – December 19, 2014

Information Room Exhibition

Insect Societies Poster

Curated by Frederick Getze


Constitution Day &ndash;<br> Selected Items from the Thomas R. Carper Congressional Papers

September 16, 2014 – September 24, 2014

Curated by Tammi Kim


Poster for exhibit

 Constitution Day and Citizenship Day, observed on September 17 each year, recognize two major actions in United States history. Constitution Day recognizes the anniversary of the formal signing of the Constitution of the United States on September 17, 1787. The purpose of Citizenship Day is to recognize and celebrate all those who have attained American citizenship.

This exhibit features selected items from the Thomas R. Carper congressional papers, including Representative Carper’s constituent newsletter, Capitol Comments, where he commemorated the 200th anniversary of Constitution Day. In his remarks, Carper discussed the importance of the Constitution over time, from the Bill of Rights, which prevents the government from intervening with basic freedoms, to ensuring equal representations of all states in the U.S. Congress. Most importantly, Carper emphasized that the Constitution gives citizens the freedom to choose their elected officials – a freedom which has been “retained and extended to all our citizens” and is “the living legacy of our constitution.”

Selected items from the Thomas R. Carper congressional papers:

  1. Photograph of Representative Tom Carper speaking at an unidentified event, circa 1987.

  2. Copy of Capitol Comments constituent newsletter, 1987 September 11.


These items are on exhibit in the University of Delaware Library's Single Exhibition Case, on the first floor, between September 16 and September 24, 2014. 


The Union at the Crossroads: the Election of 1864

 July 8 - December 19, 2014

Curated by Timothy D. Murray

The election of 1864 was one of the most critical in the history of the United States. With the country embroiled in Civil War, Abraham Lincoln hoped to become the first incumbent president to be re-elected since Andrew Jackson in 1832. But as the campaign commenced, even Lincoln himself was not confident he would win the election against his Democratic rival, the former commander of the Army of the Potomac, Gen. George McClellan. 

Despite Union victories at Gettysburg and Vicksburg a year earlier, the war was not going well for the Union and the Confederate army was advancing toward Washington, D.C. Lincoln and his administration were also receiving harsh criticism for his stance on emancipation and slavery, as well as for his suspension of the writ of habeas corpus and other constitutional rights.

With a nation weary of war, the Democrat platform advocating immediate peace with the states in rebellion and, in essence, granting them their independence from the Union, had widespread appeal. Had McClellan and the Democrats prevailed in the election there would likely have been two separate nations with no guarantee of reconciliation between them.

But everything changed on Sept. 6, 1864, when Gen. William T. Sherman seized Atlanta and began his march to the sea. The war effort turned decidedly in the Union’s favor and even McClellan now sought military victory rather than negotiations. 

Two months later, Lincoln won the popular vote that eluded him in his first election. He won the Electoral College by 212 to 21 and the Republicans controlled three-fourths of Congress. A second term and the power to conclude the war were now in Lincoln’s hands.

"The Union at the Crossroads: The Presidential Election of 1864" presents a selection of materials documenting the campaign, the election, and its aftermath.


Dylan Thomas at 100

October 2014 marks the centenary of the birth of Welsh poet Dylan Thomas (1914-1953), one of the twentieth century’s most celebrated young poets. His poignant poems about death, lost innocence, and memory such as “Do Not Go Gentle into that Good Night” (1951) engaged a huge variety of readers and listeners alike—from Beatle John Lennon, who placed his portrait on the iconic cover of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, to modernist poet T.S. Elliot. During World War II, Thomas worked for the BBC writing scripts and broadcasting. His elegant yet powerful delivery put him in high demand for performing in radio plays, reciting poetry, and discussing literary topics.


Photo above: Dylan and Caitlin Thomas's boathouse in Laugharne, Wales. Phograph by Rollie McKenna, September 1957. MSS 103 John Malcolm Brinnin papers, Special Collections, University of Delaware Library.

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Selections from the Richard H. Stewart Abraham Lincoln Collection

Photo of Richard H. Stweard Lincoln collection

Photograph of the Richard H. Stewart Collection

 “Selections from the Richard H. Stewart Abraham Lincoln Collection”  celebrates the June 2014 gift of the Richard H. Stewart Abraham Lincoln Collection from Mrs. Joan B. Stewart whose late husband, native Delawarean and University of Delaware alumnus Richard H. Stewart (1936-2013), was an avid student of history and a collector whose particular interest was the American Civil War and Abraham Lincoln.  The Richard H. Stewart Abraham Lincoln Collection includes a variety of books, documents, artwork, artifacts, and ephemera focusing on Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War era dating between 1861 and 2009. Highlights of the collection include an original 1861 appointment signed by Lincoln and Secretary of State William Seward, two Currier & Ives lithographs formerly owned by the renowned Lincoln collector Oliver R. Barrett, a set of Civil War-era handcuffs, two reproductions of the April 15, 1865, edition of The New York Herald, which provided one of the best-known accounts of Lincoln's assassination, ephemera and memorabilia, and a variety of books and other publications.  The exhibition will be on display from January 20 - June 14, 2015.

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