Category Archives: Media

Roald Hoffmann video among three new offerings now available

Roald Hoffmann, April 2012.

The fully transcribed video of Dr. Roald Hoffmann’s presentation, “Indigo – A Story of Craft, Religion, History, Science and Culture,” is now available on the Special Collections & Archives Research Center website.  Hoffmann’s talk was delivered in conjunction with his receipt of the Linus Pauling Legacy Award, presented in Portland on April 19, 2012.

A packed house of some three-hundred people was thoroughly engrossed by Hoffmann’s lecture, which lent credence to the professor’s reputation as a talented speaker.  In tracing the historical development of indigo, Hoffmann first noted that Hebrew scripture has required, from very early on, that a small tassle of the garments worn by observant Jewish males be dyed blue. For generations this decree presented something of a problem in that the only known source of indigo in ancient times was the gland of a specific type of Mediterranean snail – 10,000 of which were required to produce a single gram of dye.

As technologies advanced, various plant species were discovered that could produce a similar shade of blue. However, as Hoffmann noted, the world would need to be completely covered with indigo plants ten feet high to color the 2-3 billion pairs of blue jeans now thought to be produced each year. Hoffmann used this statistic to expound upon the power of chemistry and its ability to create synthetic forms of the dye.

Dr. Hoffmann was the fourth Nobel laureate to receive the Legacy Award and the seventh honoree overall. Previous awardees include chemists Roger Kornberg, Roderick MacKinnon and Jack Roberts, and biologist Matthew Meselson.

Paul Emmett, ca. 1970s.

Two other lectures, both by past OSU Libraries Resident Scholars, are also now freely available online.

The Useful Science of Paul Emmett,” given by Dr. Burtron Davis of the University of Kentucky, discusses Davis’ ongoing research in support of a biography of Emmett (1900-1985), who is remembered today as the “Dean of Twentieth-Century Catalysis Chemistry.”

Emmett is recalled by Davis – once a post-doctoral student of Emmett’s – to have been a kind and talented man who enjoyed a long and distinguished career. Best known for his formulation, with Stephen Brunaur and Edward Teller, of the BET equation, (which Davis calls “Nobel quality work”) Emmett also made major contributions to the scientific understanding of ammonia synthesis and the Fischer-Tropsch process. In reviewing these highlights of Emmett’s biography, Davis’ lecture provides both an overview of Emmett’s major scientific achievements while also lending a glimpse into Emmett’s habits and personality from one who knew him and has continued to study his work.

A second lecture, “Hidden in Plain Sight: The Life of Ava Helen Pauling,” was delivered by Oregon State University professor of history Dr. Mina Carson, who is writing a biography of Ava Helen.  Carson’s talk, which was given in late 2009, reflects her thinking at that time as she developed the framework of her book, which will be published in 2013.

At the time, she noted that attempting to write the life of Ava Helen Pauling forces the biographer to confront a number of difficult questions. Perhaps the most vexing is this: how does the biographer write the life of a wife? In particular, a wife who enjoyed her own world-changing career but whose life and work were inseparably fused with, and in many ways dependent upon, her husband’s work and fame?  In ruminating on these topics, Carson also reflects on the major choices that Ava Helen made at critical points in her life as she sought to clarify her own interests and identity.

These three releases comprise only the latest additions to the large cache of digitized video available on the SCARC website.  The full list of contents is available here.

Don’t just sit there!

Want to watch a movie? Take a trip? Do some research? There are plenty of things going on in the OSU Archives this month! In addition to the general buzz around exciting summer projects, we’re all a flutter over lazy, gorgeous summer days … Check out what we’ve been up to!

More new sets in Flickr Commons! We’ve been to Australia & Ireland over the past couple of weeks (care of the Visual Instruction Lantern Slide Collection, of course), with lots of gorgeous historical shots from both sides of the equator.

We’ve also had several films transferred to DVD for your viewing pleasure!

  • Gotta Start Somewhere: Minorities in Mass Media; An OSU Workshop, 1973 (FV P 119) This film was part of a program to train minority students for jobs in radio, television, or print media. It included in-class training at OSU, as well as off-site internships.
  • Nothin’ Comes Easy, 1974 (FV P 119) This film looks at services for minority students at OSU in the early 1970s, including the Educational Opportunities Program. It features footage of minority students describing their experiences and academic programs at OSU (engineering, forestry, pharmacy, etc.).
  • Hail to OSC, circa 1945 (FV P048:030) This is a 37-minute color silent film, which includes footage of academic programs as well as various student activities. The date in the finding aid dates it at 1960 … but it is much earlier than that – probably 1940s.You can listen online to a 1953 version by the Oregon State College Glee Club or a 1950 version by the Oregon State College Mens’ Choir.

Finally, we can’t ignore our 12 fabulous new finding aids for June! Included are another collection of moving images in the Media Services Moving Images, 1957-2002 (FV P 119) records; the Records of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Corvallis Branch, 1971-1974; the Pacific Northwest Seed and Nursery Catalog Collection, 1992-2009; the President’s Office Photographs, 1923-1998 (P 092); and the Voices of Oregon State University Oral History Collection, 1995-2010 (OH 09).

New Archives Column in The Messenger

rook-fire-551.jpgKarl McCreary, of OSU Archives fame, is the author of the new “Did You Know” column in the Winter 2009 issue of The Messenger.

He says “Preserving evidence and knowledge of campus culture at OSU is one of the Archives’ most important missions and one that makes my job as Archivist here a continuous and enriching education in and of itself. So stay tuned for more stories about some of the more colorful items in the Archives and the fascinating history they document in upcoming issues of The Messenger!”

Here, here for context!

google-images.jpgGoogle has announced that they have begun a project to scan and provide access to magazines and journals — from the Official Google Blog (12/09/2008 09:47:00 AM):

” The word “magazine” is derived from the Arabic word “makhazin,” meaning storehouse. Since Daniel Defoe published the world’s first English magazine back in 1704, millions of magazines catering to nearly every imaginable taste have been created and consumed, passed from person to person in cafes, barber shops, libraries, and homes around the world. If you’re wondering what cars people drove in the eighties or what was in fashion thirty years ago, there’s a good chance that you’ll find that answer in a magazine. Yet few magazine archives are currently available online. Today, we’re announcing an initiative to help bring more magazine archives and current magazines online, partnering with publishers to begin digitizing millions of articles from titles as diverse as New York Magazine, Popular Mechanics, and Ebony.”

And yes, you get the ads!

The grand recap: what happened in the Archives last month?

Historic Walking Tour 2008I wanted to personally thank everyone who participated in our Oregon Archives Month activities! Bookended by building tours, the month was full of walks, eats, and fun.

Starting us off on October 8th, Larry led us on a historic building tour. Not only did we learn something, the clear blue skies and early fall colors made for a great walk! For those of you who couldn’t make it, please visit the Flickr photo site and check it out! You can also see tour photos and historic archives photos on our Flickr Map. On the map you’ll find the locations for the images that you see in the slide at the bottom of your screen; to see more images and their locations, use the left or right arrows to change the images and the map.

And, of course, who can forget the Taste of the ‘Chives? Campus and community guests joined us to sample a bit of history. Again, for those of you who weren’t there, please check out the Gazette-Times article (look to the bottom for the video) and visit our Flickr site for pictures and recipes. There are also plenty of recipes on our blog—an entire month, in fact!

October 22nd brought “reel” fun and four great movies from our collections featuring Mount McKinley National Park, Cowboys in Central Oregon, National Dairy Champions (circa 1925), and an odd early Disney short from the 1920s. If you are looking for more films you can watch from the comfort of your chair, check out our freshly digitized films:

And last, but not least, was last night’s ghost tour—led by me! No pictures on the Flickr site yet, but we did make the front page of the Gazette-Times and the Barometer. To quote the G-T: “Nighttime tour of OSU shows the spooky side of Oregon State University.” Yes, people were scared, very scared! From Benton Hall and the ghostly sounds of band practice to personal stories of fright in front of Waldo, it was quite fun. We had about 40 join us to wander around campus before the rains hit…