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Oakland University (Rochester, MI 48309-4402)
Dominique Renee Daniel (Project Director: April 2017 to March 2021)
Oakland University Archives and Special Collections Preservation Assessment

A preservation assessment of the University Archives and Special Collections, which hold a wide range of material important to local and Michigan state history, including tax records for Oakland County and its townships (1827-1931) and the papers of Congressmen Billie S. Farnum and Mike Rogers. In addition, the library’s rare book collection includes many first editions of English and American literature. Of special note are 913 books and pamphlets by women writers in the United Kingdom from the 17th to the early 20th century, including a 1623 edition of Dorothy Leigh’s Mother’s Blessing, which was a popular and frequently reprinted conduct manual of maternal advice. Numerous first editions of works by Mark Twain are a special focus of the library’s work with students of American literature, which allows classes to examine the frontispieces, chapter illustrations, and publisher’s subscription advertisements that are absent in contemporary scholarly editions of these texts.

The goal of this grant is to hire a consultant to conduct a preservation assessment of Oakland University Archives and Special Collections. In addition to the university’s records, the papers of two Congressmen, other manuscripts, tax rolls, and rare books allow for research in local history. Notable special collections also include a comprehensive collection of English women’s 17th to 19th century literature, including unique items, and a collection of Lincolniana containing books, manuscripts, images, and memorabilia. The consultant would give us a snapshot of current conditions, policies and practices affecting the preservation of the collections, and create a five-year preservation plan offering us realistic and sustainable strategies for improvement. The consultant would be assisted by a library science student and would mentor a junior librarian at our library, who could continue to help care for our collections after the grant project is over.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
American Literature; British Literature; History, General

Preservation Assistance Grants

Preservation and Access

$6,410 (approved)
$6,345 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2018 – 6/30/2019