Presidential Inaugurations and Virginia Tech

Well, tomorrow is the inauguration of the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump, so I decided to scour our collections for items pertaining to presidents. At Special Collections you can find all sorts of material related to presidents – presidents of the U.S., presidents of organizations and businesses, and, of course, presidents of … Continue reading Presidential Inaugurations and Virginia Tech

John Redd Hutcheson, 9th President of Virginia Tech

Recently, Special Collections received a new collection, the John R. Hutcheson Family Collection, containing letters, newspaper clippings, photographs, and more documenting the life of Virginia Tech president John R. Hutcheson. Although only president of Virginia Polytechnic Institute (VPI, as Virginia Tech was then known) for two years from 1945 to 1947, John Redd Hutcheson (1886-1962) … Continue reading John Redd Hutcheson, 9th President of Virginia Tech

Cooking for the President: Cora Bolton McBryde’s Cookbook

  Cora Bolton McBrydes cookbook is a new treasure of the University Libraries Special Collections Department. The cookbook was a gift of Janet Watson Barnhill, great great granddaughter of President John McLaren McBryde and Cora Bolton McBryde. Known as the Father of the Modern VPI, McBryde served as president of Virginia Tech from 1891, when … Continue reading Cooking for the President: Cora Bolton McBryde’s Cookbook

Recently Processed Collections

After a year and a half without student workers onsite due to the pandemic, SCUA finally has a number of students in the department working on a variety of projects! I’m fortunate right now to supervise a couple of them on a number of processing projects in our different collecting areas, including the University Archives, … Continue reading Recently Processed Collections

Wading Through a Life: Processing the M. Rupert Cutler Papers

For the last 5 months, I have been kept busy with processing the recently acquired papers of Rupert Cutler, a prominent environmentalist and activist who has lived and worked in Roanoke since 1991. He was Assistant Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment of the U.S. Department of Agriculture under President Jimmy Carter, and since has … Continue reading Wading Through a Life: Processing the M. Rupert Cutler Papers

100 Years of Woman Suffrage

The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. U.S. Senate website, Art & History, Timeline: The Senate and the 19th Amendment Introduced on January 10, 1878 by California Republican Senator Aaron Sargent, the “Susan B. … Continue reading 100 Years of Woman Suffrage

A Ballot of Significance: A Virginia Republican Party Ticket from 1921

It’s not all unusual to find a lot of history wrapped up in a single, small, seemingly inconspicuous document. Sometimes you have to go looking for the stories contained in such a document. On other occasions, the stories shout their presence, even if their fullness has yet to be discovered. The Republican Party Flyer of … Continue reading A Ballot of Significance: A Virginia Republican Party Ticket from 1921

The Life of Andrew Oliver, Virginia Tech’s Little Known First African American Worker

Guest Post by Juan Pacheco Virginia Tech’s history is a complicated one that is much more presumed than known due to an early 20th century blaze. In its early years, the institution served as an allegory of the rough, rag-tag, Appalachian spirit we see still embodied through a beaten-up lunch pail at football games and … Continue reading The Life of Andrew Oliver, Virginia Tech’s Little Known First African American Worker

Special Collections and University Archives: a new name for a venerable department

We are very pleased to announce that our department has taken on a new addition to our name: Special Collections and University Archives (SCUA, for short). The University Archives have always been a meaningful part of our department, and this name change recognizes its significance in a more visible way. This is just a recent … Continue reading Special Collections and University Archives: a new name for a venerable department

Processing the Fries Textile Mill Collection

The Fries Textile Mill was established in 1903 by Col. Thomas Fries, then the president of Wachovia Bank. He built the mill on a bend in the New River, which he had dammed in order to provide power for his new venture. He also built a town nearby to house, educate, and supply the employees … Continue reading Processing the Fries Textile Mill Collection