Tag Archives: Archives

Talkin’ Turkey

This post got lost in our holiday rush to-do lists, but we didn’t want you to miss out. After putting up the most recent display in the Research Room, featuring past UAF course catalogs, archivists noticed that the page they’d chosen called to mind the food-rich holiday season (turkey, anyone?). These pages are from the course catalog from the University of Alaska’s 1949-1950 academic year. Now that you (like the rest of us) have recovered from the massive amounts of food inhaled during the holidays, we think you won’t groan too much if you take a look at these pages. Do you think you could pass a class on Turkey Management? What about Potato Production?

A selection from one of our current display cases, this course catalog is flipped to the Agriculture class listings. Stop by and see the real thing in our Research Room!

A selection from one of our current display cases, this course catalog is flipped to the Agriculture class listings. Stop by and see the real thing in our Research Room!

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George S. Witt Photographs

The George S. Witt Photograph collection includes 157 images – mostly photographs with some real photo postcards. The photographs were taken by George S. Witt who went on walking tours of downtown Fairbanks in 1944. George Sawyer Witt (1913-1996) served in U.S. Army during World War II. He was stationed in Fairbanks, Alaska, in 1943-1944. Witt, who served as a technician, took photos of the city streets, buildings, and businesses, and wrote vivid (sometimes humorous) remarks on the blank side of his photos. The images depict Cushman Street, First and Second Avenues, Empress Theater, Northern Commercial Company, Lomen Company, Model Bakery, Berny Carr’s Department Store, Nordale Hotel, and the Alaska Railroad Depot.

Our main street – Second Avenue, looking from Lacey down toward Cushman. George S. Witt Photographs, UAF-1984-105-44, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Our main street – Second Avenue, looking from Lacey down toward Cushman.
George S. Witt Photographs, UAF-1984-105-44, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks.

GMC Army Truck. Fairbanks, September 1944. George S. Witt Photographs, UAF-1984-105-89, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks.

GMC Army Truck. Fairbanks, September 1944.
George S. Witt Photographs, UAF-1984-105-89, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks.

4th Street, Fairbanks. George S. Witt Photographs, UAF-1984-105-91, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks.

4th Street, Fairbanks. George S. Witt Photographs, UAF-1984-105-91, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks.

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E.C. Sharpe Diaries: Spinach Soup

As one way to celebrate Archives Month, some of the folks in the library volunteered to make recipes found in some of our manuscript collections. This post comes courtesy of the lovely Ms. Dee from our awesome Acquisitions and Technical Services Department. These are the people who bring you the wonderful, descriptive entries on Alaska’s Digital Archives. It’s difficult to do our work without support from them and their fantastic indexing skills.

The Sharpe Diaries also include such gems as the picture below, which shows what looks like a child’s writing exercises. Some things haven’t changed all that much since the 1880s and early 1900s. Read on to hear Ms. Dee talk about her experience with an old soup recipe from the E.C. Sharpe Diaries.

Page from Sharpe diary with children's writing. E.C. Sharpe Diaries, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks. Find it in Star Archives.

Page from Sharpe diary with children’s writing.
E.C. Sharpe Diaries, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks. Find it in Star Archives.

I chose to make the Spinach Soup recipe seen below, and transcribed as this:

Put the spinach onto
[stove?] with a tiny bit
of water. [Stew?] for
1/2 hour. Then push
through a sieve. Then
add milk – salt –
pepper – ___ – chicken

So, basically, three ingredients and two spices comprise this recipe. I wonder what made this concoction recipe-worthy to the person who wrote these simple steps down? What could have been forgotten in making up this dish? I looked over this itty bitty recipe in wonder over its simplicity.

Page from Sharpe diary with Spinach Soup recipe. E.C. Sharpe Diaries, Archives, University of Alaska Fairbanks. Find it in Star Archives.

Started with the main ingredient, the spinach.  A whole plastic bin’s worth of it in all its full leaf majesty before it was sauteed down to a shapeless mound of shriveled and shrunk leaves.

Fresh spinach leaves.

Fresh spinach leaves.

Following the recipe directions, I added in milk (I chose unsweetened almond milk).
Hmmm,  it appears more like a spinach cereal than soup.  If I added the chicken the recipe called for, it would be kicked up a notch to chicken spinach cereal.
Because I’m a vegetarian, and because chicken spinach cereal sounds gross, I didn’t add animals parts to this bowl of swimming spinach leaves.   But I couldn’t leave as is either.  Just look at this sad milky bowl of greens.  I couldn’t force myself to eat of this unappetizing  dish.
Not so appetizing yet...

Not so appetizing yet…

So I busted out the blender, and gave it a good whirl.Look at how spinach cereal transforms in all its bright green glory into a blended soup!

Dee busts out the blender.

Dee busts out the blender…

...and ends up with something new.

…and ends up with something new.

To give it some substance and let’s face it, this bowl of green stuff needed some serious flavor enhancement, I added in a pile of sauteed mushrooms., and garnished it with some crumbled cashews for crunch.

My first foray into blended soups, and it was a good one. In fact, the transformation is a bit stunning. This neon-green, creamy bisque all dolled up in mushrooms and cashews turned out to be quite handsome, quite sophisticated. A spinach soup star was born from the humblest of recipes. It was delicious.

Dee took this old recipe and re-imagined it for a modern audience. Nice work Dee!

Dee took this old recipe and re-imagined it for a modern audience. Nice work Dee!

 

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Celebrating American Archives Month!

A big thank you to all who came out and attended our Political Collections in the Archives presentation last night.

Thank you to Northwest Archivists for funding the coffee and cookies!

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Celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the Morrill Act!!

The Morrill Act was signed on July 2, 1862, in the midst of the Civil War. It established land-grant colleges for the “liberal and practical education” of the people.

 

Peg Asbury, University Archivist, will be at the Wood Center to talk about the Archives on Saturday, April 21, from 12 to 3 pm, with a historical photograph exhibit.

 

For a full schedule of remaining events: http://www.uaf.edu/ces/Morrill-Act-Schedule-corrected.pdf

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Spring Semester Hours

Alaska and Polar Regions Collections has changed hours for the Spring Semester:

Monday-Friday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm

Closed on Saturdays with the exception of the following dates:

February 6th: Noon-5:00 pm

March 6th: Noon-5:00 pm

April 3rd: Noon-5:00 pm

May 1st: Noon-5:00 pm

We are always closed on Sundays.

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