The University of Massachusetts Amherst
Robert S. Cox Special Collections & University Archives Research Center
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Smedley, Audrey

Audrey Smedley Papers

ca. 1960-2020
31 boxes 46.5 linear feet
Call no.: MS 1222

Born in Detroit in 1930, Audrey Smedley was the oldest daughter of Ulysses and Mattie Smedley. After attending Detroit Public School, Smedley earned a B.A. in the history, letters, and law program (1954) and a M.A. in anthropology with a concentration in history (1957) from the University of Michigan. Smedley pursued her Ph.D. at the University of Manchester (1967) where she investigated the social and economic structure of the Birom in Northern Nigeria. Known for her research into the history of “race,” a concept she argued emerged in the Americas to justify slavery, Smedley published widely on the topic including her award-winning book Race in North America: Origin and Evolution of a Worldview (1993). She began her teaching career at Wayne State University and Oakland University, went on to teach at Binghampton University, retiring in 1995, before becoming a professor of anthropology at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she retired a second time in 2002. Smedley was the co-founder of the Museum of Afro-American History in Detroit and the recipient of numerous awards and honors including a fellow of the American Association of Science and winner of the Delta Award for Excellence in Afro-American History and Anthropology. Smedley died on October 14, 2020, in Beltsville, Maryland at the age of 90.

The Audrey Smedley Papers features an extensive collection of research materials and notes, drafts of articles and books, professional correspondence, and teaching files. Smedley’s filed notes related to her work in Birom are included as are drafts of her award-winning book, Race in North America: Origin and Evolution of a Worldview.

Gift of Brian Smedley and David Smedley, 2024.

Subjects

Birom (African people)--Nigeria—HistoryBirom (African people)--Social life and customsBirom (African people)—Economic conditions
Smith, Jonathan, 1757-1820

Jonathan Smith Collection

1788-1831
1 box 0.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 500

A prominent local politician from West Springfield, Mass., Jonathan Smith was born July 31, 1757. Among other offices, he served as town moderator, state representative, selectman, and Justice of the Peace. Most famously, lame duck Governor Elbridge Gerry appointed Smith to become the first sheriff of Hampden County shortly before the county was officially incorporated. The partisan appointment was immediately contested and brief. Smith died in Boston on February 5, 1820.

This miscellaneous collection contains a variety of professional and personal records of Jonathan Smith and other members of his family, falling almost exclusively in the first two decades of the nineteenth century.

Acquired from Dan Casavant, Jan. 2005

Subjects

Cattle--Massachusetts--West SpringfieldWest Springfield (Mass.)--History--19th century

Contributors

Hampden County (Mass.). Sheriff
Solander, Arvo A.

Arvo A. Solander Papers

1930-1958
8 boxes 4 linear feet
Call no.: MS 587

Graduating from Harvard in the thick of the Great Depression, Arvo A. Solander worked as a civil and sanitary engineer for a variety of state and federal agencies, including the Civil Works Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps. During the 1930s, as opportunity arose, he filled positions as a road engineer, in the design and construction of water and sewage plants, in pollution control, as a safety engineer in the shellfish industry, and in mosquito control, taking jobs throughout Massachusetts and as far away as Tennessee. After using his talents as an officer in the Sanitary Corps during the Second World War, based primarily in Arkansas, Solander returned home to Massachusetts and opened a private engineering office in South Hadley. He worked as a civil engineer and surveyor until his death in January 1976.
The Arvo Solander Papers consists of twenty-four bound volumes documenting thirty years of varied work as an engineer, including his contributions to the construction of the Quabbin Reservoir. Within the bound volumes are a wide range of reports, typescripts, sketches and diagrams, graphs, contracts and design specifications, photographs, and postcards.

Subjects

Civil engineersCivilian Conservation Corps (U.S.)Depressions--1929Fisheries--MassachusettsMosquitoes--ControlQuabbin Reservoir (Mass.)Roads--Design and constructionSanitary engineersSewage disposal plants--Design and constructionUnited States. Federal Civil Works AdministrationWater--Pollution--TennesseeWater-supply--MassachusettsWestfield State SanatoriumWorld War, 1939-1945Wrentham State School

Contributors

Solander, Arvo A

Types of material

PhotographsScrapbooks
Stanze Monument Company

Stanze Monument Company Records

ca. 1921-1970
7 boxes, 13 drawers
Call no.: MS 734
Depiction of Stanze Monument Co. drawing
Stanze Monument Co. drawing

Established in 1921 in St. Louis Missouri, the Stanze Monument Company was family-owned and operated until it was sold in the mid-1980s. The company custom-cut gravestones for more than sixty years and was one of the last monument companies to cut gravestones by hand.

The collection consists of gravestone, monument, and mausoleum technical and architectural drawings. Most of the tracings and drawings of headstone patterns were used to make glass molds for sand-blasting granite headstones, while the rubbings represent reproductions of designs and font sizes and styles. Some of the architectural drawings depict conceptual plans for a typical forty-acre cemetery. The drawings were transferred from the Kibbe Hancock Heritage Museum in Illinois; a small portion of the materials were identified as being part of the “Gustafson Collection.”

Subjects

Sepulchral monuments--Design

Contributors

Stanze Monument Company

Types of material

Architectural drawings (Visual works)Technical drawings
Stinson, Mary B.

Mary B. Stinson Collection

1974-1981
2 boxes 1.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 824
Depiction of

Throughout the 1970s, Mary B. Stinson (formerly Lindblom) was an active member of the National Organization for Women (NOW) in California and served as a delegate to the First National Women’s Conference in Houston.

The collection includes several ephemeral objects reflecting Stinson’s activism including IWY pendant necklaces and an ERA license plate frame, along with published reports and articles relating to the IWY and a 1979 NOW conference in California.

Gift of Mary B. Stinson, May 2014

Subjects

Equal rights amendmentsFeminism--United StatesInternational Women's Year ConferenceNational Organization for WomenWomen's rights--United States

Contributors

Stinson, Mary B.
Stock Certificates

Stock Certificates Collection

1842-1929
1 box 0.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 477

Stock certificates and other printed financial instruments became a medium for American corporations to signify their role in an expanding nation and their importance to the American economy. Often elaborately printed, in part to thwart counterfeiters, stock certificates and other financial instruments typically incorporated imagery reflecting their corporate activity, a burgeoning economy, and an the idealized nation.

This small collection of stock certificates and bonds was assembled for their value in illustrating printing history due to their more or less elaborately engraved letterheads and borders. Issued from 1842 to the even of the Great Depression, the collection includes 42 different certificates, plus a handful of duplicates, issued by railroad companies, insurance companies, banks, bridge companies, coal companies, dispatch and transit companies. The illustrations run the gamut from idealized representation of the corporation to symbolic expressions.

Acquired from Kenneth W. Rendell, Dec. 1976

Subjects

Business--History--19th centuryBusiness--History--20th century

Types of material

BondsStock certificates
Story, Ellen

Ellen Story Papers

1997-2016
14 boxes 21 linear feet
Call no.: MS 962

Temporarily stored offsite; contact SCUA to request materials from this collection.

Born in Oklahoma in 1941, Ellen Story served as the Associate Executive Director of the Family Council of Western Massachusetts for nearly 20 years before deciding to run for a seat in the Massachusetts House of Representatives in a 1992 special election. While in office, she was an advocate for a variety of women’s and social issues ranging from pay equity for women and transgender rights to health services. After 24 years representing the 3rd Hampshire District, Story announced she would not seek another term in 2016.

The bulk of the collection consists of background research and publications related to various issues that went before the Massachusetts state legislature. Also included are reports, administrative and office files, and constituent files.

Subjects

Massachusetts--Politics and government--1951-Massachusetts. General Court. House of Representatives

Contributors

Story, Ellen
Sufi Order International

Abode of the Message Collection

1975-2012
1 box 1.5 linear feet
Call no.: MS 780

Founded in 1975 by Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan, The Abode of the Message is the headquarters for members of the Sufi Order International. Sitting on 430 acres, formerly the site of a Shaker Village in New Lebanon, New York, the Abode was settled by 75 adults and 20 children coming from all over the United States. The Sufi Order initiates spent the first several months preparing for the arrival of winter, a task that required much effort since buildings were in need of repair, there was no central heating system or updated electrical wiring, and few bathrooms. Within a year, the community prospered with the establishment of woodworking, stained glass, and sewing shops, a bakery, and a small school. Today, the community is smaller in number, but their mission remains the same: to collectively embody spiritual awakening.
The collection consists chiefly of publications produced by the Abode, including two newsletters Connections and The Messenger dating from the 1970s to the present. Also represented are other Sufi Order publications, such as Heart & Wing and Mureed’s Newsletter.

Subjects

Sufi Order International
Travel Brochures

Travel Brochures Collection

1916-1949
1 box 0.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 490

Long a favored destination for travelers due to its scenic coastline and rural landscapes, New England’s tourist industry evolved in parallel with transportation technologies. Rail lines opened summering opportunities in the interior of the region in the nineteenth century, and the expansion of roadways and the automobile after the First World War drove the industry further, leading to a proliferation of summer camps, inns, and tourist sites, even in remote locales, serving shorter-term vacationers from the working class through the moneyed elite.

This small collection of travel brochures gathered by Faith Brainard and her husband Homer W. Brainard in the 1920s and 1930s, documents camps, inns, hotels, and touristic sites throughout New England. Most of the brochures advertise accommodations or attractions in a natural setting, including room rentals at farms, hiking in the White Mountains, and the rivers and mountains of Vermont. The target audience for many of the brochures was women traveling alone, featuring the promise of clean accommodations and wholesome activities.

Gift of Sharon Domier, 2004

Subjects

Hotels, motels, etc.--New EnglandSummer resorts--New EnglandTaverns (Inns)--New EnglandTourism--United States

Types of material

BrochuresPamphletsPostcards
UMass Educational Television

UMass Educational Television Collection

1994-2000
6 boxes 9 linear feet
Call no.: RG 13/1/3

In 1993, UMass Educational Television was created by Dean Bailey Jackson and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Jay Carey to establish a creative media outreach project for the School of Education. Professor Liane Brandon was asked to be the Director with Associate Dean Jay Carey as Co-director. Working in collaboration with staff member Scott Perry, they designed UMass Educational Television to provide the public with innovative, original, educational programming using the resources of the School of Education and the University, and to serve as a hands-on learning laboratory for students and teachers. They became the only School of Education in the country to produce original educational programming for cable/home audiences. Despite the positive reception of the programs produced, funding for the UMass Educational Television was cut and production ceased in 2003.

The UMass Educational Television Collection consists of many of the original programs they developed and created: Try This At Home, Fresh Ink, Who Knows? Pet Tales, Valley Vignettes, Hi Mom!, and Fine Print. Show flyers, posters, production files, and awards provide insight into the creation and reception of programs.

Gift of Liane Brandon, Jay Carey, Scott Penny, 2006.

Subjects

Educational television programs--Massachusetts

Contributors

Brandon, LianeCarey, JayPerry, ScottUniversity of Massachusetts at Amherst. School of Education