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Bennett, John W., collector

John W. Bennett Labor Collection

ca. 1880-2000
118 boxes
Call no.: MS 443
Image of

Labor historian John W. Bennett has researched the history of the labor movement since his days as an undergraduate at the University of Massachusetts (Class of 1952). A born collector, he began accumulating memorabilia associated with unions, drawn to their potential as a visual record of labor iconography and self-representation.

Extending back to the 1880s, the Bennett Collection includes examples from around the country, but with a particularly strong representation of New England unions between the mid-1930s and mid-1970s.

Subjects

  • Labor unions--Massachusetts

Contributors

  • Bennett, John W

Types of material

  • Badges
  • Ephemera
  • Realia
Brown, John, 1800-1859

John Brown Research Collection

1826-1942
10 reels of microfilm 0.5 linear feet
Call no.: MS 308 mf

Microfilm containing documents drawn from various repositories including John Brown’s correspondence with family, friends, and others; court records and testimony; transcripts of interviews and other personal reminiscences; drafts of narratives; memorandum book; drafts of speeches; church records; minutes of Anti-slavery Society of Lawrence, Kansas; financial and legal records; broadsides and circulars; newspaper clippings; other miscellaneous records.

Subjects

  • Abolitionists--United States--History
  • Slavery--United States--History
  • United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Causes

Contributors

  • Brown, John, 1800-1859
Brown, Robert E.

Robert E. Brown Southbridge (Mass.) Collection

1973-1977
1 box 0.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 029

During the mid-1970s, Robert Brown worked as a fifth grade teacher at the West Street School, Southbridge, Mass., while pursuing a graduate degree in anthropology at UMass Amherst under Joel Halpern. Part of Brown’s research involved conducting oral histories with Southbridge families identified as “ethnic,” including Albanian, Greek, Polish, Portuguese, Italian, and Puerto Rican, as well as the only African American family in town at the time. Brown published his work in local newspapers and ultimately in the book, The New New Englanders (Worcester, Mass.: Commonwealth Press, 1980).

The Brown collection includes copies of his newspaper articles, profiles of the families he studied, and apparently complete transcripts of two oral history interviews. Also included are copies of two papers by Brown on Southbridge, possibly for an anthropology class, analyzing the education of Puerto Rican students and the lives of Rumanian Americans.

Subjects

  • African Americans--Massachusetts--Southbridge
  • Greek Americans--Massachusetts--Southbridge
  • Immigrants--Massachusetts
  • Italian Americans--Massachusetts--Southbridge
  • Rumanian Americans--Massachusetts--Southbridge
  • Southbridge (Mass.)--History

Contributors

  • Brown, Robert E

Types of material

  • Oral histories
Carton, Robert J.

Robert J. Carton Papers

1935-2002 Bulk: 1983-2002
3 boxes linear feet
Call no.: MS 643

The environmental scientist Robert J. Carton emerged in the mid-1980s as one of the leading scientific critics of fluoridation of the water supply. After receiving his doctorate in Environmental Science from Rutgers University, Carton accepted a position in 1972 with the Office of Toxic Substances in the Environmental Protection Agency, assessing the risks associated with a range of toxic substances from asbestos to arsenic and hexachlorobenzene. By 1985, Carton became concerned about EPA standards for fluoride in drinking water, taking a public stance against undue political influence in framing those standards and insisting that there was no scientific evidence that fluorides prevented tooth decay and that any level of fluoride exposure presented a significant health hazard. In 1992, Carton left the EPA to work for as Chief of Environmental Compliance for the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command in Fort Detrick, Maryland.

Consisting primarily of research, notes, and some correspondence relating to the health effects of fluoridation of drinking water, the collection documents Robert Carton’s nearly two decade long struggle against the EPA and federal government. Also included are transcripts of filings relating to various legal challenges against fluoridation during the mid-1980s.

Subjects

  • Drinking water--Law and legislation--United States
  • Fluorides--Physiological effect
  • United States. Environmental Protection Agency

Contributors

  • Carton, Robert J
Chandler, John S., 1836-1916

John Chandler Account Book

1853-1914
1 vol. 0.1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 287 bd

A mariner and whaleman originally from Provincetown, Massachusetts, John S. Chandler (1836-1916) relocated to Bucksport, Maine, in the 1870s to provide care for his aging in-laws.

Chandler’s account book and diary includes records of crewmembers on various voyages, accounts for labor, supplies, and merchandise, pasted-in bills for taxes, clothes, coal, boots, and other commodities, and a journal of Chandler’s farming activities, consisting of notes on labor performed, items and livestock sold, weather accounts, new purchases, and notation of personal visits and trips.

Subjects

  • Bucksport (Me.)--Economic conditions
  • Bucksport (Me.)--Social life and customs
  • Farmers--Maine--Bucksport
  • Merchant mariners--Massachusetts--History--19th century
  • Provincetown (Mass.)--Economic conditions--19th century
  • Ship captains--Massachusetts

Types of material

  • Account books
Clark, John G., d. 1972

John G. Clark Papers

1960-1969
7 boxes, 2 vols. 3.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 499
Image of John G. Clark and H. P. Hood milk truck
John G. Clark and H. P. Hood milk truck

With a life long interest in politics, John G. Clark of Easthampton, Massachusetts worked on a number of campaigns before running for office himself. He ran for state senator in 1958, but lost in the Democratic primary. Two years later he ran again, this time for state representative of the 3rd Hampshire District, and won. Clark served in the State House of Representative for eight years until he was appointed clerk of the district court in Northampton and chose not to run for reelection.

While this collection is small, it is packed with campaign materials, letters, position statements, speeches, and press releases that together offer a good sense of the political climate in Massachusetts during the 1960s, especially issues of local concern for Hampshire County. Four letters from a young neighbor written while serving in Vietnam provide a personal account of the war.

Subjects

  • Massachusetts--History
  • Massachusetts--Politics and government--1951-
  • Vietnam War, 1961-1975

Contributors

  • Clark, John G., d. 1972
Coffin, Robert L.

Robert L. Coffin Ornithological Journal

1912-1922
1 vol. 0.1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 593 bd

Robert L. Coffin (1889-1976) began a long association with the Massachusetts Agricultural College when he arrived on campus in 1912 to begin work as an assistant photographer for the East Experiment Station. His skill as a technical photographer and his artistic eye, however, soon made him a valuable commodity on campus and within a few years of his arrival, Coffin had branched out to work for a wide range of departments across campus and, in the late 1920s, for the US Department of Agriculture in Pennsylvania and New Jersey as well. An avid birder and naturalist, Coffin was particularly known for his nature photography, using a battery of different cameras to capture everything from scenic vistas to photomicrographs. Although he established a commercial photographic studio in Amherst in 1931, Coffin continued to accept a wide range of assignments at UMass, earning recognition as the unofficial campus photographer. He remained active almost to the time of his death in 1976 at the age of 86.

Containing the meticulously detailed records of an avid birder, the Coffin journal contains records of sightings and first and last occurrences of birds observed in the years 1912 and 1917-1922. The records in the journal reflect Coffin’s many birding trips in western Massachusetts, mostly in the Connecticut River Valley, however the journal also contains records from the Swift River Valley, the Harvard Forest, the Boston area, and the Connecticut coast. In a few cases, Coffin recorded the numbers of birds observed.

Subjects

  • Bird watching--Massachusetts
  • Birds--Massachusetts
  • University of Massachusetts Amherst

Contributors

  • Coffin, Robert L

Types of material

  • Field notes
Coon, John H.

John H. Coon Ledger

1862-1873
1 vol. 0.1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 230 bd

Owner of a general store and a farmer in Sheffield, Massachusetts. Ledger includes lists of customers, the goods that they purchased, and how they paid (cash and exchange of goods or services).

Subjects

  • Arnold, Emmons
  • Crippen, Frank
  • Croslear, Aaron, Mrs
  • Curtiss, Ira
  • General stores--Massachusetts--Sheffield
  • Noteware, Frank
  • Sheffield (Mass.)--Economic conditions
  • Tuttle, Leonard

Contributors

  • Coon, John H

Types of material

  • Account books
Dillon, Robert E.

Robert E. Dillon Papers

1943-1946
1 box 0.5 linear feet
Call no.: MS 635
Image of Robert E. Dillon, 1943
Robert E. Dillon, 1943

A working class native of Ware, Mass., Robert E. Dillon was a student at Massachusetts State College when he was drafted into the Army in 1943. After his induction at Fort Devens, Mass., and training for the Quartermaster Corps in Virginia and California, Dillon was assigned to duty as a mechanic and driver with the First Service Command. Stationed at Rest Camps number 5 and 6 in Khanspur, India (now Pakistan), Dillon’s company maintained the trucks and other vehicles used to carry supplies over the Himalayas to Chinese Nationalist forces. After he left the service in February 1946, having earned promotion to T/5, Dillon concluded his studies at UMass Amherst on the GI Bill and earned a doctorate in Marketing from Ohio State. He taught at the University of Cincinnati for many years until his death in 1985.

The Dillon Papers consist of 178 letters written by Dillon to his family during his service in World War II, along with several written to him and an assortment of documents and ephemera. Beginning with basic training, the letters provide an essentially comprehensive account of Dillon’s military experience and interesting insight into a relatively quiet, but sparsely documented theater of war.

Gift of Edward O'Day, Sept. 2009

Subjects

  • California--Description and travel
  • India--Description and travel
  • Pakistan--Description and travel
  • World War, 1939-1945

Contributors

  • Dillon, Robert E

Types of material

  • Letters (Correspondence)
  • Menus
  • Photographs
Fenwick, John

John Fenwick Collection of Radcliffiana

1601-1853
3 vols. 1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 989
Image of The case of the six lords condemned for high treason
The case of the six lords condemned for high treason

The title Earl of Derwentwater was created under King James II in 1688 for Francis Radcliffe of Northumberland, and for sixty years thereafter, members of the Radcliffe family stood among the most prominent Jacobites in the north of England. One of Francis’ grandson, James, the third Earl of Derwentwater, became embroiled in the Rebellion of 1715 and was beheaded in the London Tower for high treason, and another son, Charles, the so-called 4th Earl, was beheaded for his part in the Rebellion of 1745.

Assembled by John Fenwick, who may have been a distant relative of the Radcliffes, this collection of Radcliffiana includes a mixture of original documents, 19th century transcriptions of originals, published works, and prints, all pertaining to the Jacobite Earls of Derwentwater. Set into paper frames and bound into more or less elaborate leather volumes, the documents cover the period from the English Civil War through the fallout after the execution of the 3rd Earl. They are focused primarily on the personal fates of the Earls, their Northumberland estates, and the genealogy of the Radcliffe family.

Provenance unknown

Subjects

  • Estates (Law)--England
  • Jacobite Rebellion, 1715
  • Jacobite Rebellion, 1745-1746
  • Northumberland (England)--History

Contributors

  • Derwentwater, Francis, Earl of, 1625-1697
  • Derwentwater, James Radcliffe, Earl of, 1689-1716

Types of material

  • Genealogies (Histories)
  • Maps
  • Prints