Special Collections Research Center

 HOURS for June 22, 2021:  Now Closed


Online Exhibits

Beginning April 10, 2020, some online exhibits will be temporarily unavailable. Please Contact SCRC for assistance.

Patients in gymnasium hospital, 1918Nurses at UK in 1918SATC in front of Scovell Hall

1918: Over Here explores how the University of Kentucky responded to the simultaneous health crisis and world war that affected campus during the year 1918. Future soldiers prepared for service, students and faculty enrolled in the military, impromptu hospitals created in the gymnasium and Patterson Hall, students were sent home, and classes canceled. It was an interrupted year, but one that saw an outpouring of support from the campus and community. As we grapple with our own pandemic in 2020, the century-old images resonate with our shared humanity that spans the past 100 years.  

University of Kentucky Women: Leaders in Time Online Exhibits


University of Kentucky Women: Leaders in Time: an expanded on-line version of the physical exhibit created by University of Kentucky (UK) Archives exhibit intern and UK History Ph.D. student Jennifer McCabe for display at the 2017 Sarah Bennett Holmes Award Luncheon sponsored by the UK Women's Forum on March 23, 2017. The exhibit poses two central questions--"What is Real Change?" and "When Does Real Change Occur?"--and seeks to answer them by highlighting notable UK alumna, faculty, and employees--white and of color--who displayed remarkable strength and leadership in ushering in real changes toward full equality with men throughout the 20th century, particularly during times of campus tumult and change.

University of Kentucky Women: Leaders in Time—Early Coeds: charts the paths of some exceptional UK women and also explores the experience of the average coed early in the twentieth century. Although white women have been attending the University of Kentucky since the 1880s, women have not always held an equal standing with men. How was their experience different from white male students and why?

University of Kentucky Women: Leaders in Time—Integration: explores the often-messy path the University of Kentucky took through racial desegregation under Federal law and the course toward true equality.

University of Kentucky Women: Leaders in Time—Sarah B. Holmes: focuses on the life of Sarah Bennet Holmes, a leader of women nationally and at the University of Kentucky. Overcoming incredible hardship, widowed with four young children, working through the Great Depression, and one of the few women to rise through the administrative ranks at UK in the early nineteenth century, Holmes served as a role model for generations of women.

University of Kentucky Women: Leaders in Time—The Modern Struggle: focuses on University of Kentucky women and their fight for equality within education in the second half of the 20th century, particularly after the passing of Title IX, a federal law demanding that there be equality between men and women in education.

UK Libraries SCRC General Online Exhibits


Learning Lab 2019-2020 The UK Libraries Learning Lab interns showcase their scholarly research projects using primary sources from the Special Collections Research Center.  Explore each of the eight projects ranging from typography and education in Appalachia to medicinal alcohol use during Prohibition and a 100 year-old murder trial.

University of Kentucky Black Studies @ 50 Symposium: Related Archival Documents from the University of Kentucky Archives On September 19 and 20, 2019, the University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences and African American and Africana Studies held a symposium on "Black Studies@50," commemorating the beginnings of what is currently African American and Africana Studies at the university in 1968; honoring the individual students and faculty and the Black Student Union that agitated and advocated for courses on African American history, culture, society, and politics; and exploring  current and future philosophies, topics, and directions.  The University of Kentucky Archives holds several collections with historically relevant documents on the Black Student Union, the Black Studies Committee, and the African American Studies and Research Program.  To support the Black History@50 symposium, this online exhibit offers a small sampling of these documents arranged in chronological order. 

A Visual History of Latino Students at UK, 1865-2019:  An Exhibition of Archival and Contemporary Photography  This project began with a simple question: Who was the first Latino student enrolled at the University of Kentucky? Through archival research, participant observation, and interviews conducted with past and present Latino students it quickly became clear that there are many important firsts in the history of Latino students at the University that deserve to be recognized and celebrated.  Curated by Daniela Gamez Salgado.

From the Courthouse to the White House: Earle C. Clements A timeline overview of the life and career of Earle Chester Clements, an American farmer and politician. He represented the state of Kentucky in both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate and was its 47th Governor, serving from 1947 to 1950. 

The Great Depression vs. The Great Recession is a digital humanities timeline comparing and contrasting the varying factors affecting the Great Depression of the 1920s-30s with the Great Recession of 2008 as glimpsed through materials from the Frankel and Curtis architectural drawings collections. Created by Learning Lab intern Daria Goncharovia. 

COLPComm Text Mining Project created a corpus from archival documents from the Lexington-Fayette County Urban County Government (Ky.) Planning Commission Meeting Minutes. The corpus can be used to track the architectural history of Lexington and research trends over time. Project created by Learning Lab intern Aaron Mueller. 

Verse in Type:  Poets & Printers, An Artistic Affinity is an exhibition of poetry, books, and broadsides printed at the King Library Press and other fine presses founded by the former apprentices and associates of Press.  It was created by Erin Reed, graduate student in Art History, University of Kentucky College of Fine Arts in the spring semester 2015.

Lexington Narcotic Farm is a multimedia narrative of the history of this federal drug treatment and rehabilitation center that was formerly located in Lexington, KY. It was created as a scholarly project for the Special Collections' Learning Lab internship.

Faulconer, Johnstone, Shelby, Potter, Tevis papers Research Guide was created as a genealogical and history research tool that documents a series of intermarried families and their business dealings, domestic life in Kentucky and other southern states.  It was created as a scholarly project for the Special Collections' Learning Lab internship.

A Spatial History of UK Residence Halls was created by UK geography students using various University Archives sources to make this “story map” showing the change in residence halls on campus by decades.

Famous Authors in the Special Collections Research Center is a curated collection that highlights correspondence from novelists, poets, essayists, and journalists from America and the United Kingdom, spanning from approximately 1802-1975.

The Margaret Lantis Collection: A Lifetime of Inquiry highlights the life and career of esteemed University of Kentucky anthropology professor, Margaret Lantis (1906-2006). Her tenure at the university was preceded by 25 years of pioneering field work and ethnography, which focused on War Relocation Agency internment camps, Nunivak islanders in Alaska, and tuberculosis patients.

Henry Clay: Images of “The Great Compromiser” presents Special Collections' images from significant points in the life of Kentucky statesman Henry Clay (1777-1852). The images include a variety of mediums such as sculpture, paintings, drawings, watercolors, daguerreotypes, and lithographs. Their organization provides an idea of how the pieces reflect important stages of Clay's adult life.

I'll Come to Thee by Moonlight: How Cora Wilson Stewart took Responsibility for the right to Adult Literacy was created by Fayette County Public School Junior, Christopher Beebout for the 2014 National History Day competition.

Scarlatina in Kentucky, 1879 is a look at the scarlet fever epidemic of 1879 in Kentucky as seen through letters in the Daniel Drake Carter collection. Drake Carter, a physician, received letters from physicians all over Central Kentucky who were treating a variety of patients who were afflicted with the virus. The collection, available in the University of Kentucky Libraries Special Collections is intended to provide context to medical history researchers or those with an interest in public health. It was created as a scholarly project for the Special Collections' Learning Lab internship.

Immigrants in the Coalfields, 2014 tells a story of Appalachia through images, maps, documents, and oral histories from the University of Kentucky Libraries Special Collections. The project reveals a national perspective that includes stereotypes and personal accounts of immigrants to the Kentucky Appalachian region. It is intended to showcase research collections and encourage further study of Appalachia’s rich and often-distressing coal mining industry.

Exploring Intersectionality: 1800s-present is a look at the idea of intersectionality--the study of "intersections" of oppression among certain groups such as race, class, gender or sexual identity--through various collections. The exhibit focuses on feminism and women's rights' movements in Kentucky and how they intersected with various other rights advocacy, such as civil rights, suffragy, education, and slavery.

Black History Month Exhibit, 2014 depicts various time periods in Kentucky and the ongoing search for the right answers.

Kentucky: Roots, Times and Generations: Black History Month Exhibit, 2013 is a photography exhibit of several generations of Kentucky African Americans.

A Student's View of Campus, Now & Then, 2013  Jim Blackerby, a 2013 graduating senior, reflects on the history of significant University of Kentucky buildings, comparing photos he took in 2013 with images from archival photograph collections available through ExploreUK.

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