Othmer Library Open House: Back to School Night, October 11, 2017

Posted on behalf of Chrissie Perella

This year, the Chemical Heritage Foundation hosted another great open house for Archives Month – “Back to School” – but with an added bonus: Escape the Archives!

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While my group, sadly, did not manage to “escape the archives,” it was lots of fun.  Our task: find a manuscript, written by Isaac Newton.  The clues led one through the steps an archivist might take when searching through unprocessed collections, without help from the (former) processing archivist.  It was definitely a fun way to engage the general public in learning a bit about what, why, and how archivists do what they do!

Documents on display in the reading room illustrated how STEM education has changed over time.  Some of my favorites included a catalog of science fair exhibits, 1956 (“Is Smog Ruining Your Food?”); an illustrated book entitled Magic with Chemistry, 1964; and a high school student’s chemistry note book from 1886, which surprised me because the student was a girl.

We even got to congratulate Dr Oloch on his recently-earned PhD!

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