Inside Spencer: The KSRL Blog

Throwback Thursday: “Fight for Justice in Your Campus Community” Edition

January 14th, 2021

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday, this week’s post features a telegram he sent to KU students in 1965.

In March 1965, Martin Luther King, Jr. was helping to organize and lead the Selma to Montgomery protest marches in Alabama. Church duties kept him from attending the first march on March 7, which became known as Bloody Sunday. The next day (March 8), approximately 150 Black and white student-members of KU’s Civil Rights Council staged a sit-in at Chancellor Wescoe’s office in Strong Hall to protest racial discrimination and the policies that supported it at the university. Dr. King sent the below telegram to the students three days later. It was the same day that, according to Wikipedia, he heard the news that President Lyndon B. Johnson was supporting a voting rights bill.

KU’s Civil Rights Council also received a telegram of support from James Farmer, who was a co-founder and National Director of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE).

The first page of a telegram from Martin Luther King, Jr. to the Executive Committee of KU's Civil Rights Council, March 11, 1965
The second page of a telegram from Martin Luther King, Jr. to the Executive Committee of KU's Civil Rights Council, March 11, 1965
A telegram from Martin Luther King, Jr. to the Executive Committee of KU’s Civil Rights Council, March 11, 1965. University Archives. Call Number: RG 67/20 1965: Student Organizations: Civil Rights Council. Click images to enlarge.

In his telegram to the CRC members, Dr. King writes that “It is thoroughly heart warming and encouraging to know we have your support in the struggle for freedom and human dignity in Alabama. We hope [that] you will continue your fight for justice [in?] your campus community for, real knowledge and wisdom cannot flourish in an environment where there is discrimination on the basis of race and color. We [support] you because we know [that injustice anywhere is] a threat to justice everywhere. Keep the faith that right will prevail. You have my prayers for success in your creative efforts. The statement that “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere” comes from King’s 1963 “Letter from Birmingham Jail.”

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services

Throwback Thursday: Snowy Jayhawk Boulevard Edition

January 7th, 2021

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Photograph of the KU campus in snow, 1920s
The KU campus in snow, 1920s. This image was taken on Jayhawk Boulevard, in front of Watson Library looking west/northwest. The buildings that can be seen in this photo include, from left to right, Old Snow Hall, Robinson Gymnasium, Bailey Hall (with the prominent chimneys), and Strong Hall. University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 0/24/1 Snow 1920s: Campus: Areas and Objects (Photos). Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services

Wayback Wednesday: Holiday Lights Edition, Part III

December 23rd, 2020

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Wishing all Jayhawks a holiday season that is full of peace, joy, and happiness.

Spencer Research Library is closed through January 3rd. We look forward to seeing you in 2021 and sharing more stories about our collections, staff, and services!

Photograph of KU's Danforth Chapel during Christmas, 1950s
KU’s Danforth Chapel during Christmas, 1950s. University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 0/24/1 Christmas 1950s: Campus: Areas and Objects (Photos). Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services

Throwback Thursday: Final Exam Edition

December 10th, 2020

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Finals look a bit different this year, but we’re sending positive vibes to all KU students as they wrap up the semester with final exams, projects, and papers this week. Good luck, Jayhawks!

Photograph of KU students taking a test, 1935-1936
KU students taking a test, 1935-1936. University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 71/0 1935/1936 Prints: Student Activities (Photos). Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services

Wayback Wednesday: Allen Fieldhouse Then and Now Edition

November 25th, 2020

Each week we’ll be posting a photograph from University Archives that shows a scene from KU’s past. We’ve also scanned more than 34,800 images from KU’s University Archives and made them available online; be sure to check them out!

Who’s excited for the return of KU basketball this week?!

Photograph of the interior of Allen Fieldhouse under construction, 1954
The interior of Allen Fieldhouse under construction, 1954. University Archives Photos. Call Number: RG 0/22/1 1954: Campus: Buildings: Allen Fieldhouse (Photos). Click image to enlarge (redirect to Spencer’s digital collections).

What does that view look like today? The answer to that question comes courtesy of KU student Rick McNabb. As part of a project for HIST 348 (History of the Peoples of Kansas), Rick found the above image in University Archives and later juxtaposed it with a picture he took at the men’s basketball game against Eastern Michigan on December 29, 2018. Play the video below to see! You can also move the slider back and forth yourself by visiting Rick’s post on the re.photos website.

A video created from two juxtaposed images of Allen Fieldhouse. The first is the image above, from 1954. The second was taken from roughly the same position in 2018.

Caitlin Donnelly
Head of Public Services