Collections : [David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library]

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David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library

The holdings of the Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library range from ancient papyri to records of modern advertising. There are over 10,000 manuscript collections containing more than 20 million individual manuscript items. Only a portion of these collections and items are discoverable on this site. Others may be found in the library catalog.

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Oral history and research collection forming the basis for Duke University undergraduate Chris D. Howard's 1983 senior honors thesis, including research notes and recorded interviews with political and civil rights leaders in Durham, North Carolina.

Collection contains Howard's research material for an honors thesis. There are fifteen envelopes of research notes, chronologically arranged. The notes concern the early history of Durham, from 1865 to the 1960s, and events related to the struggle for racial equality in Durham, N.C. The collection includes a set of 29 audiocassettes of oral interview recordings conducted by Howard, with local individuals such as Wense Grabarek, Vivian McCoy, Floyd McKissick, Conrad Pearson, Jake Phelps, Ben Ruffin, Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans, and others who participated in, or witnessed this struggle. There are notes and outlines of these interviews (both those on cassette tapes and others conducted by telephone) and a list of persons interviewed by Howard, Also included are copies of two papers, written by other Duke students in 1972 and 1978, about the Civil Rights Movement in Durham, N.C. during the early 1960s. Forms part of the John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture at Duke University.

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The Paul Hibbert Clyde and Mary (Kestler) Clyde Papers span the years 1924-2001 and chiefly consist of newspaper clippings, drafts of memoranda, and translations of foreign news reports, given to Paul Clyde by Hugh L. Keenleyside, who was first secretary of the Canadian Legation in Tokyo (1929-1936). Multiple additions of personal papers assembled by the Paul and Mary Clyde complete the collection.

The East Asian Clippings Files, the largest series in the collection, contain clippings assembled by the Clydes during the 1920s and 1930s from about thirty English language newspapers and news services in Canada, China, Great Britain, Japan, and the United States. Centering on Sino-Japanese relations, they concern contemporary political, social, economic, military, and international affairs in China, Japan, and Manchuria (Manchukuo), primarily from the perspective of Japan's role in these events. Files are arranged alphabetically by topic.

Materials in the Personal Papers Series, additions acquired from 1986 to 1999, consist chiefly of personal and professional correspondence, church records, manuscripts and a thesis, curriculum vitae of Paul Hibbert Clyde and his wife Mary Kestler Clyde, reprints of published articles, book revisions, other printed materials, additional news clippings, and photographs. The additions are partially processed or unprocessed. Much of the professional correspondence concerns Clyde's work with the Duke Endowment, first as secretary to the Committee on Educational Institutions, and later as educational consultant to the Trustees of the Endowment. Correspondents include Mary and James H. Semans, and administrators at Davidson College, Furman University, and the University of Florida. There is also a folder of War Department Military Intelligence Division correspondence, 1942-1943. Also included is an album of photographs, clippings, invitations, and addresses compiled for the celebration of the Duke Endowment's fortieth anniversary. Among the photographs is one of Mr. Thomas Perkins, a former chairman of the board of trustees of The Duke Endowment. Some of the personal correspondence relates to the death of Mrs. Clyde. The church records from the Independent Unitarian Church in Belleair Bluffs, Florida, include minutes and an address by Clyde on the major religions of China. A transcript of Dr. Clyde's oral history tape regarding his tenure with Duke University, as well as his tenure as director of the Educational Division of the Duke Endowment is included. There is also a description by Mrs. Clyde relating to the launching and operating of the administrative areas of the Woman's College (Duke University) in which she worked; information about her service as president of the Woman's College Alumnae Association, 1966-1967; and the initiation that year of the idea of a Continuing Education Program at Duke.

Unprocessed additions are listed at the end of the collection's Detailed Description.

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Josiah C. Trent papers, 1536-1961 and undated, bulk 1938-1951 6.5 Linear Feet — 9 boxes; 1 oversize folder — approx. 1800 items — approximately 1800 items

U.S. thoracic surgeon, rare book and manuscript collector. The papers consist mostly of correspondence, printed material, photographs, and lecture notes taken during medical training, as well as diplomas and certificates of residency, and notes and drafts for published and unpublished research and articles. The bulk of the material documents Dr. Trent's activities and publications as collector and historian of medical practice, particularly surgery and epidemiology. There are folders of photographic reproductions of medical texts and illustrations dating from the 16th century to the 20th century, whose content is reflected in the earliest dates for the collection. There is also material relating to Dr. Trent's death and the subsequent donation of his rare book and manuscripts collection to the Duke Medical Center Library, along with condolences and other items related to his wife, Mary Duke Biddle Trent. Acquired as part of the History of Medicine Collections at Duke University.

The Josiah C. Trent papers consist mostly of correspondence, photographs, research files, and notes and drafts of published and unpublished research and articles. Many of these materials concern Dr. Trent's activities and publications as a collector and historian of medical practice, particularly surgery and epidemiology. The collection also includes printed materials, photographs, a card file - possibly of his personal library, and lecture notes taken during his medical training, as well as diplomas and certificates of residency. The Writings series reveals his wide interests in surgery, medicine in general, the humanities, and medical history.

There is also material relating to Dr. Trent's death and the subsequent donation of his large rare book, artifact, and manuscript collection to the Duke Medical Center Library. Early dates in the collection refer to the content of reproductions of 16th-19th century medical illustrations rather than their dates of reproduction.

The correspondence, found in the Subject Files folders, dates mostly from the 1940s and 1950s, documenting Dr. Trent's rare book and manuscript collecting, and his involvement with various professional organizations and his association and friendships with prominent figures in various fields: medical history - John Fulton, Henry Sigerist, W. W. Francis; book collecting - Henry Schuman; Duke University - Wilburt Davison, Lenox D. Baker. Some folders contain an index of the contents.

There is also some information concerning Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans, Dr. Trent's wife, who was instrumental in facilitating the support of the history of medicine collections at Duke.

The collection also contains several hundred photographic prints and negatives reproducing medical texts and illustrations dating from the 16th to 20th centuries. The earliest dates in the collection refer to the content of the images, rather than their reproduction by Dr. Trent, Duke Medical Library staff, and others, in the mid-20th century.

The files were kept in Dr. Trent's medical office and contain relatively few items which pertain to his private life. Items of a more personal nature may be found in the James H. and Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans Family Papers in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Acquired as part of the History of Medicine Collections at Duke University.

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Nancy Hanks papers, 1894-1987 (bulk 1945-1983) 77.3 Linear Feet — 58,000 Items

The papers of Nancy Hanks span the years 1894-1987 with the bulk occurring during the 1940s to 1983. Included are correspondence; minutes; reports; typed, mimeographed, and printed material; financial papers; clippings; mail logs; telephone records; calendars; office files; interviews, questionnaires; and diaries. In addition there are scrapbooks, pictures, photograph albums, slides, audio cassettes, videocassettes, and electronic documents. One series contains awards, honorary degrees, and memorabilia.

The Nancy Hanks collection is useful as a study of the development of private and governmental arts programs, in particular through the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), and the personal life and career (1950s-1970s) of an upper-class single woman. Arts and the federal government is a recurrent theme. The collection also contains information about a variety of arts organizations in which Hanks was involved, often as a board member. Although the papers here document both her personal and professional life and present a balanced account, there are relatively few professional papers in the collection concerning her early career, 1951-1968.

The private life of Nancy Hanks is chiefly documented in the Personal Series. Although there are no diaries in the collection, the letters she wrote to her parents from the 1940s through the 1970s form a type of diary. This correspondence in the Personal Series often contains a detailed accounting of daily events from her college years at Duke University, where she majored in political science, and her early career in Washington, D.C., through the NEA years. Letters from her parents reveal their influence on her and often note their advice to her. Other correspondence is from friends, some during World War II, including extensive correspondence from 1946 to 1949 with William A. Carpenter, a former college friend. Other correspondents were Louis E. Reid, 1955-1961; John F. Watkins, 1949-1950; and Duke University Dean of Chapel James T. Cleland, 1949-1969. The financial papers in that series reveal her wealth, such as in real estate and stocks, as well as her long illness. There are gaps in the tax returns and bank statements from 1966-1975 and after 1979.

The Duke University, Bryan and Virginia Hanks, Larry Hanks, and Pictures Series all complete the story. In the Duke University Series, Hanks' financial contributions to the university are documented, including the Hanks Family Endowment Fund and the Hanks Family Chapel Fund.

The Bryan and Virginia Hanks Series and Larry Hanks Series contain records of Hanks' parents, Bryan Cayce Hanks, Virginia Wooding Hanks, and brother Lawrence (Larry) Wooding Hanks. Included in the Bryan and Virginia Hanks Series are late-nineteenth century documents, letters of Hanks' father from France during World War I and from a Colorado sanatarium, 1931-1932, as well as their courtship letters. Bryan Hanks was a lawyer in New York, Miami, and Fort Worth, and became president of Florida Power and Light Company in 1937. Also there is some Hanks and Wooding families history, including a few papers of Benjamin Franklin Wooding, Nancy's maternal grandfather. He was a medical doctor and inventor who developed an automatic train control device and automatic block controls for prevention of railroad accidents. The Larry Hanks Series tells the story of the early death of Nancy Hanks' younger brother, who was killed in a truck accident in California in June, 1950 at the age of eighteen while a student at Southwestern University.

In this collection it is primarily the NEA portion of Hanks' career, 1968-1977 during the Nixon and Ford years, that is represented. However, there is some information in the letters to Hanks' parents in the Personal Series which reflects her early work, 1951-1968. During her tenure at NEA there were vast increases in NEA funding. The NEA was established in 1965 with the National Endowment for the Humanities as components of the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities. In the National Endowment for the Arts Series there is a narrative entitled, "Ten Years for Tomorrow," which contains much biographical information about Hanks' NEA years. While at NEA Hanks delivered numerous speeches; in fact from 1971 to 1974 she made about 100 addresses. These years are also documented in the American Film Institute (AFI), Commission on Critical Choices for Americans, and National Council on the Arts series, which depict related responsibilities of Hanks. AFI files document the organization's efforts to preserve the heritage and art of both film and television in America. National Council on the Arts files reflect programs in the areas of architecture, dance, education, expansion arts, literature, museums, music, visual arts, exhibitions, and theater. The Personal Series, Pictures Series, and Awards and Memorabilia Series provide supplemental information. Letters Hanks wrote to her parents as well as other correspondence and notes in the Personal Series relating to the NEA show her continuing interest in the agency after retirement. Related papers for the NEA are housed at the National Archives.

The alphabetical files in the Personal Series document her board work, memberships, and interest in a variety of organizations and institutions, including those related to the arts. They include the Awards in the Visual Arts, Commission on Museums for a new Century, Continental Oil Company (Conoco), the Conservation Foundation, the Equitable Life Assurance Society of the U.S., the Independent Sector, the Indo-U.S. Subcommission on Education and Culture, Partners for Livable Places, the Phillips Collection, Presidential Task Force on the Arts and Humanities, Salzburg Seminar in American Studies, Scholastic, Inc., and Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution. One measure of the public recognition of Hanks' work is the fact that during 1970 to 1981 she received 27 honorary doctoral degrees. The National Endowment for the Arts Series office files, Rockefeller Brothers Fund Series, and the Personal Series alphabetical files all contain single folders for a variety of art, dance, and music organizations.

Papers relating to Nelson Rockefeller are scattered throughout the collection. The Rockefeller Brothers Fund Series contains material relating to Nelson A., John D., 3rd, and Laurance. In the Personal Series is information on Nelson A. Rockefeller and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund; Hanks' correspondence with her parents also discusses her relationship with Nelson Rockefeller.

There are papers in the collection that reflect both Hanks' retirement years as well as activities of colleagues after her death in 1983. One measure of Hanks' post-NEA involvement is that in 1982 she was on the boards of three corporations and a foundation, as well as being trustee or advisor for 20 non-profit organizations. Related materials are in the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and Friends of the Nancy Hanks Center, Inc. series. The papers of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, where Hanks was a vice chairman, do not appear to provide a complete record of her work there. These files are probably scattered ones that she kept at home and often were not clearly defined.

The U.S. government designated the Old Post Office space on Pennsylvania Avenue as the Nancy Hanks Center. The Friends of the Nancy Hanks Center was formed to initiate programs commemorating Hanks' life and advancing her values. Most of the interviews in this series were conducted by Peter Jessup, but Donna Mitchell conducted a number of them. Many of these interviews exist as electronic files and are available to researchers. These files are listed in the container list for the Friends of the Nancy Hanks Center, Inc. Series.

A related collection in the Duke University Special Collections Department is the Philip Hanes collection. In addition, Hanes material appears in the Hanks Papers in the Personal Series both under his name and in the Awards in the Visual Arts folders.

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Collection consists of correspondence, financial papers, legal papers, writings and speeches, scrapbooks, photographs, films, audio tapes, and other materials reflecting the philanthropic, financial, cultural and social activities of the Semans family and other wealthy families in North Carolina and New York. A major focus is the interrelationship of the Semans family with the Biddle, Duke, and Trent families. Additionally, the papers document the roles of Mary Duke Biddle, James H. Semans and Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans have taken in the development and support of arts and educational programs throughout North Carolina. To a lesser degree, the papers reflect women in politics and childcare issues during the early 20th century.

The papers of the Semans family span the years 1878 to 2008. The collection consists of four large sub-collections: the Mary Duke Biddle Family Papers, the James H. Semans Family Papers, the James H. and Mary D.B.T. Semans Family Papers, and the Elizabeth Lucina Gotham Family Papers. There are also series for films, oversize materials, and later additions.

Through files of correspondence, financial papers, legal papers, writings and speeches, scrapbooks, photographs, films, audio tapes, and other materialsThe collection reflects the philanthropic, financial, cultural, and social activities of the Semans family. Major areas of focus are the personal and social relationships of the Semans family with the Biddle, Duke, and Trent, and other wealthy families from North Carolina, New York, and elsewhere. Additionally, the papers document the roles Mary Duke Biddle, James H. Semans, and Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans have taken in the development and support of arts and educational programs throughout North Carolina. To a lesser degree, the papers reflect on women in politics and childcare during the early twentieth century.

Individuals represented include Mary Duke Biddle (daughter of Benjamin Duke), Anthony Joseph Drexel Biddle, Nicholas Benjamin Duke Biddle, Angier Biddle Duke, Angier Buchanan Duke, Benjamin Newton Duke, Sarah Pearson Angier Duke, Elizabeth Lucina Gotham, and Josiah Charles Trent as well as other members of the Duke, Biddle, Trent, and Semans families. Political, arts, and educational leaders are also represented.

Subject areas represented include: families in the late 19th and 20th centuries; the arts in North Carolina and other cities; charities, particularly in North Carolina; childcare and women in nursing; The Duke Endowment; Duke University and other universities and colleges; the North Carolina School of the Arts; education; genealogy of the four families; personal finances; philanthropy; the history of Durham, NC, and its politics and social life; vocational rehabilitation; and the Methodist church, particularly in NC.

The 25 16mm film reels in the collection are chiefly children's cartoons from the 1930s-1940s, but there are also wartime newsreels and a few films for adults, some as early as 1916-1917, and some travel film. Audio tapes consist chiefly of personal family recordings, a set of memoirs dictated onto cassettes in 1977 by Mary D.B.T. Semans, and music performances.

Some portions of the collection are restricted or closed to use; please consult this collection guide for details before coming to use these materials.

For additional collections of Duke family papers, see the Washington Duke Papers, the Benjamin Newton Duke Papers, and the James B. Duke Papers. For further information on the contributions of the Duke family to Duke University, contact the Duke University Archives.

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Silent film clip of Trent Room dedication at Duke University Medical Library, 1956 April 20 .2 Linear Feet — 2 videocassettes; 1 digital mp4 file — VHS (TRT: 00:02:00)

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This black-and-white silent film clip is from the April 20, 1956 dedication of the Trent Room History of Medicine Collections at Duke University. The ceremony was held at Duke's Medical Library in the new Trent Room. Speakers include Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans, Duke President A. Hollis Edens, Dean Wilburt C. Davison, John Fulton, and James T. Cleland. Attendees at the ceremony also included the Trent daughters. The recording is about two minutes long. The medical artifacts and books also briefly shown in the film are from the History of Medicine Collection assembled by Duke surgeon and faculty member Dr. Josiah Charles Trent (d.1948). Those collections are now in the Rubenstein Library at Duke University. Acquired as part of the History of Medicine Collections at Duke University.

This silent black-and-white film clip copied from a videocassete copy tape is from the April 20, 1956 dedication of the Trent Room History of Medicine Collections at Duke University. The ceremony was held at Duke's Medical Library in the new Trent Room. Speakers include Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans, Duke President A. Hollis Edens, Dean Wilburt C. Davison, John Fulton, and James T. Cleland. Attendees at the ceremony also included the Trent daughters. The recording is about two minutes long; the sound element has been lost.

The medical artifacts and books briefly shown in the film are from the History of Medicine Collection assembled by Duke surgeon and faculty member Dr. Josiah Charles Trent. The collection was donated by the Trent family to Duke and eventually displayed in the Trent Room and the Medical Library, and is now in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Duke.

Acquired as part of the History of Medicine Collections at Duke University.