Tag Archives: Dig Memphis

New Digital Collection: Civil Rights Collection

This week we launch a new Civil Rights Collection, combining materials from various manuscript collections, including the Frank Holloman Collection, the George W. Lee Collection, the A.W. Willis, Jr. Collection, the Arthur L. Webb Collection, and the Catholic Human Relations Council Papers.

Eldon Holliday began curating this collection as an intern, but in the process of working on it we hired him to work full-time in the History Department. (And we started calling him “Chip.” He’s okay with that, but not “Chipper.” Just an FYI.) It is all a well-developed plan to make sure that he keeps doing great work like this and that he continues to add to this particular collection along the way.

This digital collection also contains a slide show, entitled The Unfulfilled Dream: A History of Race Relations and Civil Rights in Memphis since the Civil Warand images from an earlier version of the Civil Rights Digital Collection.


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Filed under Black History, Civil Rights, Collections, Dig Memphis, Digital Archive, Memphis History

New Digital Collection: Hallelujah!

Hallelujah!, the first movie musical to feature an all-black cast, was released in 1929 by MGM Studios.  Filmed in part on location in the Memphis area, several Memphians were featured in the cast, including Georgia Woodruff.  Woodruff’s daughter, Ruby Woodruff Carter, donated this collection to the Memphis and Shelby County Room.  The collection includes personal photos, publicity photos, newspaper clippings and correspondence about the film and the life of Ms. Woodruff.

In 1986, the library received special permission from MGM for a one-time screening of the film, and several programs and discussions were held in conjunction with that showing.  Two events were videotaped and are available here as well:

Hallelujah!: A DiscussionHistorically Speaking: The “Hallelujah!” Collection at the Memphis Room (Visit our Vimeo Channel by clicking here.)

Our thanks to Katy Tait and Candice Joyner for their hard work to digitize this collection!  Click here to view it now.

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Filed under Black History, Collections, Dig Memphis, Photographs, Portraits, Video, Volunteers

New Digital Collection: Colton Greene

Night of the Carnival

Thanks to the hard work of University of Memphis history student Christopher Montoya, the Colton Greene is now available online.

Colton Greene, a businessman and Civil War veteran, is remembered as the originator of the Mardi Gras celebrations in Memphis in the 1870s.  The collection contains materials related to his service in the Civil War as well as documents related to the planning and execution of the extravagant Mardi Gras celebrations hosted by the Mystic Society of Memphi.

A few highlights include hand-drawn maps of the Trans-Mississippi Military Districtnumerous invitations to Mardi Gras events, and pages from the sketchbook, Mardi-Gras Costume Designs for the Society of Memphi.

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Filed under Civil War, Collections, Dig Memphis, Memphis History

Full-Text Finding Aids

Finding Aids


Thanks to the hard work of staff and volunteers, we now have the full texts of the finding aids for our manuscript collections available online in our Collection of Collections!  (Well, most of them, anyway.  The last handful will be added ASAP.)  Remember, if you would like to view a manuscript collection, you will need to visit us in the Memphis Room.

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Filed under Collections, History Department

New Digital Collection: Board of Adjustment Files

Check out our new collection of digital files from the Memphis and Shelby County Board of Adjustment.  Our thanks to Josh Whitehead, Planning Director for Memphis and Shelby County, for sharing these files with us.  Read more about his donation in today’s Commercial Appeal.

Graham and JohnsonSt. Andrews Golf ClubCentral and Melrose

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Filed under Collections, Dig Memphis, Gifts

New Ways to Search and Browse Dig Memphis

We’re always trying to make it easier for you to find what you need in the digital archive, and in the past few weeks we’ve added a few improvements that we hope will help you do just that.

Since many of the digital collections contain smaller “mini-collections,” we are starting to make them browsable by adding links on the collection landing pages, as seen here:

Thanks to a suggestion from our friends at the May program of the West Tennessee Historical Society, we are also beginning to add decades to the metadata so that you can browse by decade.  Only two collections are complete, but we will hopefully have the rest done soon and you can already begin looking the archives through the decades by clicking here.

If you only want to view images and not be bothered by all of the accompanying information, you might like the new image wall.  On every results page, an option will be available to “view image wall.”

When you click on this option, you will see something like this:

If you have other suggestions of things you would like to see in the archive, please let us know!

Happy hunting!

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Filed under CONTENTdm, Dig Memphis

New Digital Collection: Roy Cajero Photograph Collection

We’re excited to announce that the Roy Cajero Photograph Collection has been added to Dig Memphis.  Consisting of 211 images, mostly portraits, this collection tells many of the stories of the last three or four decades in Memphis.

Writers and rock stars, players and politicians – they’re all here.  Even a few breakdancing librarians to top it all off!


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Filed under Collections, Dig Memphis, Photographs, Portraits