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Special Collections

Conservative Collection

The Conservative collection documents the history, policies, and activities of organizations perceived as conservative or the right wing of the political spectrum. Includes pamphlets, newsletters, and other ephemera, often with limited distribution. Most of the materials in the collection stem from the 1960s; a few foreign publications. Subjects include anti-Semitism, civil rights, disarmament, foreign aid, immigration, integration, law enforcement, pornography, public welfare, race, religion, state rights, taxation, voting rights, and world government.

French Revolution Pamphlets

The French Revolution Pamphlets digital collection consists of pamphlets produced from 1779 to 1815. Although the French Revolution happened in the decade ranging from 1789 to 1799, this collection of pamphlets documents the time leading up to the revolution through the Napoleonic Wars (1799-1815). Often privately printed due to newspaper censure by the monarchy, the pamphlets were used to disseminate information and ideals concerning nationalism, citizenship, personal freedoms, and social injustice. The 524 pamphlets have been digitized and are available online through the Ball State University Libraries' Digital Media Repository.

Illuminated Manuscripts

Archives and Special Collections houses a variety of Illuminated Manuscripts. Illumination not only served as illustration but added to the beauty and worth of a book. The scribe's skill was highly valued and sought after to render an eloquent edition of a revered tome of knowledge. Following the printing press, hand-illumination became impractical and expensive. Printers began using woodcuts – pictures carved into blocks of wood – which could be reused many times. Collections include leaves from famous Bibles and leaves from books of hours. Digital collections include Bible Leaves: Original Leaves from Famous Bibles.

John Steinbeck Collection

The John Steinbeck Collection consists of multiple collections that documents the literary career of John Steinbeck through manuscripts and publications by the author, and literary criticism of his work. The collection contains first editions, foreign language editions, issues and manuscripts of the Steinbeck Quarterly and the Steinbeck Monograph Series, Steinbeck Society records, literary criticism, biographies, bibliographies, galley proofs, pamphlets, periodicals, correspondence, and photographs. The Steinbeck Collection consists of over 1,000 volumes and 25 cubic feet of manuscript material. Titles are available in University Libraries online catalog.

Finding aids to the manuscript collections are below:

Application for the Ditsky Memorial Steinbeck Research Award Steinbeck Research Fund Established in Honor of Dr. John M. Ditsky:

John Bower and the Healthy House Records and Photographs

John Bower was born in Lafayette, Indiana in 1949. He graduated from Purdue University in 1971 with his Bachelors of Science in Industrial Education and graduated with his Master of Arts in Education from Ball State University in 1972. This collection includes: papers, photographs, slides, videos, books, architectural drawings, correspondence, financial records, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, blueprints, and scrapbooks from John and Lynn Bower in Bloomington, IN ranging from 1975 to 2001 regarding The Healthy House and John Bower's personal life.

Finding aid:

Ku Klux Klan Collection

The Ku Klux Klan collection documents the history of Ku Klux Klan (KKK) activities, particularly in Indiana and the Midwest from the 1920s on. The collection includes books, pamphlets, broadsides, and related ephemera. For additional information and access to Archives and Special Collections holdings view our Research guide.

Nazi Collection

The Nazi collection documents National Socialism during the era of the Third Reich in German history, primarily through German language publications printed during the 1930s and early 1940s. Includes numerous Nazi ideological treatises and propaganda items; mostly books, some pamphlets and ephemera. Titles are available in the University Libraries' online catalog.

For more information, see Modern Germany: the research collections of Ball State University by Richard Wires.

Radical Pamphlets Collection

The Radical Pamphlets collection documents history, policies, and activities of organizations perceived as radical or the left wing of the political spectrum. The collection includes pamphlets, newsletters, periodicals, articles, advertisements, cartoons, handouts, poetry, and other ephemera, often limited in distribution. Over 900 titles are searchable in the University Libraries' online catalog.

Sir Norman Angell Papers

This collection consists of the papers of Sir Norman Angell and span his entire career as a political writer. The collection is broken into several series, including: Correspondence, Chronological Files, Manuscripts, Writings, Research Files, and Personal Files.

Finding aid: