Hidden gems in Fullerton – Fullerton Observer
Explore the special collections of the CSUF library
Did you know that California appears like an island on maps taken from the travels of early explorers? Thirteen maps dating from 1587 to 1761 show this surprising misconception and can be found in the Pollak Library at Cal State Fullerton, all of which are part of the Roy V. Boswell Collections for the History of Cartography. One of these maps even shows California as a peninsula.
Boswell, together with Cal State Fullerton’s founding librarian, Ernest Toy, developed a collection of 562 maps of Mexico, Canada, and the United States from their beginnings through the 19th century. In addition to maps of the Western Hemisphere, there are 359 maps of Europe through the centuries showing the fluidity of political borders and the growth of city-states; 129 from Asia; and 145 maps from around the world represented by 400 years of exploration.
Not only do these ancient maps have historical value, but the illustrations surrounding the edges of early maps depicting mythical and imaginary sea creatures add charm, fun and wonder to today’s viewers. Thanks to the generosity of Cal State’s first community support group, Patrons of the Library, Boswell’s collection grew and found its home on campus in 1971. It remains the best mapping collection in the system in the United States. Cal State University.
Another treasure found in the special collections of the Pollak Library comes from another century. In the mid-twentieth century, as science fiction gained in popularity and status, Professor Emeritus Willis McNelly created a course for the study of this literary genre. In doing so, he formed friendships with such luminaries as Ray Bradbury, Frank Herbert and Philip K. Dick. The Pollak Library typed Bradbury’s first and second revisions Fahrenheit 451, and it has one of the largest collections of typed texts, notes, and revisions of PK Dick’s work that can be found in any university library.
Herbert Dune, to be released as a film this fall, was released in 1965 and broke new ground as the first science fiction novel to become a bestseller. Equally prescient in his subject matter, Herbert drew attention to the importance of ecological concerns in our lives. Due to his friendship with Professor McNelly, Herbert came to the CSUF campus in 1970, visiting and giving lectures in the classes. He then donated working papers, drafts and typists for Dune and its sequels in various stages of production to the library’s growing science fiction collection. Currently, visitors to the third floor of the Pollak Library can view the artwork of art teacher Cliff Cramp’s students as they interpret material from the novel. Dune.
Special Collections Librarian Patrisia Prestinary tells us that the science fiction collection also contains scripts from the original 1966-69 “Star Trek” television series. She says researchers around the world visit Pollak Library’s science fiction collection for its unique collections.
Staying in the 20th century and moving into the 21st century, the Freedom Center within the Special Collections contains material from different political perspectives reflecting divergent views of the “far right” and “far left”. From the John Birch Society to Angela Davis, articles appear in newspapers, campaign materials, newsletters, books, brochures, videos, flyers and posters illustrating Liberal and Conservative views. In addition, some objects are of more historical interest, in particular the Cameron Stewart collection on the Lincoln Brigade during the Spanish Civil War.
If fly fishing interests you, the Kerridge Angling collection not only contains volumes with printed instructions, but also contains hardback books featuring real lures made by sport fishermen and protected by three-dimensional plastic covers. Viewers can see first-hand the real materials that have been found in natural settings and linked with delicacy and imagination.
From fishing to theater, the Pollak Library has been the proud recipient of theatrical material donated by former Pasadena Playhouse manager, Fairfax Proudfit Walkup. A friend of our own Dr James Young, chair of the CSUF Drama Department, Walkup was happy to donate to him over 2,000 theater history volumes containing detailed images of costumes across the centuries and 600 clothed dolls. of costumes representing characters from famous plays. .
The Local History section of the Pollak Library’s Special Collections contains books, photographs, maps, correspondence, posters and brochures on the Japanese-American internment camps in California as well as the growth of the industry. citrus fruits.
To view any of these collections directly, Fullerton residents can visit www.library.fullerton.edu/services/special-collections.php for contact details and hours.
If you would like to become more active in your support of the Special Collections, you can help by joining the Patrons of the Cal State Fullerton Library, who have helped acquire and maintain many not-so-hidden treasures on the third floor of the Pollak Library. To join the Patrons, visit www.library.fullerton.edu and select the Patrons logo. You will have the choice.
You can apply online or apply by mail.