Research on Nostalgia Lane: Flipping through Old Yearbooks

Image found in Wesleyan yearbook for class of 1958. Someone must have skied down from the Van Vleck!

Image found in Wesleyan yearbook for class of 1958. Someone must have skied down from the Van Vleck! Image courtesy of Wesleyan Special Collections & Archives.

Anyone’s who’s ever written a history paper or taken a history class knows that you can never truly finish researching. Which is why, in the final months up until the exhibition opening, we find ourselves time and time again in Olin Library pouring over books and at the Special Collections & Archives leafing through file after file. Most recently, we did a final scouring of all the Wesleyan yearbooks (each titled “Olla Podrida“) ever published since 1916 (the year the Van Vleck Observatory was dedicated) in a hunt for pertinent images and photographs. The very last Olla Podrida was published in 2008, so we didn’t have quite 100 years to look through. Us student workers divvied up the years, and soon we are all flipping pages and pages and pages in Olin, where almost all of the editions are located. Hope you enjoy getting a first look at some of our coolest finds!

Olla Podrida 1947

Photograph of Profs. Stearns and Abrams in the Transit Room

Photograph of Profs. Stearns and Abrams in the Transit Room. This might be the only picture of the Transit Room from when it was still used for its original purpose. Image courtesy of Wesleyan Special Collections & Archives.

Olla Podrida 1957

Photograph of Prof. Stearns with the 20-inch telescope

Photograph of Prof. Stearns with the 20-inch telescope. Old photographs that show the telescope and an actual person together are quite hard to come by. Image courtesy of Wesleyan Special Collections and Archives.

Olla Podrida 1960

Full page dedicated to Prof. Page in his office. Caption: "The Dignity of the Savant"

Full page dedicated to Prof. Page in his office. Image courtesy of Wesleyan Special Collections and Archives.

Olla Podrida 1971

Students hanging out on Foss Hill. Observatory in background.

Students hanging out on Foss Hill. Image courtesy of Wesleyan Special Collections and Archives.

Olla Podrida 2005

Spring Fling on Foss Hill. Observatory in background.

Spring Fling on Foss Hill. Image courtesy of Wesleyan Special Collections & Archives.

The Van Vleck Observatory seems to have secured its place on the top of the hill–once Observatory Hill, now Foss Hill–for good! Hope you’ve enjoyed this trip down memory lane just as much as we have!

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One thought on “Research on Nostalgia Lane: Flipping through Old Yearbooks

  1. Pingback: Digging Deep in the Archives: We keep finding cool stuff! | Under Connecticut Skies

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