SLU puts rare books, documents on display _lowres

Photo provided by Tonya Lowentritt -- Southeastern Louisiana University graduate assistant Nicholas Heyd, of Covington, examines one of the rare books in an exhibit sponsored by the Center for Southeast Louisiana Studies on the third floor of the Sims Memorial Library. With him are graduate student Megan Arledge, of Walker, center, and Faith Allen, a sophomore from Ponchatoula.

Rare handwritten documents from the 1700s are on display at a new exhibit at Southeastern Louisiana University.

“History Revealed Through Rare Books and Documents: The Emergence of Printing, Bookbinding, and the Challenges of War Time Publishing,” a new exhibit showcasing rare books and documents from SLU’s archives and other sources, recently opened in the university’s Sims Memorial Library.

The exhibit was curated by the center’s student workers and will remain open in the viewing area at least into next semester, Director Samuel Hyde said.

Among the exhibit’s contents are rare handwritten documents from the 1700s, examples of some of the first bound books, Civil War-era newspapers, letters to presidents and some 300-year-old books.

“In this exhibit, our own holdings have been augmented by the impressive collections of former English instructor Paul Crawford, retired appeals court Judge Jimmy Kuhn and select items from the Cate/Graham family,” Hyde said.

The bulk of the work on preparing the exhibit was done by graduate research assistants Nicholas Heyd, of Covington, and Chase Tomlin, of Slidell; graduate assistant Megan Arledge, of Walker; and undergraduate psychology student Faith Allen, of Ponchatoula.

“The collections at Southeastern have true historic value, but unfortunately because of space they are rarely displayed publicly,” Heyd said.

The Center for Southeast Louisiana Studies is located on the library’s third floor. Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday.

Call (985) 549-2151 for information.