This week at the Archive | 24 October 2011


One of the interesting collections we are digitizing is the Lincoln Financial Collection, the largest privately owned collection of Lincolniana (yes, that’s a real word) in the United States. The collection includes many books Abraham Lincoln owned, including The life and speeches of Henry Clay. The volume features a note written by Lincoln and bound into the book when it was rebound.

It is a real treat to be able to touch a piece of history, something that Lincoln once held and read, one which surely influenced his thinking on the slavery issue. If you read the many notations in the description field, you will see that this was a book used by Lincoln in composing some of his early anti-slavery speeches.

—Jeff Sharpe

Zappa on Zappa

In a program recorded in 1968, Tom Donahue interviews Frank Zappa about his life and work, and allows the irreverent rock star to present some of his favorite music. The ensuing free form program ranges from surf music, doo-wop, jazz, the blues, to the works of Pierre Boulez. The song selection is very informative for any fan of Zappa’s music, as one can easily trace the influence of all these styles on his own creative output, be it the cheesy harmonies of 1950s pop songs or the intricate percussive patterns of Boulez’s avant-garde classical compositions. The role that such songs had on Zappa’s own musical evolution is made all the more clear at the end of this hilarious program when a selection of satirical songs from the Mothers of Invention are also heard.

—suggested by John Gilmore

Wayback to the Rescue

Graham Readfearn, an Australian writer, recently wrote to thank the Archive “for rescuing a former blog of mine, owned by News Ltd, from the internet dustbin.” Readfearn thought that twenty months of work had disappeared down the corporate drain until he discovered it was preserved on the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine.

“I suppose this raises broader issues about the permanency of work online and what kind of a responsibility, if any, major news organisations have for archiving work that doesn’t get committed to a printed page,” he wrote. “In this particular case, a not-for-profit organisation on a separate continent has filled the breach.”

Here’s the full story.

—suggested by Alexis Rossi

 Popeye: Fright To The Finish (1954)

This Halloween adventure is notable for Popeye’s memorable line, “Olive, I didn’t recognize you without your skin on!”

What are your Archive favorites? Please suggest a link or two and a few words about why you appreciate your recommendation to:

bestof [at]

-David Glenn Rinehart


2 thoughts on “This week at the Archive | 24 October 2011

  1. John Hauser

    Thanks guys, for reviving these posts!
    i always find something interesting in them.
    I understand it takes effort to put them together, but please understand that your efforts are appreciated!

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