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101 North Merion Avenue
Bryn Mawr. PA 19010-2899
Phone: 610-526-5271

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Exhibitions and Events

Kris Graves: The Testament Project

September 21 - December 18, 2016

11 am - 4:30 pm daily

Class of 1912 Rare Book Room, Canaday Library

Kris Graves exhibits selections from his series The Testament Project, a collection of photographs, videos, and testimonials aimed to represent and explore blackness in contemporary America. Graves's portraits are flooded with brightly colored lights that complicate assumptions about what blackness looks like. An oversized, hot pink portrait of the artist's sister, Jessica, will greet visitors at the entrance to the gallery, even as she confronts the permanently installed painting of M. Carey Thomas by John Singer Sargent. The juxtaposition asks us to bear witness to the trauma of institutional exclusion of black students under Thomas's presidency, to attend to the persistence of traditional privileges, and to imagine a path forward toward transformation. More than 20 photographs, subject testimonials, and a video will be on view.

Artist's Lecture

Wednesday, September 21, 12:30 pm, Thomas 224

Sponsored by The Center for Visual Culture


Opening Reception

Wednesday, September 21, 5:00 pm, Canaday Library



To Increase Your Delight - Books from the Ellery Yale Wood Collection

September 16 – December 22, 2016
Open regular Library hours
Eva Jane Romaine Coombe ’52 Special Collections Suite
Gallery, Second Floor, Canaday Library

To Increase Your Delight samples the recent bequest of 10,000 children’s books to the College. The books were gathered by alumna Ellery Yale Wood (1952), a long-time resident of Wisbech, England. She started by collecting only the books that a girl in nineteenth-century England would have read -from her earliest picture books and ABCs through the novels she embraced as a young adult - but then expanded her interests. The collection contains early readers, chapter books, and young adult novels from the eighteenth through the twentieth centuries, including fairy and folk tales, important illustrators, classics like A Little Princess and Mary Poppins, and fantasy novels from The Hobbit to Harry Potter.


A Celebration of the Ellery Yale Wood ’52 Children’s Book Collection

Monday, December 5, 2016

Harry Potter, Narnia, Cinderella, Mrs. Molesworth, and many more are part of the extraordinary collection of children’s and young adult books donated earlier this year by Ellery Yale Wood, Bryn Mawr class of 1952. Please join us for an open house to see some of the highlights from the collection, and then hear reflections on the books from students who have worked with the books; from Kate Thomas and Bethany Schneider in the English Department, who played such an important role in bringing the collection here; and from noted young adult novelist Catherine Gilbert Murdock ’88.

Schedule of Events

4:00 – 5:00 pm: Children’s Book Collection Open House

Special Collections Department, 2nd Floor, Canaday Library

5:00 – 6:00 pm: Children’s Books: Some Personal Views

Carpenter Library 21

Kate Thomas, Chair, Department of English

Bethany Schneider, Associate Professor of English

Students’ responses to the books:

Cassidy Gruber Baruth '19

Hannah Kolitz '17

Julia Moss '19

Isabella Nugent '18

Catherine Gilbert Murdock '88, author of Dairy Queen and other young adult novels.

Sponsored by the Friends of the Library at Bryn Mawr College.

We often talk about the Ellery Yale Wood Collection on the Special Collections blog. Read more on the following topics:
Unpacking the collection when it arrived from England

The Girls Realm Annual

Catherine Susan and Me
The Garden Gang

Punctuation Personified, Or Pointing Made Easy
Who Is the Golliwog?

Unpacking Mrs. Molesworth
Prizes Richly Deserved
To Increase Your Delight; Sampling the Collection

And follow us on Tumblr, where we briefly display:
Guy Fawkes Night


the evils that befall bad children.


Friday Finds


Making a Mark: Provenance in Fifteenth-Century Printed Books
Presentation by Daniel J. Crosby, Graduate Student in the Department of Greek, Latin, & Classical Studies

Friday, November 12
3:00-4:00 pm
Special Collections Seminar Room, 2nd Floor Canaday Library

Daniel Crosby will discuss his Summer 2016 project tracing the history of the ownership of 15th century books in Bryn Mawr's collections, a project done in conjunction with two international book history projects, the Provenance Online Project at the University of Pennsylvania, and the Material Evidence in Incunabula at the Consortium of European Research Libraries.


Friday Finds - A series of informal chats about historical and cultural objects in Bryn Mawr's Special Collections. All of the events begin at 3:00 in the Special Collections Seminar Room, on the second floor of Canaday Library, and last about an hour.

For additional information, contact the Special Collections Department:, 610-526-6576.

Join the Special Collections Facebook page and keep up to date with events and the occasional unusual item from the collections.

Exhibitions and public programming are sponsored by the Friends of the Bryn Mawr College Library.

Past Exhibitions

Ancient Life on Greek Pottery

March 30 – June 1, 2015

Carolee Schneemann at Bryn Mawr: Video Sculptures, Photographs, Manuscripts, and a Performative Lecture

September 30 – December 12, 2014

A Century of Self-Expression: Modern American Art in the Collection of John and Joanne Payson

February 28 – June 1, 2014

A Curious Group: A Cabinet of Curiosities

In Celebration of Ten Years of the Graduate Group in Archaeology, Classics, and History of Art at Bryn Mawr College

April 4June 1, 2014

Disasters and Rebuilding in Japan: Perspectives and Testimonies from the Tri-Co Collection


Beneath the Printed Pattern: Display and Disguise in Ukiyo-e Bijinga

September 25December 20, 2013

Colors of Greece: The Art and Archaeology of Georg von Peschke

March 19–May 27, 2012

Double Take: Selected Views from the Photography Collection at Bryn Mawr College, 1860s-present

September 2011-February 2012, Rare Book Room, Canaday Library

Beyond the Text: Illustrations in Eighteenth-Century French Novels
April - December 2011, Eva Jan Romaine Coombe '52 Special Collections Suite Gallery

mAwRTyrS: Bryn Mawr Women in the Arts
September 2010-April 2011, Eva Jan Romaine Coombe '52 Special Collections Suite Gallery

Colonial Perspectives: Works from the Louise Bulkeley Dillingham Collection

October 2009-February 2010

Darwin’s Ancestors: Tracing the Origins of the “Origin of Species”
October 2009 - February 2010

"The Best Thing in a Girl's Life": Early Women's Colleges in Fiction and Fact
January - May 2009

Intimate Devotion: The Book of Hours in Medieval Religious Practice
January - May 2008

Breaking Ground, Breaking Tradition: Bryn Mawr and the First Generation of Women Archaeologists

September - December 2007

Pointing Fingers: Women Sin, Crime and Guilt

September - December 2006

Luxuriant Nature Smiling Round
January - May 2006

Building Muscles While Building Minds: Athletics and the Early Years of Women's Education
September - December 2005

Mapping New Worlds: The Cartography of European Exploration and Colonization, 1450–1750
January - May 2005

The Invention of Antiquity
September - December 2004

Bryn Mawr Plays: Dramatic Productions at Bryn Mawr College 1889-1920

Jeannette Jehanne Jeanne Joan: Shepherdess Soldier Savior Saint
January - June 2003

Dedicated to the Cause: Bryn Mawr Women and the Right to Vote
September 26 - December 20, 2002

The Very Best Woman's College There Is: M. Carey Thomas and the Making of the Bryn Mawr Campus September 21 - December 20, 2001

The Sargent Portrait: M. Carey Thomas and John Singer Sargent
September 21 - December 20, 2001

Books, Printers, and the Information Revolution in Early Modern Europe: 1450-1600
February 22 - June 1, 2001

It's the Ticket: Nineteenth-Century Bookbinding in the British Isles and the United States
September 23 December, 1998

Leading Bryn Mawr: An Exhibition in Honor of Nancy J. Vickers

The Dr. A. V. Heyl Mineral Collection
Park Science Building and Collier Science Library

Allen Heyl grew up in Allentown, majored in geology at Penn State, then went on to Princeton for graduate work and a Ph.D. He had a long and illustrious career with the US Geological Survey, which required that specialists in mineralogy be able to work in all related branches of geology, including geochemistry and geophysics. Among his numerous publications (over 200) is a valuable work on the chrome mines of southeastern Pennsylvania. This year Dr. Heyl has generously presented the Geology Department with his Pennsylvania Collection of minerals. Many of the sites where the minerals were collected are no longer available or open to the public. Anyone interested in viewing more of the collection may contact Associate Curator, Juliet Reed by e-mail.