In this edition:
- Zoology Museum events
- Archives online
- Visit of international PhD student
- New semester
- Disaster preparedness
- Dundee Royal Infirmary (DRI) Admissions Register
- The Robert Hugh Stannus Robertson collection
- Abertay Historical Society 65th Anniversary
- New Archive volunteers
- Families in British India Society
- International Source List
- Graduation, summer 2012
- Peto Image of the Week
- World Book Night
1. Zoology Museum events
After a hugely successful Easter opening, the D'Arcy Thompson Zoology Museum is playing host to various special events over the next few weeks, starting on 17 April when Professor Tony Martin will be giving a talk about the multi-million pound project he is leading to restore native wildlife on South Georgia. On 1 May, Dr Chris Connolly from the Medical Research Institute at Ninewells will be talking about a new neurological research project to investigate the declining population of bees by exploring the impact of pesticaides on their nervous systems. On 8 May we present the fourth annual creative writing event, Notes from the Museum, in which writers from the School of Humanities perform poetry and prose they've written inspired by D'Arcy's collections. Full details on all these events and more can be found at http://www.dundee.ac.uk/museum/zoology/events.htm.
2. Archives online
Caroline attended a one day conference organised by UK Archives Discover Network (UKAD) which looked at new developments in cataloguing and sharing and exchanging data. Caroline is working on a project for the Scottish Council on Archives (SCA) to extend the Scottish Archive Network (SCAN) and create an interactive online portal for catalogues so it was interesting to hear the papers at the conference and to meet with representatives of the National Archives at Kew to talk about their plans for a portal for archives in England.
3. Visit of international PhD student
During March we were pleased to welcome Cherri-Ann Beckles, Assistant Archivist, University of the West Indies, to Dundee. Cherri is currently undertaking doctoral study with the Centre for Archive and Information Studies (CAIS) on international approaches to data protection/privacy legislation. Cherri will also be moving to Dundee for three months in the autumn to examine various approaches to Data Protection Act (DPA) compliance in Scottish universities whilst on sabbatical from the University of the West Indies.
4. New semester
The CAIS team have been busy processing student applications and interviewing applicants for the May intake of our distance-learning courses. In total there will be 25 new students starting our various programmes of study, including 9 on our Masters pathways. For further information about our courses please see http://www.dundee.ac.uk/cais/ and for more information on our various CPD opportunities please have a look at http://www.dundee.ac.uk/cais/cpd/modules_for_cpd.htm or get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
5. Disaster preparedness
Alan, Caroline, Mhairi and Durham were reminded of the importance of keeping a well-stocked disaster recovery kit this month. A leak in the roof of an off-site store resulted in water running along shelving and very close to some of our records. Nothing was damaged and we were able to move the records out of harm's way and mop up accordingly, but the incident was a timely reminder of how quickly disasters can happen and the implications of not being able to respond as quickly as possible.
6. Dundee Royal Infirmary (DRI) Admissions Register
More than 2,600 entries have now been transferred from the Dundee Royal Infirmary Patient Admission Register onto a searchable database. So far this covers the period January 1842 – November 1843 and already it is showing some interesting information about Dundee at that time (besides the obvious medical information). For example it records the nationality and place of birth of the patient which for this time period shows that 73.07% of the patients admitted were Scottish, 22.06% were Irish while just 2.3% were English and 0.69% were 'foreign'. It can also tell us where the patients were living at the time; the majority lived at Scouringburn (14.17%), Overgate (13.29%) and Hawkhill (7.66%). This is obviously a long term project but should prove to be a useful resource for researchers once completed.
7. The Robert Hugh Stannus Robertson collection
Keren is currently cataloguing the papers of Robert Hugh Stannus Robertson. After obtaining an MA in geology, mineralogy and chemistry at the University of Cambridge, Robertson was appointed chief chemist in 1933 to the Fuller’s Earth Union Ltd in Surrey, where he spent nine very successful years. He devoted all his working life to applying science to industry and specialised in the creation of new processes and new industries. In 1958 he moved to Pitlochry where he worked as a consultant, rapidly becoming a highly respected international authority on the uses of clay minerals, the methodology of raw material development and the management of innovation. The collection has been worked on by several different people so it is now coming together as a whole with some very interesting items relating to peat, nuts and their uses. For further information about the collection please get in touch with us at email@example.com.
8. Abertay Historical Society 65th Anniversary
The Abertay Historical Society (AHS) will celebrate the 65th Anniversary of its founding in May. Archive Services hold the archives of the Society including the papers related to its foundation. Over the years several members of ARMMS staff have been involved with the society and current council members include Dr Kenneth Baxter and Matthew Jarron, who is Secretary of the Society. Kenneth has been going through the archives to gather some information on the AHS’ early days to use in publicity for the anniversary.
9. New Archive volunteers
Archive Services are pleased to welcome 3 new volunteers to the archives. Beth, Doug and Adey will be coming in at various times on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Beth is currently working on the Rep archive, Doug is doing some scanning and looking at the Dundee Art Society collection and Adey is working on our book collections. We wish them all well and are very pleased to welcome them to our team. Thanks are also due to our longer term volunteers John, Jaqui, and Rosanna.
10. Families in British India Society
Caroline was asked to give a talk to Scottish members of the Families in British India Society (FIBIS) on the collections that we have in the archives with a connection to India. It was difficult to limit the talk to 30 minutes given the amount of material that we have but the audience was interested and asked several questions, as well as taking leaflets on our family and local history distance learning courses. More information on our holdings can be found online at, www.dundee.ac.uk/archives.
11. International Source List
The International Source List is now available online. This is a list of records in our collections that relate to countries other than Scotland or England. Wales was included in the list of countries because it was a good way to draw together items relating to Wales. The International Source List reveals how important the international context has been for Dundee historically, through industrial, academic and personal connections. These include the famous connection with India because of jute, investment in North America, spreading religion in New England, involvement in Europe during the World Wars, and there is even mention of pirates in the Caribbean! www.dundee.ac.uk/archives/international.htm.
12. Graduation, Summer 2012
The deadline for students registering for the graduation ceremony on 19 June 2012 was Friday 6 April. There are 27 students registered for graduation. Of these, seven are graduating with the Masters, 13 are graduating with the Postgraduate Diploma and seven are graduating with the Postgraduate Certificate. To date six students have confirmed they will be attending the ceremony. Further information on the ceremony can be found at http://www.dundee.ac.uk/registry/main/com/grad/. We are very much looking forward to graduation and hope all our students and their families have a wonderful day.
13. Peto Image of the Week
All the images used for Peto Image of the Week are now available online as part of the 'The Peto Collection Image of the Week Archive' the page being available at http://www.dundee.ac.uk/archives/peto/imageofweekarchive.htm. The images are in chronological order, the most recent at the top, and grouped according to the month in which they were used. Normally, the images relate to a topical issue; a current news item, the anniversary of an important historical event or the anniversary of a famous person's birth or death.
14. World Book Night
Monday 23 April, which was both the birth and death dates of William Shakespeare, was World Book Night. The event's founder and Chair is Jamie Byng, Managing Director of Canongate, the Archive of which is held by Archive Services. Pat was a World Book Night Giver and received 24 copies of Small Island, by Andrea Levy, to give away. The purpose is to encourage reading and the books should be read and passed on to others. Each book has a unique identifier, which can be logged and monitored on the World Book Night web site. More information is available at: http://www.worldbooknight.org/.