In the spirit of educational liberty and learning about the observance of July 4th , University Libraries is delighted to share resources with the SHU Community. This day is an important federal holiday established to honor the unveiling of the Declaration of Independence, proclaiming the birth of a new nation in 1776.
There have been several works produced that examine the Declaration of Independence and its backstory. This includes the people, politics, and spirit that have made the this document one of the most popular and respected of our national charters. The following resources provide a starting point:
The recent release of the book entitled: Seton Hall University, A History, 1856-2006. (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2023) by Dr. Dermot Quinn is a detailed work that commemorates the development of our institution over its first 150 years of operation. This work is the detailed product of the documentary vision achieved by Dr. Quinn which required the central usage of primary resources housed within the University Libraries and the Monsignor William Noé Field Archives & Special Collections Center in particular. Dr. Quinn noted that our libraries were his “second home” while in the process of researching and writing this volume.
Dermot Quinn is a professor of history at Seton Hal University. Educated at Trinity College, Dublin, and New College, Oxford, his books include Understanding Northern Ireland (Manchester: Baseline Books, 1993), Patronage and Piety: English Roman Catholics and Politics 1850-1900 (Stanford CA: Stanford University Press, 1993), and The Irish in New Jersey: Four Centuries of American Life (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2004).
As Dr. Quinn wrote in the opening sequence of this tome which provides a helpful introduction to the Story of Setonia: “In 1856 James Roosevelt Bayley, Roman Catholic Bishop of Newark, founded a school in Madison, New Jersey, calling it Seton Hall College in honor of his aunt, Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton. The name was a gesture of piety and a statement of intent. By honoring the greatest promoter of Catholic schools in early nineteenth century America, Bayley wished to continue her work of building American Catholicism through education, charity, and moral instruction. . . . Seton Hall was the seed and fruit of his vision. In the thin soil of mid-Victorian New Jersey Catholicism, he built more than a school. He built a people. . . Bayley’s faith in the progressive value of education, in the pious purposes of Catholic schools, in the powerful generosity of poor people, had to do with the future. . . “ (Quinn, Dermot. Seton Hall University, A History 1856-2006, 1.)
In regard to advance praise, the publisher’s note found on the book jacket of this work expresses the following feelings regarding the effort of Dr. Quinn: “In this vivid and elegantly written history, Dermot Quinn examines how Seton Hall was able to develop as an institution while keeping faith with its founder’s vision. Looking at the men and women who made Seton Hall what it is today, he paints a compelling picture of a university that has enjoyed its share of triumphs but has also suffered tragedy and loss. He shows how it was established in an age of prejudice and transformed in the aftermath of war, while exploring how it negotiated between a distinctly Roman Catholic identity and a mission to include Americans of all faiths.”
When it comes to the size of this volume and the usage of resources perspective from various University Libraries sources total 560 pages total with 60 of those accounting for endnotes that specifically credit each of the sources that represent background information found within the pages of this volume.
March is Irish Heritage Month. With this observance in mind and at hand, there are an abundance of resources to share with you.
We are delighted to announce the successful conclusion of our Irish history project at the archives which was generously funded by the New Jersey Historical Commission, Irish Immigrant Solidarity in New Jersey, 1870-Present. This project hired an advanced graduate student in Library Science, Quinn Christie, to process the papers of several Irish fraternal organizations. The cornerstone of the project was processing the papers of the historian of the Ancient Order of the Hibernians, John Concannon. This enormous collection of 120 linear feet (120 banker’s boxes of materials) had to be rehoused in archival boxes and folders, organized in a logical way and described so that researchers could find what they were looking for by a simple keyword search. In addition, a collection of 63 fragile registers which recorded the membership records of the Knights of Columbus, had to be preserved, which entailed building custom size boxes for each one from archival materials.
Our project archivist was so efficient that she completed this work ahead of schedule, allowing time for her and her colleague Sean Cureton to digitize substantial portions of the collections, build digital exhibits, and create a display window just in time for St. Patrick’s Day. In the end, over 1,200 files were digitized, comprising almost 29 GB of data. The digitized materials can be found by exploring the finding aids here:
The Papers of John Concannon and the Ancient Order of the Hibernians
And stop by the first floor of Walsh Library to see our window exhibit!
In addition, a vast selection of information resources can be found related to Ireland “Éire” within the Seton Hall University Libraries.
Publications related to the Irish experience cover a wide range of specific topics including culture, history, literature, and religion to name just a few of the interesting themes that await discovery.
You are welcome to access our Library Guide as a starting point for specific Ireland and American Irish-centered content . . .
The Irish have been a popular subject for study on our campus for decades and we have featured specific aspects of our collections within past news stories published over the years. Please feel free to explore more specific highlights found within our archived blog entries . . .
In our efforts to uncover and share various interdisciplinary resources including materials that have both a textual and visual basis for added informational perspective.
A historical example that touches on the topic of Security from a Political Science, International Relations, Business, Scientific, and additional fields of enterprise can be found in a site that showcases 1950s-70s posters created by the National Security Agency (NSA).
Through the generous efforts that fall under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) these images have been made available to the public for research purposes.
November is African American Catholic Month. In recognition of this significant subject area, and promoting research opportunities, there are various information-centered resources hosted by the Seton Hall University Libraries to aid with your exploration.
Included are the following specialized sites . . .
Prepare yourself for Thanksgiving dinner discussions about your family history by attending a presentation on Irish genealogy, sponsored by Pirates of Irish Persuasion & Extraction (PIPE) at Seton Hall University on Friday, November 11th, from 2:00 to 3:30 p.m.
Alan Delozier, D.Litt., Humanities & Outreach Librarian will share an overview of this important topic and some practical tips for genealogical research for the beginner and expert alike.
For more information on resources related to the Irish and Genealogy please consult the following Library Guides sponsored by the Seton Hall University Libraries. This includes links to various helpful research sites . . .
This September marks the diamond anniversary of the New Jersey Constitution Committee (1947) and 235 years since the creation of the United States Constitution. The story behind each text carries a deep historical legacy combined with outlining the goals associated with the ideal functions of national and state governments alike. In research terms, each charter has provided extensive scholarship opportunities for the public that the Seton Hall University Libraries has supported over the past several years.
The United States Constitution is the recognized law of the nation which outlines how the government is required to function. It makes provisions for three distinctive divisions of authority – Executive, Legislative, and Judicial. Since 1787, the Constitution proper has been amended 27 times (with the first ten constituting the United States Bill of Rights created on September 25, 1789 and ratified in 1791) through its history and is devoted mainly to individual liberties.
Combined with the abovementioned overview, Articles III-VII principally cover State-focused governance issues. New Jersey was the third state to ratify the United States Constitution in 1789 and in large measure this helped to inspire the content found within the New Jersey Constitution and its two post-Revolution versions. This document is based on the previous State Constitution of 1776 and the first major revised manuscript in 1844 which highlighted such freedoms as religious practice, speech, and related liberties. After a century, the need for an updated State Statute was facilitated through the creation of Governor Alfred E. Driscoll’s Committee on Preparatory Research in early 1947. (“Convention Proceedings Record,” State of New Jersey Constitutional Convention of 1947, v.1, iii-1)
Between June 12th and September 10th of 1947 (a deadline of September 13th for close of the Committee Hearings was set ahead of time and met), the Delegates produced a final draft of the newly updated State Constitution. This document was ultimately ratified via a majority vote on the referendum presented to the citizens of New Jersey during the Election of 1947 held on November 4th of that year. (“Convention Proceedings Record,” State of New Jersey Constitutional Convention of 1947, v.1, 923)
During the 1940s-60s, Students in New Jersey Were Presented With a Copy of the volume – “Our Great State Documents” as part of their study on Citizenship
There are numerous study prospects for both the United States and New Jersey Constitutions and user friendly access points available through the Seton Hall University Libraries including the following leads and links highlighted below . . .
We are happy to announce the latest installment of the University Libraries podcast series entitled: Zet Forward. This podcast entitled: “American Catholicism” features an interview by University Archivist, Alan Delozier, D.Litt. with Dr. Margaret McGuinness and Dr. Tom Rzeznik who collaborated on the edited work: The Cambridge Companion of American Catholicism (Cambridge University, 2021). Margaret M. McGuinness, Ph.D. is Professor of Religion at La Salle University. Thomas F. Rzeznik, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of History at Seton Hall University and coeditor of the quarterly journal, American Catholic Studies. He is author of Church and Estate: Religion and Wealth in Industrial-Era Philadelphia (2013). This podcast covered a number of topics within the American Catholic experience in both a historical and contemporary context.
You can find this podcast at Podcast @ Seton Hall University. Please check it out along with our other sessions conducted by Professor Chelsea Barrett and Professor Gerry Shea.
Zet Forward is a podcast to celebrate authors and other individuals who are involved with projects for the benefit of Seton Hall University and the wider world. The series began in February of 2022.