USF Archives Sought Out For Perspective on Johns Committee

Reading Time: 4 minutes Andy Huse, Librarian and Curator for Florida History in Special Collections, USF Libraries, Tampa Campus shares how he assisted Emma Pettit, Senior Reporter at the Chronicle of Higher Education, in her research into the Johns Committee.

USF Curiosities: A 40-foot Band-Aid?

Reading Time: 5 minutes Mom! Mom, look! A giant Band-Aid! Walking into a hospital can be a scary experience for anyone. But, for a sick child, walking into a hospital seems particularly daunting. The Children’s Research Institute (CRI) at the University of South Florida’s St. Petersburg …Continue Reading

#Creekshed – USF Creek Shed Digital Collection

Reading Time: 2 minutes USF Libraries is collaborating with Dr. Thomas Hallock (USF St. Petersburg campus) and Dr. Amanda Hagood (Eckerd College) to archive a series of columns called City Wilds for the newspaper Creative Loafing Tampa Bay. The articles are intended to highlight various creek sheds around the Tampa Bay area. Dr. Hallock finds it important to make sure the conversation on this topic is sustained. In an effort to get the word out on these pieces, Dr. Hallock and Dr. Hagood created and put into use an easily taggable hashtag name, #creekshed.

Enjoying Real and Imagined Florida Landscapes in the Hampton Dunn Collection of Florida Postcards

Reading Time: 5 minutes Over a hundred years ago, postcards became popular souvenirs when visiting far off destinations. The images depicted on their backs provided vivid glimpses into the landscapes seen by family members and friends. The postcards from the Hampton Dunn Collection of Florida Postcards, …Continue Reading

Millions of Years in the Making: A New Platform for the Karst Information Portal

Reading Time: 3 minutes By:  Amanda Boczar, Curator for Digital Collections and Jason Boczar, Digital Scholarship and Publishing Librarian   June 6th is the National Day of Caves and Karst, and we’re celebrating with the official launch of the newly redesigned Karst Information Portal (KIP). For …Continue Reading

The Oracle in the Archives: The Grim Reaper of Pizza

Reading Time: 6 minutes Guest post from Richard Schmidt, Collection Specialist for Special Collections– Tampa campus. Richard specializes in digitization of rare materials. The push for the USF Libraries to digitize the college’s student newspaper, The USF Oracle, began several years before I was hired as …Continue Reading

Zarzuela in honor of World Theater Day

Reading Time: 4 minutes USF Libraries’ Special Collections is home to many different types of physical items and ephemera. From books and journals to newspapers, yearbooks, sheet music, and plays, the collections are vast and varied. One item type that is not widely highlighted is the zarzuela. Zarzuelas are Spanish lyric drama’s that alternate between spoken and sung scenes accompanied by dance numbers (“Zarzuela,” 2022). 

Celebrating Women’s History Month with Snapshots of Women at Work

Reading Time: 8 minutes This post was written by Lesley Brooks and Amanda Boczar The Women’s Labor Movement in the United States  The twentieth century marked a watershed century for the women’s labor movement, starting with the progressive era and evolving as world wars and the …Continue Reading

Womyn’s Words and the Women’s Energy Bank Collections

Reading Time: 4 minutes By: Amanda Boczar and Sydney Jordan  March is Women’s History Month, a time to reflect on, give voice to, and celebrate the lives of women throughout history. Women of the Tampa Bay area have no shortage of stories to tell, and many …Continue Reading

‘We Wanted Some Basic Human Rights: The Civil Rights Struggle in Tampa’ exhibit

Reading Time: 3 minutes The USF Libraries host several exhibits that highlight a variety of collections, providing context to material that is often only publicly accessed via a finding aid. The exhibits come from many different sources. Some come from grant funded research, some from library personnel or library partnerships, and some from student work under the guidance of USF faculty. The exhibit: ‘We Wanted Some Basic Human Rights: The Civil Rights Struggle in Tampa’ was created during a Spring seminar on the Civil Rights Movement taught by Dr. K. Stephen Prince of the USF History Department in 2016. Students of the seminar worked with Special Collections personnel and consulted fifteen archival collections housed in USF Tampa Special Collections.

USF Curiosities: A faculty airplane?

Reading Time: 3 minutes How do you normally get to campus?  A car, a bicycle, a bus, or walk…  What about an airplane?    Well, that’s just what USF faculty members did in the early 1980s. While the Tampa campus had permanent faculty members, its sister …Continue Reading

“Banned and Burned: Why Worry? It’s Just Kiddie Lit”

Reading Time: 5 minutes Headlines reporting a movement to pass massive book bans have been making the news across the United States. This is not the first time book banning and book burning have made headlines in recent years. USF professor of Literacy Studies, Dr. Jenifer Schneider’s ‘The Inside, Outside, and Upside Downs of Children’s Literature: From Poets and Pop-ups to Princesses and Porridge’ tackles the history, content, beliefs, and layers of cultural issues that are incorporated in banning books in her chapter “Banned and Burned:  Why Worry? It’s Just Kiddie Lit.” In the chapter Dr. Schneider discusses several books that are held in USF Special Collections.

USF Curiosities: Chariot races?

Reading Time: 2 minutes When you think of student activities on our campuses, what comes to mind? Basketball games, charity drives, bake sales, jogging, walking with friends, maybe lunches on the lawn… But…. what about chariot races?   Yes, you read that correctly. Chariot races. In …Continue Reading

USF Curiosities: A Pablo Picasso sculpture 10 stories tall?

Reading Time: 7 minutes In 1971, a small-scale model of a Pablo Picasso sculpture, “Bust of a Woman,” was donated to the University of South Florida. Fifty years later, it received new attention from researchers after it was spotted on a shelf in the Tampa Library …Continue Reading

Celebrating National Estuaries Week with Florida Environmental & Natural History Digital Resources

Reading Time: 6 minutes In honor of National Estuaries Week, Digital Dialogs is celebrating with a collection of digital resources related to the environmental history, conservation, and study of Florida environments and ecosystems. Estuaries are “semi-enclosed areas, such as bays and lagoons, where fresh water meets …Continue Reading

USF Curiosities: The Golden Brahman?

Reading Time: 4 minutes Five years after the University of South Florida was founded and long before there was a football team, USF had no mascot.  The issue had first been discussed during committee meetings convened to develop the school’s constitution, but it wouldn’t be revisited again until the University Center sponsored a contest to name the school mascot.

The Liberty Boys of “76″

Reading Time: 4 minutes Guest author, Richard Schmidt, gives an in depth look at The Liberty Boys of “76”: A Weekly Magazine Containing Stories of the American Revolution. Over 300 issues of Liberty Boys are housed in the USF Libraries’ digital repository.

Celebrating Nurses: Documenting Care and Compassion in Oral History Collections

Reading Time: 7 minutes Post written by Lesley Brooks and Jane Duncan For two centuries, nurses have been the picture of care, empathy, and compassion in healthcare. They see patients through vulnerable moments, difficult decisions, hardships, and moments of joy. Day in and day out, nurses …Continue Reading

Celebrating Earth Day with a look at ELAPP

Reading Time: 2 minutes The Environmental Lands Acquisition and Protection Program (ELAPP) was established by Hillsborough County voters in the late 1980s.  Since its establishment, ELAPP has protected over 61,000 acres of rare habitat in Hillsborough County.  Digital Dialogs celebrates Earth Day with a closer look at this program.

What’s March have to do with war?

Reading Time: 4 minutes Welcome to the month of March. According to the Roman calendar, it was the first month of the year, so if your new year’s resolutions got off to a bad start in January, try again this month. As a matter of fact, …Continue Reading

Celebrating Women’s History Month with Snapshots of the Florida Citrus Industry

Reading Time: 6 minutes Since the mid-1800s, Florida groves have been peppered with oranges, grapefruit, lemons, and limes. While not native plants, their fruit have become irrevocably linked with the Florida landscape. From postcards and packaging to advertisements and film, the image of Florida is one …Continue Reading

USF Curiosities: Planting trees at “Sandspur U”?

Reading Time: 2 minutes What are you most proud of in your tenure at the University of South Florida? Margaret Fisher didn’t select a moment of personal triumph or individual achievement in response to this question. Instead, she honed in on a moment that united the …Continue Reading

Celebrating Black History Month with a Portrait of Blanche Armwood

Reading Time: 5 minutes In honor of Black History Month, Digital Dialogs would like to highlight the story of one local leader for her commitment to education and equality. Blanche Armwood became a prominent figure on the national stage, known for her dedication to education and social reform.

USF Curiosities: Bottle Cap U? Sandspur U?

Reading Time: 3 minutes With the name “University of South Florida,” most people except USF to be located in Miami or Fort Lauderdale. Instead, USF is located in the middle of the state in Tampa, a city that is not near southern Florida at all! So, …Continue Reading

USF Curiosities: Chickens in the elevator?

Reading Time: 2 minutes Well, you can’t say that we don’t have fun at the University of South Florida… As one of the first resident instructors at USF, Phyllis Marshall came to the Tampa campus in the fall of 1960. At the time, Marshall was in …Continue Reading

Library Exhibits on Environmental Studies

Reading Time: 3 minutes USF Libraries’ program partners, donors, staff, and faculty have created several exhibits that highlight the Tampa campus library’s digital collections that focus on environmental studies.  These exhibits work to provide additional context and connect digital resources to tell the full story of events that have shaped the Florida environment.

USF Curiosities: An elephant on the roof?

Reading Time: 2 minutes From the beginning, USF faculty members have proved themselves to be resourceful and imaginative instructors. So, when an elephant passed away at nearby Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, USF’s biology professors saw this as a unique opportunity… Paul Griscti, who came to USF …Continue Reading

The Roseate Spoonbill: A Fight for Survival

Reading Time: 5 minutes As a result of the “feather craze” that decimated Florida’s bird populations, the Florida Audubon Society found that the roseate spoonbill had been the mostly heavily hit. Plume hunters and poachers sought out the roseate spoonbill for its beautiful, bright pink and …Continue Reading

USF Curiosities: Sand as far as the eye could see?

Reading Time: 4 minutes The year was 1956… At the time, an old WWII Hillsborough Army Airfield occupied a large expanse of Flowler Avenue. On December 18th, the Florida Cabinet voted to transform that airfield into the location of a new public university. The University of …Continue Reading

USF Digital Collections for Environmental and Natural Sciences Research: Oral History Collections

Reading Time: 3 minutes Post written by Lesley Brooks, Carla Fotherby, and LeEtta Schmidt This is the fourth and final post in a four part series introducing USF digital collections for environmental and natural sciences. In this post, we will be reviewing our oral history collections …Continue Reading

USF Digital Collections for Environmental and Natural Sciences Research: Historical Collections

Reading Time: 3 minutes Post written by Lesley Brooks, Carla Fotherby, and LeEtta Schmidt This is the third post in a four part series introducing USF digital collections for environmental and natural sciences. The USF Libraries Digital Collections have been steadily growing collections on various aspects …Continue Reading

The African American Experience in Florida Collections Initiative and Portal

Reading Time: 4 minutes Guest article by David Shedden, Assistant Librarian, Head of Special Collections & University Archives, USF Libraries, St. Petersburg campus On June 4, 2020, soon after the world learned of the death of George Floyd, USF Libraries Dean Todd Chavez wrote in an …Continue Reading

USF Digital Collections for Environmental and Natural Sciences Research: 3D Modeling Collections

Reading Time: 2 minutes Post written by Lesley Brooks, Carla Fotherby, and LeEtta Schmidt This is the second in a four part series introducing USF digital collections for environmental and natural sciences. The USF Libraries Digital Collections have been steadily growing collections that focus on various …Continue Reading

USF Digital Collections for Environmental and Natural Sciences Research: Research & Data Collections

Reading Time: 4 minutes Post written by Lesley Brooks, Carla Fotherby, and LeEtta Schmidt This is the first in a four part series introducing USF digital collections for environmental and natural sciences. USF Libraries’ vision is to be at the center of a highly engaged university …Continue Reading

The Florida Public Health Oral History Project

Reading Time: 2 minutes Post written by Jane Duncan Today, more than ever, public health officials contribute to the health and wellness of our communities through disease prevention programs, education, clean water initiatives, disaster relief, laboratory research, and more. It is important to document the knowledge of prominent experts so that we can continue to learn from them for years to come. That’s what makes projects like USF’s Florida Public Health Oral History Project so vital. As we contend with the spread of this global pandemic, we invite you to learn more about the vital field of public health.

Celebrating the Contributions of Nurses

Reading Time: 7 minutes Nursing has changed a lot in the last 200 years, but a few things have not changed…                    devotion to patient care,                            compassion,                           …Continue Reading

The Fashion Craze that Galvanized Conservationists

Reading Time: 5 minutes Imagine it’s the year 1880… Men are dressed in top hats and long, formal coats while elegant women wear bustled skirts, their waists pinched in by corsets, and their heads adorned by large hats scattered with bright, colorful feathers. It’s the fashion …Continue Reading

Dion Boucicault: playwright, plagiarist, and pioneer

Reading Time: 3 minutes Boucicault was both a prolific playwright and a flagrant plagiarist. He wrote at a time when appropriating plays and literary works across country borders was almost the norm. However, his activities pirating other author’s works, and also protecting his own, contributed to changes in copyright law that would give greater protection to playwrights after Boucicault. USF Libraries has one of the largest publicly accessible collections of Boucicault’s work, despite Boucicaults attempts to prevent piracy of his works by resisting publication.

Celebrating Women’s History Month with the Burgert Brothers Collection of Tampa Photographs

Reading Time: 5 minutes The Burgert Brothers Collection of Tampa Photographs pictorially captures the history of our city during the first half of the twentieth century. From 1917 until the 1960s, Burgert Brothers was the leading commercial photographic firm in Tampa. The photographs in this collection …Continue Reading

Celebrating Black History Month with the USF Photograph Collection

Reading Time: 5 minutes The USF Photograph Collection pictorially documents the history and legacy of the University of South Florida, including the impact of two pioneering individuals. In celebration of Black History Month, Digital Dialogs would like to recognize Dr. Ernest Boger, II and Dr. Juel …Continue Reading

Alicia Appleman-Jurman, a Holocaust Survivor

Reading Time: 5 minutes Today marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the largest Nazi concentration and death camp. In the weeks before its liberation, the Schutzstaffel (SS) evacuated nearly 60,000 prisoners and forced them to march to Wodzislaw while leaving 7,000 sick and …Continue Reading

Celebrating the Public Domain in 2020

Reading Time: 3 minutes Copyright protects works of original authorship from being legally copied, disseminated, and otherwise exploited without the author or rights-holder’s approval.  This protection is for a limited time in order to balance the interests of the author with the possibility that a work …Continue Reading

Catesby Collection

Reading Time: 3 minutes Mark Catesby’s two-volume set of The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands was published in 1754. Over 250 years later, this printed edition is housed in just 45 libraries globally. Describing and illustrating North American flora and fauna from …Continue Reading

Excavations of a pre-Columbian platform mound

Reading Time: < 1 minute For more than four decades, Charles Stanish has unearthed the mysteries and secrets of ancient societies in the Americas. His work uncovers the interplay of trade, war, and labor organization as villages evolved into complex societies.  His discoveries gave new understanding to …Continue Reading

USF – digitized

Reading Time: < 1 minute Since 1956, the University of South Florida has been amazing people. But, you should expect a bang from an institution built on a World War II practice bombing range, shouldn’t you? The early years definitely have stories, some inspiring and some surprising. …Continue Reading

Swing Along!

Reading Time: < 1 minute Talented. Undeterred. History Shapers. These are but some of the attributes found in the musicians of the “Swing Along!“ exhibit. In spite of prejudice and lack of opportunities, these men changed the history of music. Each story is unique as the individual …Continue Reading

USF Libraries 3D Biological Specimens

Reading Time: < 1 minute   The School of Geosciences Research Platform Team (RPT) and Digital Heritage and Humanities Collection (DHHC) at the USF Libraries worked with paleo-biologist professors Jen Bright and Greg Herbert to create 3D models of six biological specimens for use in an out-of-classroom …Continue Reading

Tampa in Time

Reading Time: < 1 minute Tampa was incorporated in 1849, but for a long time was overlooked or considered a town with dubious morals—a town for mobsters or corrupt politicians. In spite of these unfortunately accurate accusations, Tampa grew, and as it grew changes took place. From …Continue Reading

Digitization in Celebration of African American History Month

Reading Time: < 1 minute Black Migrations is the theme of 2019’s Black History Month as chosen by the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH).  The theme focuses on the movement of African American people in the U.S. from the south to the north, …Continue Reading

Celebrating the Public Domain: 19 in 2019

Reading Time: 3 minutes What is the public domain?  The public domain consists of material that is not protected by copyright and is therefore considered to belong to everyone for every kind of use (find more info on the copyright guide).  Items enter the public domain …Continue Reading

New Digital Collection: Dr. Garald Gordon Parker

Reading Time: < 1 minute Journals, reports, maps, and photographs from the ‘Father of Florida groundwater hydrogeology’ Digital Scholarship Services is happy to announce the launch of a new digital collection pulled from the USF Libraries’ Tampa Special Collections:  the papers of Dr. Garald Gordon Parker.  Dr. …Continue Reading

Digital Scholarship Services Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

Reading Time: 2 minutes In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month and this year’s theme:  Hispanics:  One Endless Voice to Enhance our Traditions, Digital Scholarship Services has digitized a small selection of musical and theatrical materials from our Special Collections Sheet Music and Centro Asturiano Collections.  First, in …Continue Reading

What Will Be Your Legacy

Reading Time: < 1 minute Welcome to new students and welcome back to returning students. Every month comes with designated remembrances and celebration. “What will be Your Legacy” is celebrated this month. How are you going to celebrate it? Every Bull leaves hoof prints and a legacy …Continue Reading


Reading Time: < 1 minute After several months of diligent work, USF Library Digital Scholarship Services unveiled the Environmental Lands Acquisition and Protection Program (ELAPP) Oral History Collection on Thursday October 12th, 2017. This collection features audio interviews and transcripts from many of the founders, partners, and …Continue Reading