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'Special Collections Month' to highlight U. of I. library hidden treasures

Andrea Lynn, Humanities Editor


CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — February has a new moniker at the University of Illinois.

The shortest month is now called Special Collections Month, so named by librarians, who have arranged “discovery” events that explore some of the Library’s hidden treasures.

The events “showcase what can happen and what you can be inspired to do when you are offered access to original historic artifacts,” said William Maher, university archivist and coordinator of Illinois’ special collections.

The events, all free and open to the public except where noted:

Visit with author-artist Audrey Niffenegger, Feb. 7, 9 to 11 a.m. in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, 346 Library, 1408 W. Gregory Drive, Urbana.

Valentine’s Day Concert, Feb. 14, 3 p.m. in the Rare Book Library. Soprano Tania Coambs accompanied on guitar by Alvan Bregman, curator of rare books.

Love Stories: Gift Buildings at the University of Illinois, Feb. 15, 3 p.m., ACES Library, 1101 S. Goodwin Ave., Urbana, an exploration of the history of donor-funded buildings on campus, presented by Lex Tate, a visiting lecturer in journalism.

Exotica from the Far Side of Brass Bands: Sarrusophones, Antoniophones and Ophecleides, Feb. 27, 7:30 p.m., Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, 500 S. Goodwin Ave., Urbana, tickets required. Unique historical instruments from the Sousa Archives and Center for American Music featuring the U. of I. Symphonic Band II and Concert Band I.

Special Collections Month is sponsored by five units of the University Library: the Map and Geography Library, the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Sousa Archives and Center for American Music, Student Life and Culture Archival Program, and the University Archives.