Archives and Special Collections

Archives, Historical Records, Special Collections

Why Should I Go Looking in IRis?

"Tires to Fit," by Flickr user Bob Aubuchon

If I was applying to go to college, and was hearing over and over about how important research is at major universities, I might wonder what exactly that means. Research can be something of an abstraction to a high school student—most of the social and lab science taught in classes is done straight out of textbooks, two or three times removed from the original research that they’re based on. Northeastern has great opportunities for grad and undergrad students to be involved in research, with faculty and independently. IRis contains research done here at NU, and can show a prospective student both what she or he could be working on, and the kinds of research that are being done on campus that make NU unique. For example, I’ve gone through just now and seen a capstone project in mechanical engineering about turning tires into fuel. This seems like a really interesting project: the method is laid out for breaking down old tires, pulverising them into particles, and the economic model for generating fuel this way. IRis is free and open to the public, and is therefore a great way for the university to show off to prospective students. It can also be appealing to new students to see how their work could be published and permanently archived.

Carmen Pola records now available for research

The Carmen A. Pola papers are open for research in the Archives and Special Collections Department, 92 Snell Library.  A guide to the collection is available online.  Carmen Pola is a community activist who settled in Mission Hill, Boston, in 1972. The materials date from 1970-2006 and document Pola’s work with the Puerto Rican Festival, the Boston Public Schools, the Project to Monitor the Code of Discipline, Mayor Raymond Flynn’s Administration, and Roxbury Unites for Families and Children. The collection includes photographs, correspondence, grant proposals and reports, surveys, charts, organizational records, legal materials, political campaign literature, catalogs, booklets, and meeting minutes. Read the full press release here. If you’re interested in this topic, in addtion to perusing the records in Archives, you might be interested in checking out Latina Politics, Latino Politics: Gender, Culture, and Political Participation in Boston by Carol Hardy-Fanta. Below is a picture of Carmen Pola and Mayor Ray Flynn viewing a report in the Mayor’s office, ca. 1986.

Carmen Pola and Mayor Ray Flynn view a report in the Mayor's office, ca. 1986

Chinese Progressive Association Historical Records Available for Research

The records of the Chinese Progressive Association are now available for research (in 92 Snell Library). The Chinese Progressive Association has been involved in important projects since 1977, getting involved in local Chinatown issues and fighting to protect community rights. 1986: CPA organized with dislocated garment workers from P&L Sportswear and from Beverly Rose, another sportswear manufacturer, to win the first Chinese bilingual retraining programs in New England.  1993: CPA worked with other Chinatown organizations and the American Friends Service Committee to organize a plebiscite on the Parcel C parking garage proposed for the center of residential Chinatown, eventually winning the designation of the parcel for community development. 2005: The organization launched its Immigrant Workers Center Collaborative to build immigrant worker organizing and solidarity in the Chinese, Brazilian, and Latino communities. 2006: CPA strengthened ties with communities of color, tenant organizations, and housing advocates to secure changes in Boston’s Inclusionary Development Policy and its definition of housing affordability in an effort to stabilize Boston neighborhoods. Take advantage of Northeastern Libraries’ material from the CPA, ranging from 1976 to 2006: And read the full press release here.

Boston Opera House, front page story in the Boston Sunday Globe

Boston Opera House

Boston Opera House

The Library houses the historical records of the Boston Opera House. Today’s Boston Globe article by Jeremy Eichler highlights this Northeastern fact! Boston Opera House article Finding aid for Boston Opera House records

Archives reveal Co-op Centennial history

Co-op Centennial
The University Archives and Special Collections here at the NU Libraries are a treasure trove of information about the history of the Co-op program, now in its 100th year at Northeastern University. In celebration of  the Co-op Centennial, we’ve assembled a Guide to Co-op Centennial Resources, describing the Archives’ photos, videos, manuscripts and books relating to NU’s Co-op program through the years.  We hope you enjoy it!