Vermont Green Mountain Digital Archive Joins DPLA

By Samantha Gibson, June 6, 2019.

We are pleased to welcome Vermont Green Mountain Digital Archive as the newest DPLA Service Hub. The Vermont Hub, which is led by Middlebury College, represents a collaboration between Middlebury, the Vermont Department of Libraries, Vermont Historical Society, Vermont State Archives, and the libraries of Norwich University, the University of Vermont, and St. Michael’s College, which in turn represent collections from a number of other libraries, archives, museums, and historical societies across the Green Mountains. Vermont Green Mountain Digital Archive’s 57,000 items include local and regional history like photographs capturing rural New England town life; Vermonters’ Civil War letters, and broadsides dating to the 18th century, alongside materials that are international in scope like Dr. Edgar Hyde’s photographs from his service as an Army Medical Corps officer during World War II.

Explore highlights from Vermont’s newest additions to DPLA below or start searching today!  

The Flanders Ballad Collection

One of the nation’s great archival collections of New England folksong, folklore, and balladry, the Flanders Ballad Collection from Middlebury College was the lifework of Helen Hartness Flanders (1890-1972) of Springfield, Vermont. Along with hundreds of photographs and broadside ballads, this collection includes hundreds of digitized wax cylinder recordings of New England folk singers performing in the early twentieth century captured during the earliest years of portable audio recording technology through Flanders’ dedicated field work.

The Song of the Factory Girl,” an 1848 ode by Henry Heywood about the women and girls who worked in New England’s mills, from the collection of Middlebury College.

Vermont 1970s Counterculture Project Oral Histories

A project of Vermont Historical Society, this collection includes over fifty oral history interviews with men and women who made Vermont their home, many hailing from far flung cities and towns across the country. Common threads in this collection of interviews include participation in civil rights and anti-war protest movements in the 1960s, religious and spiritual awakenings, pushback against traditional gender and social roles, and environmental activism and the back-to-the-land movement. As Vermonters, some of the interviewees established or participated in communal settlements and collective business models that have helped shape the history and character of the state.

Interviewees include Ellen David Friedman, Chris Braithwaite, Jane English, and Gene Bergman, from the collection of Vermont Historical Society.

Porter Thayer Photographs

Porter Thayer’s collection of over 1,300 photographs, held by Brooks Memorial Library, captures rural life at the turn of the twentieth century. Thayer embodied the archetype of the town photographer. He traveled the narrow dirt roads in his buggy, behind his faithful mare Lady, who accompanied him daily. Working continually through seasons and years, Porter Thayer left an archive that is a cultural treasure for southeastern Vermont. During the time period Porter worked, Vermont was extremely poor and rural, yet held a close-knit population that shared the constant labor of maintaining farms and homes. Thayer’s images capture everyday work, tools, and the landscape that characterized the region.

Child feeding a pig a bottle, Newfane, Vt.” by Porter Thayer, from the collection of Brooks Memorial Library.

Out in the Mountains

Out in the Mountains was the only LGBT focused newspaper in Vermont from early 1986 to January of 2007 when the last issue was released. The newspaper provided a forum for a diverse LGBT community to stay connected, covered issues facing the community such as violence, isolation and HIV, and discussed policy and organizing efforts to battle discrimination against LGBT people in Vermont and in the United States as a whole. Some significant milestones for LGBT rights in Vermont covered by Out in the Mountains include the passage of Civil Unions and the Vermont Employment Non-Discrimination Act. The newspaper featured ongoing advice and dating column, a series of coming out stories, a column for youth writers, LGBT cartoonists including Alison Bechdel, and profiles of prominent community members.

The February 1986 issue of Out in the Mountains, from the collection of University of Vermont.

Alden Partridge Papers

Norwich University’s Alden Partridge collection documents the activities and philosophies of nineteenth-century education reformer Alden Patridge. Patridge envisioned a national system of practical schools dedicated to molding “citizen soldiers.” His correspondence documents collaborations with protégés and associates as they established over twenty institutions operating under the “Partridge System of Education” across the United States. While most of these schools did not survive long-term, other aspects of Partridge’s educational philosophy proved more enduring. Written accounts of Partridge’s “pedestrian excursions” with students highlight his interest in outdoor education as well as his own experiences as one of New England’s early hikers.

Society of Saint Edmund Southern Mission Collection

This collection of photographs from St. Michael’s College documents the activities of the Society of Saint Edmund in the Southern US and South America since the 1930s. The Society worked in schools, parishes, and healthcare facilities and served African American and Creole communities. The Society’s Good Samaritan School of Practical Nursing was the first school of practical nursing for black students in Alabama.

Please join us in warmly welcoming Green Mountain Digital Archive to DPLA! To learn more about Vermont Green Mountain Digital Archive, visit https://libraries.vermont.gov/GMDA.