Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

Official Archives of George Mason University. Sharing manuscripts, rare books, digital records, and so much more!

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Operating as usual

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 06/13/2024

Welcome back to 🎭! It’s June and we’re celebrating by featuring LGBTQ+ shows and artists, starting with Jerry Herman & Harvey Fierstein’s 1983 musical “La Cage aux Folles”.

Based on Jean Poiret’s 1973 French play of the same name, Herman & Fierstein’s musical adaptation, directed by Arthur Laurents, premiered on Broadway at the Palace Theatre on August 21, 1983. The musical centers around the story of Georges, manager of “La Cage aux Folles”, a drag nightclub in Saint-Tropez, and his partner and star performer Albin and what happens when their son becomes engaged to a young woman from a conservative family. The original Broadway production would go on to win six of its nine Tony Award nominations, including Best Musical, and run for 1,761 performances until 1987. In the 40+ years since its opening, in addition to several national and international tours, the musical has been revived twice on Broadway, in 2004 and 2010, with both productions winning the Tony for Best Revival of a Musical, becoming the first musical to receive such an honor. Its Act I closing song “I Am What I Am” has also become both a Broadway classic and an LGBTQ+ anthem.

📸 Playbill and mailer from the original Broadway production, circa 1983-1984. From the L. Claire Kincannon theatre collection, C0018.

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 06/12/2024

This October 21, 2002 article from Broadside, the George Mason University student newspaper details the beginning of the Safe Zone program . Now in its 23rd year the program works with the Mason community to create a safer, more welcoming & inclusive campus environment, to strengthen community and encourage networking among faculty, staff, and students toward the goal of understanding and supporting the well-being of the LGBTQ+ community.
Mason's LGBTQ Resources Centern Mason Librariess George Mason University Alumni Association

06/05/2024


The George Mason University Pride Alliance is a student-led organization established in 1989 that aims to create a safe and welcoming space for LGBTQ+ students and allies. It advocates for, and educate others about, the LGBTQ+ community. This flier, most likely created in the 2010s, is part of the George Mason University LGBTQ+ Resouces Center collection, 2022.074-R.
GMU Pride Alliance Mason's LGBTQ Resources Center Mason Libraries George Mason University Alumni Association

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 06/03/2024

Summertime is almost here, and people all across the Commonwealth will be finalizing their summer plans. One of Virginia's most popular attractions decade after decade is . Nestled in the Shenandoah Valley, the caverns were discovered in 1878 by five local men, and in 1880 a report from the Smithsonian stated, "[I]t is safe to say that there is probably no other cave in the world more completely and profusely decorated with stalactite and stalagmite ornamentation than that of Luray." Luray Caverns is privately owned, and as a result, has been commercialized over time. These View-Master reels of the "Beautiful Caverns of Luray" were created around the 1950s to promote the caverns and allow others to see pictures of them from afar. Will you visit Luray Caverns this summer?

From the Martin Cohen theater collection, C0335.

05/23/2024

Welcome back to 🎭! Continuing our celebration of today we’re featuring Indian American dancer Indrani Rahman (1930-1999). Born in Chennai (then Madras), India, Indrani was the daughter of Ragini Devi (formerly Esther Sherman) an American dancer who was one of the first performers of Indian dance in America and Ramalal Balram Bajpai, a chemist and activist for Indian independence from Nagpur, India.

Beginning in her mother’s dance company as a child, Indrani was trained in many classical Indian dance styles including Bharata Natyam, Kuchipudi, and Odissi, becoming the first professional dancer to learn this lesser known ancient dance. In 1952 she was crowned the first Miss India and competed at the Miss Universe pageant held that same year in Long Beach, California. In 1961 she became the first dancer presented on a national tour by the Asia Society and would go on to perform for a number of world leaders, including John F. Kennedy, Queen Elizabeth II, and Mao Zedong. In addition to assuming teaching positions at various American colleges and universities, such as the Julliard School and Harvard University, Indrani continued to tour extensively, including multiple performances at Jacob’s Pillow dance center in Beckett, Massachusetts.

📸 Indrani at Jacob’s Pillow, photographed by John Lindquist, circa 1960s. From Jacob’s Pillow dance photograph collection, C0514.

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 05/20/2024

Time for another 🔎❓Do you know any of these Patriots from the past?

As we digitize the George Mason University photograph collection (R0120), we need your help identifying these former students of George Mason University !

Please comment or DM us if you have any clues! 💚💛

05/17/2024

The spring semester may be over, but we’re back with more new and updated finding aids! Our latest blog previews some of these theatre, art, and University Archives collections that are now available for use in the Special Collections Research Center! Follow the link to learn more: https://vault217.gmu.edu/?p=10943

05/15/2024

Almost 57 years ago, the George Mason University baseball team played Essex Community College of Baltimore County, losing to the Knights 4-3. Mason's first intercollegiate sport was baseball, beginning in 1966. Like George Mason, Essex Community College began operation in 1957. It is part of the Community College of Baltimore County system, and known as CCBC Essex. From the Broadside student newspaper collection, .
CCBC Essex Baseball George Mason Baseball CCBC Mason Libraries George Mason University Alumni Association

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 05/09/2024

Welcome back to 🎭! Continuing our celebration of today we’re featuring the work of set designer Ming Cho Lee from the Arena Stage records, C0017.

Born in Shanghai, China in 1930, Lee moved to the United States in 1949 to attend Occidental College in California and eventually moved to New York City in 1954 to become an assistant to set designer Jo Mielziner. Over the course of his career, Lee became one of the country’s top set designers, working for both Broadway and regional theatres, including 21 productions for Washington, D.C.’s between 1967-1998. His many awards and honors include the National Medal of Arts (2002), induction into the American Theater Hall of Fame (1998), the Helen Hayes Award, and two Tony Awards: Best Scenic Design for “K2” in 1983 and a Lifetime Achievement award in 2013. Lee passed away in October 2020 at the age of 90.

📸 Lee observing set construction for “The Ascent of Mount Fuji”, 1975
📸 “The Ascent of Mount Fuji”, 1975
📸 “Don Juan”, 1979
📸 “Hamlet”, 1978
📸 “K2” set construction, 1982
📸 Biography from “The Ascent of Mount Fuji” program, 1975

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 05/08/2024

in 1973 George Mason University students were in the final month of their studies at Mason. Unlike today Spring Semester ended in June, so students were still enjoying time on campus before finals on the Quad, and at Robinson Field by the P.E. Building (now RAC). SG election posters covered walkways between the original buildings, too. From the Broadside student newspaper collection, . Mason Libraries George Mason University Alumni Association

05/01/2024

50 years ago (5/1/74) GMU Department of Biology professor, Dr. Jay Shaffer and class meet in George Mason University's Lecture Hall for a Biology lecture. From: Broadside photographs,
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Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 04/29/2024

Time for another 🔎❓Do you know any of these Patriots from the past?

As we digitize the George Mason University photograph collection (R0120), we need your help identifying these former students of !

Please comment or DM us if you have any clues! 💚💛

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 04/25/2024

Welcome back to 🎭! All this talk about has us thinking about this recently processed scrapbook, created circa 1915-1922, featuring images of other silent movie stars.

The silent era of film dates from roughly the introduction of the film medium in the late 1800s through the late 1920s and refers to those movies made without synchronized sound. By 1912 advancements in film technology and editing led to the creation of the feature-length film. These newly expanded stories, combined with organized and higher budget studio productions, also led to the rise of the first movie stars such as Clara Bow, nicknamed “The It Girl” and one of the stars of the first Academy Award Best Picture winner (“Wings”), and the women featured in these images, including Norma Talmadge, Betty Compson, Ethel Clayton, & Academy Award winner Alice Brady.

📸 Selections from Silent movie star scrapbook, C0419

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 04/24/2024

#1997
This Friday, April 26 will mark the 59th Mason Day, George Mason University's longest running tradition, brought to you by Mason Student Involvement. Here are some photos of 1997's held on the Quad between Fenwick Library, SUB I, Krug Hall and (at that time) Robinson Hall. Among the performers that day were Ghoti Hook and headliner, Violent Femmes. From Broadside photograph collection, . Learn more about 2024 Mason Day at https://si.gmu.edu/mason-day/

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Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 04/23/2024

“Speak the speech, I pray you, as I pronounced it to you, trippingly on the tongue” (“Hamlet”, Act III scene ii, 1-2).

It’s April 23, so we’re celebrating William Shakespeare’s 460th “birthday” with this 3 volume collection of his plays, featuring woodcut illustrations by H.C. Selous, published circa 1860s 🎭 Fun fact: This edition doesn’t include “Titus Andronicus” because of editors Charles & Mary Cowden Clarke’s “strong conviction that it is not [Shakespeare’s] writing” and “on account of its grossness” (Volume III, preface) 🤷‍♀️

📸 “The Plays of Shakespeare” Volume III: The Tragedies (PR2753 .C53)

04/19/2024

A new finding aid for a collection full of photographic slides taken by a former GMU president? We simply had to dedicate a full post on our blog to highlight this recently processed collection now available for use in the Special Collections Research Center! Follow the link to learn more: https://vault217.gmu.edu/?p=10891

04/17/2024

A student-led rally in support of popular, yet controversial George Mason University faculty member, Fred Millar takes place on the quad between Finley, Krug, East and West Buildings during the spring of 1978. Before the wave of construction that began in the mid-1970s, this spot was a popular gathering place for Mason students and the site of events such as . From the George Mason University photograph collection ( ).
Mason Libraries George Mason University Alumni Association

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 04/11/2024

Welcome back to 🎭! We are always impressed with the detail that goes into both scenic and costume designs, so today we’re highlighting these lithographs for Jules Massenet’s “La Navarraise” printed circa 1894 in Paris by Heugel & Cie, Editeurs.

Translated from the French as “The Girl from Navarre,” “La Navarraise” is a verismo opera, a style that was popularized in the 1890s which focused on telling stories with greater realism. Based on the short story “La cigarette” by Jules Clartie, “La Navarraise’’ tells the story of a Navarre woman named Anita who is in love with a soldier named Arquil. Both encounter many thwarts to their passionate love, with drama and death ensuing.

📸 Black and white lithograph featuring a street scene from the opera by E. Buval after R. Caney, C0471.
📸 Full color costume lithograph featuring the characters Anita, Arquil, and Remigio, C0471.

04/10/2024

50 years ago, this George Mason University student camps out in the hallway of Thompson Hall and reads Broadside, the student newspaper, in between classes. From the Broadside photograph collection, . Mason Libraries George Mason University Alumni Association

04/08/2024

Happy ! 🌑🌒🌓 Back on February 26, 1979, George Mason University students were gearing up to watch the , just like today! If you're watching the eclipse in 2024, make sure to do it safely, Patriots!

Photo from the Broadside photograph collection, R0135.

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 03/28/2024

Welcome back to 🎭! We’re continuing our celebration of by sharing some of our collections featuring women performers and theatrical patrons. Today we’re highlighting the incomparable Gwen Verdon and, appropriately for Baseball’s official Opening Day, her breakout role as Lola in “Damn Yankees”. The show would not only make Verdon a star, but also mark the beginning of her decades long personal and professional partnership with choreographer Bob Fosse.

A modern retelling of the “Faust” tale set in 1950s Washington, D.C., in which Verdon plays a seductive assistant to the devilish Mr. Applegate, opened on Broadway on May 5, 1955 and ran for 1,019 performances. The show won 7 of its 9 Tony Award nominations, including Best Musical and Best Actress for Verdon, her second in total and the first of her 3 wins in the Leading Actress category. Verdon would go on to reprise her role as Lola in the 1958 film version, immortalizing her performances of “Whatever Lola Wants” and her duet with Fosse in “Who’s Got the Pain”.

📸 “Damn Yankees” 1955 Broadway program, from the Broadway souvenir theatre programs collection, C0182.

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 03/27/2024


An on-air personality works an airshift on George Mason University's mighty WGMU in 1980. As you can see, turntables and open-reel tape players provided the high-fidelity sound that eminated from the station, which, at that time, was located in Thompson Hall. From the Broadside photograph collection, . George Mason University Alumni Association Mason Libraries

03/22/2024

The Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) and George Mason University (GMU) Libraries recently hosted an event celebrating the official opening of the Lavinia Scott papers, C0506. In our latest blog post we provide a preview of the collection and recap this month’s collection opening event. Follow the link to learn more: https://vault217.gmu.edu/?p=10859

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 03/21/2024

Welcome back to 🎭! We’re continuing our celebration of by sharing some of our collections featuring women performers and theatrical patrons. This week we are highlighting the American dancer , one of the most striking and talented ballet dancers of the 20th century, and was considered the most famous prima ballerina in midcentury America. Tallchief was of Osage and Scots-Irish descent, marking her the first Native American ballet dancer to reach such renown. However, it was Tallchief herself who said “Above all, I wanted to be appreciated as a prima ballerina who happened to be a Native American, never as someone who was an American Indian ballerina.” Tallchief found a creative home for three decades with the , and collaborated to much success with its founder and choreographer George Balanchine. The lead role in Balanchine’s version of the ballet 𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘍𝘪𝘳𝘦𝘣𝘪𝘳𝘥 was created for Tallchief, who was known for her perfect technique, as well as her intense passion and athleticism when dancing. Tallchief would go on to found the Chicago City Ballet in 1981, and continued performing and teaching ballet until her death in 2013.

Images from the Charles Rodrigues playbill collection, C0184.

03/20/2024


1985 George Mason Women's Soccer team members Sis Koskinen, Pam Baughman, and Meg Romaine raise the NCAA Division 1 Championship trophy on November 24, 1985 after defeating North Carolina 2-0. This image is from the Spring 1986 issue of George Mason Magazine and part of George Mason University Publications, .
Mason Libraries George Mason University Alumni Association George Mason University

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 03/15/2024

“Remember March; the ides of March remember” (IV.ii.19).

We’re following Brutus’ reminder and marking the with this tiny Knickerbocker Leather & Novelty Co. copy of William Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” (PR2808 .A2 1900), and definitely listening to any warnings from Soothsayers. (Paperclip and binder clip provided for size 😉)

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 03/14/2024

Welcome back to 🎭! We’re continuing our celebration of by sharing some of our collections featuring women performers and theatrical patrons. This week we’re also wishing a belated Happy Birthday to the one and only Liza Minnelli. That’s Liza with a “Z” not Lisa with an “S” 😉 so appropriately we’re featuring this signed souvenir program from the 1973 tour of her “Liza with a Z” concert.

Directed and choreographed by Bob Fosse, the concert was originally filmed for television on May 31, 1972 at the Lyceum Theatre in New York and features Minnelli singing and dancing to popular standards, a medley from “Cabaret”, and original songs written for her by John Kander and Fred Ebb, including the title song.

From the Charles Rodrigues playbill collection, C0184.

Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 03/13/2024


George Mason University Broadside photgrapher Sam O'Neal and reporter Joyce Renwick attended Nikki Giovanni's appearance at the Smithsonian on September 11, 1974 and filed this story. Giovanni is an important poet who has written on race and gender among other important topics. From Broadside student newspaper and photograph collections and
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Photos from Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA's post 03/11/2024
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Fenwick Library MS 2FL, George Mason University
Fairfax, VA
22030
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Mason Housing Mason Housing
4400 University Drive MS 3F6
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Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study, GMU Krasnow Institute for Advanced Study, GMU
4400 University Drive
Fairfax, 22030

Whether discovering therapies for neurodegenerative illnesses or creating models explaining social behavior, we are committed to making a difference.

M.S. in Telecommunications at George Mason University M.S. in Telecommunications at George Mason University
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Graduate Program in Telecommunications

Defense & Strategic Studies at Missouri State Defense & Strategic Studies at Missouri State
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DSS provides professional education in U.S. national security policy; especially on issues regarding defense policy analysis and planning, the intelligence process, strategic deterrence, foreign relations, and the threat of weapons of mass destruction.

Mariposas Mentoring Program Mariposas Mentoring Program
George Mason University
Fairfax, 22030

The purpose of Mariposas Mentoring Program (MMP) is to promote academic excellence and leadership on campus. Our goal is to provide Latinas and other females at GMU with a strong foundation and network, to encourage opportunities for academic excellence.

Mason Photos Mason Photos
Fairfax, 22030

Mason Photos is a page dedicated to sharing images of the George Mason University community. Imagery is produced by Creative Services photographers from the Office of Communications and Marketing.

VIU Egypt VIU Egypt
Fairfax, 22030

http://www.viu.edu/ At VIU, we are committed to setting a new standard in higher education.

Johnson Center - George Mason University Johnson Center - George Mason University
4400 University Drive
Fairfax, 22030

The Johnson Center has become the heart of George Mason campus life, offering the largest food court on campus, four floors of study rooms and event space, a library, a Barnes & Nobles bookstore, offices and much more. Plan a visit to GMU JC!

The LEAD Office at George Mason University The LEAD Office at George Mason University
George Mason University, The Hub (Formally, SUB II), Room 2400
Fairfax, 22030

We provide leadership training and development for students!

International Socialist Organization - NoVa/GMU Branch International Socialist Organization - NoVa/GMU Branch
4400 University Drive
Fairfax, 22030

The George Mason University Fairfax Campus and Northern Virginia Branch of the International Socialist Organization

Mason Sailing Mason Sailing
Fairfax, 22030

Partnership for College Completion; College Account Program Partnership for College Completion; College Account Program
Fairfax, 22031

The PCC's College Account Program is an innovative program tackling one of today's most difficult qu