Tonight, after months and years of anticipation and preparation, the curtain finally goes up on the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games! Fourteen black and gold sports stars are poised to represent Scotland and Pakistan, and two of us from Archives and Special Collections are all set to give our best as Clydesiders.
To celebrate the occasion, a round-up of all the sports-history projects worked on at Archives and Special Collections over the last half year or so. These projects have aimed to explore and raise awareness of less familiar aspects of our heritage collections.
As part of the University Careers’ Service Club 21 internship programme, three students completed research placements at Archives. 2014 History graduates Catriona Donaldson and Katie Berry researched University sports clubs in which they were themselves involved, while third-year History of Art student Mathilde Renauld investigated alumni athletes who competed at the British Empire and Commonwealth Games of the 1930s-50s.
On discovering the University Boat Club’s archive, current committee member, Emma Baxter, added to the portfolio of sports-club research.
Currently on exhibition at Special Collections is ‘A Collection of Sport‘. It offers a glimpse into the diverse range of sports-related materials among the rare books and manuscripts in Special Collections and the Scottish Theatre Archive, from a Renaissance emblem to a photograph of Rikki Fulton.
From 24 July at Archives in Thurso Street the fruits of another Club 21 project will be on display: 2014 History of Art graduates Natalia Masewicz and Victoria Scott’s exhibition on the places and people in the history of University of Glasgow sport.
For their help with assembling these exhibitions especial thanks are due to Special Collections’ conservator, Lou Robertson, and Archives’ preservation manager, Ela Gorska-Wiklo.
To publicise our rich sports-related heritage collections even further, a selection of digitised photographs and eighteenth-century swimming-instruction manuals written by Melchisedech Thevenot (Special Collections BD1-i.25) and by Benjamin Franklin (Special Collections Sp Coll 2348) have been added to the University’s Commonwealth Games webpages.
Keep an eye on Twitter and Flickr over the coming weeks for further images from the exhibition at Archives.
Have a great Games! I’m very much looking forward to my first volunteer shift at the squash!