olding History invites your hands to hold, explore, and even take pictures of some of the most important books ever printed. At each event, participants are welcomed into one of the UW-Madison’s Special Collections Libraries where student curators and rare book experts team up to create a lively, hands-on experience with books that were printed when Hamlet was barely a twinkle in Shakespeare’s eye.
At its core, it is the Wisconsin Idea in action: the program not only welcomes public audiences into the university’s Special Collections, but also provides a forum for training students to share their knowledge and the resources of the campus with our broader community.
At our kickoff event on July 21, “Holding History: Shakespeare’s Sonnets & Poems,” undergraduate and graduate students (with majors ranging from English to Astrophysics) invited participants to turn the pages of about a dozen rare volumes including the second printing of Shakespeare’s Sonnets.
Biology major Alexandria Smith discusses old and new books during Q&A, UW-Madison Special Collections (Photo: Rick Marolt)
English major Tegan Vail & English PhD student Kaydian Campbell invite participants to leaf through 16th C poetry books, UW-Madison Special Collections (Photo: Rick Marolt)
Grant supported provided by the UW-Madison Anonymous Fund, the Brittingham Fund, and the Kemper K. Knapp Fund.