The Adelmann Regional History Collection debuts online

The Adelmann Regional History Collection debuts online slide collection

Published: December 25, 2012.

(Left to right) Stefany Drabes, Robert Pruter
and Mary Ann Atkins

The Adelmann Regional History Slide Collection is now available online. The Lewis University History Center collection features almost 500 historic images of the Lockport area and the Illinois and Michigan Canal.

Representing the work of almost three years, Lewis University student interns worked closely with university librarians and staff to scan and identify the 35mm slides. “The majority of images are from Lockport, showing businesses, residences, parks, community activities, and the I&M Canal. Most date from the 1970s through the 1990s,” Stefany Drabes described. The history major has worked for the last six months as a paid intern under a grant from the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation.

Dr. John Lamb, professor emeritus and founding director of the ARHC, took the photographs for the slides. Drabes added, “As a long-time resident of Lockport, Professor Lamb developed a historical perspective for the region and began collecting I&M Canal-related items. The photographs include the houses of prominent Lockport figures such as William O’Connell, Bruce Cheadle, and Patrick Fitzpatrick; as well as many local Lockport businesses.”

Robert Pruter, librarian, reviewed each slide with Lamb to ensure the most accurate description possible to maximize the searching capability. The slides are an important part of state and local history that is now easily available to the public. The Slide Collection joins other online materials such as the Adele Fay Williams Collection of Drawings and Prints, the H.H. Carter Collection, the Robert Hawley Milne Collection, and the Postcard Collection.

Visit to view the collection.

“Dr. Dennis Cremin, director of the Lewis University History Center, made the digitization of the various slides in the ARHC a priority project. He was able to secure grant support from the Donnelley Foundation that included funds for student interns to scan these images, some of which were starting to deteriorate,” Drabes noted.

“Chelsea DeRose, Nick Cozzolino, and Stefany Drabes successively worked on organizing and scanning the slides over the past couple of years. The hard work of these students enabled this labor intensive project to be online,” Mary Ann Atkins, library interim co-director added.

Lewis University is a Catholic university offering distinctive undergraduate and graduate programs to more than 6,500 traditional and adult students. Lewis offers multiple campus locations, online degree programs, and a variety of formats that provide accessibility and convenience to a growing student population. Sponsored by the De La Salle Christian Brothers, Lewis prepares intellectually engaged, ethically grounded, globally connected, and socially responsible graduates. The ninth largest private not-for-profit university in Illinois, Lewis has been nationally recognized by The Princeton Review and U.S. News & World Report.

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