Amherst Magazine

Nooks and Crannies: Archives and Special Collections

Located on the A Level of Robert Frost Library, Archives and Special Collections is home to the history of Amherst. In 1851, the faculty approved a plan to collect and preserve the most important documents of the college, and the shelves beneath Frost Library (and buried deep in Bare Mountain) have grown with artifacts, books, theses, manuscripts and more ever since. Dig a little deeper, or just ask the right questions, and you'll find a few of the stranger pieces of college lore—shelves full of miniature Sabrinas, a time capsule discovered during recent renovations or even Emily Dickinson's hair. Peter Nelson, an archivist for the department, tells the story below.

Note: Many items in the collections are unlabeled, their explanations squirreled away in a database. If you would like further information on anything photographed in this presentation, please contact the department.

A list of items discovered in the time capsule is available here.