Nerd Nite No. 79: Archives Month! Monuments, Pamphlets, Stooges, and music by Midwestern Exposure
Laurie Allen will present Monument Lab: Changing the way we write the history of our city together
What is an appropriate monument for the current city of Philadelphia? Monument Lab is a citywide public art and history project centered around that important question. We’ve invited local and non-local artists to create temporary monuments and are gathering proposals from Philadelphians that will become a permanent collection of speculative monuments that tie together our city’s past, present, and future.
By day, Laurie Allen runs the Digital Scholarship Department at the Penn Libraries. She works to expand capacity for new kinds of scholarship. She is also the co-founder (with Penn Program in Environmental Humanities) of Data Refuge, an attempt to make copies of environmental and climate data housed on US Federal websites. Her side gig / passion project is as the Research Director of Monument Lab where she is working to create an archive/collection/dataset that reflects Philadelphia’s creative collective brilliance.
Will Fenton will present Friendly Indians, Fighting Quakers, and Scurrilous Pamphlets: The 1764 Paxton Pamphlet War
In December 1763, following years of gruesome frontier warfare, armed settlers in the Paxton Township exacted revenge on an isolated, unarmed Indian settlement, attacked the Lancaster jailhouse where refugees had taken shelter, and vowed to march all the way to Philadelphia. While these “Paxton Boys” were stopped in Germantown by a delegation led by none other than Benjamin Franklin, their critics and apologists spent the next year battling tooth and nail in print.
As a digital archive, critical edition, and teaching platform, the Digital Paxton Project (digitalpaxton.org) surfaces broadsides, pamphlets, political cartoons, and correspondence that circulated during that pamphlet war and situates that print event in a larger representational debate that spans from the Seven Years’ War (1756-63), through the American Revolution, to the Northwest Ordinance (1787). Co-sponsored by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania and the Library Company of Philadelphia, with contributions from institutions as diverse as the American Philosophical Society and the Moravian Archives of Bethlehem, Digital Paxton wouldn’t be possible without the support of archives and cultural institutions across the region.
Will Fenton is the Elizabeth R. Moran Fellow at the American Philosophical Society and a doctoral candidate at Fordham University where he specializes in early American literature and the Digital Humanities. His dissertation, “Unpeaceable Kingdom: Fighting Quakers, Revolutionary Violence, and the Antebellum Novel,” explores how nineteenth century American novelists use “fighting Quakers” to authorize the violences attendant upon settlement, slavery, and westward conquest. He has developed a complementary digital humanities project, Digital Paxton (digitalpaxton.org), a digital archive, scholarly edition, and teaching platform for the 1764 Paxton pamphlet war.
Finally, Michelle Squiccimara will present It’s Bigger on the Inside: How the world’s largest collection of Three Stooges memorabilia landed outside of Philadelphia.
Open to the public since 2004, The Stoogeum (rhymes with “museum”) houses over 100,000 objects along with an archive, research library, film vault, and a movie theater. Conceived as a home away from home for die-hard Three Stooges fans and the headquarters of one of the country’s oldest active fan clubs, the Stoogeum is now a highlight for oddity seekers from around the world.
Michelle Squiccimara is the registrar and outreach coordinator at The Stoogeum, the world’s largest collection of Three Stooges memorabilia. Despite what you may have heard, she did not get this job by guessing the correct number of jelly beans in a jar or win a call-in radio contest.
Our entertainment for the evening will be provided by Midwestern Exposure. Midwestern Exposure is a Blues / Roots rock band from Philadelphia consisting of Cam Clark, Jeff Goldman and Forrest Wright. Their recently released second album; The Workin’ Man’s Special, noticeably exudes a higher level of dedication and maturity from the band’s first album The Walrus Rabbi. The Rabbi was a terrific original dose of what Cam Clark and his music is all about so this time around the ante was upped and the bar, raised. The addition of Forrest Wright and his innovative styling’s ranging from tight melodic lines to fierce distorted runs on the lap steel, pedal steel and dobro had a striking impact on the overall sound of this album. With ominous adventures like ‘Pipeline’ the tone was set for an album with depth and dirtiness that the band’s music had not reached before.
Wednesday, October 4th. 7:30 pm.
1210 Frankford Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19125
$5 (CASH ONLY, there’s an ATM on site and a Wells Fargo up the street)
Doors open at 4, we recommend getting there early to get a good seat!
BE THERE AND BE SQUARE