New & Updated Finding Aids – June 2024


Happy Summer! As usual, the SCRC processing team is celebrating with another group of new and updated finding aids. All of the following collections are available for use in the Special Collections Research Center and the finding aids are available on our website (or use the links included below).


“Three solos for the violoncello with accompaniment for a bass” by Johan Arnold Dahmen music manuscript, C0422

Collection processed by Meghan Glasbrenner

Handwritten and printed music manuscript by Dutch composer Johan Arnold Dahmen containing three previously unrecorded cello sonatas in C major, G major, and Bb major, doubling Dahmen’s known compositions in the genre. Dahmen (also known as John Arnold or Johannes Arnoldus) was born in the Netherlands circa 1766. The son of musician Willem Dahmen, Johan grew up in a musical family and by 1787 was playing bass for the Collegium Musicium in Utrecht. He is known as possibly the last professional player of the viola da gamba, or gambist, and is known to have published at least 45 compositions, with an emphasis on string instruments. This manuscript is an oblong folio, contained inside early leather-backed flexible marbled boards with titling “Solos Violoncello” in gilt letters along the front spine, although the compositions appear to be written for performance by two cellos. Consists of 12 leaves with 8 hand-ruled staves and is signed by the composer on the first page under the title, which reads “Thre[e] solos for the violoncello with accompaniment for a bass music manuscript”. Believed to be the only existing handwritten score by Dahmen.


Center detail of “Chaucers Canterbury Pilgrims” print, C0421


“Chaucers Canterbury Pilgrims” print by J.G. Charlton of 1810 engraving by William Blake, C0421

Collection processed by Meghan Glasbrenner

Printed, possible collotype, reproduction of “Chaucers Canterbury Pilgrims” by J.G. Charlton of 1810 engraving by William Blake. On the back of the print is a stamp attributing printing to “J.G. Charlton, Cathedral Studios, 14 Mercery Lane, Canterbury”. William Blake was an English engraver, artist, and poet, perhaps best known for his collections “Songs of Innocence” (1789) and “Songs of Experience” (1794). Among his best known and most critically acclaimed engravings are his large-scale design of Geoffrey Chaucer’s “Canterbury Pilgrims” in 1810, his 22 folio designs for the Book of Job in 1826, and his 7 large unfinished plates for Dante (1826-1827). John Charlton, known professionally at J.G. Charlton, was a photographer and publisher based in Canterbury, England from circa 1893 through the 1920s, likely serving for some time as the official photographer of Canterbury Cathedral. Charlton’s studio specialized in portrait photography, reproduction prints of popular engravings of Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales by both William Blake and Thomas Stothard, and a variety of other Canterbury-based souvenirs.

Written by Geoffrey Chaucer in Middle English between 1387-1400, The Canterbury Tales is a collection of stories set within a frame narrative centered around a pilgrimage to the shrine of Thomas Becket in Canterbury, Kent. Chaucer establishes the identities of these 30 pilgrims in “The General Prologue” where they gather at the Tabard Inn in Southwark, across the Thames from London, and agree to engage in a storytelling contest to pass the time during their journey to Canterbury. The print depicts Chaucer, seen on the far left riding a dark horse, and the pilgrims as they depart the Tabard Inn in Southwark on their way to Canterbury. The names of the pilgrims are identified directly below the image and read, from left to right, as follows: “Reeve. Chaucer. Clerk of Oxenford. Cook. Miller. Wife of Bath. Merchant. Parson. Man of Law. Plowman. Physician. Franklin. 2 Citizens. Shipman. The Host. Sompnour. Manciple. Pardoner. Monk. Friar. A Citizen. Lady Abbess. Nun. 3 Priests. Squires. Yeoman. Knight. Squire.”


The Green Pastures, 3 Is A Family, and Tobacco Road souvenir programs, C0427

Collection processed by Meghan Glasbrenner

Souvenir programs for three shows: The Green Pastures, circa 1932, The American Negro Theatre Broadway transfer production of 3 Is A Family from April 17, 1944, and Tobacco Road from circa 1938 which includes several signatures of members of the cast on the first page and a signed insert photograph of actor John Barton (1890-1962).

The Green Pastures was written in 1930 by Marc Connelly and adapted from Roark Bradford’s 1928 collection of stories. The play won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1930 and featured the first all-Black cast on Broadway. While hailed by white critics, Black critics and academics have been more critical of Connelly’s claims to be presenting an authentic view of Black religious thought. 3 Is A Family (also spelled Three Is A Family and Three’s A Family) was written in 1943 by Henry and Phoebe Ephron. The American Negro Theatre production transferred to Broadway’s Longacre Theatre in April 1944. Formed in Harlem, New York in 1940 by Abram Hill, Frederick O’Neal, and other actors, the American Negro Theatre (ANT) grew out of the Federal Theatre Project’s Negro Unit and would continue to operate until the mid-1950s. Tobacco Road was written in 1933 by Jack Kirkland, based on Erskine Caldwell’s 1932 novel of the same name. The play ran on Broadway for 3,182 performances to become the longest running show in Broadway history at the time. As of March 2024, it is still the 20th longest running show on Broadway, as well as the 2nd longest running non-musical.


Detail showing letters from Union soldiers Homer on the left and Daniel G. Marshall on the right, C0426


Two Civil War letters on shared paper signed by Union soldiers Daniel G. Marshall and Homer, C0426

Collection processed by Meghan Glasbrenner

Two Civil War letters on shared official stationery paper signed by Union soldiers Daniel G. Marshall and Homer. The paper had been folded in half, with each soldier writing on both the front and back of one half. Both served with the Union Connecticut Volunteers’ 19th Regiment Infantry, which was organized at Litchfield, Connecticut from July 25 through September 9, 1862. On September 15, the Regiment left Connecticut for Washington, D.C., and assumed guard and patrol duty at Alexandria, Virginia until January 12, 1863. On November 23, 1863, the designation of the Regiment was changed to 2nd Connecticut Heavy Artillery. According to the National Parks Service Civil War database there are 7 soldiers listed as belonging to the 19th Regiment Infantry with the name of “Homer.”

In his letter, addressed “Dear friend,” Daniel reassures the recipient of his health and safety, passes along updates on other soldiers known by the recipient or those back home, and asks the recipient to please write with updates and to pass his letter and news along to his parents and other friends. The letter written by Homer, addressed informally possibly to his sister “Hatt” or “Hal,” covers similar topics as Daniel’s letter, but the tone is more playful in parts and also includes details on the writer’s experience on patrol duty in Alexandria, direct criticisms of the “rebels,” and recounting of acts of violence he has witnessed.


Letter from George Bernard Shaw to unknown recipient regarding university education, C0425

Collection processed by Meghan Glasbrenner

A typed letter, dated December 13, 1913, written by George Bernard Shaw (also known as G. Bernard Shaw or Bernard Shaw), to an unknown recipient advising the recipient to postpone career questions until “he” has enrolled in and finished university. The letter was written while Shaw was living at 10 Adelphi Terrace in London and the salutation says simply “Dear Sir.” The letter does not include a formal written signature, but instead includes a typed signature reading “/S/ G. Bernard Shaw.” Born in Dublin on July 26, 1856 to a lower-middle class family, as a child Shaw attended four schools and was tutored by his uncle, but left formal schooling behind at the age of 15. Not long before he turned 16, his mother left the family and moved to London, with her son following in 1876 to pursue a career as a journalist and creative writer. For the next almost 50 years, Shaw would establish himself as a dramatist, insightful critic of music, art, and drama, and a prominent political writer and public speaker. Shaw passed away on November 2, 1950 at the age of 94.


Cover of “Official Souvenir Score Card World’s Series 1933” program, C0424


“Official Souvenir Score Card World’s Series 1933” program, C0424

Collection processed by Meghan Glasbrenner

“Official Souvenir Score Card World’s Series 1933” program. Interior contains headshots identifying officers and players for the Washington Nationals and the New York Giants and narratives introducing each of the teams. The center fold contains a blank score card to be filled in by spectators during the game. The score card for this copy is partially completed in pencil and the scores entered indicate the program was possibly used during Game 3 of the series, which Washington won 4-0. Referred to at the time as the World’s Series, the 1933 World Series was played over five games from October 3-7, 1933 between the Washington Nationals (commonly referred to as the Senators) and the New York Giants. While the Senators were heavily favored going into the series, strong pitching from the Giants led to an easy victory, winning four out of the five games. The 1933 World’s Series was the last in Washington, D.C. until 2019.

The selling of souvenir score cards and programs at baseball games goes back almost as long as professional baseball itself. However, the version that we think of today was introduced by Harry M. Stevens. Born in Derby, England in 1855, Stevens immigrated to the United States in 1882. Finding the score cards currently being sold to be low quality as they didn’t assist in identifying players, Stevens designed a new version which included, in addition to the score card, illustrations on the front cover, a full roster of players and their positions inside, and space for advertisements. Low printing costs and the ability for businesses to purchase advertising space quickly made Stevens’ new design appealing to team owners, and soon nearly every professional ballpark was selling souvenir score cards to fans. Stevens’ design is still the standard used today.


Follow SCRC on Social Media and look out for future posts on our FacebookInstagram, and Twitter accounts. To search the collections held at Special Collections Research Center, go to our website and browse the finding aids by subject or title. You may also e-mail us at or call 703-993-2220 if you would like to schedule an appointment, request materials, or if you have questions.