Photo Courtesy of Brandon Maraldo

The Special Collections department is on the third floor of the Michael Schwartz Library and provides information on Cleveland history.


February 28, 2017

Special Collections provides info to students

Located on the third floor of the Michael Schwartz Library is the Special Collections department, which can help students by providing information on Cleveland history and other information about northeastern Ohio projects.

Special Collections has its own part of the library. It has this space because some of the collections are very fragile and care is needed to keep them undamaged. These collections could be rare and hard to be replaced.

The first big collection that Cleveland State received came from the Cleveland Press. The Cleveland Press, a daily newspaper, published from 1878 through 1982 in Cleveland.

Joseph Cole, the owner of the Cleveland Press and a member of the Cleveland State University Board of Trustees, donated half a million photos and a million press clippings, which is the biggest collection the library has.

Bill Barrow, head of Special Collections, helped to create the Cleveland Union Terminal collection in 1996. The Cleveland Union Terminal is also known as Tower City. The Collection has 6,000 photos and 400 boxes that detail the construction of the Cleveland Union Terminal.

Special Collections has more than 150 different collections, most of which are donations. The department has also received negatives from former press photographers.

The oldest piece of history that the Special Collections has is a 1796 newspaper article from Massachusetts. The article is a report from Conneaut, on the fourth of July when General Moses Cleaveland was en route to what would become Cleveland. Led by Cleaveland, the group began laying down the township lines before they came to Cleveland, which was named after the General.

Barrow said he hopes people who visit Special Collections will come away with a sense of “how the city came to be and grew and who the people have been,” he said. “To have a better appreciation of the city and how it turned into a major industrial power and to whatever we are becoming today.”


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