Thousands Of Items From Chattanooga History Headed To UTC

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Chattanooga’s history is moving into the UTC Library.

More than 7,600 objects, almost 14,000 photos, and a huge number of text and paper items are being packed for the trip to their new home. 

Among the items, originally intended for the Chattanooga History Center are more than 100 years of personal and family papers, business records, photographic materials, moving images, textiles, books, periodicals, and physical objects.  

“This collection represents our city’s history and heritage,” says Theresa Liedtka, dean of UTC Library Administrative Services. “The collection has tremendous scholarly and local history value.

“It is the desire of both the UTC Library and the Chattanooga Public Library to work together to curate these important elements of Chattanooga’s history and culture and to make them available to citizens of Chattanooga and the world.”

Corinne Hill, director of the library, describes the collaboration as “a wonderful example and opportunity for two community anchor institutions to work together and share expertise.”

“We are looking forward to collaborating on ways to safeguard and celebrate these historic archives so they can be enjoyed for generations," she says.

Pieces in the collection cover such historical eras as the Cherokee Nation, the Civil War and Reconstruction, local sit-ins and demonstrations during the Civil Rights Era, and the renewal of Chattanooga from pollution-ridden to tourist destination.  

There also are materials from such noted Chattanooga families as the Brocks, Luptons, and Crutchfields and informational items from such city-based entities as Wheland Foundry, Coca-Cola, Fairyland, and Engel Stadium.

The main goal is to keep the collection intact, in Chattanooga, and in protected spaces, Ms. Liedtka says. “We are going to try to keep it all in one place and in a preservation environment. 

"Only a few of pieces of the collection will be on display in the library, which is limited in the amount of space it can dedicate to the items.  But there will be materials available online.

“Long-term we plan to work with the Public Library on exhibitions and loans, displaying some and making items available on loan to others.

"No renovations to the library should be needed, although some storage space and extra shelving probably will be used.  We are in the process of rearranging our existing climate-controlled storage facility on the fourth floor of the new UTC library.”

Most of the collection currently is housed in the former location of the Chattanooga History Center above Puckett’s restaurant next to the Tennessee Aquarium. The rest is in a city-owned warehouse.

The History Center was planned as a full-scale, interactive museum, but never opened.



Tennessee Historical Commission Announces Opening Of Battlefield Preservation Grant Funding

The Tennessee Wars Commission and the Tennessee Historical Commission announced that applications for the Tennessee Civil War Sites Preservation Fund are now being accepted. The grant program, begun in 2013, is a key source of matching funding for the preservation of properties associated with the 38 most significant Civil War sites in Tennessee. Additionally, grants can assist ... (click for more)

The Papers Of Andrew Jackson Project Receives NEH Award To Publish 3 New Volumes

The Papers of Andrew Jackson project has received a $325,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to prepare three new volumes for publication, covering 1833 through 1835. This grant is the second highest among the 21 awarded this year within the NEH Scholarly Editions and Translations program. "This generous grant is the largest we have ever received from ... (click for more)

Dallas Bay Baptist Church School Evacuated By Bomb Threat Tuesday Afternoon

Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office personnel responded to a bomb threat at Dallas Bay Baptist Church School on Tuesday.  As a precaution, all staff and children were evacuated from the building. They were moved to a secure location off-site near the school.  An all clear was given several hours later. All students at this time of been accounted for and have been ... (click for more)

Federal Appeals Court Rules In Favor Of Family With Down Syndrome Child Who Sued County Schools

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of a couple with a Down syndrome child who sued the county schools. The parents of Luka Hyde objected when the county schools tried to move him from his zoned school to a segregated school. The ruling says under federal law that students with disabilities are supposed to be placed in the least restrictive ... (click for more)

Thank You For Cleaning Up Brown's Tavern

Thank you to whomever is responsible for the massive clean-up project that began yesterday at Brown's Tavern in Lookout Valley.  It already looks 1,000 percent better. Ricky and T.J. Hendricks Smith  (click for more)

Roy Exum: One Person Every Hour

After the first weekend in August, the United States was shaken to its core as every major media outlet reported that 67 people had been shot in Chicago, 12 of them dead in the senseless carnage. Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel pleaded for calm and announced an additional 600 police officers would join other law enforcement in the five most troubled districts. This past weekend, which ... (click for more)