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Special Collections collections listing

An alphabetical list of collections in Special Collections (by person's last name or first name of organization).

Special Collections listing

The following is a list of collections held in Special Collections. It is not comprehensive, nor does it include the College Archives or Rare Books Collections. For more information, please go to the Special Collections website



Norris Abbott grade reports; 1854-1858. MSS-0106. The collection consists of Norris Abbott’s grade reports in the mid nineteenth century.


Alternative and Underground Press collection; 1916-2019 (bulk 1960-1998). MSS-0037. Publications from social and political groups relating to political controversies, extremism, and youth counter-culture.



Helen Hazard Bacon papers; 1846-1944. MSS-0093. Helen Hazard Bacon’s collected papers consisting of correspondence, financial papers, philanthropic papers, publications, and clippings.


Leonard Bacon letters; 1940-1951. MSS-0107. The collection contains letters and poems written by Leonard Bacon to “John” and Millie Knox in the mid twentieth century.


Leonard Bacon papers; 1887-1954. MSS-0094. Collection of a poet and literary critic.


Nathaniel Terry Bacon papers; 1763-1954. MSS-0005. Papers of an engineer, entrepreneur-industrialist, philanthropist, and scholar.


Thomas Rutherford Bacon papers; 1878-1907. MSS-0091. Papers primarily pertain to Thomas Rutherford Bacon’s teachings on theology, U.S. history, and European history in Berkeley, California.


Henry Barnard letters; 1846-1899 (bulk 1846-1853). MSS-0096. The collection contains a dozen original letters written by Henry Barnard in the mid-to-late nineteenth century.


David Baxter papers. MSS-0079. The collection includes 35mm slides from photographs taken by David Baxter of Cape Verde spanning from 1980 to 1989. Digitized photographs are available via DigitalCommons@RIC and Artstor. [Note: This collection is undescribed but is available upon request with a two weeks’ notice].


Book leaves of woodcut prints by Holbein family; 1460-1543. MSS-0122. Four book leaves of woodcut prints by the German Holbein family.


Book plates removed from “Life and Letters of John Winthrop” 2nd edition; 1869. MSS-0115. The collection contains book plates that were removed from the second edition of Life and Letters of John Winthrop by Robert C. Winthrop.


Dr. Rose Butler Brown memorabilia collection. MSS-0040. Memorabilia of Dr. Rose Butler Browne (1897-1986), including awards, diplomas and certificates. Dr. Browne was an alumna of RICE, and she earned her doctoral degree in education from Harvard University in 1939. She was a renowned educator, dedicated to civil rights and improving educational opportunities for children of color. [Note: This collection is undescribed but is available upon request with a two weeks’ notice].


Samuel Brown bills for school supplies; 1865-1870. MSS-0108. The collection contains bills for school supplies purchased by Samuel Brown from various booksellers in the late nineteenth century.


James Bushee papers, 1849-1889. MSS-0097. The collection consists of the collected papers of James Bushee, an educator and principal in New England during the nineteenth century.


Hezekiah Butterworth letters; undated, 1887. MSS-0109. The collection consists of two original letters written by Hezekiah Butterworth while working for The Youth’s Companion.



Cabo Verde Television Production videocassettes. MSS-0071. Videocassettes of CVTP’s weekly program “KONTAKT,” which was produced in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. CVTP was under the direction of João Rosário. [Note: This collection is currently undescribed and access is subject to digitization of items due to preservation concerns].


Antonio de Jesus Cardozo papers; circa 1920-1985. MSS-0080. Personal papers of Antonio de Jesus Cardozo, an attorney and Cape Verdean immigrant who lived in Massachusetts.


William Clarke letter to John R. Bartlett; 1871. MSS-0098. Letter from William Clarke to John R. Bartlett written in the late nineteenth century.


Eva Coombs papers. MSS-0082. Clippings, articles and printed material on Cape Verdean history and culture collected by Eva Coombs (1924-2010). Coombs was born in New Bedford, MA to Alfred and Maria Pina. She lived in Philadelphia, PA for 35 years, where she worked for the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry. [Note: This collection is undescribed but is available upon request with two weeks’ notice].


Confederate currency collection; undated, 1861-1863 (bulk 1861-1863). MSS-0110. Original Confederate money from the American Civil War.


Maribelle Cormack papers; 1920-1972. MSS-0010. Papers of a published author, former director of the Roger Williams Museum of Natural History, and educator.



da Graça and Soares family papers; 1901-1994. MSS-0072. The collection contains the collected papers of the da Graça and Soares family, which includes photographs that reflect the lives of a Cape Verdean family in Rhode Island in the early to mid-twentieth century.


Michael DeCiantis papers; circa 1900-1980. MSS-0001. Papers of a Rhode Island lawyer and judge. A majority of the collection consists of information on Rhode Island politics, Rhode Island Family Court, and life in Rhode Island.


Ingamar M. Alven Ducey papers; 1929-1931. MSS-0019. The collection consists of assignments created by Ingamar M. Alven Ducey while studying at the Yale School of Fine Arts in the early twentieth century.



Edmonds family papers; 1893-2012 (bulk 1904-1964). MSS-0027. The collection contains the collected papers of the Edmonds family, which includes photographs and documents that reflect the day-to-day lives of a family of color in Rhode Island in the late nineteenth to mid-twentieth century.


Edward Dexter Emerson letter to Anna Emerson; 1854 April 8. MSS-0099. The collection contains a typescript copy of a letter from Edward Dexter Emerson to his sister, Anna Emerson, written in April of 1854.



Facsimile of the New England Hornbook; 1960. MSS-0100. The collection contains one facsimile of the New England Hornbook with The Lord’s Prayer.


Irving Jay Fain papers; 1940-1974 (bulk 1959-1970). MSS-0003. Papers relating to Irving Jay Fain’s concern for and activities regarding housing, civil rights, poverty, and nutrition. The collection includes materials about the Rhode Island Fair Housing Law and the National Welfare Rights Organization.


Helen Forman papers; circa 1920-1999. MSS-0034. Collection of materials from a Rhode Island School of Education graduate and local teacher, Helen Forman, which contains photographs, correspondence, and memorabilia.



Jean Garrigue letter to Bill Read; 1969 October 20. MSS-0111. The collection includes an original response letter from Jean Garrigue to Bill Read in October of 1969.


Clare Gomnes Letters to Caroline DiOrio; 1940-1955 (bulk 1945-1955). MSS-0031. Letters written to Caroline DiOrio by Clare Gomnes, who was superintendent of the Sophia Little Home, a residence for unmarried mothers, from 1948-1955. The collection also includes a watercolor sketch of Caroline DiOrio by Clare Gomnes, as well as a few letters from Olga Gomnes and Madeleine Hoagland.


Virginia Neves Gonsalves collection. MSS-0084. Collection of materials on Cape Verde and Cape Verdean Americans collected by Virginia Neves Gonsalves. Includes publications, research files, ephemera, educational and conference materials pertaining to the people, culture, history, economics and development of Cape Verde.


Dr. Carl Russell Gross papers; circa 1843-1928. MSS-0002. Papers created by Providence physician, Dr. Carl Russell Gross, relating to Black history in Rhode Island. The collection includes draft manuscripts he wrote as well as subject files.



Hazard family letters; circa 1843-1928. MSS-0055. Letters sent to Dora and Frederick Hazard.


Dorothy Hunt and James Williams Urban League records; 1940-1975 (bulk 1941-1959). MSS-0008. Papers documenting some of the programs and activities of the Urban League of Rhode Island, Inc. since its inception to 1959. Correspondence and newspaper articles regarding Black nurses and artists in Rhode Island are included. The collection also includes literature regarding the Poll Tax in the United States.


Dorothy Hunt records of the Mayor’s Recreation Advisory Committee; 1944-1954. MSS-0086. Records documenting the City of Providence’s Mayor’s Recreation Advisory Committee. This collection includes correspondence, reports, budgets, newspaper clippings and meeting minutes.



International Longshoremen’s Association Local 1329 financial ledger; 1941. MSS-0095. Financial ledger tracking membership and dues for members of the International Longshoremen’s Association Local 1329 in 1941



Zenas Kevorkian photographs and other material; 1923-1988 (bulk 1930-1950). MSS-0042. The bulk of this collection consists of Kevorkian’s personal photographs, documenting his life, family, and community mostly in and around Providence and Cranston, Rhode Island from the 1920s through about 1960. The collection also includes correspondence while Kevorkian was in naval training in 1942, as well as publications of Providence Technical High School and Roger Williams Junior High School.



Letters to James White; 1958-1959. MSS-0118. Letters from Frank O’Connor and Richard Wilbur to Dr. James White in late 1950s.


James R. Langevin papers. MSS-0087. Papers relating to James Langevin’s congressional career. [Note: This collection is undescribed, however it will be accessible Fall 2023].


Joseph Livramento papers; 1916-2011. MSS-0060. Joseph Livramento’s collected papers, photographs, and memorabilia related to Cape Verde, Cape Verdean-Americans, and Cape Verdean music.


James Lopes papers. MSS-0062. This collection includes postcards of Cape Verde. Some postcards have been digitized and are available via DigitalCommons@RIC and Artstor. [Note: This collection is undescribed but is available upon request with a two weeks’ notice].



Horace Mann letter to Miss Peabody; 1840 June 11. MSS-0101. The collection consists of one original letter from Horace Mann responding to Miss Peabody in June of 1840.


Mariposa Collection; 1966-2018 (bulk 2007-2018). MSS-0025. Collected records from Mariposa, including administrative documents, curriculum resources, and printed materials.


Carla Martin collection on Cape Verdean language and culture; circa 1899-2012 (bulk 1985-2007). MSS-0074. The collections contains Dr. Carla Martin’s articles and research files, as well as sheet music, textiles, artworks, and souvenirs collected by Dr. Martin. 


Ron McLarty papers; 1915-2018 (bulk 1950-2018). MSS-00221. The McLarty collection includes Ron McLarty’s personal papers, photographs, published and unpublished works, and memorabilia from his appearances in theater, television and film.


Scott Molloy Social and Political Materials collection; 1947-1991. MSS-0025. Political materials collected by Rhode Island College alumnus Scott Molloy. Includes letters, leaflets, newsletters, newspapers, and other printed materials created by various political groups.


Joseph R. Muratore papers. MSS-0012. Collection relating to the history and culture of Italian Americans in Rhode Island. Some of Muratore's newspaper columns were digitized and available via DigitalCommons@RIC. [Note: This collection is undescribed but is available upon request with a two weeks’ notice].



Newspaper and newsletters collection; 1835-1864. MSS-0053. Collection of nineteenth century newspapers and newsletters.



Stephen Olney letter to Jeremiah Dexter; 1777 August 3. MSS-0102. The collection contains a typescript copy of a letter written by Stephen “Coggeshall” Olney to Jeremiah Dexter in August of 1777.



Pages from A Midsummer Night’s Dream; 1908. MSS-0121. Arthur Rackham’s illustrations and other pages from disbound 1908 edition of A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare.


Paper folding book; undated. MSS-0117. Paper folding book of paper folded in intricate ways.


Olive Parsons social and political collected materials; 1949-1980. MSS-0020. Olive Parsons’ collected documents as vice president in charge of correspondence for the American Coalition of Patriotic Societies, Inc.


Alberto Torres Pereira papers. MSS-0067. Collection includes materials from the Cape Verdean Oral History Project, which began in 1972 under the auspices of the Rhode Island Department of State Library Services. It was the second program of its kind undertaken by the RIDSLS, and it was conducted by Alberto Torres Pereira, a Cape Verdean historian, linguist and writer.​ Oral histories have been digitized and available  in DigitalCommons@RIC. [Note: This collection is undescribed but is available upon request with two weeks’ notice].


Portuguese Cultural Association records; 1959-1980. MSS-0038. The collection contains the collected papers of the Portuguese Cultural Association based in East Providence, Rhode Island, and includes documents and photographs that celebrate and promote Portuguese culture.


Portuguese Heritage Subcommittee records; 1971-1990 (bulk 1980-1983). MSS-0043. The collection contains Mariana Pierannunzi’s collected documents of the Portuguese Heritage Subcommittee which was created to celebrate and promote Portuguese culture.


Nancy Elizabeth Prophet collection; 1920-2022 (bulk 1920-1960). MSS-0028. Collection of Rhode Island born sculptor, Nancy Elizabeth Prophet. The collection includes photographs of Prophet’s sculptures, original sketches and watercolors, and articles on her life in the United States and Paris, France.


Providence High School Girls Department Manuscripts of Examination; 1876. MSS-0116. Manuscripts of modern history examination papers of twenty-six girls attending Providence High School in 1876.



Walter Ranger pen; 1908, 1972. MSS-0114. The collection includes the tip of a pen presumably used by Walter E. Ranger to sign the first State teacher’s certificate in Rhode Island in 1908.


Rhode Island School Superintendents Association records; 1903-1920. MSS-0103. The collection consists of meeting minutes documenting Rhode Island School Superintendents Association meetings from 1903-1920.


Rhode Island State Home and School records; 1885-2008 (bulk 1885-1960, 2001-2008). MSS-0039. The collection contains the records of, and relating to, the Rhode Island State Home and School. The records reflect the lives of the children who lived in the Home between the late nineteenth century to mid-twentieth century.



Linda J. Sable collection; circa 1970-1988. MSS-0123. Collected publications relating to the LGBTQIA community.


Chester E. Smolski photographic slides and publications; 1956-2008. MSS-0041. This collection comprises over 10,000 slides and 370 editorial columns published in Rhode Island newspapers, spanning the 1950s through the 2000s. Materials document the studies and travels of Professor Chester Smolski, who was a Professor of Geography and Director of the Urban Studies Program at Rhode Island College.


Wilfred E. Stone photographs; circa 1895-1929. MSS-0052. The collection consists of photographs taken by Wilfred E. Stone in various places of New England, mostly in Rhode Island.



Debra Thomson photographic slides; undated, 1980. MSS-0049. Photographic slides highlighting Rhode Island’s architecture in the twentieth century.



Maurice and Vera Vendettuoli papers; 1964-1975 (bulk 1971-1975). MSS-0113. Papers of a couple who opposed desegregated busing and the Providence Desegregation Plan in the 1970s.



John C. Wahnon collection; undated, 1982-1984. MSS-0076. The collection consists of John C. Wahnon’s collected papers of political articles regarding the Portuguese Communist Party’s (PCP) and African Party for the Independence of Cape Verde (PAICV).


Dr. Leonard West-Hardisty collection of Medieval and Early Modern manuscripts; circa 1250-1500. MSS-0050. Original Medieval and Early Modern manuscript leaves collected by Dr. Leonard West-Hardisty.


John Greenleaf Whittier letter to Ruth A. Williams; 1891 March 14. MSS-0105. The collection consists of a response letter from John Greenleaf Whittier to Ruth M. Williams regarding a class moto in 1891.


John J. Wilkinson collection; 1876-2001 (bulk 1966-1980). MSS-0026. John J. Wilkinson’s collected research and documents relating to vocational-technical education in Rhode Island.


Women’s Studies Organization, Feminist United, of Rhode Island College v. Rhode Island College records; 2005-2007. MSS-0088. Records pertaining to the cause and outcome of a court case involving the Women’s Studies Organization, Feminist United, and Rhode Island College.