Exhibition features interviews, photographs about Las Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo

On Monday, April 22, 2013, University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston opened an exhibition in the Library’s Grossmann Gallery about the history and work of Las Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo).

The exhibition, titled “Nunca Más”: Niños Desaparecidos en Argentina y Las Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (“Never Again”: Disappeared Children in Argentina and the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo), opened as part of an event celebrating of the life and work of biologist and human rights activist Rita Arditti and the many donations made by Arditti and her Executors to the Library at UMass Boston.

The Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo is a human rights organization founded in 1977 to search for disappeared children who were abducted or born into captivity during the military dictatorship that ruled Argentina between 1976 and 1983. The Grandmothers’ goal was to find these children and return them to their biological families. The Grandmothers’ work led to the creation of the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team and the establishment of a National Genetic Data Bank.

In the early 1990s, Arditti traveled to Buenos Aires to interview the Grandmothers. She incorporated the interviews into her book Searching for Life: The Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo and the Disappeared Children of Argentina (1999). Two additional interviews with the Grandmothers were conducted in 2011 by Estelle Disch, Professor Emerita at UMass Boston and Executor of the Estate of Rita Arditti.

The Rita Arditti Collection contains audio files, interview transcriptions, and photographs of the Grandmothers. The materials were donated to University Archives & Special Collections at UMass Boston in 2011.In this exhibition, sponsored by University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston, are photographs of the Grandmothers who were interviewed by Arditti and Disch. Accompanying each photograph is an excerpt from that Grandmother’s interview in the original Spanish as well as an English translation.

The exhibition will be on display in the Healey Library’s Grossmann Gallery through the fall.

Explore this collection at openarchives.umb.edu.

For additional information, email library.archives@umb.edu or call 617-287-5944.


University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston collects materials related to the university’s history, as well as materials that reflect the institution’s urban mission and strong support of community service, notably in collections of records of urban planning, social welfare, social action, alternative movements, community organizations, and local history related to neighboring communities.

University Archives & Special Collections welcomes inquiries from individuals, organizations, and businesses interested in donating materials of an archival nature that that fit within our collecting policy. These include manuscripts, documents, organizational archives, collections of photographs, unique publications, and audio and video media. For more information about donating to University Archives & Special Collections, click here or email library.archives@umb.edu.

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Lexington Mass. Memories Road Show a resounding success

Volunteers and contributors at the Lexington Mass. Memories Road Show, March 16, 2013

On Saturday, March 16, 2013, as part of the town’s 300th Anniversary Celebration, the Mass. Memories Road Show visited Lexington, Massachusetts, and collected more than 300 photographs and stories from community members about their lives, their families, and their memories of Lexington.

Two hundred and eighty-one community members attended this Road Show event, which was part of series of activities for the LexCelebrate! Incorporation Weekend held at Lexington High School.

The Mass. Memories Road Show is a statewide digital history project that documents people, places, and events in Massachusetts history through family photographs and stories. In partnership with teams of local volunteers, we organize public events to scan family and community photographs and videotape “the stories behind the photos.” The images and video are indexed and incorporated into an online educational database at openarchives.umb.edu.

A Lexington Mass. Memories Road Show contributor, and Battle of Lexington reenactor, describes his photo contribution, sword in hand, to the Mass. Memories Road Show digital archive.

The Mass. Memories Road Show is an initiative of University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

The photos and stories from the Lexington Mass. Memories Road Show are currently being processed by archives staff and will be available online soon. It typically takes archives staff 2-3 months to fully process and incorporate images and stories into the digital collection.

Keep checking this site for up to date information.

Contact University Archives & Special Collections with any questions.


The Mass. Memories Road Show is a statewide digital history project that documents people, places and events in Massachusetts history through family photographs and stories. In partnership with teams of local volunteers, we organize public events to scan family and community photographs and videotape “the stories behind the photos.” The images and videos are indexed and incorporated into an online educational database. Since its launch, the project has gathered more than 8,000 photographs and stories from across the state. It is supported in part by the Patricia C. Flaherty ’81 Endowed Fund at UMass Boston.  

University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston was established in 1981 as a repository to collect archival material in subject areas of interest to the university, as well as the records of the university itself. The mission and history of UMass Boston guide the collection policies of University Archives & Special Collections, with the university’s urban mission and strong support of community service reflected in the records of and related to urban planning, social welfare, social action, alternative movements, community organizations, war and social consequence, and local history related to neighboring communities. To learn more, visit blogs.umb.edu/archives.

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Archives of an Activist: Celebrating the Donations of Rita Arditti to UMass Boston

Date: Monday, April 22, 2012

Time: 4:00 – 6:00 pm

Location: Joseph P. Healey Library (5th floor), University of Massachusetts Boston, 100 Morrissey Boulevard, Boston, MA 02125-3393.

Please RSVP for this event by emailing library.archives@umb.edu or by calling 617-287-5944.

The Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston invites you to celebrate the life and work of Rita Arditti, as well as the many donations made by Arditti and her Executors to the Library at UMass Boston, on Monday, April 22, 2013.

Arditti was an Argentinean professor living in the United States who learned about Las Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo, pictured above), an organization that searches for children who were abducted during the Argentinean military dictatorship between 1976-1983. Arditti visited the Grandmothers and conducted more than a dozen interviews, which were incorporated into her book Searching for Life: The Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo and the Disappeared Children of Argentina. Arditti spoke publicly about the Grandmothers’ work until her death in 2009.

Additional interviews were conducted in 2011 by  Estelle Disch, Rita Arditti’s partner and literary executor. The interview materials were donated to University Archives & Special Collections at UMass Boston in 2011.

Join us for this celebration, which will include an exhibition in the Library’s Grossmann Gallery about the Grandmothers and the disappeared children of Argentina. Speakers will include Estelle Disch, Doris Cristobal, Dean of Libraries Daniel Ortiz, and University Archivist Joanne Riley.

This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments and hors d’oeuvres. Please RSVP by emailing library.archives@umb.edu or by calling 617-287-5944.

For more information, visit blogs.umb.edu/archives.


University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston collects materials related to the university’s history, as well as materials that reflect the institution’s urban mission and strong support of community service, notably in collections of records of urban planning, social welfare, social action, alternative movements, community organizations, and local history related to neighboring communities.

University Archives & Special Collections welcomes inquiries from individuals, organizations, and businesses interested in donating materials of an archival nature that that fit within our collecting policy. These include manuscripts, documents, organizational archives, collections of photographs, unique publications, and audio and video media. For more information about donating to University Archives & Special Collections, click here or email library.archives@umb.edu.

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Snow, sledding, and Thompson’s Island

A residential school for boys was located on Thompson’s Island from 1833 until 1975. In 1907 the name of the school was changed to the “Farm and Trades School” and in 1955 to “Thompson’s Academy,” a college preparatory school for urban boys that closed in 1975.

Since 1988, “the island’s Board of Trustees has partnered with Outward Bound to operate the island, creating Thompson Island Outward Bound Education Center. The island continues its mission to serve underprivileged Boston youth with programs that instill teamwork, self-confidence and compassion, and that encourage learning-by-doing.” (http://thompsonisland.org/about/history/)

This digital exhibit includes a sampling of some of the photographs and visual material from the UMass Boston Thompson’s Island archival collections, which contain thousands of photographs, publications, school records and documents spanning 175 years.

Explore this collection of photographs and documents from Thompson’s Island.


University Archives & Special Collections in the Joseph P. Healey Library at UMass Boston collects materials related to the university’s history, as well as materials that reflect the institution’s urban mission and strong support of community service, notably in collections of records of urban planning, social welfare, social action, alternative movements, community organizations, and local history related to neighboring communities.

University Archives & Special Collections welcomes inquiries from individuals, organizations, and businesses interested in donating materials of an archival nature that that fit within our collecting policy. These include manuscripts, documents, organizational archives, collections of photographs, unique publications, and audio and video media. For more information about donating to University Archives & Special Collections, click here or email library.archives@umb.edu.

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Introducing Carolyn Goldstein, the new Mass. Memories Road Show manager

We’re delighted to announce that Carolyn M. Goldstein has joined University Archives & Special Collections as Public History and Community Archives Program Manager.

Carolyn is an experienced public historian, having worked as a museum curator at Lowell National Historical Park and the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. Her publications include Creating Consumers: Home Economists in 20th-Century America (University of North Carolina Press, 2012) and Do It Yourself: Home Improvement in 20th-Century America (National Building Museum and Princeton Architectural Press, 1998). Carolyn received her Ph.D. from University of Delaware, where she was a Fellow in the Hagley Program in the History of Industrialization.

One of Carolyn’s primary responsibilities will be coordinating the Library’s public scanning project, the Mass. Memories Road Show. She will also focus on building partnerships with undergraduate and graduate programs on campus, especially the History Department’s Archives and Public History tracks, as well as developing ways to expand the Library’s engagement with and service to local communities.

Upcoming Mass. Memories Road Shows include Lexington, on Saturday, March 16, and Stoughton on Sunday, May 5. Please visit openarchives.umb.edu for further information.

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