Kent State University Museum, Papers, 1962-[ongoing]
Prepared by Edith Serkownek, May 8, 2006; Updated July 2012
6 boxes (1 record storage box, 1 half sized record storage boxes, 4 document cases, and 1 flat box), 3.5 cubic feet,
This history of the Kent State University Museum is excerpted from the KSU Museum web page, "The Story of the Kent State University Museum."
"In January, 1982, Kent State University received the largest and most valuable gift offered since its founding in 1910: the collection of fashion, historic costume, paintings and decorative arts amassed by Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman, partners in Jerry Silverman, Inc., a manufacturer of better dresses on Seventh Avenue in New York City. They were persuaded to make this extraordinary gift to the University during the administration of President Brage Golding who endorsed their vision of establishing both a museum and a curriculum in fashion design and merchandising. Shannon's Ohio roots enabled the first connection with Kent State, and generous members of the Kent, Cleveland and Akron communities joined University Alumni in enthusiastically supporting the idea of a museum.
The original Silverman/Rodgers gift included 4,000 costumes and accessories, nearly 1,000 pieces of decorative art and a 5,000 volume reference library. In 1983, Akron antique collectors Jabe Tarter and Paul Miller donated their extensive collection of American glass. The KSU Museum collection now numbers over 20,000 objects - enriched by major gifts from Helen O. Borowitz, Paige Palmer, Martha McCaskey Selhorst, John Wilkinson, and many other generous donors.
The Museum opened in 1985 in Rockwell hall, the original University Library, which was renovated to meet the highest museum standards. Built in 1927, the building reflects Beaux Arts design elements which were restored under the supervision of Ted Curtis, former Kent State University architect, and the Cleveland architectural firm Whitley & Whitley."
This collection consists of materials relating to the KSU Museum from 1962, when the idea of a museum on the KSU campus was studied, through the present. It includes six series. Series 1 contains papers relating to KSU Museum business and events including early correspondence regarding the creation of a KSU museum, Silverman-Rodgers project material, the architectural program for Rockwell Hall and files on important individuals involved with the museum organized chronologically. Series 2 contains KSU Museum publications including promotional books, visitor guides, newsletters, postcards, flyers and stationary and is organized topically. Series 3 contains photographs, promotional material and publication for KSU Museum exhibits. It is organized chronologically. Series 4 contains topical and event photographs and is organized chronologically. Series 5 contains newspapers, newsletters and magazine clippings on the KSU Museum and it's acitivities organized chronologically. Series 6 contains audio-visual materials includes both in-house material and news coverage of the KSU Museum and its activities organized chronologically. Additions will continue to be made to the collection. Please note copyright restrictions.
KSU Museum business and event files organized chronologically. Research note: The (KSU) Museum Committee was formed in the early 1960s to study the feasibility of creating a museum(s) on the KSU campus and did not directly result in the creation of the current KSU Museum.
(KSU) Museum Committee: Minutes, agendas and surveys: 1962-1963
(KSU) Museum Committee: Minutes, agendas and surveys and photograph: 1964-1965
Correspondence: Leslie Stegh, KSU Archivist, to William Taylor regarding creation of KSU Museum: April 1, 1974
Silverman-Rodgers Project and KSU Museum: Correspondence and memorandums: 1981-1986
Rockwell Hall: Architectural Program for Kent State University School of Fashion Design and Merchandising and Costume Museum: December 29, 1982
Silverman-Rodgers Project: Leadership Awareness Program narrative and background paper: [early 1980s]
Alumni Association: Correspondence, publications and Alumni Gallery fundraising material: 1982-1985
KSU Museum and School of Fashion: Progress reports and newsletter: 1983-1985
Blum, Stella: Interview by Barbara Tober of Brides magazine: April, 1983
"Dazzle" and "Reflections," KSU Museum Opening: Committee lists, invitations, memorandum, program and publicity: June-October, 1985
KSU Museum: Press releases: 1985-1990
KSU Museum: Advertisements in area publications from KSU Publications and Printing Services and memorandum: 1985-1988
KSU Museum: Advertisements in area publications from KSU Publications and Printing Services: 1990-1991
Rodgers, Shannon: Memorial service program, press release and obituary: March 6, 1996 and Undated [Note: Birth date is incorrect, Rodgers was born in 1911]
Garfinkel, Stanley: Memorial program and obituary: September, 1997
KSU Museum: "History of Museum" paper: Undated
KSU Museum: Inventory of art and costume collection: Undated
Folder -- Contents
Series 2: Publications
KSU Museum publications, topically organized.
KSU Museum booklet: A Gift to the Nation: Published booklet (2 copies) and proof: 
KSU Museum booklet: The Kent State University Museum: Undated
KSU Museum booklet: The Kent State University Museum (different publication, same title): Undated
KSU Museum brochures, visitor guides and maps: Undated
KSU Museum exhibit schedules and guides: 1997-ongoing
KSU Museum membership cards and printer mock-ups: [circa 1985]
KSU Museum newsletter: Fall, 2002
KSU Museum postcards: Undated
KSU Museum press kit: News releases and photographs of individuals involved in opening, Rockwell, costumes and glass collections: 
KSU Museum special events, rentals and workshops: flyers, folders, mailers, etc.: 1991-ongoing
KSU Museum stationary: Undated
Folder -- Content
Series 3: Exhibits and Collections
Museum exhibit and donation files. These files may include photographs, promotional material, gallery guides, exhibit scripts, correspondence and exhibit publications. Organized chronologically, then alphabetically by exhibit title.
KSU Museum: Tarter/Miller donation: Interiors and objects: Photographs: [circa 1983]
Canton Art Institute and KSU: Nightingales and Dragons: The Robes of China: Photograph, slides and publications: 1984
KSU Museum: "Dazzle" and opening exhibits: Photographs: September 27, 1985
KSU Museum: Brides, Brides, Brides: Photographs and slides: 1987
Musee des Arts de la Mode, Paris: Christian Dior Retrospective exhibit:
Two KSU Museum dresses were loaned for the exhibit and KSU Professor, Stanley
Garfinkel showed his documentary, Completely Dior: Slides: 1987
KSU Museum: Girl Scout display: Photographs: 1987
KSU Museum: Indian exhibit and reception for dignitaries: Photographs, slides and correspondence: September-November, 1987
KSU Museum: Talking of Hats: Photographs: 1987
KSU Museum: Blue & White Chinese Porcelains: Photographs and exhibit brochure: 1988-1989
KSU Museum: Embroideries from the collection of Cora Ginsburg: newspaper clippings and exhibit text: 1988
KSU Museum: The Fascinating '20s: Photographs: 1988
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