Tag Archives: NMU Archives

Student Staff Spotlight: Lydia

Our second graduating senior this year is Lydia Henning, our Website and Digitization Specialist. For those of the readership that have had the joy of visiting us in person this year, they have Lydia to thank for Whiteboard Wednesdays. It is her accomplishments with our online exhibition websites, however, that she values the most from her time with the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives.


The original!

Lydia spent four years as a Graphic Communications major; a scheduling snafu lead her to switch her major to Spanish. It was a natural second choice, since Lydia has been taking classes in that language since before preschool, and spoke Spanish with a close neighbor and her grandmother. Even with years of practice, though, Lydia says “I find my Spanish has improved exponentially since I have two Spanish classes on the same day of my school week this semester. I recommend immersion to learn any language.” She has been to Mexico twice, and looks forward to going again.

Lydia on living in the Upper Peninsula:

“Marquette is a great city, away from the bustle of major highways of the Lower Peninsula, and with more abundant natural beauty! I have enjoyed the lakes and ponds and rivers of Da Yoop, fly fishing with my boyfriend, who I met at NMU- in the library, actually. I also work there, as a student assistant. I love going to the numerous coffee shops around town, and walking to the shoreline of Gitche Gumee every so often. Many agree it’s much nicer here in the warmer months… so do I! I like the winter and snow, though. Saying, stay warm! to people is my favorite goodbye phrase in the winter.”

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Lydia with a big boat. The man in the red shirt is the author’s brother!


Lydia with some pretty leaves!

Originally from Fowlerville, Michigan, Lydia hopes for a career in museums, as a curator, exhibit designer, or interpreter, or maybe all three! She has been volunteering at the Marquette Regional History Center, and looks forward to many other opportunities. Stay warm, Lydia! Stay warm, Stefan!


Stefan and Lydia. Author’s brother not pictured. Or is he?

This post was written by Emily Wros.


Student Staff Spotlight: Stefan

As the 2017-18 academic year comes to a close, we at the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives have to say goodbye to our graduating seniors: Stefan Nelson and Lydia Henning. So we’ll be bidding a fond “hail and farewell” to them by giving each of them their own sendoff here on the blog. This week’s spotlight is on Stefan.


Stefan Nelson came to Northern in the fall of 2014 after graduating from Stillwater Area High School in Stillwater, Minnesota. According to him, he chose to attend Northern for three reasons: “First off, it had the major I was interested in – Fisheries and Wildlife Management. Secondly, it was a medium-sized school, not huge like some of the big public schools in MN, WI, ND, and elsewhere where I’d looked at. Thirdly, there was a tremendous amount of opportunities to do things in the area. I could hike, bike, shop, fish, walk to downtown from campus, or drive for a few minutes and be in the woods. This was pretty unusual for almost all of the other schools I’d looked at that had been in cities with large suburban areas surrounding them.” In regards to why Stefan chose to major in Fisheries and Wildlife Management: “I chose Fisheries and Wildlife Management as my major after taking AP Environmental Science in high school. I had a great teacher who was actively participating in environmental science but also wildlife in his professional and personal life with his peregrine falcon breeding program.”


Outside of school and working in the Archives, Stefan enjoys hanging out with friends; going out to eat; enjoying good weather in the outdoors in the form of hiking, biking, (ice) fishing, skiing, hammocking, and camping; and going to the PEIF. He’ll carry with him a lot of memories when he leaves Northern: “I know I’ll always remember the great professors at NMU, the fishing, hanging out with friends, the parties, night hikes, and other spontaneous activities I got to do. All of this would’ve been extremely hard to do anywhere else but here.”


Stefan (right) and friend

After graduating from NMU, Stefan plans to go to graduate school to conduct research in the natural resource field on wildlife or fish ecology, dispersal and distributions, interspecific and intraspecific interactions, or population management. As of the date of this blog post, he is still waiting to hear back from four schools on six different projects, and has heard back from four already that have selected other candidates. Stefan would like to be able to apply the knowledge he’s learned at Northern and pair it with the summer experiences he’s gained over the last three years. Career-wise, Stefan would take a job working for a state, federal, or private agency in a wildlife science, research, or management position.


Stefan (left) and friend

In closing, here’s Stefan, in his own words, talking about what working in the Archives has meant to him: “Working at the Archives for four years has been a great experience for me. I’ve enjoyed being able to learn about the vast breadth of resources available to the public here at the Archives. It’s also been cool to have been the first male Senior Student Assistant. I’ve been able to practice interacting with members of NMU staff and the public, drive a full sized (green) van, perform historical research, practice good data entry and management, plan and organize public events, learn what an archives is, how it works, what kind of records it keeps, and how records retention works, among other things. I appreciate having worked with some amazing coworkers who have supported me with both work and non-work related things, and for the opportunity to work a job on campus that’s taught me so much about the history of NMU, Marquette, and the UP in general. Thanks to Marcus, Glenda, and all the student assistants!”


This post was written by Lucas Knapp.

Archivist File: Carey Hall

While looking through the Archivist File and ruffling through folders full of different memorabilia, I came across an interesting packet of papers.


As stated above, this packet would have been sent out to the parents of female students at Northern Michigan College. The Girls’ Organization of Carey Hall, or G.O.O.C.H., was comprised of girls living in Carey hall who created the rules for the dorm and decided the consequences for breaking said rules. While I completely agree that there is a need for rules in dormitories and that it would be comforting for parents to know that their children are living in well structured and disciplined places, to have curfews for only the female students is quite unnecessary.

Now, obviously I can detach myself and my ideals from our current era — where a packet with rules like this would never happen without severe backlash — and I can see that for the era it was made in this would have been normal. It would have been normal for a parent to feel the need to control their daughter who, although legally an adult, by societal standards would have needed to abide by her parents rules until she found a husband to abide by.

Something that I do want to look at, however, is the language used throughout the packet. Written by G.O.O.C.H, I would have assumed that many of the girls would have bonded together and tried to advertise the “Blanket” permission option as the best, in order for the girls to have more freedom. It is surprising to find that much of the wording is meant to shame the female students and their parents.

“Our problem we have taken into consideration is “overnights” after dances…,” is the first example of shaming the female students. G.O.O.C.H. is clearly tattle-taling to the parents of female students, essentially saying “ Hey we noticed that after these dances, some of our female students are participating in “adult activities” and we feel that it may be inappropriate.” Not only is that a total breach of  privacy, but it is also a window into the past of how little control women had with making their own choices.

On the second page is where we can see the shaming of the parent. It is easy to see how the choices of permissions were written in order to shame parents into taking more control. When one reads the options on their own, each one sounds okay, but when reading down the row, like many parents would have, one can read the change is tone in the 4th option. The first three options begin their sentences with an authoritarian phrasing of “a girl may not” or “a girl is permitted” which implies power and control. The final option begins with a weaker, lenient tone, not even bothering to mention the girl, but instead flipping the wording to “ If a parent wishes”. This is a subtle change, but it has a major impact on how parents would have read the choices and how they would have made their choice. It becomes a basic question. Which kind of parent would you want to be? Do you want to have power and control, or are you weak?

It is interesting to look back and see how the everyday woman would have been treated and what rules and power struggles she would have faced. It is hard to see that even other women, at that time, would have been so willing to enforce such sexist rules. Today, rules like this would never happen, but it is strange to look back at a not so distant past and see such a different frame of mind.

This post was written by Kyleigh Sapp.