Fund Created for UWM Libraries LGBT Collection
Joseph Pabst, an advocate, activist, and philanthropist in the Milwaukee LGBT community, has created a fund to support the acquisition, processing, and preservation of materials for the UWM Libraries LGBT Collection and to promote the collection to UWM students, faculty, and the general public.
Pabst said the endowment-officially, the UWM Libraries LGBT OUTreach History Fund established by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation's Johnson and Pabst LGBT Humanity Fund-supports an important objective.
"The UWM Libraries have the largest LGBT collection in Wisconsin," Pabst said. "It's a breathtaking collection that documents Milwaukee's gay community from its beginnings. People in the community need to know about it and support it."
Michael Doylen, Head of the UWM Libraries Archives, noted that Wisconsin has a rich LGBT history, but it is neither well documented nor widely known.
"For the last several years, the UWM Libraries have worked with organizations and individuals from the Milwaukee community to ensure that the record of our local history is preserved and made accessible to everyone," Doylen said. "Joe Pabst's generous gift to establish the LGBT OUTreach History Fund gives us the financial resources to carry this mission forward. We're deeply grateful."
Pabst established the fund in memory of his partner, Robert Johnson, an attorney, avid reader, and vocal advocate of LGBT issues. He said he hopes that others will contribute to the endowment.
This is not the first time Pabst has been involved in supporting the collection. This past fall, he offered a $1,500 challenge grant to preserve the audio recordings of Gay Perspective, an early 70's radio program produced by the Gay Peoples Union. That challenge was met early this year.
Once preserved, those recordings will be digitized and included in a Web-based collection of print and manuscript materials documenting the history of the Gay Peoples Union, the first gay rights organization in Milwaukee. The recordings will be available on-site in the UWM Archives and accessible to anyone with a computer.
To view the UWM Libraries LGBT collection, please contact Michael Doylen, Archives, (414) 229-6980 firstname.lastname@example.org or Max Yela, Special Collections, (414) 229-4345 email@example.com.
Although a minimum of $40,000 is required to establish an endowment at UWM, the Libraries invite others to augment the LGBT OUTreach History Fund with donations of any size. For more information, please contact Susan Modder at (414) 229-2811 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ewa Barczyk, Libraries Director; Joseph Pabst; Max Yela, Special Collections Head; Michael Doylen, Archives Head
New Jewish Latin America Collection in Special Collections
In October 2007, Robert and Sandra Meldman of Mequon and Michael and Reena Hais of Arcadia, Calif. established, in memory of Sandra's and Reena's parents, the Louis P. and Ethel S. Setlick Fund for the UWM Libraries' Special Collections Department with a goal of building a collection of printed primary sources documenting Jewish life and culture in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The Setlick Fund positions UWM as the first institution in the Midwest to establish a special collection of Jewish Latin American materials. The collection will support teaching and research at UWM, but it will also provide a unique, public resource for regional institutions and for the community-at-large. (Special Collections is free and open for research to any interested person with a photo ID).
The primary goal of the collection is to identify and gather materials that serve as documentary evidence of Jewish life in Latin American and Caribbean culture, from newspapers and announcements to original community historical accounts to first and special editions of fiction and literary works. Additional goals are to develop general and academic programs that draw attention to the Jewish presence in Latin America and the Caribbean, and to establish a network of connections in the region to serve as resources for the collection.
In December 2007, the Setlick Fund was instrumental in making the inaugural acquisition for the new collection, in conjunction with an additional donation from Robert and Sandra Meldman, and support from the UWM Libraries, the UWM Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, and the UWM Department of Spanish and Portuguese. The acquisition is a bilingual, limited-edition artist's book by two noted Jewish Argentines-printmaker, painter, and book artist Mirta Kupferminc, and scholar and poet Sa�l Sosnowski-entitled Borges and the Kabbalah: Paths to the Word.
Through design, structure, poetry, and original prints, Borges and the Kabbalah beautifully articulates the inextricable links between traditional, Jewish mystical thought and the literary imaginings of the non-Jewish Argentine writer and poet Jorge Luis Borges, one of the 20th century's literary giants. The book serves as a physical manifestation of the Jewish and non-Jewish dialectic that forms one of the critical underpinnings of contemporary Latin American society. In this way, the cultural symbiosis reflected in this acquisition is emblematic of the documentary goals of the Jewish Latin America Collection.
This limited edition book (of 25 copies corresponding to the 25 orthographic Hebrew symbols-the 22 letters, the period, the comma, and the space), with its poetic expression of Jewish paradigms in the Latin American consciousness by Sa�l Sosnowski, and its 29 exquisitely-rendered original prints by Mirta Kupferminc, is the very first to be acquired by an American institution, and will serve both as an example of Jewish-Latin American integration, and as an inspirational Jewish Latin American artifact for contemporary researchers and for generations to come.
"Todos los senderos = All the paths," etching-aquatint. One of 29 original prints by Mirta Kupferminc in Borges and the Kabballah.