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University of Waterloo -- Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
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Wednesday, June 11, 1997

Seagram papers come to UW

UW is among several institutions that will get a share of the papers, books and artifacts from the Seagram Museum in central Waterloo, which closed in March. The Seagram distillery firm, which operated the museum, announced yesterday what's being done with its collections.

The UW library gets some 900 rare books, as well as archival collections about the Seagram family and the company it founded. Joseph E. Seagram, founder of the internationally-known liquor company, was the first Member of Parliament for Waterloo and established his first distillery at the corner of Erb and Caroline Streets in downtown Waterloo, where the museum was housed for its ten years of operation.

The items will be housed in the Library's recently expanded Doris Lewis Rare Book Room, and will complement the library's existing collections in chemistry, chemical engineering and the history of technology, the decorative arts, temperance and social history, said rare books librarian Susan Bellingham.

The earliest of the imprints in the rare book collection is Konrad Gesner's famous book on distillation De Secretis Remediis aut Potius Thesaurus, printed in Zurich in 1554. "The finely bound and carefully assembled collections on distillation and the beverage alcohol industry will provide fine resources for the study of one of the early and well-known industries of the Waterloo area," Bellingham said.

The archives, including the papers of the Seagram family and the pre-1928 records from the Joseph E. Seagram and Sons Ltd. Waterloo plant, will add significant resources to the library's existing papers about the history of the Waterloo area. Papers from several prominent local families and companies are already in the UW collections.

A UW news release today notes that the gift from Seagram "continues the tradition of support of the University of Waterloo" by both Seagram Co. Ltd. and the Bronfman family, which now owns it -- a tradition which began in UW's founding year with the gift of Seagram Stadium.

Many of the physical artifacts from the Seagram Museum are being given to the City of Waterloo, which is hoping to mount a display of local industrial history. Wilfrid Laurier University gets a collection of artworks, and Brock University, which recently opened a centre for the study of the wine and grape industry, gets the museum's materials and books on that subject.

This week's staff positions

Since there's no Gazette today, here are the week's Positions Available, as issued by the human resources department. (Full lists of qualifications are available on the HR web pages.) The obligatory fine print: "The university welcomes and encourages applications from the designated employment equity groups: visible minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and aboriginal people. For more information call UW, 885-1211 ext. 2524."

On Martin Van Nierop's birthday

Friends of Pat Martin, long-time office secretary for the staff association, can wish her well on her retirement, at an open house today from 12 to 1:30 in Davis Centre room 1301.

The research office holds its technology transfer information seminar from 1 to 4 this afternoon -- an event "designed to assist University of Waterloo Researchers make informed decisions regarding intellectual property protection and commercialization of research work". Last-minute information: ext. 3142.

A reception to honour Herbert Fernando on his retirement from the biology department will start at 4:00 this afternoon at the University Club.

Dance recitals continue in the Humanities Theatre; tonight and tomorrow night, Let's Dance of Kitchener ("Our goal is to bring out the best in you") has the place rented.

Hosting seven thousand scholars

That's the kind of crowd that has descended on the Memorial University of Newfoundland for the past week and a half, as the annual Congress of Learned Societies takes place there. An excerpt from a report in Memorial's Gazette:
"It's a chance to see colleagues who, in a country the size of Canada, you don't encounter very often," observed Dr. Greg Kealey, dean of Memorial's School of Graduate Studies, who has attended every Learneds conference since 1973. "Over the two-week period you have remarkable combinations of different disciplines. I think it is a very important event; it is internationally unique in that you get this combination of groups meeting at the same time...You see people that you just talk to on the phone, and other people whose work you have read and you've not had the opportunity to meet," he said.

The Learneds is about work, but it also provides delegates a chance to socialize with their peers from other universities.

"The major purpose is the delivery of the papers, but the socializing, and what goes on at the Publishers' Exhibition, and the stuff the that goes on at the beer tent is also important. Never underestimate the importance of the beer tent -- many people judge the quality of the Learneds by how good the social arrangements are," Dr. Kealey said with a grin.

Social activities provide a backdrop for what is the business of discussing and exchanging ideas, and meeting with people who do the same.

"You are making connections with publishers, you are making connections with journal editors, you are talking about your work, Dr. Kealey explained. "You are meeting with colleagues with whom you may collaborate, and you are meeting graduate students or even very senior undergraduate students, who are advancing new ideas. It's a place to establish contacts and get yourself known."

About 140 societies, from Kant specialists to Chinese economists and the Canadian Association of Emeriti And Retired Academics, are holding their meetings simultaneously at Memorial.


June 11, 1976: Vera Leavoy, who was one of UW's first administrative staff members, leaves for a year facing a new challenge in Paraiba as administrator of the Brazil-Waterloo Program in Engineering.

Editor of the Daily Bulletin: Chris Redmond
Information and Public Affairs, University of Waterloo
credmond@watserv1.uwaterloo.ca -- (519) 888-4567 ext. 3004
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