Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Dramatic Archival Research!

Every day is a new learning experience when working on the Cheney house and today though we were not excavating, is no exception. As a part of the research, archival work is important in learning more about May and Warren Cheney.

I was at the library today looking through old issues of The Daily Californian and its predecessor, The Berkeleyan, the campus newspapers for my own research. That wasn’t going so well. After a few hours of desperately looking through the microfilm I decided to search on May Cheney and in the index I noticed one peculiar entry. It simply states “ shot, August 5, 1919”. I don’t think May died of gunshot…this is weird.

I decide to investigate and lo-and-behold, on August 5, 1919 a disgruntled alumnus burst on to the CAL campus and fired his pistol at Mrs. Cheney, who fighting him off - only suffering from a gash on the head as the bullet grazed her head and took a tuff of hair as it implanted itself in her office wall! The man was after May and two other professors who he believed were conspiring against him in his quest to get a permanent job at the University Library.

I couldn’t believe it! After several hours of research without anything to show for it I had before me the sensational headlines that describe the scene. “Narrowly Escaped Death!” “ Friends Rush to Bedside.” I couldn’t help myself; I had to rush over to the lab to share with Kim my findings. I have to say, archaeology isn’t only about the thrill of discovery in the ground, but it is also the thrill in library stacks!

- Krissy, senior


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Blogger mattchan said...

HAHAHAHA... I totally remember that day... you ran your butt as fast as you could from the library over to Kroeber... and then you frantically called me and were hecka excited...

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