Library Event Shares Secrets from Wonderland

One of the reasons to be thankful this academic year is that it’s an Alice in Wonderland year at Meredith! Meredith has done a performance of Alice in Wonderland every four years since 1924. To celebrate the occasion coming up in January 2016, the library held an exhibition called Secrets from Wonderland in the Harris Room. 

The secrets revealed included treasures from our archives and from collectors all over campus. Amanda Sullivan, a Research and Instruction Librarian, worked with Meredith Haynes, our Meredith Archivist, and library student workers to pick out photographs from past productions. There were images dating back to 1930, ones from 1960, and some from 1954 as well.

Along with the photographs on display, there was a bright yellow program from the first 1924 performance and The Twig article that reviewed the performance. The Twig declared the play was “one of the most delightful dramatic affairs of the year.” Also on view was a recording of the 1988 performance that played by a psychedelic Mad Hatter costume (is there any other kind) and a beautiful Alice dress from the archives.

Amanda Strickland, a student who attended said she “loved the history aspect of the show and that it was a great way to get students excited about the traditions at Meredith and the importance of Meredith history.”

The rest of the exhibition’s items were from the personal collections of Robin Colby, Jean Jackson, Amanda Sullivan, and Deborah Tippett.  Covering practically every surface of the room were dolls, tins, figurines, garden statues, stuffed animals, Christmas ornaments, plates, and even tea towels all paying homage to Alice in Wonderland. There were also many tea sets and tea cups with modern interpretations of the Alice story and of course many of the pieces had John Tenniel’s famous illustrations. One mug even had Lewis Carroll’s handwriting from the original manuscript he wrote out for the Alice and the illustrations he drew.

You can see the book virtually here thanks to the British Library’s project Turning the Pages. If you weren’t able to make it to the exhibition, keep your eyes out for pictures from the event on our library’s Facebook and Instagram accounts.

--Submitted by Amanda Sullivan, Research and Instruction Librarian

Melyssa Allen

News Director
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