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Digital Teaching Collections (Special Collections)

This research guide highlights primary sources and research materials in Special Collections for English 102 students.
The following selected materials are intended to serve as jumping-off points for further, more in-depth research. Each primary source listed contains a brief description as well as a link to the digital collection of which it is part. Links for the full digital collections can be found at the bottom of the page.  For information on searching within these collections, please see the tutorial Navigating Digital Teaching Collections.

Selected Materials for Pandemics, Epidemics, and Disease

Knoxville General Hospital, colorized photograph c.1917. Served as Knoxville's primary hospital from 1902 to 1956, and as the only hospital in Knoxville during the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic. From Images of East Tennessee Digital Collection. 

1918 Spanish Flu Special Collections LibGuide

This guide highlights primary sources and research materials in Special Collections related to the Spanish Flu and the Fall of 1918 at the University of Tennessee, providing more context for the spread, response, and effects of the Spanish Flu pandemic on the University of Tennessee Knoxville campus and the surrounding community.  

Sevier County Influenza Broadside

This county-issued broadside informs citizens of Sevier County, Tennessee ways to stop the spread of influenza. The broadside notes that the flu "is now sweeping over the United States and claiming its hundreds by such complications as pneumonia" and that "it has at least reached out county."  From the Volunteer Voices Digital Collection.

1901 meeting minutes about Lynchburg smallpox epidemic

From the Lynchburg, Tennessee Minute Book, these pages detail a meeting between the Lynchburg Aldermen and Mayor and the Board of Health that outlines a quarantine and vaccination plan for the town of Lynchburg in February, 1901. To view the transcript, click on the transcript tab above the item, or click here. From the Volunteer Voices Digital Collection.

Board of Health. of the Town of Lynchburg, Tennessee. 

1850 Jul. 19, Nashville [Tennessee] [to] Jo[h]n / R. H. McEwen. This is a letter from R. H. McEwen to his son John, dated July 19, 1850. McEwen reports that the cholera epidemic is abating. Transcript available here. From the Tennessee Documentary History Digital Collection. 

An Ordinance to establish a Board of Health for the Town of Lynchburg, and to define the powers and duties of the same. From the Volunteer Voices Digital Collection.

Yellow Fever in Memphis

A page from Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper with two sketches of Father Mathew Yellow Fever Camp near Memphis, TN. The top illustration shows the Sisters of Charity breaking down the camp, and the bottom illustration shows conditions during the epidemic. An article about the camp follows. From the Volunteer Voices Digital Collection.

Community Drug Awareness documents

A letter from Nancy Reagan written on The White House stationery expressing her deep concern for the drug epidemic among young people and gratitude for those attending Kingsport`s Community Drug Awareness Week. From the Volunteer Voices Digital Collection.

Teens and AIDS: Opportunities for Prevention

Pamphlet about HIV in children and teens, and prevention of AIDS published by the Children's Defense Fund in 1988. From the Children's Defense Fund Digital Collection. 

1833 Dec. 4 [to] J.M. King, Murfreesboro, Tennessee / Thomas O. Moore, Alexandria, Louisiana

 A letter written on December 4, 1833 from Thomas O. Moore to his cousin James Moore King. He writes of the great panic in Louisiana caused by the Cholera, as well as fear that half of the country will die from the disease. Moore also writes of difficulties in finding workers, and hope that the disease has left their region. From the Tennessee Documentary History Digital Collection. 

Establishment of a smallpox hospital in Gallatin, Tennessee in 1865

This letter was written as an court order to establish a smallpox hospital in Sumner County, Tennessee in 1865. From the Volunteer Voices Digital Collection.

Full Digital Collections for Pandemics, Epidemics, and Disease

Children's Defense Fund

Collection of reports and videos published by the Children's Defense Fund (CDF) on child welfare. CDF advocates for policies that lift children out of poverty; protect them from abuse; and ensure their access to health care, education, and a spiritual foundation

Tennessee Documentary History 

This collection covers the history of Tennessee from statehood to the pre-Civil War period through the letters and documents of such individuals as Andrew Jackson, William Blount, Andrew Johnson, John Sevier, and many more.

Tennessee Newspaper Digitization Project

The Tennessee Newspaper Digitization Project (TNDP) is a partnership between the University of Tennessee and the Tennessee State Library and Archives. The project provides access to a selection of Tennessee's historical newspapers. Search keywords in the search box to search the text of newspapers and identify relevant articles, while using filters to limit date or location for specific results. Link to the Tennessee Newspaper Digitization Project sources is here

Volunteer Voices

Volunteer Voices provides access to digitized primary sources documenting the history and culture of Tennessee. Significant events, like the Trail of Tears, World War I, and the Civil Rights Movement, are presented in this collection from the perspective of Tennesseans.