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From the Stacks: Scottish Tailor Tartan Sample Book

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Tucked away in the Thomas B. Lockwood papers (MS 11) is an undated book of tartan samples from a Scottish tailor.  Clans MacLeod, Campbell, McKenzie, and MacDonald are all represented.  For Outlander fans, the Hunting Fraser on page 20 will be of particular interest.  The book contains 44 samples of vibrant tartans tacked to each page.  Click here to view the tartan sample book.

Hunting Fraser tartan sample

Hunting Fraser tartan sample

Buffalo lawyer and businessman Thomas B. Lockwood (1873-1947) was one of many successful and wealthy men who built magnificent private libraries. Acquiring his books at auctions, including the famous ones of Robert Hoe and Beverly Chew, and through dealers like George D. Smith and Mitchell Kennerley, Lockwood assembled his library of some 3,000 volumes between 1910 and 1930. This was a very active time for book collectors in America. During the period Henry Folger, Henry E. Huntington and John Pierpont Morgan made massive purchases of printed books and manuscripts, which became the foundations of the research centers they later endowed. In Buffalo, there were also other collectors of importance, such as John L. Clawson and Robert B. Adams, both of whom were friends and neighbors of Lockwood.

Lockwood and his wife Marion Birge Lockwood (1881-1932) gave $500,000 for a library building for the University of Buffalo. He worked closely with Buffalo architect E. B. Green (1855-1950) in the design of the building and was involved with every detail of its construction. Writing in the New York Times on June 23, 1935, Philip Brooks describes the new library as “a beautiful building and a noble monument to book collecting. All that modern architecture could suggest in the way of design and equipment, and that a generous benefactor could provide, has been lavished upon the library in order to make it the last word in institutional luxury.”

Construction of Lockwood Library on South Campus

Construction of Lockwood Library on South Campus

The original Lockwood Memorial Library (pictured above) was dedicated on May 15, 1935, with remarks made by Christopher Morley (1890-1957), author and editor of the Saturday Review of Literature. “For every institution of higher learning the one perennially indispensable possession is a library,” Chancellor Samuel P. Capen (1878-1956) said in his dedicatory address. “New disciplines may arise and old disciplines totally disappear. The social purposes of universities may be completely altered, as they have been over and over again since universities were first established. But the dependence of a university upon its library does not abate. Books do not become less important as universities open up new intellectual territory and devise new ways of probing the mysteries of nature and of human life. They become ever more important.”

*“From the Stacks” highlights unique, little-known documents and artifacts uncovered by the staff and student assistants who work with the rich historical collections of the University Archives.

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