Today: Michelle Smith Performing Arts 08:30AM - 11:00PM

Exhibits | Special Collections and University Archives

Exhibits

The Special Collections and University Archives exhibition program features thematic displays of our unique collections. The exhibits focus on a wide range of subjects and are composed of books, manuscripts, ephemera, three-dimensional objects, and multi-media items. Special Collections and University Archives also sponsors a number of outreach programs in support of our major Maryland Room Gallery Exhibits.

Find exhibits in our main gallery, throughout the reading room and online. Visit us on the first floor of Hornbake Library

All exhibits are free to the public.

Current Exhibit

Labor unions were created by workers to protect their rights. Less recognized is labor’s role in advancing civil liberties, social justice, and economic equality for all Americans.

The labor movement has always supported the quest for economic justice, including demands for an eight-hour workday and a living wage. From the beginning of the 20th century, organized labor has championed religious freedom and the evolving demands of the environmental movement. By the end of the century, the labor movement consistently promoted international human rights.

In contrast, people of color, women, immigrants, and the LGBTQ community faced exclusion, segregation, and discrimination by unions. These groups created their own organizations, fought for inclusion, and pushed the labor movement to broaden its central principles of liberty, justice, and equality. In the 21st century, organized labor has become an advocate for the rights of all these communities, including anti-discrimination and civil rights legislation, marriage equality, and protections for undocumented workers.

This exhibit explores the American labor movement’s contributions to social progress using documents, images, videos, and artifacts from the Labor History Collections within the Special Collections and University Archives at the University of Maryland Libraries.

For Liberty, Justice, and Equality: Unions Making History in America

Online Exhibits

Featured exhibit

Saving College Radio: WMUC

For over 75 years, the University of Maryland has been actively involved in radio. What began as an introductory course in the Speech Department blossomed into a thriving student-run station, first as WMUC AM 650, then as WMUC- FM in College Park and WMUC Digital.

Generations of students have lent their talents to WMUC.  Many have gone on to broadcast-related careers in music, sports, journalism, reporting, production and engineering, while others have simply enjoyed the creative opportunities the station offered as an extracurricular activity. Whatever the future held for each of them, every voice at WMUC has helped to shape the identity of the university.

The University Libraries are proud to play a role in saving college radio at the University of Maryland. As we work to preserve the materials that tell the story of WMUC’s past, we are committed to ensuring that the station continues to serve the students, the campus and the greater Washington, D.C., area community well into the future.