A glimpse into our history

New collection of archived photos distributed in the JDUC

Pierre Trudeau addressing 1968 convocation.
Pierre Trudeau addressing 1968 convocation.
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The AMS unveiled a 40-piece collection of framed archival photographs distributed throughout the JDUC.

The black-and-white installation is permanent, and the concept came to fruition through joint work between Queen’s Archives staff and the AMS.

Philip Lloyd, vice-president of university affairs at the AMS, said the photos play a significant role in showcasing Queen’s history from the early 1900s onwards.

“One of the things that we wanted to do, was recognizing that with the space we currently have, down the road it’s going to be completely transformed,” said Lloyd, ConEd ’13. “But as of right now, we asked, what can we do to make [the JDUC] have more of a homey feel, or something that really celebrates Queen’s as it is?”

Lloyd added that a few options were discussed for how they would give the JDUC a more “homey feel”, and it was decided that archival photos would best capture the history of Queen’s.

“We thought we should get some archival photos from across our entire history — everything from aerial shots of the campus to photos of dignitaries coming to just general student life,” he said. “We wanted to display that, and hopefully breathe life into the walls of the JDUC.”

The photos include shots of Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt receiving honourary degrees in 1948, the corner of University Ave. and Union St. before Stauffer Library was built, aerial shots of the campus, a photo of John Deutsch himself, student life and more.

“I feel like this is one building that we’d love for students to engage more with, and I think that if they feel like they’re a part of it, then that can hopefully draw more people in,” Lloyd said.

The main goal when creating the collection was to select photographs that encompassed many aspects of life at Queen’s, both then and now.

“We really tried to get a variety — ones that encompass everything from the early 1900s to the 1960s to recently,” Lloyd said. “I think they tried to get a wide range of dignitaries, student life, aerial shots, landscapes, different seasons and different groups of people.”

The idea of expanding the collection into other areas of campus is a welcome one, Lloyd added.

“I think there’s definitely the option to do that,” he said. “I would love to see even more. This was a great start and we’ve received great reception for it so there’s definitely an opportunity to expand [the collection].” It’s important to look further into the history of Queen’s so, as students, we can form a better appreciation for the past circumstances that made Queen’s the tight-knit, spirited community that it is today, he said.

The collection of photographs gives a glimpse into some of the significant traditions, people, and events of the past.

“There’s so much history here,” Lloyd said. “When you can see people who are in your shoes decades or even centuries before you, you feel like you’re a part of something.

“As students we want to recognize that we’re a part of something — intiatives, projects, ideas, that started long before us and we’re the beneficiaries of that,” he added. “And you can kind of see that within the photos — it all means something.”

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