Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Peacock photos now online

Thanks to a generous loan from Tom Peacock, the library now has over 100 digitized images of William "Fred" Peacock and his wife Margaret "Margie" Peacock in our collection.  We began our research on 1930s chorus girl and Hollywood film dancer Margie Murphy Peacock back in January. After marrying Darlington native Fred Peacock in the 1940s, Margie moved to Crawfordsville and resided here until her death in 1989. Fred Peacock served in the army during World War II and was a well-known dentist who practiced in Crawfordsville until his death in 1981. The collection includes head shots, modeling photos, and cast photos of Margie Peacock when she performed as Margie Murphy in the 1930s.  Also included are snapshots of Fred Peacock overseas during World War II.

You can access the Peacock collection by going to our image database and entering the following in the subject field:
Murphy, Margaret "Margie"
Peacock, Margaret "Margie"
Peacock, William Frederick "Fred"

You can also enter their names in the keyword field to browse the collection.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Display: Maurine Dallas Watkins

A display honoring the life and work of Maurine Dallas Watkins, author of Chicago, is now up on the second floor of the library.  Before her career as a playwright and screenwriter, Watkins was a Crawfordsville resident and a 1914 graduate of Crawfordsville High School. Featured in the display are photographs, programs, news articles, yearbooks, and much more.

CDPL has a photo of Watkins with the Sunshine Society at the 1914 County Fair.  You can see it here!

We also have Douglas Perry's latest book on Watkins and the writing of Chicago.

If you would like more information about Maurine Watkins in Crawfordsville, please contact the Reference/Local History Department  at 765.362.2242 ext 117 or

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

New Richmond School, 1914

Donations to our collection are always welcome, and it is not uncommon for us to receive items that add great value to our collection -- your county's heritage. We recently received a large panoramic photograph of a large group of school children, teachers, and drivers standing in front of the New Richmond School building in 1914. Some school hacks (Coal Creek Township Schools) are parked in the background. The school was on East Washington Street, next to the New Richmond Christian Church. Although both these buildings are gone today, we intend to save the image for future generations.

Scanning this panoramic photograph for our image database proved to be a challenge because the image was over 2.5 feet long and some 10 inches tall. We had to scan it in five sections and then "stitch" together the sections to make one image. Using Windows 7 with its Live Photo Gallery made this once difficult chore very easy because Photo Gallery has a feature that can recognize overlapping images in order to make one image out of it. All five sections blended well with one another except for the first section on the left -- Photo Gallery could not recognize that section as part of the panoramic photo because we simply could not seem to scan it at the same size as the other four sections (so we finally ended up attaching that section manually, as is obvious). But at least for now we are able to share with the community a photo that few have seen before.

Are you curious to see a few more images we have, taken of the same building around the same time? You can find several on our image database, including: