Events & Exhibits

Events and Exhibits

Heritage Resources Distinguished Speakers

We are pleased to offer a regular lecture series featuring speakers who are authorities in their respective fields and who have used Heritage Resources' collections significantly in their research. Programs are free and we welcome attendance from members of both the campus and broader community. Stay tuned for upcoming announcements about our 2019 speakers!

Winter 2019: Arlene Blum to present "Women in High Places: To Annapurna and Beyond"

Arlene Blum, biophysical chemist, author, and mountaineer, has led successful expeditions to some of the world’s most challenging mountains as well as scientific research to protect human health and the global environment. She is the author of Annapurna: A Woman’s Place and Breaking Trail: A Climbing Life, both of which have become classics in mountaineering literature. Please join us for a reception and talk, during which Blum will share her favorite images and dramatic stories illustrating her climbs of challenging high peaks, and her scientific research and policy work for a healthier world. The event is free and open to the public, and will take place in the Wilson Library Reading Room (Wilson 4 Central) from 4:00-6:00pm on Monday, February 25, 2019. Light refreshments will be provided.

Spring 2019: Candace Wellman to present "Inside the Archives: Exploring Whatcom County's 19th Century Cross-Cultural Marriages"

While volunteering at the local archives, Candace Wellman discovered that nearly 90 percent of all early-Whatcom County marriages were cross-cultural. An expert in research methods, history, and genealogy, Wellman resolved to uncover some of these stories, and thus began a decades-long quest which culminated in the publication of Wellman’s first book, Peace Weavers: Uniting the Salish Coash Through Cross-Cultural Marriages (Washington State University Press, 2017). The manuscript, which looks at the lives and accomplishments of four indigenous women who married early-Whatcom County settlers, won the WILLA Award for Scholarly Nonfiction in 2018. A companion book, Interwoven Lives: Indigenous Mothers of Salish Coast Communities, was published in March 2019. Wellman will discuss her research process and subsequent discoveries at an event in Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th floor) from 4:00-5:30pm on Tuesday, April 16, 2019. The talk is free and open to the public. 

Exhibits and Displays

"To the Mountaintop: A Social History of Mountaineering"

Mountains are as much a part of the human psyche as they are a part of the landscape. In his last speech, Martin Luther King spoke of having “been to the mountaintop” and seen a land of greater promise, and Americans proudly sing the lines, “From every mountainside, let freedom ring.” Literally and symbolically, mountains are a source of liberation. But in helping some reach new heights, mountains have also been the backdrop to past and present struggles that have left others feeling looked down on.

Heritage Resources is sponsoring new exhibition featuring historical materials that explore the complex relationship between humans' love of high altitudes and issues of gender, race, and class. Opening on September 26, 2018, the exhibit will be available for viewing in Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th floor) Monday-Friday from 11:00am-4:00pm and by advance appointment (closed weekends and holidays). Contact Special Collections Librarian Michael Taylor with any questions or for more infomation (; (360) 650-3097), or click here for the Western Libraries news story.

Doris Burn Digital Exhibit

Click here to view an online exhibit featuring original manuscripts and artwork created by award-winning children's author and illustrator Doris Burn. A long-time resident of the San Juan Islands, Doris (Wernstedt) Burn authored and illustrated the 1965 classic Andrew Henry's Meadow, which won the Washington Governor's Art Award. She also wrote the much-loved favorites The Summerfolk and The Tale of Lazy Lizard Canyon, and served as illustrator for a range of other well-known children's books. This online resource was created as an accompaniment to a physical exhibit - "Plenty of Things to Do" - which Heritage Resources hosted in Special Collections between Fall 2016 and Winter 2017.

Wallie Funk Digital Exhibit

Click here to view an online exhibit featuring photographs taken by noted and prolific Pacific Northwest journalist Wallie V. Funk. During his career, Funk photographed a diverse and eclectic range of subjects, including several U.S. presidents, the Beatles' and Rolling Stones' concerts in Seattle, the 1970 Penn Cove whale capture, community events, and military activities on Whidbey Island. Featured images are a small sample from a far larger collection of papers, prints and negatives donated by Funk to the Center for Pacific Northwest Studies in 2003. This online resource was created as an accompaniment to a physical exhibit which Heritage Resources hosted in Special Collections between Winter and Summer Quarters, 2016.

Special Collections Display Cases

The Special Collections space includes ten unique display cases the feature rotating selections of books and other items from our holdings. Check back regularly to see what's new. Click here for a list of all Special Collections displays.