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Plastics Pioneers Reading Room to Open in Bird Library

On Friday, Sept. 27, from 2:30–4 p.m., the Plastics Pioneers Reading Room, a gift of donors Glenn and Patsy Beall, will officially be dedicated and opened on the sixth floor of Syracuse University’s Bird Library. The public is invited to the ribbon-cutting event to open this new quiet study and exhibition space.


Robert Friedel Lecture - “Is it Real? Imitation and Style in the First Plastics”

Robert Friedel, Professor at the University of Maryland, will give a lecture entitled “Is it Real? Imitation and Style in the First Plastics” on September 26, 2013 at 5:00 p.m. in the Peter Graham Scholarly Commons, Bird Library. Professor Friedel will also lead a mini-seminar on September 27, 2013, from 10:00 a.m. - Noon in the Special Collections Research Center, Bird Library.  Both events are free and open to the public, but advanced registration is required for the mini-seminar.


Perlovs donate hundreds of Celluloid items to Plastics Collection

(July 26, 2012) The Plastics Collection of the Syracuse University Library has received a major gift of celluloid objects from Dadie and Norman Perlov and family of New York City.  The Perlovs began collecting celluloid in the 1960's with their three young daughters. Collecting became a family activity and passion and over the decades the family amassed one of the largest celluloid collections in the world.   Dadie Perlov explains that “many people have collected celluloid because they like thimbles, toys, advertising, jewelry or some other area of collecting.  We’ve always been interested in celluloid as celluloid, in all its potentials.  This single material tells us about so many different aspects of life at the turn of the 20th century – a period when American society was going thought major social changes.”


Plastics Hall of Fame Member Irvin I. Rubin Dies at Age 93

(June 29, 2012) Plastics Hall of Fame Member Irvin I. (Irv) Rubin died at his home in Brooklyn on June 25, at age 93.  Rubin, who was past chair of the Plastics History and Artifact Committee of the Plastics Pioneers Association, donated his extensive papers and collection of molded plastic items to the Plastics Collection at the Syracuse University Library in 2010.


Syracuse University Library Plastics Collection Expands Online Presence

The Syracuse University Library has launched a redesigned and expanded website devoted to its extensive Plastics Collection. The new site now offers approximately 3,000 objects with high quality photographs, information about plastic materials and processes, and twice the previous number of biographies and company histories.  Of particular note, viewers can now submit additional information about objects, people, and companies through the site.


Syracuse University Library acquires Plastics Collection from National Plastics Center

The Syracuse University Library is pleased to announce that the National Plastics Center (NPC) has completed the accelerated transfer of ownership of its collection of plastics artifacts, books, and manuscripts to the SU Library.


Plastics Collection Receives Erik Furholmen and Chicago Molded Products Papers

In August and September 2011 The Plastics Collection received gifts of papers related to the career of engineer, teacher and entrepreneur Erik Furholmen (1896-1963) and the Chicago Molded Products Co. for which he worked from 1938 to 1946.


Presenting Bakelite

In conjunction with its ongoing exhibition "Just One Word: Plastics," the Syracuse University Library will host Dutch producer/photographer and Bakelite expert Reindert Groot, founder of the Amsterdam Bakelite Collection. The presentation will take place in the Peter Graham Scholarly Commons at Bird Library on Thursday, Oct. 27, at 5 p.m.


Just One Word: Plastics Exhibition Guide (pdf)

In the 1967 movie The Graduate, Dustin Hoffman's character, Benjamin Braddock, is given the unsolicited career advice of "Just one word: plastics." The phrase quickly became a derisive and dismissive summation of the ubiquity of plastics in our world-and a symbol of the (perceived) overwhelming falseness of all things for the 1960s generation.