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Scrapbooks give a local glimpse into World War II

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EDWARDSVILLE, IL - To get their hands on history inside the Lovejoy Library on the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville campus, they've first have to put on some gloves.

Steve Kerber is a university archivist and special collections librarian.

"This is a collection of newspaper and magazine clippings put together during the second world war by a resident of Alton, Illinois," said Steve Kerber.

It's a collection of 23 scrapbooks filled with celophene tape, glue, and articles documenting the progress of World War II, as told through magazines and St. Louis and Alton newspapers.

"I think integrating them into a curriculum for middle and high school students would be interesting. There's a lot here in terms of journalism, history, and interdisciplinary studies," said Lovejoy Library History Subject Specialist  Mathew Paris.

An Alton resident by the name of Dorris William Wilton originally started the scrapbooks after his son was drafted into the war. SIUE's library and information services will preserve and make accessible to researchers the collection.

"I think you could read into it that it helped him to feel closer to his son. I expect also given the constraints of war time and home life this was probably a fairly common recreation," said Steve Kerber.

The scrapbooks will be processed and archived, but available for examination and teaching curriculums in early 2018.