Poetry and Pogue: Archives After Dark

Pogue Library opened their doors and archives for a late night session Friday, September 21st, drawing a crowd of creative-minded people to experience history and gain inspiration. One of these students was Breeanna Maupin, a junior English Education major. She agreed to talk with Her Campus about the event and her project.*


1. Why did you sign up to attend the Archives After Dark event?

wanted to expand on my poetry skills. The event was motivation to take the time and work on poetry. I want to like poetry; it's just hard to understand sometimes. This was my opportunity to learn more about it to be able to better teach it in the future and to personally better myself as a writer.

2. What did you find the most interesting from the tour and event?

The most interesting thing was the recording [of the senator's speech that turned out to be his dying words]. It also surprised me how many boxes of documents and things they have. 

3. What archive piece drew your eye?

The old student newspapers with their political cartoons. They captured the mindset of the students, and it was interesting to see the similarities between the students back then and the students now. I think the way students thought about politics then are similar to now. 

4. What project did you start based on the archives?

I focused on the political aspects of the newspapers, finding some lines that inspired poetry. I found some inspiration for black out poetry [where you cross out lines from the original document to create a new piece]. I am working on a collection of poems.

5. Do you plan on presenting at scholar's week? 

If I have time to finish my project, then I will probably present at scholar's week. This project gave me an appreciation for professional writers. It would be hard for professional writers to find time to write, especially when they have other jobs.

6. Would you attend an archive event again?

Yes. I really liked how we were given free reign to look at different documents. I actually started with records of land ownership to look at my family's land in Tennessee.

 7. Have you written poetry before this?

I have a little bit. I always wanted to like poetry, and this event helped me challenge myself to write more. 

8. Is there anything else about your project or the event that wasn't touched on?

It's less about the event, but Pogue as an archive should be used more. A lot of students don't know about it, but it has a lot of different documents for research and information.         

(*Some of the answers have been edited for clarity)