To tie in with the annual Congress to Campus event being held at the Rothermere American Institute on Monday 6th February, we are displaying a selection of items from the Philip & Rosamund Davies US Elections Campaigns Archive until next Friday.
This archive, donated to the VHL by Professor Philip Davies (Eccles Centre, British Library), contains campaign materials collected from US elections at all levels. The majority of the material dates from the later 20th century, but there are many examples of older items, some of which we have included in this exhibition, such as 19th and early 20th century campaign buttons and ballots from the Civil War era. As well as buttons, posters, bumper stickers, flyers and leaflets, the collection contains many other examples of campaign ephemera – t-shirts, caps, dolls, rain bonnets, jewellry, bars of soap, rain bonnets, playing cards and commemorative plates. Professor Davies continues to add to the archive with each election, and an archivist is currently in the process of cataloguing it in full so that it can be made available to researchers.
Congress to Campus runs throughout the US and UK and brings bipartisan pairs of former Congressmen to colleges and universities to talk to students and impart their insights into the inner workings of US politics. The RAI has hosted the Oxford event for the past few years, offering the opportunity to local sixth form students as well as those studying at the University.