The Minor Bird Collection
Scope and Contents
The Minor Bird Collection features issues of The Minor Bird from its initial time of publication in 1929, spanning to 2018. The collection is added to with regular accruals as new issues are published. The journal contains content including, but not limited to: poetry, prose, critical writing, drama, photography, visual art, and interviews with student writers and artists. Early issues of The Minor Bird focus on nature-based writing, literary fiction, and critical theoretical writing. As The Minor Bird progressed, the journal became more-art focused and developed a more experimental aesthetic. The collection features individual bound print issues, as well as three unbound oversized copies from the 1971/72 issue and two bound volumes of the journals, spanning from 1929 to 1936 and 1958 to 1966. The Minor Bird had two publication hiatuses, from 1938 to 1949 and from 1992 to 2005. Issues from 2015 and 2016 were exclusively online publications and therefore are not available as physical copies. Archives has yet to acquire a physical copy of the Spring 2017 issue.
- created: 1929-1938, 1949-1992, 2005-2014, 2018
- Chatham University (Organization)
Conditions Governing Access
There are no restrictions on access. The records are open for research use.
Conditions Governing Use
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Biographical or Historical Information
The Minor Bird is the official undergraduate literary journal of Chatham University, formerly Pennsylvania College for Women at its initial publication. It was preceded in publication by the university’s prior literary journals, The Sorosis, which ceased publication in 1921, and The Englicode, which ran from September 1925 to May 1928 as part of the student newspaper, The Arrow. As The Englicode ceased, The Pennsylvania College for Women’s Publications Board opted for selections published in The Minor Bird to be published in The Arrow as a creative supplement to the newspaper. For three issues in Spring 1939, The Minor Bird and The Arrow came together to form a hybrid publication called Dart, also colloquially known by the students as Minor Arrow. After this, The Arrow existed solely as a news magazine and The Minor Bird took a publication hiatus until 1949.
From 1949 to 1992, The Minor Bird was consistently published without any gaps in publication. The journal, which had once had an even split of literary work and critical work, began to integrate artworks and to broaden its reach beyond the English department. After a gap in publication from 1992 to 2005, The Minor Bird was resuscitated as a self-published venture by the students before regaining its standing within the English department and returning to a professionally published format. From 2014 to 2016, the journal was published exclusively online and was again published as a physical journal in 2017.
The title of The Minor Bird relates to the Robert Frost poem of the same name and the timing of campus visit by Frost on April 16, 1929 as students were preparing the debut issue. The Minor Bird accepts submissions exclusively from the undergraduate student body at Chatham University. The journal typically is composed of an undergraduate editorial board and a faculty advisor.
Note written by Carina Stopenski and Molly tighe
Language of Materials
The Minor Bird Collection is arranged in chronological order by publication date, save for the oversized issues from 1971/72 and the two bound volumes, which are arranged at the end of the series to better accommodate the different formats.
- Archon Finding Aid Title
- Carina Stopenski, under the supervision of Molly Tighe
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
- Language of description note