We have a lot of interesting things here at the Tate Archives and Special Collections in the Ames Library. We have old letterman jackets, the shovel used for almost every building’s groundbreaking since Presser, and an old student publication issue that included a packaged condom! Recently, we discovered what has got to be the most interesting Archival discovery of all time: the whiskers from a man-eating tiger slain by an alum during his time in India! How cool is that?
These tiger whiskers were folded into a letter written by 1907 Wesleyan alumnus Frank D. Campbell that was in his biographical file.
Campbell, his wife, and daughter lived and worked as missionaries in Jagdalpur, India for close to 20 years. Campbell’s daughter, Eleanor, told the tale of her father’s slaying of the tiger in a file obtained from the
Illinois Great Rivers Conference Archives at MacMurray College. Eleanor told how her father, a Methodist minister, shot the tigress, who had killed over 150 people, after a Sunday church service!
If you’re interested in learning more about the Campbell family’s time in India or about the man-eating tigress herself, head up to Tate Archives & Special Collections on the fourth floor of Ames! We love the company!