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Festival Acadiens History on Display at Dupré Library

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Two current exhibits at Dupré Library at UL Lafayette focus on dorm life at the university and Festivals Acadiens.

A variety of materials from the library's Louisiana Room and University Archives are featured in the exhibits. Exhibit cases in the Louisiana Room display photographs of dormitories through the years, from Foster Hall, built in 1903, through Legacy Park, completed in 2003.

A 1901 furniture inventory lists black moss mattresses, slop buckets, round iron bath tubs, and beds equipped for mosquito nets. Letters record a hunger strike by the male students in 1919 and a complaint the following year from the girls about cold grits and leftover fish mixed with “cold slaw.”

The weekly cost for laundry and medical services, utilities, and board at the time was $5.62. Photographs, papers, brochures, and other memorabilia highlight building projects, medical concerns, disciplinary action, financial assistance, and regulations for the dormitories throughout the history of the university.

The display cases in the library stairwell focus on Festivals Acadiens. This exhibit includes the 2006 poster for the festival, to be held October 13-15. Brochures, articles, clippings, and books portray the history of the Festivals Acadiens, as well as other festivals that have merged into it: Festival de Musique Acadienne/Cajun Music Festival, the Bayou Food Festival, and the Louisiana Native and Contemporary Crafts Festival.

The exhibits were arranged by Dr. Bruce Turner, Head of Special Collections, and Jean Kiesel, Louisiana Room Librarian. The public is invited to view these free exhibits, which will run through Nov. 30.6. For more information about the exhibits, call 482-6031. For library and Louisiana Room hours, call 482-2665.