Dr. Olga Tsapina has been at The Huntington since 1998, before which she was the curator of the collection of Russian 18th-century printed and manuscript materials at the Division of Rare Books and Manuscripts at Moscow University Library. She holds her Ph.D. in history from the Moscow Lomonosov University, and her scholarly interests include comparative studies of religious Enlightenment, the history of autograph manuscript collecting in the United States, and correspondence networks in British America. Tsapina's most recent exhibition at The Huntington was "The U.S. Constitution and the End of American Slavery."
The Huntington’s Edward Davis Townsend collection contained something rather curious: a spool of thread with a note hidden inside that shed new light on the dramatic events that unfolded shortly after the election of Abraham Lincoln in November 1860.
A collection of correspondence yields insight into the Seven Years' WarOn November 13, 1756, James Grahame hastily scribbled a letter at his London residence. The note, addressed to William Mercer in Perth, Scotland, confirmed that Grahame’s friend and William’s brother, Colonel James F. Mercer, was dead.