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Last Updated: Feb 25, 2015 URL: Print Guide
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Peter DePuydt

Since 1990 I have been a Reference Librarian and Archivist for the High Library at Elizabethtown College in Elizabethtown, PA (please see below for a curriculum vitae). During the past few years we have created a number of digital collections of materials held in the College Archives. These projects have been cooperative endeavors with the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies; the LYRASIS library network; and through the efforts of the following student library assistants: Jenna Zimmerman, Elyse Ford, April Tuggle, Morgan Nebbia, Claire Sedney, and Annemarie Hartzell.

My recent research has mostly focused on two socially-prominent slaveowners from Frederick County, Maryland, Outerbridge Horsey (yes, that was his actual name!) and his brother-in-law, John Lee. In 1828 the pair had purchased a sugar plantation in Louisiana where they proceeded to ship many of their slaves as labor for the plantation. Financial difficulties soon followed and the plantation owners were eventually sued for restitution in a Louisiana State Court, a lawsuit that had traumatic consequences for their slaves. Some of this research was published in Pennsylvania History: A Journal of Mid-Atlantic Studies, Southern Studies, and Louisiana History. As an aside, I highly recommend the movie 12 Years a Slave for its accurate depiction of the brutal conditions for slaves on a Southern sugar plantatation during the antebellum era.

On a more personal level, I'm humbled to have been able to use my library research training to help my father, George DePuydt, come to some degree of closure with one of his experiences in World War II. The published story is available online.

Jean-Paul Benowitz (Assistant Director of Academic Advising) and I recently published an Elizabethtown College history photo book through Arcadia Publishing. The book is available at the Elizabethtown College store and at A newspaper article about the book appeared in the March 23, 2014 issue of the Lancaster Sunday News (the article is available online).

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