200 Years. 200 Stories. Story 175: “Wacky Ed's Costume Change ”

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sculpture of wacky ed with some of the costumes
Wacky Ed and some of his holiday accessories.

Wacky Ed's Costume Change

Staff in the Academy Library and Archives like to celebrate holidays and the changing of the seasons. Beloved retired Reference Librarian Eileen Mathias created a rather unique way in which to observe. She crafted miniature costumes, one for each month, that adorn a small statuette of Edward James Nolan.

Nolan was the Academy’s first paid librarian, serving from 1867–1921, and filling the role of Recording Secretary from 1874–1921. Today he’s known affectionately around the Library as “Wacky Ed.” Upon Eileen’s retirement, the costumes were given to the Archives, where they are housed in ANSP Collection 2011.007.

Each month Wacky Ed is dressed in his finest for a new occasion. Stop by the Library Reading Room on weekdays for inspiration on how to celebrate in style!

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