Archive and Special Collections | Blog

Doomed never to die?

As a ten year old I avidly read a comic strip called Adam Eterno in a comic called Thunder. Eterno was doomed to roam time and space after drinking an elixir of eternal youth and was cursed with eternal life by his dying alchemist master, for his trouble.

Doomed never to die

Apart from the doom and cursing I thought, aged ten, that roamimg time and space and to live forever would be a fine thing. The ups and downs of the last forty odd years have rather dampened the immortality thing, but I still have hopes.

Preserving archives, by arresting the decay however fleetingly, tastes a bit like immortatlity. Eventually all this material will be lost perhaps in fifty years time , in a hundred years, in a thousand. For a brief time we have the opportunity to touch, smell, see and even on occasion hear our past. We can make a stab at interpreting and understanding it, helping us make some sense of the worlds we live in.

On a recent visit to my parents house I was helping clear some old ‘rubbish’. Deep in the bottom of a cardboard box I found an old copy of Thunder. The pages were brittle, soiled and creased but I could still make out the story of Adam Eterno doomed to roam time and space, forever.

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Dr Keith Rowntree

Keith Rowntree maintains the University's Archive and Special Collections which are currently held at the University’s Library, situated on our Headingley Campus. We collect, describe and preserve material for future generations while seeking to promote knowledge of, and access to this rich heritage for educational, professional and research purposes.

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