Come celebrate the Cambridge Science Festival with the MIT Libraries. Visit our table in Lobby 10 from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on Wednesday, April 23 to learn about the 4,000-year-old tradition of writing a letter on papyrus, parchment, or paper and folding it to function as its own envelope. Hear about historic letter locking, discover the collections here at MIT, unlock some facsimile letters written by William Barton Rogers, and sign this enormous letter before it’s locked shut at 12:30pm.
Try your hand at writing with a peacock quill and other proportionally large writing instruments. Craft your mood with our Letter+Lock playlist we put together expressly for you on Spotify!
Thanks to master papermakers Tom Balbo at the Morgan Conservatory and Julie McLaughlin for making this seven foot long sheet of handmade paper so that we can transform it into a giant locked letter.