Yale University has amassed an enormous collection of horror, video nasty and exploitation movies on VHS tapes — and I want to watch every single one of them!
Yale librarian David Gary explained to Bloomberg about "the materiality of VHS" treasures:
'''The kind of material that lets you get at the cultural id of an era. [Historians] will want to study the labels that were put on tapes, or the tape stock, or the plastic case. All that stuff tells a story about how it was produced and where it came from that future scholars will want to grapple with in some fashion.''
Yale purchased around 2,700 ultra-rare VHS tapes from private collector Joe Pesch of Dayton Ohio. Gary says that he was able to negotiate the price with by discussing the historical necessity of preserving these seldom-seen artifacts, telling Pesch:
''Nostalgia is the last stage before it becomes an academic topic of study. Let’s make sure that there’s a place that’s preserving these tapes for the long term.''