Friday, May 30, 2008

TGIF from PBO and the Minsky Collection

The book featured here is Black Friday by Frederic Stewart Isham (1886-1922) with binding design by Rome K. Richardson, published in 1904 in New York by Grosset and Dunlap. It is from the Richard Minsky Collection at the W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library. The cover design features stylized stock ticker tape machines and basket receptacles in a repeating pattern -- a distinctive nod to the modern.

Visit Publishers' Bindings Online, 1815-1930: The Art of Books for images of this book and over 5,000 more, along with a huge variety of research and teaching tools, fun and fascinating things to read, and lots of cool things to look at -- something for everyone. And that includes a nice little graphic to remind us (not that we need it) that it's Friday!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Cool as a Plate Glass Negative: Selections from the Eugene Allen Smith Collection

The Eugene Allen Smith Collection spans more than four decades from the late nineteenth century to early twentieth century. The collection depicts Smith's field work and travels. E.A. Smith was a professor of Chemistry and Mineralogy at The University of Alabama from 1871-1913, and served as Alabama State Geologist from 1873-1913. We have 209 images from from his collection of plate glass negatives accessible through the UA Libraries Digital Collections.
The photographs featured here illustrate the broad spectrum of subjects -- from industry, to natural history, to The University of Alabama's history, to travel photographs.

A native of Autauga County, Alabama and was born in 1841. Smith entered The University of Alabama at the age of nineteen and graduated with an A.B. degree in 1862. In his long and successful career as Alabama State Geologist he was instrumental in documenting, mapping, discovering and publicizing the abundant resources in the State.

Smith was responsible for creating the first comprehensive Alabama geological survey as well as documenting these findings to fellow scientists and to the press, bringing to public view each new discovery of coal, iron, or other minerals. It was Dr. Smith who also first realized the historical value of Moundville and its artifacts, and actively focused public interest on this important archaeological site. His impact as an advocate for the state of Alabama is still felt to this day. The extensive Mineralogy collection stated by Smith in the 1870s is housed at the Alabama Museum of Natural History, located in E.A. Smith Hall also on the UA campus.

View of unidentified temple in China, undated

The purpose of the UA Libraries Digital Program at the University Libraries is to develop accessible digital collections of materials that support the teaching and research of UA faculty and students, and that, in turn, further the mission of The University of Alabama.

The Digital Program coordinates major digitization projects, actively develops policy and procedure relating to digital project and program development, and is active in soliciting digital project proposals and ideas for proposals, regardless of size, format, or technological medium. The program works with idea submitters to develop ideas into potentially viable projects, evaluating each individual digital project proposal. The Digital Program's role is to assess and seek out potential digital projects, and in turn make recommendations about implementation and development of these potential projects to the Dean of University Libraries.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Harper Lee Postscript: The Understatement of the Century

This detail from the "Little Nelle" Heads Ram... article posted earlier this week merits a second look. And write a book she did.... It was awarded the Pulitzer Prize 47 years ago today.