Adopt a book this Black Friday!

Black Friday is upon us! The day American retailers look forward to all year long, expecting a surge in purchases as customers prepare for holiday gift-giving. But if you’re not interested in braving the crowded shopping malls (in fact, we hope you’re reading this in a comfy chair with a plate of leftovers!), consider gifting your loved ones with something you can purchase from home and that benefits generations to come. Take more »

Happy Thanksgiving!

From all of us at the Smithsonian Libraries! Our branches will be closed on Thursday, November 27th, 2014, though Smithsonian museums remain open. We hope you enjoy your holiday!

A.W. Quilter journal added to Transcription Center

The travel journals of A.W. Quilter document his adventures in East Africa between 1909-1911, while on safari and engaging in big game hunting. These fascinating tales are now available in the Transcription Center for volunteers to read and review. While a great deal is still unknown about Quilter, for instance was he British or not, what is known from his journal was that he was a major in the military and embarked more »

The Fix – Outfitting a Satellite Conservation Lab

We recently carved out some space in the Natural History Building for a Conservation and Digitization Annex. The Annex allows us to do low to medium level repair on site where many of our Library books are housed. Preservation staff share the space with our digitization team. The goal was to reduce the amount of shipping between our main conservation lab  (located offsite in Maryland) and the majority of our materials located on more »

The Lost Bird Project: A Wonderful Collaboration

This post was submitted by Susan Frampton, program coordinator, Smithsonian Libraries. Serendipity: happy chance; lucky chance; happenstance; and good fortune. Any and all of those words could be used to describe my encounter, collaboration and friendship with Andy Stern, executive director, and Todd McGrain, artist, sculptor and creative director, of The Lost Bird Project. My good luck began during an online image search for the Smithsonian Libraries’ exhibition Once There Were Billions: Vanished Birds of North America in September 2013; little did I know then that the exhibition would take on a very big dimension.

Swahili Coast: Exploration by French Captain Charles Guillain, 1846-1848. Part 1, Re-building an Empire and Emancipating Slaves.

This post, one of three, was written by Xavier Courouble, volunteer at the National Museum of African Art. Recovering from loss of empire following Napoleon’s defeat at Waterloo in 1815, the French sought to re-establish commerce and colonies in the Indian Ocean.  The task fell to Charles Guillain, who led a French expedition to the Swahili coast of Eastern Africa in 1846-1848.  Our record of his travels is enshrined in a magisterial more »

Cooking the Majestic Way

Thanksgiving is almost here. That means getting together with family and friends and, of course, lots of great food. Here is a catalog from the Trade Literature Collection that might get you in the cooking or baking mood. Or maybe the recipes will just make you hungry.

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