The Fix – Paperwork you can love

This post was written by Vanessa Haight Smith, Head of Preservation Services. The Book Conservation Lab makes use of hand-made marbled papers in some of our book treatments and projects.  Originally used for decorative book covers and endsheets, marbled papers are occasionally replaced during treatments with new handmade papers when the originals are substantially damaged or missing. 

Amaryllis for Christmas

All I want for Christmas (really) is an amaryllis in full bloom. It is lovely to see poinsettias, beautiful products of the Smithsonian Gardens Greenhouse in Suitland, Maryland, placed about the museums, but there is something special about the amaryllis as a seasonal plant. Poinsettias have become too traditional, too expected, too (well) durable.

Hirshhorn Museum Press and Publicity Books

This post was written Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Gallery Library volunteer Shawon Sarkar. In the middle of the vast collection of art books, exhibition catalogues, and serials, there are 20 black notebooks on a shelf at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden Library. These are the press and publicity books holding archival materials on the founding of the museum, the past exhibitions, and the Hirshhorn family.

New Online Exhibitions! Notable Women and Latinos in Natural History

This post was written by Grace Costantino, Outreach and Communications Manager for the Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL). We are pleased to announce the release of two new BHL online exhibitions: Early Women in Science and Latino Natural History. Earlier this year, the Smithsonian Women’s Committee awarded a one-year grant to Smithsonian Libraries (SIL) to build online exhibitions to showcase the scientific and historical contributions of Women and Latino naturalists and illustrators. The project, entitled Notable Women and Latinos in Natural History, draws from content in BHL and uses the Biodiversity Library Exhibition (BLE) platform developed by BHL Europe.

Discover and Connect but Don’t Steal this Book!

This post was written by Julia Blakely, Special Collections cataloger. It first appeared on the Smithsonian Collections blog here. Discovering an interesting mark of a former owner in a volume is one of the many great things about working with rare books. A signature of a famous person, a fun drawing, a gift presentation, marginal annotations revealing a reader’s thoughts, a memento laid-in, are not uncommon to come upon. Such additions after more »

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 »

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 »

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