Who’s that Bird?

April 16, 2014

Our Instagram followers (we’re @SILibraries) may have noticed some extra ornithological action in our feed recently. “Martha”, an origami passenger pigeon, has been in the spotlight the last few Mondays.

Ask Our Book Conservator Anything!

April 11, 2014

On April 30th, in celebration of Preservation Week , the Smithsonian Libraries will host a question and answer session with our book conservator, Katie Wagner. Do you have a question about how to care for your own books or how we care for ours at the Smithsonian? Now is your chance to ask our expert!  

Biodiversity Heritage Library Adds Washington University as New Member

April 9, 2014

The Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL), headquartered at the Smithsonian Libraries, welcomes Washington University Libraries (St. Louis, Missouri) as a new member. The 14th member of the BHL consortium, Washington University Libraries will help identify and digitize historical science literature from its collections and add these to the BHL’s online holdings, where all materials may be accessed free by the public.

Libraries Brings The Lost Bird Project to the Smithsonian

April 2, 2014

The Smithsonian Libraries and Smithsonian Gardens present The Lost Bird Project, an exhibit by artist Todd McGrain, March 27 through March 15, 2015. This project recognizes the tragedy of modern extinction by immortalizing North American birds that have been driven to extinction. It features large-scale bronze sculptures of the Carolina parakeet, the Labrador duck, the great auk, the heath hen and the passenger pigeon.

Meet recent volunteer Julia Murphy!

Hello! My name is Julia Murphy and I am currently a contractor at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. My primary task is to ingest the Hirshhorn’s collection photos onto the DAMS, Smithsonian’s Digital Asset Management System, which acts as an online image database for long-term storage and access. In between contracts I found myself with a two-week break in January so I reached out to Anna Brooke, head librarian at the Hirshhorn Library, and asked if she needed any assistance. Although my volunteer time was short I tried to help in any way. As a volunteer in the library I re-shelved books, repaired torn covers, and answered reference questions. A major part of my volunteer time was devoted to scanning slides for a curator who needed them for a presentation about a future exhibit. These slides included images not found online and were from her personal collection so they were valuable and needed to be digitized. Of the 70 the curator asked for, I was able to scan, edit, more »

Event: Is a Rational Discussion of Open Access Possible?

March 4, 2014

Open Access (OA), like every other publishing or distribution model, carries with it both benefits and costs. But unlike other models, OA is built on a foundation of values and beliefs about how scholarly communication ought to be conducted—this makes conversations about its costs and benefits both difficult and fraught with passion. And yet as OA continues to grow in importance—and in financial impact—such conversations are essential. What can we do to make more »

Behind the Scenes on the Smithsonian-Gale Project

March 3, 2014

Last year, the Smithsonian began a partnership with Gale, part of Cengage Learning, to digitize content, package it, and make it available through libraries around the world. Gale debuted the first of these products with digital versions of the Smithsonian magazine and Air & Space magazine’s archive. The Smithsonian Libraries is excited to be a part of the second group of products, Smithsonian Collections Online: World’s Fairs & Expositions: Visions Of Tomorrow more »

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