It’s hard to believe that my time at the Libraries has come to an end! Since there was a post about me here when I began my internship back in January, I thought I’d give a summary of what I’ve done since then.
When one thinks of inventors, it's hard not to picture Thomas Edison, who is responsible for the title quote. Frank Morton Todd, The Story of the Exposition, San Francisco. Panama Pacific International Exposition, 1915. 1915. Thomas A. Edison Receiving the Exposition Medal, Volume 3, plate opposite page 150. But I also found some other interesting quotes on the subject, perfect for National Inventor's Day (which is in honor of Mr. Edison.) “I do not think there is any thrill that can go through the human heart like that felt by the inventor as he sees some creation of the brain unfolding to success … Such emotions make a man forget food, sleep, friends, love, everything.”—Nikola Tesla “Invention, it must be humbly admitted, does not consist of creating out of void, but out of chaos”—Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley “The greatest inventions were produced in the times of ignorance, as the use of the compass, gunpowder, and printing”—Jonathan Swift “Telephone, n. An invention of the devil which abrogates some of the more »
Masterpieces of the Centennial International Exhibition illustrated . . . Earl Shinn, Walter Smith and Joseph M. Wilson. Imprint: Philadelphia: Gebbie & Barrie, [1876-1878], p. cxlvi (vol. 3) ("Main Building – Central Avenue looking West"). International World’s Fairs and Expositions have been popular cultural events since the 1851 Crystal Palace Exhibition in London. The opportunity for visitors to see and experience new technologies, products, peoples, and ideas had a tremendous impact on the people who attended these world-wide events in Europe, North America, and Asia. These fairs are of particular interest to Smithsonian researchers and to scholars from outside the Institution. They use the Libraries' World’s Fairs collection of original print editions or microfilm copies that include official reports by contributing organizations and government agencies or exhibition guides and maps given to visitors, to understand their impact on the modern world. Many of these unique publications came to the Smithsonian from people who had attended particular fairs or who collected literature from the many fairs that were held in the 19th, 20th more »
February is International Friendship Month. What better way to illustrate friendship between nations than a depiction of Napoleon signing the Louisiana Purchase? the fact that this little slice of history comes from a World's Fair Louisiana Purchase Exposition Borden milk advertisement makes it all the more interesting! —Elizabeth Periale Borden Company, E pluribus unum: the story of an eagle, 1904
This lithograph displays machine-made embroidery from the 1876 and 1878 World's Fairs. The Libraries has many wonderful items from World's fairs in its collections. Many other wonderful images can be viewed in our online bibliography, Revisiting the World's Fairs and International Expositions. Enjoy! —Elizabeth Periale Frank H. (Frank Henry) NortonIllustrated Historical Register of the Centennial Exhibition, Philadelphia 1876 and of the Exposition Universelle, Paris 1878, c. 1878
Librarian Stephen Van Dyk, from the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Library in New York, worked with photographer and design historian Andrew Garn on a new book, Exit to Tomorrow: History of the Future, World's Fair Architecture, Design, Fashion 1933-2005. Stephen wrote a short chapter in this book on how world’s fairs from the 1930s to 1980s were venues for projecting future trends in architecture, technology, city planning, and international relations. —Susan Frampton
The Libraries will award grants to Dibner Library Resident Scholars and Baird Society Resident Scholars in the 2010 academic year. These competitive short-term grants are offered for one to six months to historians, librarians and bibliographers, as well as predoctoral and postdoctoral students, with an approved research project. The scholars will complete their residencies at one or more of the Smithsonian Libraries’ 20 branches for various lengths of time throughout the year. Dibner Library Resident Scholars will do research in the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology in the National Museum of American History. The Dibner Library specializes in the physical sciences and technology, and holds over 25,000 rare books and 10,000 manuscripts covering a wide variety of subject areas and time periods, particularly in mathematics, astronomy, classical and Renaissance natural philosophy, theoretical physics, experimental physics, engineering and scientific apparatus and instruments. The collections range from early printed works of ancient Greek and medieval scholars through the Renaissance and Early Modern eras up through the nineteenth century. more »