Garden scene with dancers (to be used as the set for a miniature theater) is a peep show (or tunnel book), designed by engraver and print-seller Martin Engelbrecht of Augsburg, Germany (1684-1756). The set includes six 6″ x 8″ hand-colored etched prints on light gray laid paper, with sections carefully cut out to create a perspective view when the prints are arranged in a viewing box.This early and rare example of a more »
Zuber et Cie, founded in 1797 by Jean Zuber, is one of the most important manufacturers of hand blocked and scenic wallpapers. In 1804, Zuber produced one of the earliest scenics called “Vue de Suisses,” and they continue to be known for the quality of their wood block printing. This rare catalogue documents Zuber’s work that reflects American tastes in the late 1920s. A few of the samples also directly relate to more »
Elements of the philosophy of plants by Augustin-Pyramus de Candolle and Kurt Sprengel is the first edition in English of a composite work by two of the most eminent botanists of the early 19th century. The first three parts on nomenclature, theory of classification, and descriptive botany are from a work by de Candolle, while the final part on the structure and nature of plants is by Sprengel. This book was recently adopted more »
Thank you to those who attended our annual Adopt-a-Book event on January 9 in the Smithsonian Castle. Almost 120 books have been adopted since inception of our Adopt-a-Book program. Last year, 26 books were adopted at our Adopt-a-Book event (48 books were on display), 128 tickets were purchased and more than $10,000 was raised. This year, 45 books were adopted at the event (74 books were on display), 106 tickets were purchased and more than $12,000 was raised.
Last year a book came into the Book Conservation Lab as part of the Smithsonian Libraries Adopt-a-Book program. The book, Systema Entomological by Heinrich Buchecker, was in two distinct pieces – text and plates. The color lithographic plates, depicting dragonflies, were printed on paper that is a higher quality than the text. Unfortunately, the text is printed on highly acidic paper that has become brittle with age. Usually the decision to post bind is more »
It’s less than a week away, but there are still tickets available for our Adopt-a-Book event next Thursday! Enjoy a unique and lively evening to benefit the Smithsonian Libraries’ rare book and preservation programs. The event will feature German food, wine and beer, and entertainment. Guests will have the opportunity to browse a trove of remarkable and historic volumes and are invited to learn more about the Libraries’ special collections and why they must be preserved.