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Category: Exhibitions

Spotting a First Edition of Peterson’s A Field Guide to the Birds

Should you happen to spot—say, in a yard sale, thrift store or grandparent’s house—an old copy of that classic of ornithological literature, A Field Guide to the Birds, have a close look. The first printing of the first edition of 1934 is calling for prices well over $10,000 in the antiquarian book trade. One was recently spied by keen-eyed staff in an office at the Smithsonian’s National Zoological Park. This volume has been transferred to a more suitable habitat, the Joseph F. Cullman 3rd Library of Natural History, for cataloging, preservation, research access, and education. Curator Leslie Overstreet has gathered from branch libraries three others of this title to include in the rare book library’s holdings.

 

Smithsonian Libraries Opens “Magnificent Obsessions”

The Smithsonian Libraries presents a new exhibition, “Magnificent Obsessions: Why We Collect,” at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History beginning Nov. 7. “Magnificent Obsessions” will be on display through July 1, 2020.

 

 

“Magnificent Obsessions” tells the captivating stories of the book collectors whose diverse interests and passions helped shape—and continue to contribute to—the Smithsonian Libraries. Through rare books, manuscripts and other intriguing items from across the varied Libraries of the Smithsonian, the exhibition highlights the personal motivations and enduring impact of book collectors who were compelled to share their “magnificent obsessions” with the nation.

Cultivating America’s Gardens Coming to a Close – Come Visit Before It Ends!

Come visit the Cultivating America’s Gardens exhibition in the National Museum of American History before it closes this August!

The exhibition officially opened in May 2017 and will be saying goodbye at the end of this summer. The exhibition highlights the establishment of botanical gardens and the history of gardening in America. On show are a collection of books and other objects from the Smithsonian Libraries and Smithsonian Gardens collections. Here you will be able to see a variety of beautiful, vintage illustrations, rare books and artifacts related to the history of American gardening. Many of the books on display have been digitized and are available online. They will stay available through the Smithsonian Libraries Digital Library collection even after the exhibition’s closing.