Up, up and away!

Portrait of Felix Nadar (1820-1910), Photographer and Aeronautical ScientistOriginally uploaded by Smithsonian Institution This intriguing character has captured quite an audience on Flickr. To learn more about Felix Nadar, read our recent blog post on the Smithsonian Photography Initiative's blog, The Bigger Picture. —Erin Clements Rushing

There’s a New Deputy in Town!

The Libraries is pleased to announce Mary Augusta Thomas as the new Deputy Director.  Before accepting this position, Thomas served as Associate Director for Reader Services and Strategic Planning, a post she held since 2002. Thomas’s new responsibilities include directing the operation of the Libraries’ twenty branches in each of the museum and research institutes, working with Smithsonian staff on library planning issues to support the mission of the Smithsonian, and directing the administrative services department for the Libraries. Thomas has demonstrated outstanding leadership in her 33 years of employment at the Smithsonian Institution. Her prior positions at the Libraries include Assistant Director for Management and Technical Services, Assistant Director for the Management and Systems Division and Manager to the Planning and Administration Office. She currently holds exclusive pan-institutional assignments as a member of both the Smithsonian Collections Advisory Committee and the Smithsonian Institution Executive Leadership Development Program. Active in the local and national library community, Thomas has served as councilor-at-large for two terms at the American Library Association (1999-2003, more »

Botanica Magnifica

As a follow up to our post from last week…you can watch the CBS News Sunday Morning segment on Botanica Magnifica  in an eight minute clip on YouTube. Enjoy!—Liz O'Brien

Happy 302nd to Leonhard Euler!

Leonhard Euler, an eminent mathematician and physicist, was born this day, April 15, in 1707, in Basel, Switzerland. According to Ronald S. Calinger, a Professor of History at the Catholic University of America in Washington DC who specializes in the history of mathematics, and Leonhard Euler in particular, Euler can be considered “the presiding mathematical genius of the Enlightenment.” Dr. Calinger was a Dibner Library Resident Scholar in 2007, during which he made substantial use of the Dibner's rare materials by Euler and his contemporaries while working on a full scale scientific and biographical study of Euler, the first such work in English. At the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s Annual Meeting in February 2009, Calinger organized a symposium focusing on Euler and his achievements, From Enlightenment Lunar Theories to the Discovery of Extra Solar Planets. His presentation relied in part on research done during his term as a Dibner scholar. Calinger and students from two of his Catholic University classes come to the Dibner today, Euler’s birthday – a coincidence! more »

Buon Compleanno Leonardo

Leonardo da Vinci was born today in Vinci, Florence in 1452. The Libraries has books throughout  its many locations featuring this unique artist and inventor's interests in art, science, architecture and anatomy – just to name a few of his passions: Leonardo da Vinci : the artist, inventor, scientist in three-dimensional, movable pictures / / by A. & M. Provensen. Paper engineering by John Strejan.Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Library, New York, New York (image above) The curves of life : being an account of spiral formations and their application to growth in nature, to science, and to art : with special reference to the manuscripts of Leonardo da Vinci / / by Theodore Andrea Cook.National Museum of Natural History Library, Washington, D.C. Man with wings; the story of Leonardo de Vinci, / by Joseph Cottler.National Air and Space Museum Library, Washington, D.C. The inventions of Leonardo da Vinci / / Margaret Cooper.National Museum of American History Library, Washington, D.C. Leonardo da Vinci on plants and gardens / / William A. more »

National Library Workers Day

Today is National Library Workers Day. The Smithsonian Libraries would like to celebrate its entire staff and all they do, every day. The Libraries updates its public and patrons with posts on this blog, website, Galaxy of Images, as well as through Web 2.0 applications such as twittter, facebook and flickr. Check us out and leave a comment to say hello to a librarian or staff member who helps make your day a little easier. —Elizabeth Periale

Thomas Jefferson’s Birthday

Thomas Jefferson was born today in Shadwell, Virginia in 1743. The Libraries has a variety of interesting titles about this former governor of Virginia, minister of France, Secretary of State, principal author of the Declaration of Independence and third president of the United States: Thomas Jefferson : a brief biography / / Dumas Malone ; preface by Merrill D. Petersonfrom the Smithsonian American Art Museum/National Portrait Gallery Library, Washington, D.C. Thomas Jefferson and the University of Virginia. / With authorized sketches of Hampden-Sidney, Randolph-Macon, Emory-Henry, Roanoke, and Richmond Colleges, Washington and Lee University, and Virginia Military Institutefrom the National Museum of American History Library, Washington, D.C. Jefferson's Monticello / / by William Howard Adams ; with principal photography by Langdon Clayfrom the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Library, New York, New York Adams and Jefferson: the story of a friendshipfrom the Vine Deloria, Jr. Library, National Museum of the American Indian, Suitland, Maryland Undaunted courage : Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the opening of the American West / / Stephen E. more »

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