Grants and Acquisitions

Ann-Christe Galloway

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The New York Public Library has been awarded a three-year grant from the Aeroflex Foundation and Hippocampus Press to process and eventually digitize its Amateur Periodical Collection. The collection is comprised of nearly 3,000 titles and more than 8,000 pieces spanning the years from 1872 through the early 20th century. With the availability of low-cost printing presses in the 1860s, amateur publications bloomed across the United States, often written and edited by young people. Amateur journalism captured the imagination of many well known people of the time, from Horatio Alger and Thomas Edison to Charles Scribner and H. P. Lovecraft. The New York Public Library’s collection of these periodicals was built through a series of major gifts and purchases in the early 20th century, particularly through gifts from Bertram Adler in 1906 and from Charles W. Smith in 1940. The grant will allow the library to fully catalog this significant collection, physically stabilize items that were published on very poor paper, and eventually digitize selected titles.

The Private Academic Library Network of Indiana (PALNI) has been awarded $225,000 by Indianapolis-based Lilly Endowment Inc. for the Shared Print Collection Project, an initiative of PALNI and its partner organization Academic Libraries of Indiana (ALI) that will inventory the holdings of 34 of Indiana’s academic libraries to identify overlapping and unique resources. The grant will enable PALNI and ALI to hire Sustainable Collection Services, which has expertise in reviewing and evaluating library collections. The shared holdings of the participating libraries amount to nearly 7 million volumes. The effort to streamline these collections has the potential to create a significant amount of space in a manner that will not disrupt the experience of library users. In addition to identifying redundancies, the study will identify rare books in the collections of participating libraries that deserve special attention. Libraries can then make sure these items are appropriately stored and preserved for the future. The study is also expected to provide new insights regarding how print book collections are used both in individual libraries and across the state. Libraries individually and collectively can use this data as they develop their collections and services going forward.

Acquisitions

An extensive collection of books on Japanese art and Japan has been acquired by the University of Pennsylvania Libraries along with an endowed acquisitions fund to purchase additional resources relating to Japanese studies. The gift comes from Shirley and Marilyn Luber, wife and daughter of Penn alumnus and Philadelphia-based Japanese art and book collector Gilbert Luber. Gilbert Luber passed away in 1999, and the donation honors his legacy at Penn as a Wharton School graduate in the class of 1940 and ensures his family’s passion for Japanese art and culture is accessible to a broad audience for scholarship.

The Pablo Eisenberg Native American Literature Collection has been acquired by Amherst College. Eisenberg devoted years of his life to collecting nearly 1,500 books written by Native American authors ranging from 1772 (Samson Occom) to living writers still publishing today (Louise Erdrich). The collection includes fiction, poetry, history, philosophy, sermons, anthropological works, photography, activism, and books for children. The aim is to document as thoroughly as possible the full spectrum of Native American writing and intellectual life from the 18th century to the present.

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