I love research, books, reading, and learning new things.
mbkcons has written 168 posts for Exploring Public Records and Primary Sources

Exploring reference tools

After reading 50 memos about acquiring, retaining, or discarding reference tools, I was struck by the small number of reference tools the class, as a whole, decided to consider. The most common recommendations to keep or acquire were ESTC, EEBO, 19th STC, Evans, and Sabin. A few tackled NUC and NUCMC (National Union Catalog of … Continue reading

Where we read makes a difference

As a lifelong reader and learner, I’ve come to recognize that where we read is important. After I graduated college, I lived in NYC and rode the subway everyday. It was crowded and noisy, but it was my undivided, uninterrupted time when I could delve into a complex subject and read until my stop (at … Continue reading

The evolution of books

As I was reading older issues of Atlantic Monthly, I came across this interesting article by Alan Jacobs called “How Books Learn” (July 2012)  http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/07/how-books-learn/259926/   In his article, Jacobs ruminates about the evolution of books. He perceives of books ranging from ever evolving and maturing oral poems and histories by Homer to those written down … Continue reading

Type, Fonts, and Punctuation

This week, our third in the exploration of the history of the book, typefaces and punctuation are most intriguing. You’ve grappled with ideas of how letter shapes change over time. The evolution of the letter form continues from those shaped and rounded with a stylus or pen to those seen on the computer screen. Here’s … Continue reading

From manuscript to print

Have you seen this article about the book?  http://ilovetypography.com/2014/01/24/the-first-book-printed-in-italy    When looking at the page from this first printed book in Italy, we see examples from the manuscript tradition including a factotum (a letter in the blank spot at top left) that tells the illuminator or rubricator what letter to insert. In this case a … Continue reading

On overview of the history of books

Do you want to read more about the history of books? We will be reading some during the course of the semester. The main text by Chappell will provide an historical overview of texts and printing.Martyn Lyons Books: A Living History (Los Angeles: The J.Paul Getty Museum, 2011) is an illustrated overview of the history … Continue reading

Project & Time Management

We are all busy. We have our own lives, jobs, school, and too many projects to let them all slide to the bottom of the pile or to the last minute. As an information profession, you will be expected to manage your time and projects. In addition to reference, cataloging, and bibliographic instruction, rare book … Continue reading

Durer – the most amazing printer

There’s a BBC radio program that discussesAlbrecht Dürer (1471–1528) and his prints.  http://www.bbc.co.uk/i/b03q59w4/  The narrative is fascinating. If only the program included images of his work.   The Metropolitan Museum of Art has a series of pages dedicated to his life and work http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/durr/hd_durr.htm  There’s a house museum in Nurnberg dedicated to the artist http://museums.nuremberg.de/duerer-house/ The … Continue reading

Examining the minutiae

Studying texts involves examining the way books look and feel, how pages are designed and laid out, the arrangement of the text, collation of pages, and many other aspects, including book plates, signatures, and provenance. Now and again, researchers stumble upon books that look authentic but aren’t. These cleverly created forgeries force librarians and scholars … Continue reading

Rothschild Prayerbook Set to Break Record – The Fine Books Blog

As we start to explore the world of rare and special books, it’s important to read widely. There are a number of blogs that include information about rare books. Fine Books & Collections Magazine is one of those blogs. Today (January 7th, 2014), they posted this article about a Book of Hours that’s to be … Continue reading