Tag Archives: Special Collections

A little look at Middlebury’s dwarf-sized books

We’ve been talking a lot about little things in the College’s Special Collections & Archives as we pay extra attention to pocket-sized books in our midst. Our smallest book (so far) is a 2 inch tall History of the Bible, published in Cooperstown, New York, in 1836 (pictured below).  The general definition of a miniature book is anything under 3 inches. We’re assembling miniature books up to 5 inches, since we’ve found big books and tiny books don’t play nicely on the shelves together and can cause damage to each another over time. You can learn more about miniature books here or visit us and ask to see our mini books yourself.

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Thanks to our hand-model, Joseph Watson, Preservation Manager and Special Collections and Archives .

“2-D printing, meet 3-D printing.”

The Korean American novelist Chang-rae Lee’s newest novel, On Such a Full Sea appeared in January with a technological twist: Lee collaborated with the 3-D printing company MakerBot to create a first-of-its-kind, limited edition 3-D printed cover, formed from a corn-based bioplastic and made on a MakerBot Replicator 2 Desktop 3D Printer.

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© Riverhead books

On Such a Full Sea

Middlebury College Special Collections & Archives, copy number 465

“What I like about this project is that it re-introduces the idea of the book as an art object. Content is what’s most important, but this [3D edition] is a book with a physical presence too.” Chang-rae Lee.

 

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Chang-rae Lee using a MakerBot Replicator 2 Photo © MakerBot

Middlebury’s limited edition copy, number 465 of 500 copies, will be on display in Special Collections and Archives in the Davis Library this spring.

 

Photos from the Archives showing the area around Twilight Hall

President Harry Truman once said “The only thing new in the world is the history you do not know.”  Because the site around Twilight Hall and the Middlebury Municipal Building has recently been a topic of community conversation, we thought people might be interested in these photos from the Middlebury College Archives.   For more information on the history of the site and adjacent buildings, see pages 11 and 12 of A Walking History of Middlebury.

Click on the photos to enlarge them and see more detail.

View of Academy Park from Old Chapel.  Notice the building site of the Academy (now Twilight Hall) that replaced the previous wooden structure.

View of Middlebury from Old Chapel in 1867. Notice the building site of the Academy (now Twilight Hall) that replaced the previous wooden structure.

Academy Building in 1893, seen from the east end of the park between College and South Main St.

Academy Building in 1893, seen from the east end of the park between College St. and Main St.

Graded School in 1900 seen from College St. just west of Weybridge St.

Graded School in 1900 seen from College St. just east of Weybridge St.

The Academy Building in 1900 seen from the corner of South Main St. and Cross St.

The Graded School in 1900 seen from the corner of Main St. and Cross St.

Busy start to 2014 in Special Collections

Special Collections has enjoyed a busy start to 2014 with several J-term classes visiting this week to use our collections for coursework. Prof. Peter Lourie’s class Adventure Writing and Digital Story Telling came to see 17th to early 20th century examples of travel and adventure writing, as well as to view photos from the College Archives of students engaging in their own adventures over the years.

And below see some photos from Prof. Kacy McKinney’s class Space and Place in the Graphic Novel. Students learned about the history of illustrations in books, viewing everything from a 1484 illuminated Latin text, to recently published graphic novels.

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Students looking at a wide selection of illustrated books

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Special Collections Director Rebekah Irwin shares a large format art book.

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Prof. McKinney and students view illustrated books from the 16th to the 18th century.

Middlebury College named in grant to convert rare and historic audio collections

Helen Hartness Flanders

Helen Hartness Flanders

Middlebury College’s Library & Information Services (LIS) will participate in a federal grant rewarded to the Northeast Document Conservation Center to digitize wax cylinder recordings in the Flanders Ballad Collection, one of the nation’s great archival collections of New England folksong, folklore, and balladry.

Working in partnership with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the grant will use IRENE/3-D, a system that uses digital imaging to retrieve sound from historical recordings made on discs and wax cylinders that might otherwise be unplayable. IRENE/3-D was used at the Library of Congress in 2012 to extract sound from discs produced by Alexander Graham Bell whose contents hadn’t been heard since they were made about 125 years ago.

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Wax cylinders, Middlebury’s Special Collections & College Archives

Middlebury College will make available over 200 wax cylinders and more than 1,000 records from the Helen Hartness Flanders Ballad Collection. This new technology will make it possible to capture sound even from broken and cracked cylinders and records, making it possible to play ballads not heard for over 80 years.

Along with Middlebury College, The Woody Guthrie Archives and The Carnegie Hall Archives will make historical records available to the project.

Learn more

The Library of Congress Blog post on IRENE/3D

Playback: 130-Year-Old Sounds Revealed at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Press Release for the NEDCC Grant Project

About Middlebury College – Helen Hartness Flanders Collection

About Carnegie Hall Archives Collections

About the Woody Guthrie Archives