Jisc workshops in November: making your digital collections easier to discover

Jisc is offering two one-day workshops to help you increase the reach of your digital collections, optimise them for discovery and evaluate their impact.

 

Exploiting digital collections in learning, teaching and research will be held on Tuesday 15 November.

Making Google work for your digital collections will be held on Tuesday 22 November.

 

If your organisation has digital collections, or plans to develop them, our workshops will help you maximize the reach of those collections online, demonstrate the impact of their usage, and help you build for future sustainability. They will equip you with the knowledge and skills to:

• Increase the visibility of your digital collections for use in learning, teaching and research
• Encourage collaboration between curators and users of digital collections
• Strategically promote your digital collections in appropriate contexts, for a range of audiences
• Optimise your collection for discovery via Google and other search tools
• Use web analytics to track and monitor access and usage of your digital collections
• Evaluate impact and realise the benefits of investment in your digital collection

Who should attend?

Anyone working in education and research, who manages, supports and/or promotes digital collections for teaching, learning and research. Those working in similar roles in libraries, archives and museums would also benefit.

Both workshops will be held at Jisc office, Brettenham House, London and will offer a mix of discussion, practical activities and post-workshop resources to support online resource discovery activities.

For more information and to book your place please visit www.jisc.ac.uk/advice/training/making-your-digital-collections-easier-to-discover

Jisc resource discovery workshops – flyer

Royal College of Nursing Library catalogue loaded

We’re pleased to announce that the holdings of the Royal College of Nursing Library have been added to Copac.

Photo of Royal College of Nursing Library

Royal College of Nursing Library. Image copyright: Royal College of Nursing, London

The Royal College of Nursing Library and Archive Service is Europe’s largest nursing resource, with a wealth of print and e-resources.

The Collection dates mainly from the 1850s onwards. We strive to remain the pre-eminent specialist nursing collection of English language materials in Europe: collecting books, journals, nursing PhD theses, pamphlets, rare grey literature, audio-visual, digital objects, oral histories, images and archives through to the most recent e-books, e-journals and e-resources.

The Royal College of Nursing is a professional UK membership body and union of over 400,000 registered nurses, midwives, health care assistants and nursing students.

The Library and Archive Service supports our members, who work in a range of health care specialties and settings in the NHS and independent sectors. Around 35,000 nursing students are members.

To browse, or limit your search to the Royal College of Nursing Library, go to the main tab on copac.jisc.ac.uk and choose ‘Royal College of Nursing Library’ from the list of libraries.

 

The Library of the Zoological Society of London

A couple of months ago I was asked by Copac to write a piece about the Library that I work in, and I was only too happy to oblige as I can proudly say I work in a very special library, which I’d love to tell you more about…

My name is Emma, and I’m the Deputy Librarian at the Library of the Zoological Society of London.  We’re situated just on the edge of Regent’s Park, next to London Zoo, and we are one of the largest (and oldest) zoological libraries in the world!  We have in the region of 200,000 items on our shelves, comprising of about 40,000 books, 5000 journal titles, along with art works and archives, all of which are related to the study of zoology.  We also have nearly 20,000 unique records on Copac, demonstrating how unusual some of the items in our collection are.

Photo of ZSL Library interior

ZSL Library interior

You may have noticed that I tend to stress that the Library is part of the Zoological Society of London, and that’s because ZSL is made up of many departments working together on a range of projects, across the globe.  ZSL is comprised of not only London Zoo, but also Whipsnade Zoo, and very importantly the huge team of scientists and conservationists that make up two departments called the Institute of Zoology and Conservation Programmes.   The Library has the challenging task of trying to support the needs of the staff in all of these areas (many of whom are overseas) ranging from ordering books about the naked mole rat for Keeper staff here in London, to helping with literature searching about the red panda for our colleagues out in Nepal!  The Library is also open to members of the public, with the hope that we might inspire an enthusiasm for the conservation of animals.

Also, people are often surprised to find out that the Zoological Society of London has a rich history – a history that the Library has been intertwined with from ZSL’s founding in 1826.  In 1826, an ambitious man named Sir Stamford Raffles founded ZSL to meet the needs of the growing zoological community.  One of the obvious aims was to create a living collection of animals, but another very important goal was to create a leading zoological library.  In the early days the library had various locations across London, including Leicester Square and Hannover Square, but by 1910 it was decided that the library should be closer to the living animal collection in Regent’s Park, and from that day on is where the Library has remained.

To give an idea of the kind of material ZSL Library holds, we wanted to share with you some of the highlights of the collection, but it has been proving very difficult to select just a few as there are so many to choose from!  So I hope you don’t mind that I’ve selected a few that are my personal favourites, and hopefully you can see why.

Historiae animalium / by Konrad Gessner (1516-1565). – Tiguri : Froschover, 1551-85

Konrad Gessner was a Swiss naturalist, who was trying to describe all of the animals that were known (and unknown) at the time, and his 5 book work, Historiae animalium, is the culmination of his efforts.  In these books can be found descriptions of mammals, birds, fish and reptiles – some accurate, but some curious, like this ‘giraffe’ below.  This is also one of our oldest books in the Library.

‘Giraffe’ picture - Historiae animalium

‘Giraffe’ picture – Historiae animalium by Konrad Gessner (1516-1565).

Daily Occurrences

The Library also contains a unique archival collection relating to the history of ZSL, and one of our more heavily consulted items is a series of volumes called Daily Occurrences.  They record the comings and goings of animals at both London and Whipsnade Zoos, from both of the zoos foundation to the present day (admittedly the current ones are electronic).  This particular page shows the arrival of one of the stars London Zoo – Jumbo the Elephant.

Photo of Daily Occurrences – 26th June 1865

Daily Occurrences – 26th June 1865

Illustrations of the family of Psittacidae, or parrots, the greater part of them species hitherto unfigured… / by Edward Lear (1812-1888). – London : Lear, 1832

Edward Lear is most commonly known for his ‘nonsense poetry’ (i.e. the Owl and the Pussycat), but Lear was also a phenomenally talented artist whose skill influenced the style of others, such as the ornithologist John Gould and his wife Elizabeth.  One of Lear’s most beautiful works is his volume on the family of parrots, of which the illustrations were based on the birds in ZSL’s parrot house.

Image of Parrot from Illustrations of the family of Psittacidae

Illustrations of the family of Psittacidae, or parrots, the greater part of them species hitherto unfigured… / by Edward Lear (1812-1888). – London : Lear, 1832.

ZSL Library welcomes  members of the public, as well as Staff and Fellows of the ZSL.  As well as being able to make use of our resources, we usually have something of interest on display and there are always paintings and sculptures to admire in the Reading Room. To find out more please email library@zsl.org or consult our web pages http://www.zsl.org/about-us/zsl-library-collection.  Don’t forget to follow on Twitter @ZSLArts

Emma Milnes
Assistant Librarian
The Library
The Zoological Society of London

All images copyright the Zoological Society of London and reproduced with the kind permission of the copyright holder.

 

Royal Holloway, University of London Library catalogue loaded

We’re pleased to announce that the holdings of the Royal Holloway, University of London Library have been added to Copac.

Photograph of the Library at Royal Holloway, University of London

Founder’s Library at Royal Holloway, University of London. Image copyright: Royal Holloway, University of London.

Royal Holloway College, originally a women-only college, was founded by the Victorian entrepreneur, Thomas Holloway in 1879. The campus is set in 135 acres of woodland near Windsor, and is acknowledged as one of the country’s most appealing campuses, offering a close-knit community based location with close proximity to London.

Royal Holloway Library Services occupies two sites on campus – the Bedford Library, opened by The Princess Royal in 1993, houses resources for Science, Social Sciences and History, while the Founder’s Library, located within the magnificent Founder’s Building, modelled on the Chateau de Chambord and opened by Queen Victoria in 1886, houses Languages, Literatures, Cinema, Theatre, Fine Arts and Music. Currently under construction is a new Library and Student Services building due to open in 2017. This will dramatically expand our library and study space, provide flexible learning and public spaces and a dedicated study area for PhD students. It will also provide a purpose-built storage space for Royal Holloway’s art and archives, as well as the Library’s Special Collections.

The Library’s book collections extend to some 600,000 volumes. There are subscriptions to more than 17,000 e-journals; more than 800,000 items are loaned each year and there is an annual footfall of about 700,000.

To browse, or limit your search to the Royal Holloway, University of London Library, go to the main tab on copac.jisc.ac.uk and choose ‘Royal Holloway, University of London Library’ from the list of libraries.

National Aerospace Library catalogue loaded

We’re pleased to announce that the holdings of the National Aerospace Library have been added to Copac.

National Aerospace Library

National Aerospace Library. Image copyright: National Aerospace Library

The National Aerospace Library (NAL) in Farnborough is one of the most prestigious aerospace and aeronautical library collections in the world. Collections contain contemporary and historical material exploring man’s dream to conquer flight including:

  • Aircraft engineering
  • Military flight, including twentieth century warfare
  • Civil aviation
  • General works on aircraft, ballooning and spaceflight
  • The wider aeronautics world, including aviation law, economics, aerospace medicine, space, management and model making

More than 130 current journals are available with over 35,000 articles indexed on the online catalogue.

The NAL cares for the Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS) Library and Archives. Since the Society’s foundation in 1866, the RAeS Library has incorporated many other personal and corporate collections and, in so doing, has preserved them for the nation, with their earliest book dating back to 1515.

Special collections include: balloons, airships, air charts, aircraft models and aviation philately. Archives include the records of the Royal Aeronautical Society and the Society of Society of British Aircraft Constructors and the personal collections of Sir George Cayley, C. G. Grey and the design drawings of F.S. Barnwell.

Photographs and images include: over 100,000 photographs, lithographs and other images. There are over 40,000 technical reports from around the world, including those published by the Royal Aircraft Establishment (RAE), NASA and ARC. Also, material on aircraft production including company and staff journals and company brochures.

To browse, or limit your search to the National Aerospace Library, go to the main tab on copac.jisc.ac.uk and choose ‘National Aerospace Library’ from the list of libraries.

British Library 19th Century texts added to Copac

We’re pleased to announce that records have been added to Copac for 65,000 British Library 19th Century texts (1789-1914).

The records are from Historical Texts, a Jisc sister service, who became Copac contributors earlier this year (more information at http://blog.copac.ac.uk/2016/02/29/latest-contributor-to-copac-historical-texts-service/).

The service is available via subscription to UK HE and FE institutions and Research Councils who are full members of Jisc Collections. Historical Texts is also available to everyone at the British Library Reading Rooms in London.*

To browse, or limit your search to Historical Texts, go to the main tab on copac.jisc.ac.uk and choose ‘Historical Texts’ from the list of libraries. When the ‘Internet Resources’ link in a Copac record is selected, you will be prompted to login with your institutional login.

Further additions to Copac from Historical Texts are planned for the future.

*For more information see: http://historicaltexts.jisc.ac.uk/about.

 

The Library of the Society of Friends

The Library of the Society of Friends is the library and archive of the Religious Society of Friends in Britain (Quakers). It’s responsible for the care and use of one of the largest collections in the world relating to Quaker history, thought and activities.

Its origins lie in the religious controversies of the 17th century. In 1673 a committee of Friends (the Second Day’s Morning Meeting) decided to keep two copies of every book written by Friends, and one of every book written against them. This gathering together of books and pamphlets is the foundation of the Library.

Photo of Norman Penney in Eastern dress

Norman Penney in Eastern dress – new librarian dress code?

When the first librarian (Norman Penney) was appointed in 1901 the books were stored in the Society’s then central offices in Devonshire House, Bishopsgate, along with the archives from the 17th century on – records of Yearly Meeting (the annual Quaker assembly), Meeting for Sufferings (the national executive body) and numerous committees. Penney was a dynamic force in starting to arrange and catalogue these burgeoning collections, which were supplemented by substantial manuscript collections formerly held in private hands.

By the time plans for the present Quaker headquarters on Euston Road were being drawn up in the 1920s, a purpose built library with strong-rooms and reading room were an integral part of the specification.

Today the Library is open to all for research, and has a varied readership of members of the Society of Friends, academic researchers, local and family historians, media researchers and others. One of its strengths (and one of the reasons it’s such a great library to work in) is the way the printed and archival collections complement each other. Users can search across both printed and archive material using the online catalogue, and, like many special libraries, the Library has developed a range of finding aids and biographical, geographic and topical subject files that draw on the different parts of the collections.

Its printed collections now include over 100,000 books, pamphlets, broadsides and other items, and around 2,000 serial titles. While the majority are Quaker publications, there are significant supporting collections, including works on Quaker history and publications in areas where Quakers have been particularly active, such as the peace and anti-slavery movements.

Photo of bound volume of tracts

Bound volume of tracts (Library of the Society of Friends, Vol. 54)

What are the highlights? While other special collections may bring out lavishly illustrated books and gorgeous bindings to show off their holdings, our books are, by and large, distinguished by their sober appearance. They may lack visual sparkle, but book historians and conservators have been known to wax lyrical about some of these more humble exemplars of 17th and 18th century book production and bindings.

This lack of ornament is in keeping with the Quaker testimony of simplicity (exemplified in plainness of dress and speech), but it doesn’t mean there are no visually striking printed items in the collections. One example is George Fox’s Battle-door for teachers & professors to learn singular & plural (1660), a defence of the early Quaker use of “plain speech” (addressing all equally as thee and thou), with section heading pages printed in the shape of a battledore (the paddle shaped alphabet learning boards that succeeded hornbooks).

Anti-slavery campaigners used the power of visual imagery to great effect, in ways that are well known. This image of a plan of a slave ship was a potent way of conveying the real horror and suffering of the trade to a wide audience (read more about this particular copy, bound together with other anti-slavery material, in this post on our Quaker Strongrooms blog). The Library also holds anti-slavery china – cups and saucers bearing the anti-slavery message.

Plan of an African slave ship’s lower deck

Plymouth Society for the Abolition of Slavery, Plan of an African slave ship’s lower deck (Plymouth : Trewman and Haydon, printers, [1789?])

The central Quaker archives held by the Library consist of minute books, correspondence, reports and other records. Among them are the Great Books of Sufferings, 44 huge manuscript volumes compiled between 1650 and 1856, recording persecution of Quakers around the country for holding illegal meetings, non-attendance at church, or refusal to pay tithes (read more about them here). These central archives reflect Quaker involvement with wider social movements, like anti-slavery, peace, temperance, war time relief and reconstruction. Take for example the extensive records of the Friends Emergency & War Victims Relief Committee: a project to catalogue and make these more accessible has recently been completed.

WWI relief – sending out 44 mattresses from the depot

World War I relief – sending out 44 mattresses from the depot, Pargary (YM/MfS/FEWVRC/PICS/8/4/4)

The Library also holds local London & Middlesex Quaker records dating back to the 17th century – a rich resource for local historians and others (including economic historians, like this PhD student who wrote about her research on the Library’s blog).

A number of other Quaker related bodies have deposited their records in the Library. One of the more substantial archives is that of the Friends Ambulance Unit (the unofficial volunteer ambulance service set up by Quakers in both World Wars to provide alternative wartime service). In preparation for the World War I centenary, the Library has made the F.A.U. 1914-1919 service cards.

Photo of Friends Ambulance Unit service card for Lionel Sharples Penrose

Friends Ambulance Unit service card for Lionel Sharples Penrose.

Besides official records, there are considerable collections of personal papers – letters and diaries of well-known figures like George Fox or Elizabeth Fry (prison reformer, recently featured on the £5 note), and others less well-known, such as the travelling minister Abiah Darby of Coalbrookdale (1716-1794), or James Jenkins (1753-1831), illegitimate son of a Quaker, whose Records and recollections provide a sometimes waspish commentary on contemporary Quaker affairs. While the Swarthmore Manuscripts (a substantial body of about 1,400 letters and other documents of early Friends) are considered the “jewel in the crown” for historians of 17th century Quakerism, there are also rich collections of family papers for later periods, such as the Lloyd Papers or the A. Ruth Fry papers, both spanning several centuries.

Photo of Diary of Elizabeth Fry, volume 10 (MS Vol. S 264)

Diary of Elizabeth Fry, volume 10 (MS Vol. S 264)

The Library’s printed and archival holdings are complemented by its visual collections –  paintings, prints and drawings, and a remarkable photographic collection, including the photographic archives of Quaker relief work from the First World War onwards.

Contributing to Copac is one of the ways we’re making our collections known to wider audiences. For regular highlights, check out our own library blog and Facebook page.

Tabitha Driver
Printed Books Librarian
Library of the Society of Friends

All images copyright the Society of Friends and reproduced with the kind permission of the copyright holder.

Magic, Witches and Devils in the Early Modern World

Magic, Witches and Devils in the Early Modern World, 2016.

Magic, Witches and Devils in the Early Modern World. John Rylands Library exhibition, 21 January – 21 August 2016.

This fascinating exhibition, housed within the gothic splendour of The John Rylands Library in Manchester, reveals how magic, diabolical witchcraft and ghostly encounters inspired fear and curiosity on an unprecedented scale between the 15th and 18th centuries. With stunning local, European and non-Western examples from Manchester collections, the exhibition offers an exceptionally wide-ranging window onto the supernatural world. Curated by historians Jennifer Spinks and Sasha Handley from the University of Manchester, the exhibition presents rare books, prints, manuscripts and objects that illuminate the roots of our obsession with supernatural powers and reveal a world where the Devil was understood as a very real and present danger in daily life.

The exhibition draws on the collections of the John Rylands Library, the Whitworth Art Gallery and Chetham’s Library which contain many rare books, prints, manuscripts and protective amulets that provide unique perspectives on how early modern people feared, engaged with, and sometimes found pleasure in the supernatural world. The years c.1400- c.1800 coincided with major changes in European society, from scientific developments to religious conflicts to a great increase in the number of printed publications. One of the most important changes was increasing contact with other lands. Although the exhibition focuses principally on Europe, it also includes examples of how some non-Western traditions represented and tapped into powers beyond the everyday.

Compendium magiae innaturalis nigrae (Compendium of Unnatural Black Magic).

Compendium magiae innaturalis nigrae (Compendium of Unnatural Black Magic).
Pseudo-Michael Scot. Franconia, Germany, late 16th century (Latin MS 105).

The Compendium was attributed to the astrologer Michael Scot, whose infamy as a supposed magician was noted even by the famous Italian poet Dante. Intriguingly, the Scot manuscript contained strange elements of Arabic artifice. What appears to be a copy of an earlier spell, transcribed into corrupted or fake Arabic, was included as a precursor to its Latin ‘translation’. This was evidently designed to lend a sense of mystery as well as credibility to the conjurations contained within the book.

Shahnama (Book of Kings).

Shahnama (Book of Kings). Abu’l Qasim Firdousi (‘Ferdowsi’) and unknown artist. Western India, mid 15th century (Persian MS 9).

The Shahnama (Book of Kings) was an epic poem that detailed Persian history from the beginning of the world to the arrival of Islam. It appeared in many manuscript editions and generated a vibrant artistic tradition. The story of Rustam’s fourth task saw the hero enter a land populated by demons and sorcerers, where he was approached by a witch in the guise of a beautiful young woman. Realising her true nature when she recoiled at hearing the name of God, Rustam ordered her to ‘speak and show thy proper favour’. Returning to her hideous, wrinkled appearance, she was quickly put to the sword.

 

 

The Art of Dying was designed to help people achieve a good death. Images of poor deathbed performances (listed as faithlessness, despair, impatience, vainglory and avarice) were contrasted with those showing how the dying person should behave (with faith, hope, patience, humility and worldly detachment). ‘The Temptation to Avarice’ scene, for example, shows a group of demons pointing to the dying man’s possessions and loved ones, reminding him of the things he will soon leave behind.

Ars moriendi (Art of Dying)


Ars moriendi (Art of Dying) Unknown author and artist. Strasbourg, France, c. 1475 (Blockbook collection 10123).

For further details and an online copy of the exhibition booklet, written by Jennifer Spinks, Sasha Handley and Postdoctoral Research Associate Stephen Gordon, see: http://www.library.manchester.ac.uk/rylands/whats-on/exhibitions/magic/

Magic, Witches & Devils in the Early Modern World runs from 21 January – 21 August 2016 at The John Rylands Library, Manchester.

You can also find an interview with the curators about the process of putting the exhibition together on the University of Manchester History blog (https://uomhistory.wordpress.com/2016/01/11/magic-witches-and-devils-in-the-early-modern-world-new-exhibition/)

This exhibition has been generously supported by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

AHRC logo

AHRC logo

Julianne Simpson
Rare Books and Maps Manager, Special Collections
University of Manchester Library

All images copyright The John Rylands Library, Manchester and reproduced with the kind permission of the copyright holder.

University of Sussex catalogue loaded

We’re pleased to announce that the holdings of the University of Sussex Library have been added to Copac.

University of Sussex Library.

University of Sussex Library. Image copyright: University of Sussex

Designed by Sir Basil Spence, the University of Sussex Library has been a central feature of academic life since the campus was established as the first of a new wave of Universities in the early 1960s.

The materials in the Library reflect the wide range of the University’s teaching and research. There are over 650,000 books and journals in its main collection, as well as government publications, audio visual materials, Archives and Rare Books. The Library has a growing number of online resources and is transitioning to a digital library environment.

The library also holds a number of Special Collections at The Keep, a state-of-the-art building and centre of excellence for conservation and preservation, representing the new generation of archive buildings in the UK. It includes:

  • The papers of Rudyard Kipling
    The New Statesman Archive
  •  Bloomsbury Group
  •  Monks House Papers (Virginia Woolf).
  • The Mass Observation Archive containing the papers of the social research organisation of the 1930s and 40s and continues to collect new material in the present day.

To browse, or limit your search to the University of Sussex, go to the main tab on copac.jisc.ac.uk and choose ‘Sussex University’ from the list of libraries.

Latest contributor to Copac: Historical Texts service

We’re pleased to announce that records from Historical Texts, a Jisc sister service, have been added to Copac.

Historical Texts is a full text digital archive enabling you to cross search, view and download over 350,000 texts published in the late C15th to the long C19th from three key collections.

Image from British Library via Historical Texts

Image copyright British Library via Historical Texts

Records are included on Copac for:

  • Early English Books Online (EEBO) (1473-1700)
  • Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO) (1701-1800)

Further records will be added to Copac in the future for 65,000 British Library 19th Century texts (1789-1914).

The Historical Texts service encompasses a wealth of content ranging from the Romantic to the Victorian period and covers a wide range of subject areas including English literature, history, geography, science, social science, religion and medicine. Materials include books but also pamphlets, sermons, prayer books, sheet music, broadsides, newsbooks and much more.

The service is available via subscription to UK HE and FE institutions and Research Councils who are full members of Jisc CollectionsHistorical Texts is also available to everyone at the British Library Reading Rooms in London.*

To browse, or limit your search to Historical Texts, go to the main tab on copac.jisc.ac.uk and choose ‘Historical Texts’ from the list of libraries.  When the ‘Internet Resources’ link in a Copac record is selected, you will be prompted to login with your institutional login.

*For more information see: http://historicaltexts.jisc.ac.uk/about.