Sunday, June 06, 2010

Links & Reviews

- Michael Taylor at the LSU Special Collections blog has the story of a fascinating biblio-character with a great name: Bindon Blood.

- The archive of Bletchley Park, comprising millions of documents, is to be digitized and made available online. [h/t @bookn3rd]

- Forbes editor Tom Post got a tour of the Folger Shakespeare Library's vault, and blogs about it.

- New blog of note (and link added to the sidebar): Res Obscura, which is pretty new but already has some really neat posts up, including one about one of my favorite guys, George Psalmanazar. [h/t Nick]

- Laurel Thacher Ulrich spoke in Utah recently on the importance of historic preservation.

- The National Gallery of Art has a new web exhibit, "Announcing the Text: Development of the Title Page, 1470-1900."

- From BibliOdyssey, butterflies!

- Tarquin Tar has found a new collecting focus: Salem printers Samuel and Ebenezer Hall.

- Ian offers up a sampling of book curses.

- The NYTimes ran a piece this week on a dispute over the ownership of Gregor Mendel's writings on pea plant genetics.

- Larry Nix notes that the Lusitania was carrying an order of books for the Library of Congress when it was sunk: check out the invoice.

- LISNews passes along this post which suggests that an impending Facebook Q&A service is "the death of library reference." I'll believe it when I see it. They said the same thing about the Internet. But the larger point, that libraries need to be continuously thinking about what they're doing, is a good one.

- In The Telegraph, a profile of the process by which Belgian publisher Paul van den Heuvel got permission to visit the Vatican Secret Archives to create his coffee-table book The Vatican Secret Archives.

- The National Cathedral may sell parts of its rare book collection, due to staffing cuts. Talks are underway with the Folger about a possible transfer.

- Over at Paper Cuts, some "stray questions" for Nicholas Carr, about his new book The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to our Brains

- The Getty Museum has been sued by the Armenian Church, which is demanding the return of pages from a 1256 Bible. The pages are alleged to have been removed following an authentication of the book as complete in the late 1940s. The Getty acquired the leaves in 1994 from a private collector, but maintains that their provenance is clear. They claim that in a 1943 article, these canon tables were noted as belonging to an American family at that time.

- A forensic astronomer claims to have explicated some references in Whitman's poem "Year of Meteors." [h/t @thelitdetective]

- From the Deccan Herald, a summary of recently-published books about books. [h/t @briancassidy]


- Jack Rakove's Revolutionaries; review by Dwight Garner in the NYTimes.

- Ellen Horan's 31 Bond Street: review by Emma Hagestadt in The Independent.

- Gary Nash's The Liberty Bell: review by T. Rees Shapiro in the WaPo.

- Peter Carey's Parrot and Olivier in America: review by Kevin Grauke in the Philly Inquirer.

- Allan Massie's The Royal Stuarts: review by Ian Mortimer in the Telegraph.

- Nicholas Carr's The Shallows: reviews by Jonah Lehrer in the NYTimes; Wen Stephenson in the Boston Globe; John Horgan in the WSJ.

- Nathaniel Philbrick's The Last Stand: review by Brian Hall in the WaPo.

- James Shapiro's Contested Will: review by Lloyd Rose in the WaPo.

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