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Year Published: 2016
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Once treated as exclusive spaces for valuable but hidden and under-utilized material, over the past few decades special collections departments have been transformed by increased digitization and educational outreach efforts into unique and highly visible major institutional assets. What libraries must now contemplate is how to continue this momentum by articulating and implementing a dynamic strategic vision for their special collections. Drawing on the expertise of a world-class array of librarians, university faculty, book dealers, collectors, and donors, this collected volume surveys the emerging requirements of today’s knowledge ecosystem and charts a course for the future of special collections. Expanding upon the proceedings of the National Colloquium on Special Collections organized by the Kelvin Smith Library of Case Western Reserve University in October 2014, this timely resource for special collections librarians, administrators, academics, and rare book dealers and collectors
More than simply a guide to collection management, this book details myriad ways to forge the future of special collections, ensuring that these scholarly treasures advance knowledge for years to come.
- recounts the factors that governed the growth and use of special collections in the past;
- explores ways to build 21st-century special collections that are accessible globally, and how to provide the expertise and services necessary to support collection use;
- gives advice on developing and maintaining strong relationships between libraries and collectors, with special attention paid to the importance of donor relations;
- provides critical information on how libraries and their institutions’ faculty can best collaborate to ensure students and other researchers are aware of the resources available to them;
- showcases proactive, forward-thinking approaches to applying digital scholarship techniques to special collections materials;
- looks at how the changes in the way authors work—from analog to digital—increases the importance of archives in preserving the aspects of humanity that elevate us; and
- examines sustainable and scalable approaches to promoting the use of special collections in the digital age, including the roles of social media and crowdsourcing to bring collections directly to the user.
Table of Contents
Preface, by Arnold Hirshon
Introduction, by Robert H. Jackson
Part I Communities
Chapter 1 Reflections on the Meanings of Objects
E. Haven Hawley, Chair of the Special and Area Studies Collections Department at George A. Smathers Library at the University of FloridaChapter 2 Affinities and Alliances: Thoughts on Acquisitions, Collection Development, and Donor Relations
Jim Kuhn, Joseph N. Lambert and Harold B. Schleifer Director of Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation at the University of Rochester River Campus LibrariesChapter 3 Where Does the Collector/Donor Community See Special Collections Today?
Jon A. LindsethChapter 4 Collecting Communities: The Role of Special Collections Librarians and Archivists in Creating New Life for Community-Based Collections
Melissa A. HubbardChapter 5 The Role of the Auction House
Selby Kiffer, Special Collections Library at the University of MichiganChapter 6 Forging into the Future: Facing Digital Realities and Forecasting Endeavors for Special Collections Librarianship
Athena N. Jackson
Part II The Enduring Object
Chapter 7 Lawrence Clark Powell Revisited: The Functions of Rare Books Today
Joel Silver, Director of the Lilly Library, Indiana University BloomingtonChapter 8 Special Collections Libraries and the Uses of the Past (Apologies to Herbert Muller)
Paul RuxinChapter 9 Everything Old Is New Again: Transformation in Special Collections
Alice Schreyer, Vice President for Collections and Library Services at the Newberry LibraryChapter 10 Special Collections and the Booksellers of Today
Tom CongaltonChapter 11 Acknowledging the Past
Daniel De Simone, Eric Weinmann Librarian at the Folger Shakespeare LibraryChapter 12 Literary Archives: How They Have Changed and How They Are Changing
Ken LopezChapter 13 Objects of Study: Special Collections in an Age of Digital Scholarship
Stephen Enniss, Director of the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas
Part III From Periphery to Center
Chapter 14 Considering the Present: Special Collections are the Meal, Not the Dessert
Jay Satterfield, head of Dartmouth College’s Rauner Special Collections LibraryChapter 15 Teaching with Special Collections
Christoph Irmscher, Provost Professor of English at Indiana University BloomingtonChapter 16 From Siberia to Shangri-La
Sarah Thomas, Vice President for the Harvard Library and the Roy E. Larsen Librarian of Harvard CollegeChapter 17 The Once and Future Special Collections
Mark Dimunation, Chief of the Rare Book and Special Collections Division, Library of Congress
About the Editors and Contributors
About the Editors
Arnold Hirshon has been the Associate Provost and University Librarian
at Case Western Reserve University since August 2010. He has
an extensive scholarly record that includes many monographs, among
them the Library Strategic Planning Toolkit (with Stephen Spohn), and
Outsourcing Library Technical Services (with Barbara Winters). He is also
the author of numerous articles about strategic management, organizational
design, technology, leadership, information service integration,
assessment and optimization of operations, and nonprofit management.
A frequent lecturer nationally and internationally, he has given lectures
in nearly 40 countries on six continents on a wide range of topics,
including organizational management, trend spotting and analysis, technology
planning, and operations assessment and optimization.
Robert H. Jackson is a senior partner at Kohrman Jackson & Krantz,
PLL in Cleveland, and is also a noted writer, speaker, and collector of rare
books and art. His broad knowledge of, and involvement in, bibliophilic
endeavors are reflected in his affiliations with such organizations
as the Grolier Club, the Rowfant Club of Cleveland, Association Internationale
de Bibliophile (Paris), and the Fellowship of American Bibliophilic
Societies, of which he is a founder and past chairman. At Case
Western Reserve University, he serves as chair of the Baker-Nord
Committee for Humanities Advisory Board, is a member of the Visiting
Committee for the College of Arts and Sciences, and the Institute for the
Science of Origins Visiting Committee. He is the Distinguished Visiting
Scholar at Kelvin Smith Library.
Melissa A. Hubbard is the Head of Special Collections and Archives at
Kelvin Smith Library, Case Western Reserve University. She previously
served as the Rare Book Librarian at Southern Illinois University. Her
research and professional interests include the pedagogical uses of special
collections materials and innovative approaches to exposing hidden
”Recommended for archivists, special collections librarians, and administrators of the same, along with book collectors and sellers."
— Library Journal
"This compilation captures a valuable cross-section of perspectives on the
state of special collections and their possible future directions. One valuable
feature of the book is that many of the authors are leaders in their fields,
including head curators, administrators, long-time collectors and booksellers,
and faculty, who have seen broad changes in cultural heritage-related fields.
Another appealing feature is that many of the chapters are brief, which helps
busy professionals stay current in their profession. Also, the editors have
performed a great service to the special collections field by documenting the
thoughts exchanged at the colloquium and sharing them with the wider world."
— Technical Services Quarterly