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Indiana University Bloomington

February 10, 2011

Sci-fi and Mystery writer/editor extraordinaire

Filed under: Manuscripts — David Frasier @ 2:10 pm

William Anthony Parker White [Anthony Boucher]

William Anthony Parker White, better known under his pseudonym Anthony Boucher, has since his death in 1968 achieved iconic status as a writer, editor, book reviewer, and critic of mystery, science fiction, and fantasy literature during the mid–1930s to late–1960s. The Mystery Writers of America three times bestowed upon Boucher its highest honor, the Edgar, in the field of criticism while the eponymous Bouchercon, an annual convention held since 1970 of writers, publishers, and fans of mystery and detective fiction, continues to ensure his immortality in the field. The White mss. in the Lilly Library contains an estimated 30,000 items ranging from Boucher’s editorial and personal correspondence with now legendary writers (Ray Bradbury, Raymond Chandler, Arthur C. Clarke, Philip K. Dick, Harlan Ellison, Richard Matheson) to his own script work for radio (Sherlock Holmes, Ellery Queen), television (Kraft Suspense Theater), and print anthologies like Best Detective Stories of the Year and A Treasury of Great Science Fiction. In addition to manuscripts for many of his novels (Nine Times Nine, 1940), the collection also contains Boucher’s translations for works by Pierre Boileau, Jorge Luis Borges, and Belgian mystery writer Georges Simenon. Of special interest are the transcripts of interviews with noted science fiction writers (Poul Anderson, Isaac Asimov, James Blish, Ray Bradbury, Arthur C. Clarke, Robert A. Heinlein, Rod Serling) conducted for a Playboy magazine panel discussion moderated by Boucher entitled, “1984 and Beyond.” The final text for the discussion was published in two parts in Playboy (July & August 1963).

A brief description for the White mss. is available at http://www.indiana.edu/~liblilly/lilly/mss/html/white.html. A more detailed inventory for the collection including a partial list of correspondents, a list of writings (articles, short stories, scripts, screenplays, translations) is available in the Reading Room of the Lilly Library.

The Lilly Library also holds the Mystery Writers of America mss. Access to this largely uncataloged collection requires advance notice. Please contact the Curator of Manuscripts for additional information (liblilly [at] indiana.edu).

—David K. Frasier, Reference Librarian, Lilly Library

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January 26, 2011

London Low Life database

Filed under: New acquisitions — Lilly Library @ 3:03 pm

Tallis's Illustrated Plan of London and Its Environs

Under the Lilly Library’s guidance, Adam Matthew Digital recently digitized many items from a variety of Lilly Library collections, including the Michael Sadleir Collection of London Low Life, the Chapbook Collection, and the Virginia Warren Collection of Street Cries, to create London Low Life: Street Culture, Social Reform and the Victorian Underworld.

London Low Life includes Fast literature, Street ephemera, posters, advertising, playbills, ballads and broadsides, Penny fiction, Cartoons, Chapbooks, Street Cries, Swell’s guides to London prostitution, gambling and drinking dens, Reform literature, and Maps and views of London. Among its topics are the underworld, slang, working-class culture, street literature, popular music, urban topography, ‘slumming’ , Prostitution, the Temperance Movement, social reform, Toynbee Hall, police, and criminality.

Access to this searchable resource is available through the IUB Libraries: http://www.libraries.iub.edu/index.php?pageId=400&resourceId=16924590.

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January 12, 2011

Staff News

Filed under: In the news — Lilly Library @ 5:04 pm

Lori Dekydtspotter

On January 3, 2011, Lori Dekydtspotter accepted the position of Rare Books and Special Collections Cataloger at the Lilly Library. Lori comes to this position with fifteen years of experience in three different paraprofessional positions working in the Lilly Library Technical Services Department. She holds a Master of Library Science degree from Indiana University, with a specialization in Rare Books and Manuscripts Librarianship and an M.A. in English from Eastern Washington University, with a focus on Medieval Literature. Before coming to Indiana University, Lori worked at Cornell University’s Olin Library. In addition to her work at the Lilly Library, Lori is an Adjunct Instructor in the IU School of Library and Information Science, where she teaches an Introduction to Rare Books Cataloging workshop (S603) as well as a History of Libraries course (S580).

Meanwhile, we have had to say goodbye to two members of the Lilly Library staff: Gabriel Swift and Elizabeth McCraw. Gabriel, former Reference/Technical Associate in the Lilly Library, accepted a position at the Firestone Library, Princeton University, as Reference Librarian for Special Collections. Elizabeth, who was Senior Retrospective Conversion and Special Projects Cataloger at the Lilly Library, accepted a position as Special Projects Cataloger at UNC Chapel Hill. She will be cataloging printed materials in the North Carolina Collection and sound recordings for the Southern Folklife Collection.

Congratulations, Lori, Gabriel and Elizabeth!

December 16, 2010

Lilly Library Director Breon Mitchell Earns MLA Prize

Filed under: Books,In the news — Lilly Library @ 2:53 pm

Breon Mitchell

Indiana University Professor of Germanic Studies and Comparative Literature and Lilly Library Director Breon Mitchell recently received the 2010 Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for an Outstanding Translation of a Literary Work from the Modern Language Association of America for his 2009 translation of Günter Grass’ 1959 novel Die Blechtrommel (The Tin Drum).

Read the official IU News Room press release.

A video clip from a discussion between Mitchell and Grass is available on YouTube.

Photo courtesy of Indiana University

November 18, 2010

Researching Ann Quin at the Lilly Library

Filed under: Manuscripts — Guest Blogger @ 4:11 pm

Berg dust jacket

At Easter-time 2010 I made a research trip to the Lilly Library at Bloomington, all the way from the University of East Anglia in the U.K., to read papers contained in the Calder and Boyars manuscript collection concerning my PhD subject, the British writer Ann Quin (1936–1973).

With trembling fingers, I sat in the reading room at the Lilly and opened the first box. Quin’s surviving papers are rare, and working with the papers held at the Lilly Library was my first experience of reading and handling her papers at first hand. What I found were a collection of letters and papers that not only charted the story of Quin’s professional career, but also revealed much about her personally. These letters, between Quin and her publishers, John Calder and Marion Boyars, reveal her to have been very anxious about money, demanding, difficult, sporadic, impulsive, and seeking stability. In the letters, her tone is at times, not so much inappropriate, as overly personal, the letters mix detailed discussion of matters to do with the printing of this or that novel, or of issues surrounding what royalties are owed etc, with newsy descriptions of and responses to place, as well as revelations about personal feelings. The tone and composition of these letters expose much about her as a person, and the corresponding responses by her publishers give Quin’s comments a context that has provided me food for thought: she does not always emerge in a pleasant or professional light, and this has aided my thinking about her relationship with her work as well as the people around her. The letters are also revealing in their charting of her ongoing and increasing lack of commercial success, from the frustrations brought by the endless soliciting of the short stories by Boyars, to repeated rejections by foreign publishers.

Many of the letters confirmed what I had already suspected, but some brought unexpected and surprising things to light. Of course, the collection not only contains letters by or directly responding to Quin, but also ones about her. From these, I gleaned vital information about periods of her life when she was suffering from increasingly severe bouts of mental illness and both her fiction and letter writing ground to a halt. It was fascinating to know, for example, that her novels were requested and put forward as evidence to a Doctor treating Quin after one serious breakdown in 1970.

Working with the letters has provided my project with the depth of knowledge and understanding crucial for developing a more sensitive eye when drafting my interpretations of Quin’s fiction. I find echoes of the letters in her fiction, and this conversation between her life and work is something that my experience of visiting the archive has allowed to become an integral part of my project. I am grateful to the Lilly Library not only for providing me the opportunity of reading such papers, but also for their generous financial support of the Ernest Everett Helm Visiting Fellowship which made the trip possible.

—Nonia Williams Dodd, University of East Anglia

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November 5, 2010

Exhibition Celebrates Scott Russell Sanders

Filed under: Exhibitions — Guest Blogger @ 2:18 pm

Scott Russell Sanders image owned by Indiana University

“Words to Speak Our Love of Earth: Celebrating Scott Russell Sanders,” the exhibition currently on display in the Slocum Room of the Lilly Library, represents the full breadth of the work of writer Scott Russell Sanders, who retired from the English Department of Indiana University Bloomington last year, after having taught on this campus for 38 years. The exhibition opened the day before Sanders’s 65th birthday.

Sanders’s output at various times during his illustrious career has included science fiction, fiction, biographical fiction, children’s fiction, criticism, poetry, the personal essay, and autobiography. Drawing on the extensive holdings of the Lilly Library, the exhibit features autographed copies of Sanders’s more than twenty books; manuscripts ranging from an 11–year–old’s middle school compositions to the journals Sanders kept while writing Hunting for Hope; and samples from Sanders’s extensive correspondence.

“Words to Speak Our Love of Earth” foregrounds the themes that recur through Sanders’s work: religion and the importance of the sacred in daily life; the connections between literature and science; the knowledge of place; and, above all, the need for a deeper understanding of our relationship with the Earth on which we live. Some of the more unusual items displayed include an essay on Hamlet from Sanders’s college days in Cambridge, England, which shows the roots of Sanders’s later activism (”Hamlet embodies the dramatic purpose of showing the effects on a sensitive and intelligent man of an escapable demand to perform an act to which he is morally, rationally, educationally, humanistically, and temperamentally disinclined”); a teaching guide he wrote for the science fiction movie The Invasion of the Body Snatchers; a postcard on marriage from twice–married fellow writer John Updike (”Marriage does a writer a great deal of good”); and, finally, a handmade chapbook of Sanders’s poetry written during a retreat at Knoll Farm in the Mad River Valley of Vermont: “… having seen the pond/ shimmer with sky, having grown still,/ when the time comes this morning for us to break silence, we might find words to speak our love of earth.”

The exhibition was curated by Christoph Irmscher, Professor of English at Indiana University.

November 4, 2010

Traveling with the Lilly Library

Filed under: Exhibitions — Cherry Williams @ 10:04 am

Due to the depth and breadth of the Lilly Library’s holdings, we are frequently invited to collaborate and participate in exhibitions created by other libraries and cultural heritage repositories. Wherever your travels may take you, there may be an exhibition nearby featuring familiar and unfamiliar items from the Lilly Library’s collections. Currently, Lilly Library materials are on exhibit in Pennsylvania and Colorado; more will soon be on display in Washington State and Wisconsin.

The National Watch and Clock Museum in Columbia, Pennsylvania, http://www.nawcc.org/index.php/museumlibrary, exhibition Bond Watches, James Bond Watches is available for viewing from June 2010 – April 2011. Highlights include original manuscripts and printed first editions from the Lilly Library’s extensive Ian Fleming related collections. As noted on the exhibition Website, “James Bond watches are invariably at the center of Ian Fleming’s original literary thrillers, … consistently pitting the hero against the most unrelenting adversary of all: the clock, with the fate of the world hanging on mere seconds left before mission success.” For more information visit: http://www.nawcc.org/index.php/museum-exhibits/special-exhibits/bond-watches-james-bond-watches

On exhibit at the University of Colorado at Boulder is “The Art of Willis Pyle,” whose early illustrations — including his characters that lived on the big screen — are featured in a new display at the CU Heritage Center. “CU was the launching pad for Pyle, 96, who has drawn popular Disney characters such as Pinocchio, Bambi and dwarfs from the fairy tale ‘Snow White.’ Before the creation of Pinocchio, Mr. Magoo and Raggedy Ann, illustrator Willis Pyle was art editor of a monthly humor magazine called the ‘Colorado Dodo’ at the University of Colorado.”

The exhibition showcases original sketches and drawings by Mr. Pyle of these Disney characters from the Lilly Library’s Willis Pyle Manuscript Collection. For more information visit: http://www.coloradodaily.com/cu-boulder/ci_16199186#ixzz12kUUrJ24

A major exhibition and overview of the work of Timothy C. Ely of Washington state will be opening at the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture in Spokane on December 4, 2010 – April 16, 2011. “Mr. Ely’s exquisitely bound books integrate Western and Eastern religious and mystical traditions, astronomy, particle physics, cartography, alchemy and sacred geometry.” Considered “one of our regions most important but little-known (in any depth) artists, Mr. Ely is a National Endowment for the Arts Fellow (for study and teaching in Europe and Japan), and was awarded a prestigious Pollock–Krasner Foundation Award.” The Lilly Library is very pleased to hold many of Mr. Ely’s works. Additional information can be found here: http://www.northwestmuseum.org/index.cfm/Exhibits_Collections_Exhibits.htm

Closing out the year at the Chazen Museum, in Madison Wisconsin is their exhibition Hidden Treasures: Illuminated Manuscripts from Midwestern Collections. As the title suggests, there are many items of great rarity and beauty held in Midwestern collections and this exhibition will provide visitors with an opportunity to view a selection of the rarest. More information will be coming soon at: http://www.chazen.wisc.edu/home.htm

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October 6, 2010

Lilly Library announces publication

Filed under: Books,Exhibitions,Illustration,In the news,Manuscripts — Lilly Library @ 4:44 pm

Gilding the Lilly book coverThe Lilly Library at Indiana University, Bloomington is very pleased to announce the arrival of its latest publication: Gilding the Lilly, A Hundred Medieval and Illuminated Manuscripts in the Lilly Library, written by Christopher de Hamel, Donnelley Fellow Librarian, Corpus Christi College, Cambridge. Fully illustrated, the book showcases a selection of a hundred items, described chronologically by Dr. de Hamel.

The Lilly Library manuscripts tell the unfolding story of European book production, art, language and literature, over more than a thousand years from the seventh century to the high Renaissance. The result is a graphic and engaging narrative of the survival and dissemination of culture in the pre-industrial world. Many of the manuscripts are described here for the first time, and they include items of extreme rarity and delicate beauty. The title, Gilding the Lilly, refers both to the burnished gold illumination used in many of these manuscripts and to the golden jubilee of the Lilly Library itself, founded in 1960.

The book is available for purchase at the Lilly Library by contacting Penny Ramon, perfoste@indiana.edu, 812-855-2452 and at the Friends of Art Bookshop, foabooks@indiana.edu, 812-855-1333.  The perfect bound soft cover edition is $50.00; the Smyth Sewn hard cover edition is $100.00; the limited edition, of one hundred signed and slip cased hard cover copies, is $175.00.

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September 23, 2010

First published jazz composition

Filed under: Music — Elizabeth Johnson @ 5:00 pm

Sheet music cover for The "Jelly Roll" BluesHappy Birthday, Jelly Roll! September 20th was the birthday of Jelly Roll Morton, American composer, arranger, ragtime and early jazz pianist, and bandleader. He was born in New Orleans in 1885. While some dispute his contention that he invented jazz in 1902, among the many accomplishments that are credited to him is the first jazz composition to be published. The “Jelly Roll” Blues was published in 1915 by the Chicago publisher Will Rossiter. The composer’s name is presented on the piece as Ferd. Morton. The New Grove dictionary of American music gives his birth name as Ferdinard Joseph LaMothe or Lemott. The Lilly Library has a copy in its Sam DeVincent Collection of American Sheet Music, and it is one of thousands of pieces of sheet music from the Lilly Library’s collection that have been digitized and are available on the website IN Harmony.

—Elizabeth Johnson, Head of Technical Services, Lilly Library

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September 20, 2010

Upgrading WordPress

Filed under: Uncategorized — Lilly Library @ 3:35 pm

Tomorrow, Tuesday September 20th, we will be upgrading the WordPress software used to manage this blog. This upgrade will not affect the appearance or layout of News & Notes, but will allow us to add new features. For example, a new subscription page will offer readers the option of receiving new posts by email.

Bookmarks to our site will be safe, as the upgrade will not affect the primary web address. However, the upgrade may affect any permanent links you have to archived posts, and will change the address of the RSS feed. If you have added News & Notes to a feed reader (like Google Reader) or subscribed to receive posts through a third party program, you will need to update the link to reflect the new format. Check back tomorrow evening for the specific URL.

September 17, 2010

Warm impressions of the Lilly Library

Filed under: Books — Virginia Dearborn @ 1:38 pm

Alexander McCall Smith, best-selling author of The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series (among others) mentions the Lilly Library with his usual warmth and gentleness on page 156 of his 2009 Isabel Dalhousie novel The Lost Art of Gratitude London: Little, Brown, 2009, in Isabel’s voice:

“‘And there’s to be a major conference to mark each new volume.  Bloomington, Indiana. Tel Aviv. Helsinki. Siena. Sydney.
She watched him.  He was quite still. ‘Starting off in Bloomington,’ she went on. ‘Have you been there, Professor Lettuce?’ Lettuce shook his head. He had coloured slightly, she noticed.
‘I had a wonderful visit there,’ Isabel said. ‘A few years ago—in the spring.  The blossom was out and it was just perfect. I was very well looked after.  They took me to the Lilly Library.  They have the most remarkable collection there—literary papers from all sorts of people, all neatly boxed away.  And an astonishing collection of miniature books. Tiny ones. Smaller than that plum tomato you’re trying to eat. You should impale it on your fork, you know.’”

McCall Smith visited Bloomington in April 2009 to give a public talk in the Indiana Memorial Union’s Whittenberger Auditorium as a guest of the College Arts and Humanities Institute at Indiana University.

Special collections in the Lilly Library — including the miniature books and works by Alexander McCall Smith — may be requested for use in the library’s reading room during operating hours.

September 8, 2010

Gilding the Lilly

Filed under: Exhibitions,Manuscripts — Cherry Williams @ 3:55 pm

Ricketts_small

Gilding the Lilly, A Hundred Medieval and Illuminated Manuscripts in the Lilly Library, the final exhibition celebrating the Lilly Library’s 50th anniversary year, has been guest curated by noted medievalist, Christopher de Hamel, Donnelley Fellow Librarian at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge. The exhibition showcases one hundred of the Lilly Library’s most important and interesting manuscripts written in the medieval and renaissance eras. From a Roman tombstone to gleaming and delicate Books of Hours, visitors will be able to view many items rarely seen on exhibit together.

The exhibition will be on display in the Main Gallery at the Lilly Library from October 1 through December 18, 2010.

The Lilly Library is open to the public Monday–Friday 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Please visit http://www.indiana.edu/~liblilly/info.shtml for complete hours, including exceptions.

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August 19, 2010

Bloomington, Lilly Library in Washington Post

Filed under: In the news — Virginia Dearborn @ 3:41 pm

In a recent article in the Travel section of the Washington Post, Washington writer Robin Soslow featured many of the local treasures—including the Lilly Library, of course—that make Bloomington the unique place it is. Soslow was particularly taken with the Lilly Library’s large collections of mechanical puzzles and miniature books, as well as the many rare and unique items in this summer’s main exhibition: Of Cabbages and Kings: Unexpected Treasures of the Lilly Library, on display through September 4, 2010.

Read the full article

August 3, 2010

A Scrapbook Look at John Ruskin

Filed under: Exhibitions — Guest Blogger @ 5:31 pm

John Ruskin

The Lilly Library has a new exhibition called “A Scrapbook Look at John Ruskin,” on display July 26th through August 27th, 2010. This exhibition is created around two scrapbooks made by John Ruskin and held by the Lilly Library. These scrapbooks were initially auctioned during a sale held at Ruskin’s estate in July, 1931, and eventually became part of Elisabeth Ball’s collection, which was donated to the Lilly Library in 1984. These scrapbooks are not only a unique index into Ruskin’s life and thought, but also contain a few interesting surprises: there is a dancing hippo in a tuxedo, monkeys flagellating each other, and a cheeky ghost who querulously asks, “Do you w-a-n-t to be sha-a-ved?” Beyond these amusing tidbits, the scrapbooks document the artifacts Ruskin thought were important to keep, and as a visually-oriented thinker, these documents are of interest for their insight into his own interests as well as what they say about life in Victorian England.

The other books in the exhibit display visual and intellectual connections seen in the scrapbooks, pursuing disparate yet complementary themes. Case one shows the shaping of Ruskin’s thoughts through his life experiences, using his interest in mountains, especially the Alps, as a focal point. It includes a first edition of Modern Painters, The Poetry of Architecture, and The Ethics of the Dust, as well as a magnificent copy of George Chapman’s Whole Works of Homer with John Ruskin’s bookplate and annotations. Case two shows how Ruskin had been shaped by his contextual surroundings, and the ways others have responded to his intellectual legacy. This case includes several editions of Ruskin’s fantasy story The King of the Golden River, William Morris’ edition of The Nature of the Gothic, James Abbott MacNeill Whistler’s pamphlet regarding the libel suit he pressed against Ruskin, and Marcel Proust’s translation of Sesame and Lilies.

This exhibition should be of interest to any aficionado of the nineteenth century, whether a scholar or a member of the community. It was curated by Emilee Mathews, M.A. Candidate in Art History and M.L.S. Candidate in Library Science, as part of an internship pursued through the School of Library and Information Science.

The Lilly Library’s summer hours are Monday through Thursday, 8am to 6pm, Friday 8am to 5pm, and Saturday 9am to 1pm. The exhibition is in the foyer of the library.

—Emilee Mathews

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July 29, 2010

Volunteer at the Lilly Library

Filed under: Uncategorized — Sue Presnell @ 2:01 pm

Volunteer docents are needed to provide gallery tours of the Lilly Library exhibitions. Applicants should possess a genuine interest in books and manuscripts. Orientation and instruction sessions to learn about the Lilly Library collections and new exhibitions are required. Because of the training investment, docents are expected to make a commitment of at least one year to the program. Time commitment varies, usually 2–5 hours per month. We ask volunteers to commit to at least one Friday from 2:00–3:00 per month.

The Lilly Library is a rare book, manuscripts, and special collections library of Indiana University, serving as a resource for scholars throughout the world as well as a center of cultural enrichment for the public. With collections containing over 7,000,000 manuscripts, 400,000 books, and 100,000 pieces of music, the Lilly Library makes its holdings available to a diverse public through publications, exhibitions, and public programming.

Library Hours: Monday–Friday: 9:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m.; Saturdays: 9:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.

For more information or to apply, call Sue Presnell, 855–3006 or e-mail: mpresnel@indiana.edu

As of September 30, the Lilly Library is no longer accepting applications for volunteer positions. Thank you!

June 16, 2010

Frank M. Hohenberger Photograph Collection

Filed under: Photographs — Lilly Library @ 11:11 am

Hohenberger photo_small

The Lilly Library, in partnership with the Indiana University Digital Library Program, recently launched a newly-redesigned online portal for exploring the thousands of images contained in the Frank M. Hohenberger Photograph Collection. This new site provides a new visual design along with access to many more digitized images than were available in the previous site, and new content will be added continually as it is digitized.

Newspaperman and photographer Frank M. Hohenberger (1876–1963) left Indianapolis in 1917 to start a small photography business in Nashville, Indiana, concentrating on the subject matter of Brown County. The next forty-seven years were spent recording the life, customs, and scenes of the hills of Brown County, of other areas of Indiana, of Kentucky, of South Carolina, and of Mexico. From 1923 to 1954 he wrote a column for the Indianapolis Star entitled “Down in the Hills O’ Brown County.” The articles were frequently illustrated with his photographs.

Hohenberger willed his collection to the Indiana University Foundation, and in 1998 ownership was transferred to the Lilly Library.

Visit the redesigned Frank M. Hohenberger Photograph Collection site at http://www.dlib.indiana.edu/collections/lilly/hohenberger.

June 3, 2010

Robert Klein Collection of Comics

Filed under: Books,web site — Whitney Buccicone @ 12:04 pm

Shadow comic_small

A new database has been added to the Lilly Library’s comic book page. The Robert Klein Collection is the Lilly Library’s newest collection of comic books. Ranging from the 1970s forward, the collection spans the independent and international sides of the comic book world. An intriguing gem is an Arabic comic of Superman as well as several Japanese comics. The collection focuses on independent publishers and provides an interesting frame of reference for those interested in a non–mainstream view of the comic book community.

For more information, please see our page on the Klein comic book collection.

—Whitney Buccicone, Literature Cataloger

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May 27, 2010

Unexpected Treasures at the Lilly Library

Filed under: Exhibitions — Lilly Library @ 11:49 am

Rita Hayworth's makeup case_small

After sharing some of its treasures this spring, the Lilly Library is presenting some of its more surprising treasures during the summer of its 50th Anniversary year: Of Cabbages and Kings: Unexpected Treasures of the Lilly Library. This exhibition, which runs through September 4, 2010, offers a look at unusual books, manuscripts and other physical objects from the Lilly Library’s collections, including: A Catalogue of the Different Specimens of Cloth Collected in the Three Voyages of Captain Cook; Rita Hayworth’s makeup case; George Washington’s Proclamation…To Recommend…a Day of Public Thanksgiving and Prayer; Guatemalan music manuscripts from the late 16th and early 17th centuries; the earliest known manuscript of Auld Lang Syne autographed by Robert Burns; and the first printing with music of The Star Spangled Banner. The exhibition also includes some royal materials, such as Queen Elizabeth I’s Great Seal, and the memoirs of King James II.

Objects from great artists’, poets’, and historical figures’ childhoods and everyday lives are on display, as well as love letters and locks of hair. Rare first editions, such as Webster’s American Dictionary (1828) and Chairman Mao’s “Little Red Book” (1964), are also included in the exhibition.

The title of this exhibition, Of Cabbages and Kings: Unexpected Treasures of the Lilly Library, is borrowed from Lewis Carroll’s poem, “The Walrus and the Carpenter,” found in his book entitled, Through the Looking Glass: “‘The time has come,’ the Walrus said, ‘To talk of many things; Of shoes—and ships—and sealing wax— Of cabbages—and kings— And why the sea is boiling hot— And whether pigs have wings.’”

And so, from May 24 to September 4, 2010, the time has come —here at the Lilly Library— to look at many things. We hope that you will experience the joy of unexpected discoveries that this exhibition offers. Of Cabbages and Kings: Unexpected Treasures of the Lilly Library is curated by Rebecca Cape, Erika Dowell, and Gabriel Swift.

—Rebecca Cape, Head of Reference and Public Services; Virginia Dearborn, Reference/Technical Assistant; and Gabriel Swift, Reference Associate

View a larger image of Rita Hayworth’s makeup case, pictured above.

April 30, 2010

So Blessed to Be Here: A Celebration of Don Belton's Life in Literature

Filed under: Events,New acquisitions — Lilly Library @ 2:32 pm

Don Belton

On Wednesday, May 5, at 7 p.m. in the Slocum Room of the Lilly Library, former students of the late Don Belton, Assistant Professor of English at IU, will honor his memory and literary legacy by reading selections from his published and unpublished writings.

Don Belton was the author of the novel Before Midnight and the editor of Speak My Name, a groundbreaking anthology exploring the gulf between real and represented black masculinity.  Belton’s writings have appeared in literary reviews, literature anthologies, cultural journals, and popular magazines and newspapers. The event will also celebrate the transfer of Don’s literary estate, including his extensive journals, to the Lilly Library.

If you have questions about the event, please contact Christoph Irmscher at cirmsche@indiana.edu or 443-622-3277.  The event is free and open to the public; a reception will follow.

Photo courtesy of Indiana University

April 28, 2010

Dr. Rosenbach and Mr. Lilly

Filed under: Books,In the news — Lilly Library @ 1:45 pm

Dr. Rosenbach and Mr. Lilly_cover_small

Joel Silver, Associate Director and Curator of Books for the Lilly Library, has written a book about the collector for whose family the Lilly Library was named, Josiah Kirby Lilly, Jr., and Dr. A.S.W. Rosenbach, from whom Mr. Lilly bought many books and manuscripts. Published in limited first edition by Bird & Bull Press, Dr. Rosenbach and Mr. Lilly: Book Collecting in a Golden Age not only tells the story of these two particular men but also brings to light the golden age of book collecting in the earlier decades of the twentieth century.

For most of his life, J. K. Lilly, Jr. (1893–1966), of Indianapolis, was a devoted collector in many different fields. For some three decades, beginning in the mid–1920s, Mr. Lilly’s collecting attention was focused on assembling one of the finest private libraries of rare books and manuscripts in the world. Mr. Lilly’s collection, which was quite wide–ranging in scope, was particularly strong in American and British literature, American history, voyages and travels, and the history of science and medicine. In the mid–1950s, Mr. Lilly donated his collection of 20,000 books and 17,000 manuscripts to Indiana University, where it became the founding collection of the Lilly Library.

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