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Ruth E. Adomeit in November 1972 at the exhibition of her collection at the Cleveland Public Library.

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Addresses of Abraham Lincoln. Kingsport, Tenn.: Training Division, Kingsport Press, 1929. Excerpts from the Autobiography of Calvin Coolidge. Kingsport, Tenn.: Kingsport Press, 1930.


Ruth E. Adomeit

This miniature book exhibition is based primarily on the Ruth E. Adomeit Collection of Miniature Books, with important additions from the Elisabeth Ball Collection of Historical Children's Materials as well as the Library's other holdings and ongoing acquisitions. Ruth Adomeit began her interest in miniature books while a student at Wellesley College. A gift from her father, two of the Kingsport Press's miniature volumes by Abraham Lincoln and Calvin Coolidge, began her lifelong involvement with the world of miniature books. She also collected in other fields, ranging from children's books to antique butter molds, Russian icons, and pre-Columbian artifacts, but it is her collecting of miniature books for which she was nationally and internationally known. She was active in the field not only as a collector, but also as an author and editor. In addition to writing several miniature books, she was the editor of The Miniature Book Collector from its first issue in June 1960 until it ceased publication in 1962. As a scholar, she is most noted for her bibliography Three Centuries of Thumb Bibles: a Checklist, published by Garland in 1980. It remains the standard reference book on the subject, essential to any scholar or collector in the field. She was also an important member of the Miniature Book Society. The Adomeit collection ranges the entire history of human record keeping in miniature form, from cuneiform tablets of circa 2000 B.C. to contemporary small press and artists' books.

Read a profile of Ruth E. Adomeit:

Rauscher, Janet. Chapter 2, Ruth E. Adomeit: An Ambassador for Miniature Books. In Gruber, Christiane, The Islamic Manuscript Tradition: Ten Centuries of Book Arts In Indiana University Collections. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2010.

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