Special Collections Unbound

Dante Canto 2 decoration

Stanford's 1481 'Divine Comedy' Online

September 2, 2021
by Benjamin L Albritton

In 1987, Stanford Libraries acquired a major collection of materials by, and about, Dante Alighieri. Among these materials were nine 15th-century editions of his Comedia (more familiarly, the Divine Comedy) - editions which are constant highlights in the teaching and learning programs in Special Collections and, because of the familiarity of the text to many students and visitors, in regular use by researchers.

Sol Martinez inventorying a box from the John J. Johnson collection.

Guest blogger: Summer Intern Sol Martinez

September 1, 2021
by Hanna Ahn

I am excited to share that the John J. Johnson papers are now available for research through the University Archives. John J. Johnson (1912-2004) served as a professor of Latin American history at Stanford from 1946 to 1977, and continued to contribute to the field through research publications, journal editorship, teaching, and mentorship long after his retirement. This collection represents the latter part of Johnson’s career.

Barry Hinman photo

Brown, Burlingame and Hinman family archives open for research

September 1, 2021
by Gurudarshan Khalsa

The Brown, Burlingame and Hinman family archives has been processed and is open for research. The collection was donated to Stanford by Barry Hinman, who began his career at Stanford Libraries in 1980 and retired in July 2007 from the Department of Special Collections and University Archives as Special Collections Librarian for Cataloging Emeritus. Barry was a valued member of Special Collections staff.

Peter Whidden and John Mustain holding a rare book bound in medieval manuscript

In Appreciation of Peter Whidden on the Eve of His Retirement

August 30, 2021
by Benjamin L Albritton

John Mustain (left) and Peter Whidden (right) show off a treasure from the Rare Books Collection

 

“Peter’s work is exceptional”

-- Memo from Linda Long in 1994

Visitors to the basement of Green Library could easily overlook a series of small, blue arrows on the floor. They once directed colleagues toward a service elevator during a major move of materials from Green Library to the Stanford Auxiliary Library. They are the subtle reminders of the often unseen work that happens in an institution like ours: the thinking, logistics, measuring, planning, and communication that keeps things humming along smoothly and of which patrons and colleagues might not even be aware. While our colleague, Peter Holt Whidden, Rare Book Specialist in Special Collections, was not responsible for those particular arrows, he has left many similar signposts throughout the library and Special Collections when he retires on Aug. 31, 2021 after 31 years of service to Stanford Libraries. 

Composite view of one section of the mural with full color, 3d photgrammetry, and a blend of the two.

Scientific Imaging of Diego Rivera's 'Pan American Unity' Mural

Stanford Libraries is proud to announce a new Spotlight exhibit: Diego Rivera's San Francisco Masterpiece - Virtual Preservation of "Pan American Unity". The exhibit is devoted to rich scientific imaging of Diego Rivera's 1940 mural Unión de la Expresión Artistica del Norte y Sur de este Continente (The Marriage of the Artistic Expression of the North and of the South on this Continent), also known as Pan American Unity. It highlights 3D photgrammetric documentation of the mural created by Cultural Heritage Imaging as part of an arrangement between City College of San Franscisco and SFMOMA to display the mural at SFMOMA from 2021 to 2023. This exhibit takes advantage of both the International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) and the Mirador viewer to allow users to explore the mural's colors and surface textures, the progress of the work as it was created, and work done by SFMOMA and Site & Studio Conservation to describe the condition of the mural.

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