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March 30, 2012

Packing the Cleveland Play House Archives

During 5 days in December 2011, 25 Kelvin Smith Library and Cleveland Play House staff spent over 100 hours packing more than 1,000 boxes of documents, books, posters, and models. The purpose of this marathon effort was to prepare the Archives of the Cleveland Play House for transport to its new home at Kelvin Smith Library.

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Some of the aisles were narrow. The boxes were certainly heavy.

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Many of the shelves were high. A few of the items tested our packing ingenuity.

But the job was completed - on time and under budget.
A promising start to an exciting addition to Kelvin Smith Library's collections.

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March 22, 2012

Another highlight in honor of Charles Dickens 200th Birthday

The Cricket on the Hearth : a Fairy Tale of Home is the third of five Christmas books published by Dickens. It was originally published by Bradbury and Evans in 1846. Our featured work was printed by the prominent British private press, the Golden Cockerel Press, in a limited edition of 1500 copies in 1933. The Golden Cockerel Press was in operation from 1920 until 1960 and gained fame for its beautiful handmade books of classic literature that were produced in limited editions.


Facing page 6, plate 1: "The Perrybingle Family" The Cricket on the Hearth : a Fairy Tale of Home by Charles Dickens
Waltham Saint Lawrence, Eng. : The Golden Cockerel Press : Printed for the members of the Limited Editions Club, 1933

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March 07, 2012

O tempora! O lectores!

February brought an interesting array of readers through our doors for a variety of events, highlights of which we note here. The month began with a facilities tour and presentation on the history of the book given to students engaged in IMLS grant activities in the Kelvin Smith Library. The event included an exhibit of items from the Special Collections shelves, including Fifty Original Leaves from Medieval Manuscripts from the Otto Ege Collection and our Flemish Book of Hours.

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frontispiece from Mr. William Shakespear's comedies, histories, and tragedies, faithfully reproduced in facsimile from the edition of 1685

Busy times continued with classes held in the Hatch Reading Room including English 310: History of the English Language, and, USSY 286S: Shakesploitation - 400 Years of Marketing Shakespeare. Professors conducting these courses, Dr. Kimberly Emmons and Dr. Barbara Burgess-Van Aken, respectively, worked with Special Collections and Research Services librarians to integrate a number of Special Collections texts into their syllabi, examples of which ranged from a first edition De humani corporis fabrica [1543] to a 20th century reprint of the bard’s first folio. Preparation for such visits would not be complete without a review of our bibliography William Shakespeare: Works Held in the Department of Special Collections- we hope you will take a moment to enjoy it.

A visit from Michael F. Suarez, SJ, University Professor & Director of Rare Book School at the University of Virginia offered an exciting opportunity to join local bibliophiles in enjoying his lecture at the Kelvin Smith Library: “Patrons and Illustrations: 17th Century British Books and Coming of the Enlightenment.” The event offered a fascinating look at the publishers, printers, and readers of that time followed by a spirited Q&A session.

If you would like to know more about Special Collections please be sure to visit our website.

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