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Thursday, February 4, 2016

Fashion in the Natural World: Fusing Science with Art

Emile-Allain Séguy was a popular French designer throughout the Art Deco and Art Nouveau movements of the 1920s. Often confused with the French entomologist Eugene Séguy who was active during the same time period, E.A. Séguy designed primarily patterns and textiles and was heavily influenced by the natural world. He was particularly fond of the intricate patterns and beauty of insects (Eugene would have approved), which he saw as "mechanic wonders" that provided abundant inspiration for interior design.

Séguy, Emile-Allain. Papillons. 1925. http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/48852979. Digitized by Smithsonian Libraries.

In 1920, the American textile manufacturer F. Schumacher and Co. commissioned the work Papillons, which was to include stunning compositions of butterflies intended for use as wallpaper, textiles, and other interior and fashion design purposes. Referring to scientific illustrations for reference, Séguy reproduced 81 butterflies within 16 compositions, as well as four additional plates of decorative patterns inspired by butterfly wings, using the pochoir technique. The pochoir technique is based on an ancient method that uses stencils for color application. A costly and labor-intensive technique, pochoir was especially popular in Paris in the 1920s. Each color in a design has its own stencil and layers of gouache or other pigments are applied through each stencil by hand with a brush or sponge. The result is an intense and accurate representation of the colors intended for each composition.

Séguy, Emile-Allain. Papillons. 1925. http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/48852961. Digitized by Smithsonian Libraries.

Though the butterflies and plates are ultimately meant for design applications, Séguy emphasized his use of scientific illustrations to inspire his art and included a table of scientific names within Papillons identifying the species depicted in each plate and its place of origin. The work includes species from across the globe.

Séguy, Emile-Allain. Papillons. 1925. http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/48852957. Digitized by Smithsonian Libraries.

Séguy's designs were reproduced extensively in textiles, wallpapers, and other decorative applications for nearly a century. You can view all of the plates from this work in Flickr. This week, we put the artwork to another use in the Color Our Collections event. The event invites you to download images from library and cultural institution collections, color them, and share them on social media using the event hashtag #ColorOurCollections. We created a plethora of content for the event, including a Flickr collection containing over 1,000 black and white illustrations from BHL's collection. We also created a set of coloring pages from colored illustrations in our collection, which are available separately in Pinterest and also as a single PDF.

A coloring page made from Séguy's Papillons. Digitized for BHL by Smithsonian Libraries.

A significant portion of the coloring pages we created are from Séguy's Papillons, which was digitized for BHL by Smithsonian Libraries. While the colors chosen and so carefully applied by Séguy may reflect the true hues of the natural world, we invite you to design your own butterflies! Download the PDF, choose your own colors for Séguy's outlines, and share the results on social media by tagging @BioDivLibrary and using the #ColorOurCollections hashtag.

coloring page made from Séguy's Papillons. Digitized for BHL by Smithsonian Libraries.

The natural world is alive with artistic inspiration. It's your turn to color your world! 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Color Our Collections

Get your colored pencils ready!



Join us for the Color Our Collections event this week, February 1-5, 2016. Led by The New York Academy of Medicine, the event invites you to download images from library and cultural institution collections, color them, and share them on social media using the event hashtag #ColorOurCollections. With millions of natural history illustrations produced over 500 years in our collection, BHL is thrilled to participate in the event.

How to Download Images from BHL for Color Our Collections

BHL Flickr

We've gathered over 1,000 black and white images from books in the BHL collection into a new Flickr collection. Browse the images, download your favorites, and color away! https://www.flickr.com/photos/biodivlibrary/sets/72157663149641612/



BHL Pinterest

While BHL is full of beautiful black and white images that are just waiting to be colored, there are also thousands of stunning color illustrations in our library that are great candidates for a coloring book. We've selected some of our favorites and turned them into coloring pages. They're available for you to browse, download, and color in Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/biodivlibrary/bhl-coloring-pages/

To download one of the images in Pinterest, right click on the pin and choose "save image as" to save the image to your computer. You can then print and color at your leisure!




BHL Coloring Book

Want to download all of the coloring pages in the BHL Pinterest at once? We've prepared a handy PDF, which you can download for free here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B00hDkSQMhfDMXdIVng0NGd0WlU/view?usp=sharing

Source Books in BHL

You can browse the books that the images in our Color Our Collections Flickr and Pinterest sets come from in our BHL Collection here: http://biodiversitylibrary.org/browse/collection/ColorOurCollections

Many other institutions will also be participating in the event and sharing images from their own collections for you to download and color. Check out this list to see who else is involved. Be sure to follow the hashtag #ColorOurCollections on social media to learn more, and don't forget to share your masterpieces with that same hashtag (and tag @BioDivLibrary if it's from a BHL image). We look forward to seeing your works of art!

Friday, January 29, 2016

New Postage Stamps Featuring Images from the NYBG Nursery & Seed Catalog Collection

Today, January 29, 2016, the U.S. Postal Service released 10 new postage stamps featuring images from catalogs in The New York Botanical Garden's nursery and seed catalog collection.

The Botanical Art Forever stamps featuring illustrations from nursery catalogs in The New York Botanical Garden's nursery and seed catalog collection.

The 10 Botanical Art Forever stamps feature illustrations from American nursery catalogs printed between 1891 and 1912. NYBG's nursery and seed catalog collection is one of the largest and most important collections in the United States. The collection and similar collections in other institutions are treasure troves of historical information for scholars and scientists studying a wide range of subjects, including the history of botany, horticulture, commercial agriculture, landscape design, plant exploration, graphic arts and publishing.

John Lewis Childs. Childs' fall catalogue of bulbs, plants & seeds. http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/44290234. Digitized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Library.

The flowers featured on the stamps include corn lilies, tulips, stocks, roses, petunias, dahlias, Japanese Iris, daffodils and jonquils. The artists responsible for the work seen on early nursery catalogs are mostly unknown, but thanks to these stamps, the catalogs, and ongoing work to digitize the catalogs and make them freely available worldwide, the incredible works of these artists live on.

Dreer. Dreer's autumn catalogue : 1899 bulbs plants, seeds, etc. http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/42696608. Digitized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Library.

You can find most of the catalogs featured in the stamps in BHL. Below is the list of catalogs featured on the stamps and, where available, the links to them in BHL. The copies in BHL were digitized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Library. The remaining catalogs will be uploaded to BHL by NYBG.




We're excited that so many letters will now be adorned with stunning botanical art thanks to the Botanical Art Forever stamps. You can browse over 20,000 seed and nursery catalogs contributed by both NYBG and other BHL partner institutions in BHL. Learn more about the importance of these catalogs in our Garden Stories campaign.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Celebrating Mary Gunn and 100 Years of Library Excellence in South Africa

Compiled by:
Anne-Lise Fourie
Assistant Director, SANBI Libraries
The South African National Biodiversity Institute

In 2013, BHL Africa officially launched with the mission to provide open access to the valuable biodiversity literature found within African libraries and institutions. Today, eleven institutions have signed the BHL Africa MOU and, thanks to support from the JRS Biodiversity Foundation, each is working to contribute content from their collections to BHL. The South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), which has been a member of BHL Africa since its inception, leads the current JRS-funded work.

SANBI has two libraries: the Harry Molteno Library at the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in Cape Town, and the Mary Gunn Library at the Pretoria National Botanical Garden. The mission of SANBI libraries is to meet the information needs of all SANBI staff and to address a public demand for comprehensive, easily accessible information on the biodiversity of southern Africa.

The Mary Gunn Library dates back to 1916 and will celebrate its centenary this year. Today, Ms Mary Gunn’s efforts are reflected in this library’s being one of the most important botanical and biodiversity resources in Africa. Subjects covered in the collection include taxonomy, biodiversity, climate change, global warming, morphology, plant anatomy, plant geography, ethnobotany, conservation ecology, history of botany, palaeobotany and plant exploration.

Mary Davidson Gunn (1899–1989) 

Mary Davidson Gunn. 1919-20.

Mary Davidson Gunn was born on 15 May 1899 in Kirriemuir, Scotland. Her father served in a Scottish regiment during the Anglo Boer War in South Africa and after the war, he decided to immigrate his family to South Africa. They settled in Pretoria where Ms Gunn attended the now defunct State Gymnasium. In September 1916, Ms Gunn was appointed as a clerk with ‘knowledge of typing’ in the Department of Agriculture’s Botany Division. She was not constantly busy and to keep herself occupied, she would dismantle and study the workings of her watch. Caught in the act by the chief of the division, Dr Pole Evans, she was tasked with the job of taking care of the books and building up a library. She approached her new responsibilities with great enthusiasm even though the few books did not even fill one shelf. Every night at home, she would describe each book she catalogued in detail to her father.

As Ms Gunn did not have a botanical background, she studied the catalogues of well-known antiquarian booksellers to establish which works were available and how she could purchase them. She became more and more interested in botanical literature and her knowledge developed rapidly. With enthusiasm and dedication she purchased relevant books and journals and even obtained a great number of publications as gifts – the basis of the current extensive antiquarian collection of the library. Her love for old botanical works became one of her main passions in life and made her one of the country’s most knowledgeable persons on rare botanical books and plant collectors of southern Africa.

Because of limited funds, various ways and means were devised to acquire treasures. She was very persuasive in getting rare and expensive books donated or sponsored to the library during her time as librarian. In her own words, ‘I frequently had to go hat-in-hand asking for money from influential people so that I can buy what I wanted!’ Her acquiring gifts, as well as purchasing and exchanging books and journals, populated Ms Gunn’s library until she had enough of a variety for the public. To this day, the global exchange programme remains one of the chief ways in which the Mary Gunn Library receives new journals.

Redouté, Pierre Joseph. Les liliacees. v. 1 (1805). http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/287202. Image from the copy in BHL digitized by the Missouri Botanical Garden, Peter H. Raven Library.

The Mary Gunn Library houses a magnificent Rare Antiquarian Book Collection that includes publications such as the broadsheet edition of Pierre-Joseph Redouté’s Les Liliacées. Redouté published Les Liliacées from 1802–1816 and the institute’s copy is one of only 18 broadsheet editions published. Redouté himself finished the plates in this edition by hand. Ms Gunn bought this rare work in England and conveyed it to South Africa in General Jan Smuts’ personal luggage after attending the signing of the Versailles Treaty. Smuts was a good friend of Ms Gunn and introduced her to businessmen such as Myles Bourke, Charles Maggs and J.J. Kirkness who donated funds to the library for purchasing rare books.

Nikolas Joseph Jacquin published Stapeliarum in 1808. The book contains 64 colour plates of stapeliads grown in the botanic garden of the University of Vienna. In 1938, Ms Gunn spotted the book in a booksellers’ catalogue and, with donations, she managed to purchase this rare book. The library now also houses other rare works by Jacquin.

Bergius, Peter Jonas. Descriptiones plantarum ex Capite Bonae Spei. (1767). http://bibdigital.rjb.csic.es/ing/Libro.php?Libro=5028. Image from the copy in BHL digitized by the Biblioteca Digital del Real Jardin Botanico de Madrid.

One of the rarest and oldest works on the botany of the Cape of Good Hope is Descriptions plantarum ex Capite Bonae Spei (1767) by Peter Jonas Bergius, based in part on specimens collected at the Cape by the Swede, Mikael Grubb. It predates Linnaeus’s famous Mantissa Plantarum by one month. The library’s copy of this work was once owned by Prof. W.H. Harvey, the co-initiator of Flora Capensis. A handwritten note in the book explains that the book once belonged to a young botanist, George Forster, who, with his father, accompanied Captain Cook on his second voyage around the world with this very book.

Xylotheque (wooden) book set by C.H. Wehdemann.

The unique 52 xylotheque (wooden) book set by C.H. Wehdemann is the only South African example ever made. Wehdemann came to the Cape Colony in the early 1800s as part of the army of the Dutch East India Company. After his dismissal in 1806, he moved to the Eastern Cape settling on a farm near Somerset East where he died in 1836. Each wooden book represents an indigenous tree. At the top of the book is a slide which gives you access to the inside of the book. Inside is a short description of the tree, some illustrations and a small cane tube with seeds inside. Of the original set of 60, the Mary Gunn Library has the remaining 52 books.

Selection from the Xylotheque (wooden) book set by C.H. Wehdemann held in The Mary Gunn Library.

Other treasures in the library:



Dr Pole Evans’ continuous queries about botanical explorers led Ms Gunn to her second passion, namely biographical research of early botanists and plant collectors. Information on Thunberg, Burchell, Masson, Ecklon, Drège and more were collected from all corners of the world. In 1981 the major part of this information was used to publish Botanical exploration of southern Africa: an illustrated history of early botanical literature on the Cape flora. This work, produced in collaboration with Dr Leslie Codd, was the culmination of more than 60 years of research. In 2010 the work was revised and published as part of SANBI’s Strelitzia series.

Ms Gunn possessed charm, coupled with a sharp wit, a sense of humour, steely determination and a high regard for those she felt warranted respect. After her official retirement in 1954, she continued working at the institute until 1973. In honour of Ms Gunn’s devotion to botanical literature for 60 years of her life, the National Herbarium Library was renamed the Mary Gunn Library in 1969.

The official opening of the Mary Gunn Library, 15th January 1970. From left to right: Dr. B de Winter, Deputy Director, Botanical Research Institute; Dr JW Geyer, Chief Director of Research, Department of Agriculture; Ms Gunn and Dr. LE Codd, Director, Botanical Research Institute.

Through their participation in BHL Africa, SANBI will work to digitize the treasures in the Mary Gunn Library and make them openly, globally, and freely available in BHL. In the meantime, you can view many of the books mentioned in this post in the BHL collection thanks to contributions from several of our other partner libraries.

We are excited to see the continued growth of BHL and its collections thanks to the dedicated efforts of our partners around the world. We have a feeling that Ms Gunn would heartily concur.

Ms Gunn in her later years.

References 

  1. Fourie, D. Obituary of Mary Davidson Gunn. Bothalia 20, 1: 127-130 1990. 
  2. Fourie, D. The history of the Botanical Research Institute 1903-1989. Bothalia 28, 2 1998.
  3. Glen, H.F. Botanical Exploration of Southern Africa: An illustrated history of early botanical literature on the Cape Flora, Biographical accounts of the leading plant collectors and their activities in southern Africa form the days of the East India Company until the modern times. 2nd ed. Pretoria: SANBI, 2010.
  4. Gunn, M. and Codd, L. Botanical exploration of southern Africa: an illustrated history of early botanical literature on the Cape flora. Cape Town: Balkema, 1981. 
  5. Killick, D.J.B. The Mary Gunn Library. 1992. Pamphlet.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Biodiversity Heritage Library staff attend the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting in Boston, MA

IMG_20160108_131954638
Ronnie Broadfoot
A number of BHL staff attended the American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits in an unseasonably warm Boston, MA during the run of the conference, January 8-12, 2016. Taking advantage of the meeting's location near BHL Members, The Ernst Mayr Library (Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University) and the Harvard Botany Libraries, staff at those institutions hosted visits by BHL Program Director Martin Kalfatovic and Program Manager Carolyn Sheffield, as well as staff from The Field Museum Library (Christine Giannoni, Diana Duncan, and Melissa Anderson).

BHL staffer Matthew Person, from the MBLWHOI Library in nearby Woods Hole, MA, said of the meetings, "After attending ALA Midwinter sessions on 'linked data' and cooperatively developed tools to help researchers communicate on an inter-institutional level, I felt good about the work BHL is putting into aligning metadata for BHL published science literature with publishing standards and requirements for discovery systems. This work will make BHL content and metadata available through multiple avenues of research exploration, which assists inter-institutional research worldwide." Added the Mayr Library's Ronnie Broadfoot, "Overall, I had a great conference for the usual reasons -- good conversations with colleagues I know from previous conferences and with colleagues just met. That's what keeps me coming back."

During a visit to the Mayr Library, staff Joe DeVeer and Broadfoot provided tours of the general and special collections as well as an overview of the Internet Archive Table Top Scribe scanner.

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Mayr Library (Joe DeVeer, left and right; Ronnie Broadfoot, center)

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Herbals
Judy Warnement, librarian of the Harvard Botany Libraries, provided an overview of the botany collections of the botanical libraries in Cambridge, including the Economic Botany Library of Oakes Ames, the Oakes Ames Orchid Library, and the Farlow Reference Library of Cryptogamic Botany. Among the treasures Judy showed us were botanical specimens collected by Henry David Thoreau and some of the amazing early herbals in the libraries' collections.



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Harvard Botany Libraries


2016.01.10-IMG_5484During the conference, Giannoni met with Kalfatovic and Sheffield to discuss scanning operations as well as the upcoming "BHL @ 10" meetings to be held at the Natural History Museum (London) and the Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew. Said Giannoni, "ALA is a great way to reconnect with colleagues from all over the country. While folks are oftentimes surprised to encounter a 'museum' librarian at ALA, there are still a lot of great opportunities to connect with librarians dealing with the same issues we encounter: intellectual property, digitization initiatives, marketing. We're more alike than many folks realize!"

Participating in the conference exhibitions was the Internet Archive, which brought one of the Table Top Scribes from their Boston scanning facility.

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Tim Bigelow of the Internet Archive
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Matthew Person
The conference also included a reception at the New England Aquarium, hosted by ProQuest.

During the reception, Matthew Person noted "I attended an ALA Midwinter session on organizational change and leadership during which it was discussed that in building and growing organizations, when transparency is practiced, it can have a huge payoff in the success and sustainability of the organization. BHL has been unique as it was conceived as a transparent organization from the bottom to the top, and BHL successes are a positive example that transparency works!"

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Fantastic Worlds: Exploring the Ocean through Science and Fiction

In July 2015, BHL founding institution Smithsonian Libraries opened a new exhibit at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History entitled Fantastic Worlds: Science and Fiction 1780-1910. The exhibit invites visitors to explore the fantastic worlds of fiction inspired by 19th century scientific discovery and invention. It features fabulous natural history books on topics ranging from marine life to geology and dinosaurs and expeditions to the polar regions and interior Africa. Exhibit curators Kirsten van der Veen (Special Collections, Dibner Library, Smithsonian Libraries) and Doug Dunlop (Metadata Librarian, Smithsonian Libraries) not only walk visitors through some of the remarkable scientific discoveries of the Victorian era but also demonstrate the profound impact these advances had on popular fiction.

Kingsley, Charles. Glaucus. 4th Ed. (1859). http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/29363521.

In the exhibit section entitled "Sea Change: Underwater Worlds," visitors can experience 19th century ocean exploration through the lens of publications, both scientific and fictional, produced during the time period. As the exhibit articulates:

"The sea was a vital part of 19th-century life: distant travel, commerce, and the livelihoods of many depended on it. Tales of sea voyages, both fact and fiction, were immensely popular. As scientists explored the depths of the oceans, however, stories began to take place not just on the sea, but in it.  
In the early 1800s, scientists believed the deep sea simply could not sustain life. Knowledge of the oceans had largely been limited to shores and shallow waters, but the mid-19th century saw the start of our exploration of this immense underwater world. Technological improvements to submersible vessels and diving gear helped make the seas more accessible. The bold plan to lay a telegraph cable across the Atlantic Ocean made understanding the ocean floor essential, and helped drive deep-sea exploration further. 
Victorian Britain had a fascination with the sea, and with the natural world in general. The pastime of shell collecting became very popular in the mid-1800s. As the middle class grew and people found themselves with leisure time, the seaside became a frequent holiday destination. Amateur naturalists and vacationers scoured the shores for specimens to add to their collections. Collecting and cataloging one's findings was considered a morally appropriate, enriching activity, and a worthy antidote to idleness. This fascination mirrored the interests of the scientific community, as newly coordinated efforts to dredge for marine fauna and survey the coasts were initiated, to address the notable lack of new knowledge of the undersea world.  
Kingsley, Charles. Glaucus. 4th Ed. (1859). http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/29363529.
Books on the identification of sea life, like Rev. Charles Kingsley’s Glaucus, or, The Wonders of the Shore, were very popular. Perhaps best known for his children’s book The Water Babies, Kingsley was a prolific writer of non-fictional works as well, including sermons, social commentaries, and scientific treatises. He was a capable amateur naturalist, too, well-versed in the scientific issues of the day (he and Charles Darwin corresponded) and a proponent of science education. Glaucus, named for an ancient Greek sea-god, encouraged personal and religious improvement through knowledge of the natural world, in this case the corals, mollusks, and anemones found at the seashore. 
Interest in sea life found its way into the home in the 1850s as the first aquariums (or “aqua-vivariums”) appeared. Having a miniaturized version of the ocean floor at home became a mid-19th century fad. The first public aquarium opened in 1853 in London. Purveyors of aquatic plants and animals catered to aquarium enthusiasts. Books [such as Henry Noel Humphreys' Ocean Gardens: The History of the Marine Aquarium. London, 1857] offered advice to enthusiasts on creating and maintaining their indoor “ocean gardens."
Humphreys, Henry Noel. Ocean gardens : the history of the marine aquarium, and the best methods now adopted for its establishment and preservation (1857). http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/43084496.

As the exhibit shows, the public's growing interest in the deep ocean can be clearly seen in the popularity of many of the fictional works of the time, especially Vingt Mille Lieues Sous les Mers (Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas in English) by Jules Verne. Within the work, the famous Captain Nemo takes his captive guests on a journey through the oceans in his submarine. The work draws on many of the scientific advances, such as self-propelled submarines and diving suits, and features many of the exotic underwater species, that were captivating the public during the era.

Not only were the inventions and species featured in works like Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas a reflection of the advances of the time, but the very idea of extended underwater expeditions like that undertaken by Captain Nemo also mirrored the scientific endeavors being launched. According to the exhibit:

"Britain’s Challenger expedition, a massive four-year undertaking begun in 1872, vastly increased knowledge about the deep sea. Its goal: to circumnavigate the globe and study the ocean's depths. It was the first large-scale government-funded scientific expedition. The HMS Challenger was a British naval warship outfitted for scientific study and included a chemistry lab and a workroom for the study of specimens.  
The expedition resulted in 50 volumes of scientific reports. More than 4,500 new species of marine life were recorded, and scientists were finally able to prove that life did indeed exist in the ocean's depths. The hundreds of crates of specimens were painstakingly studied and illustrated by experts worldwide, like those by Ernst Haeckel [Report on the Scientific Results of the Voyage of H.M.S. Challenger during the years 1873–76...Zoology: Report on the Deep-Sea Keratosa. Edinburgh, 1889], and formed the basis for the marine collections at the Natural History Museum in London."
Haeckel, Ernst. Report on the scientific results of the voyage of H.M.S. Challenger during the years 1873-76. Zoology v. 32, pt. 82 (1889). http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/2225158.

Many of the books featured in the "Sea Change: Underwater Worlds" section of the exhibit, such as Glaucus, Ocean Gardens, and Report on the Scientific Results of the Voyage of H.M.S. Challenger during the years 1873–76, can be found in BHL. You can learn more about underwater science and fiction in the Victorian period in the Fantastic Worlds online exhibit from Smithsonian Libraries. The exhibit at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History runs through February 26, 2017, and is free to the public. Be sure to visit the exhibit if you're in Washington, D.C., or browse the online exhibit to learn more about the fantastic intersection of science and fiction in the Victorian era.

Exhibit Text Featured in this Post by: 
Kirsten van der Veen
Special Collections, Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology, Smithsonian Libraries

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Happy New In-Copyright Materials!

Welcome to 2016 and BHL's latest batch of in-copyright content! We have 8 new titles to add to the list since our last post.

Over the course of 2015, BHL secured the following:




Where possible, BHL acquires permission in the form of a signed license agreement from copyright holders to digitize post-1922 publications. These publications are available for open access under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0) license. Users are welcome to reuse the in-copyright content in BHL so long as they adhere to the terms of the CC license, meaning:


  • you attribute the content to the copyright holder
  • use the content for non-commercial purposes such as educational or personal use
  • share the content under the same license (CC-BY-NC-SA 4.0)


This time around we have contributions from South Africa, United States, Scotland, Italy and England:

Special thanks to our Affiliate partners with BHL Africa from the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) who are contributing 3 new titles to the BHL collection. 
  1. Bothalia (1918 to present) - named after General Botha, South Africa's first Union Premier and Minister of Agriculture, the journal continues to this day as a principal publication about South Africa's flora and fauna. Most recently, it is expanding in scope to include more information about African biodiversity and conservation topics.
  2. "Atlas and red list of the reptiles of South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland" (2014)
  3. Flora of Southern Africa (1963 to present)
Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press has contributed "Watershed Research Perspectives" (1986) edited by David L. Correll. This publication is a collection of papers resulting from a 1985 watershed research workshop held at the Smithsonian's Environmental Research Center.



The earliest issues of the newsletter Nemophila, published by the California Botanical Society, are now in BHL from 1919 to 1927. CBS is better known for its premier publication, Madroño which is also in BHL. We are very pleased to support the digital archives of this 103 year old society who support the scientific research initiatives and community outreach for Western American botany.


The quarterly magazine and journal for members of the Scottish Ornithologists' ClubScottish Bird News, will be in BHL soon. The following graphic summarizes nicely the importance of the SOC for Scotland's bird enthusiasts and researchers alike. For now, selected back files are available via the organization's website. 



Dating back to the 1870s, Italy's foremost organization dedicated to malacological research, the Società Italiana di Malacologia (SIM), has generously contributed later volumes of its Bollettino Malacologico (1979 to present, with 3 yr embargo) to the BHL collection. Its earliest volumes actually preceded the formalization of the society and are available in BHL as the Bullettino malacologico italiano. Stay tuned for the later volumes to come.

Now in their 155th year, the Yorkshire Naturalists' Union "is devoted to studying and recording Yorkshire's flora and fauna...as an association of amateur and professional naturalists covering a wide range of aspects of natural history." BHL will soon include later volumes of their triannual publication The Naturalist in our online collection. You can see its earliest volumes in BHL from 1864.

Digitization is in progress for these titles and you can see them appearing via our recent additions list.

Want to see more in-copyright content in BHL? Let us know what you’d like to see!

-Bianca Crowley, BHL Digital Collections Manager