Archive for the ‘flash-mob cataloging’ Category

Monday, May 13th, 2013

Flash-mob: Help catalog Eisenhower’s Library!

Thanks to LibraryThing member kcgordon, we have a list of the books at the Eisenhower National Historic Site in Gettysburg, PA, so we thought it would be fun to do a quick flash-mob of these (there aren’t a huge number of books, so this probably won’t take too long).

We’ve kicked things off already (see Eisenhower’s profile page) but there are quite a few books still to be added, and we’d love to have your help!

See the Talk thread or jump right to the project wiki page to get started and claim your section of the library list. No worries if you haven’t worked on a Legacy Libraries project before – this is definitely a good introduction to them! I’ll be helping out too, and will answer any questions you have on the Talk thread.

NB: Another LTer is working on obtaining a list of additional Eisenhower books from his home in Kansas, so with any luck at all we’ll be able to add those soon as well. We’ll keep you posted!

Labels: flash-mob cataloging, fun, legacy libraries

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

Flash-mob: Help catalog Rudyard Kipling’s library!

As part of our Legacy Library 5th-birthday celebrations, we’re kicking of a flash-mob cataloging party for the library of Rudyard Kipling. We’ll be working from the shelf-list of Kipling’s library at his home, Bateman’s.

Kipling (1865-1936), is well known for his fiction and poems, and he accumulated quite a neat library, judging by a somewhat cursory glance at the inventory. It’ll be fascinating to see what it looks like when all the books are in LT.

We’d love to have your help! See the Talk thread or jump right to the project wiki page to get started and claim your section of the library list. No worries if you haven’t worked on a Legacy Libraries project before – this is definitely a good introduction to them! I’ll be helping out too, and will answer any questions you have on the Talk thread.

[UPDATE: We're done! Thanks to the eighteen volunteers who helped out!]

Labels: flash mob, flash-mob cataloging, legacies, legacy libraries

Monday, September 3rd, 2012

Legacy Libraries, Five Years On …

Five years ago today we launched the Legacy Libraries group (formerly and affectionately known as “I See Dead People['s Books]“. The project, now with its own homepage, has grown far beyond what we originally intended when a small group of volunteers started cataloging Thomas Jefferson’s library. Some numbers:

  • 157: Legacy Libraries completed to date, with 60 more currently in progress (the full list)
  • 19: libraries of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence cataloged so far
  • 16: libraries of Mayflower passengers documented
  • 8: libraries of actors added or suggested
  • 1,401: Libraries of Early America on which data has been collected to date
  • 153,232: books added to Legacy Library catalogs so far
  • 8: flash-mob catalog projects, including Frederick Douglass and the H.M.S. Beagle (see below for the next one!)
  • 433: members of the Legacy Libraries group
  • ~160: members who have contributed to at least one Legacy Library
  • 59: Legacy Library catalogs which contain a copy of the works of Shakespeare

    To mark the occasion of the fifth birthday, some announcements:

    - Badges! All LibraryThing members who’ve helped with a Legacy Library should now find on their profile page a new “award,” which we’ve named the Legacy Lagniappe. If you don’t have one and should, email me (jeremy@librarything.com) with your LT username and the Legacy catalog you worked on (some of the early records are a bit hazy). We’re glad to finally be able to recognize those members who’ve helped out, at least in some small way. The project wouldn’t be what it is without your contributions and your help! I’ve also been working on trying to connect a few LT libraries which should probably be brought into the Legacies fold, so if you were involved with one of those, please be in touch.

    - Boswell Completed. One huge project has recently reached completion: the library of James Boswell, underway since early October 2008, now contains 5,047 titles! Congratulations and thanks to LTers moibibliomaniac, larxol, and aynar. Jerry Morris (moibibliomaniac) sent along this note:

    “When, after thirteen long months of cataloging, Boswell cataloging team member larxol declared the cataloging of the library of James Boswell complete in November 2009, he included the following proviso:
    ‘… “complete,” in the sense that all the books we know about at this time have an entry.’

    Little did he know …

    In Feb 2010, James Caudle, the Associate Editor Yale Editions of the Papers of James Boswell, read my announcement in a recent issue of The Johnsonian News Letter that both the Samuel Johnson and James Boswell Libraries could be viewed online at Library Thing. He congratulated us for our efforts and offered his assistance in the form of additional catalogues and lists we and probably most of the rest of the world were unaware of.

    In May 2010, we began the cataloging of the 1893 Auchinleck Sale (books owned by generations of Boswells), to be followed in rabid, if not rapid, succession with the cataloging of the 1916 Sotheby Sale, the 1917 Dowell Sale, the 1810 Catalogue of Greek and Latin Classics (written by Alexander Boswell), the c.1770 Catalogue of Books Belonging to James Boswell (written by James Boswell himself), and finally, Boswell’s Curious Productions, a catalogue of chapbooks belonging to James Boswell.

    Thanks go to the Boswell cataloging team: larxol, aynar, and myself (moibibliomaniac); to James Caudle; to Yale undergraduates Jing fen-Su (c.1770 catalogue) and Jacob Sider Jost (Curious Productions); to Boswell researcher Terry Seymour; to Boswell collector Paul T. Ruxin; to James Boswell himself; and to Library Thing and its Legacy Libraries for making these least four years enlightening and enjoyable.”

    - A Selected Catalogue. In 1793, the librarian at Harvard College, Thaddeus Mason Harris, published a pamphlet titled A Seleced [sic] Catalogue of some of the most esteemed Publications in the English Language. Proper to form a Social Library: with an introduction upon the choice of Books (Printed at Boston, by I. Thomas and E. T. Andrews, Faust’s Statue, No. 45, Newbury Street, 1793). Harris wrote in the introduction of his choices:

    “As it has been my endeavour to form a catalogue for a small and cheap library, intended to suit the tastes and circumstances of common readers, many valuable works, in the higher departments of science, have been intentionally omitted. And imperfect as the list may be found, in other respects, yet I trust it will appear that there are sufficient under each head to give a satisfactory and comprehensive (though in some instances very short) view of that particular department of knowledge.”

    This weekend I added Harris’ catalog to LT: see it at SocialLibrary1793. How does your library stack up to the Harvard Librarian’s recommendations from more than two centuries ago? See my overlap (17 titles), or yours (if you’re logged in).

    - Coming soon: Kipling Flash-mob! We’ve got a great list of books from Rudyard Kipling’s library, and this week we’ll be starting a flash-mob to catalog them into LibraryThing. Watch the blog for an announcement about details tomorrow or Wednesday, and save some time to join in!

    Finally, from me, a big and very heartfelt THANK YOU to everyone who’s helped out with these projects over the last five years, and to Tim for taking an interest and letting us run with the idea way back then! We’ve got a lot more work to do, but it’s great fun, so if you’re interested in helping out with a current project, know of another library we ought to add, or want to begin a project of your own, please be in touch (jeremy@librarything.com, jbd1 on LT, or @JBD1 on Twitter). Here’s to many more years of this important, endlessly-fascinating project!

    If you want to discuss the state of the Legacy Libraries at five years, head over to the Talk thread.

  • Labels: flash-mob cataloging, legacies, legacy libraries

    Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

    Flash-mob catalog: Frederick Douglass’ library!

    Starting at noon EST today, we’re going to flash-mob catalog the library of Frederick Douglass, working from the National Park Service’s inventory of Douglass’ library at his home, Cedar Hill.

    Douglass (1818-1895), a leading abolitionist, social reformer, noted orator, and author, collected quite an impressive number of books and pamphlets, including a very significant body of abolitionist literature as well as many history texts, religious literature, and U.S. Government publications.

    We’d love to have your help! See the Talk thread or jump right to the project wiki page to get started and claim your section of the library list. No worries if you haven’t worked on a Legacy Libraries project before – this is definitely a good introduction to them! I’ll be helping out too, and will answer any questions you have on the Talk thread.

    Labels: flash mob, flash-mob cataloging, legacies, legacy libraries

    Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

    Occupy Libraries!

    It’s been fascinating to watch the rise of libraries at the various Occupy sites around the world, particularly the impressively-large collection at Occupy Wall Street known as the People’s Library. We reached out and suggested a LibraryThing account for the collection, and the volunteer librarians in Zucotti Park responded enthusiastically.

    The OWSLibrary catalog now includes more than 3,300 titles, and it’s quite a rich and varied collection (check out the tag mirror). We’ve got a Talk thread where members are posting the books they share with the library; as of this morning, I share 100 titles with them, everything from E.O. Wilson to Annie Dillard to Strunk & White. If you’re signed into LibraryThing, you can see what you share with the OWS Library here.

    The OWSLibrary folks also have an active blog, Twitter, and Flickr presence (they’ve even got library stamps!). Many authors have visited to speak, lend support, and sign books, and there’s now even an Occupy Wall Street Poetry Anthology.

    More than 1,300 writers have signed the Occupy Writers petition in support of the Occupy movement, including Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman, Junot Díaz and more.

    You can read some good coverage of the Occupy library movement in American Libraries, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and the Wall Street Journal.

    On Friday, local librarian JustinTheLibrarian, Tim and I went downtown on our lunch break and cataloged the Occupy Maine library, a small collection housed at Portland’s Spartan Grill restaurant (which also serves a very tasty gyro).

    Occupy Sacramento’s library is also up on LibraryThing, and we’ve been in touch with various other Occupy libraries; if your city’s library joins up, we’d love to know about it!

    While you may agree or disagree with the Occupy movement as a whole, we think what they’re doing with books and libraries is simply awesome. And we’re very happy to be a part of it.

    Labels: cataloging, flash mob, flash-mob cataloging, libraries

    Friday, September 9th, 2011

    Legacy Libraries updates: Arendt, Greene, Twain, Wilde

    Some recent Library Library highlights:

    Hannah Arendt: LTers pranogajec, rsterling, and mambo_taxi have completed the addition of political theorist Hannah Arendt’s 3,500+ books, which are currently in the collections of Bard College.

    Graham Greene: Our flash-mob to finish up author Graham Greene’s catalog went very well, and Greene’s 2,500 titles now at Boston College have been completely entered. Thanks to the following LTers for their assistance: g062r (who began the project and added the first several hundred titles), plus ReneeGKC, jjmcgaffey, cinaedus, timspalding, jbd1, cartogis, melmmo, JustJoey4, DuneSherban, mandymarie20, Kaczencja, SassyLassy, flissp, rdurie, melmore, jcbrunner, anglemark, ansate, Wabbit98, UtopianPessimist, urland, arrwa, cpirmann, jburlinson, DanaW.

    Mark Twain: Now underway as an effort of the Mark Twain Papers & Project, headed up by LTer skgoetz, Mark Twain’s Legacy Library catalog. Watch for new titles!

    Oscar Wilde: Another Legacy Library now underway: the books entered so far are based on Thomas Wright’s book Oscar’s Books, with many more to come from other sources. LTer JDEllevsen began this catalog and will be augmenting it with additional data over time.

    On the Libraries of Early America front, I recently finished up the library of Richard Henry Lee. He’s the 20th Signer of the Declaration of Independence with a completed LT library (see the full list here). And I’m currently going through a large database of 17th and 18th-century probate inventories from York County, Virginia to add information about libraries there. More data about early libraries continues to arrive every day!

    Many thanks as always to all those helping out with the Legacy Libraries. For more info or to find out how you can help, see the homepage.

    Labels: flash-mob cataloging, legacies, legacy libraries

    Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

    Flash-mob catalog Graham Greene’s library!

    Flash-mob time! Help us complete the Graham Greene Legacy Library catalog by assisting with the addition of the ~2,200 remaining titles.

    Greene’s library, now in the collections of Boston College, is notable for the number of books containing Greene’s annotations and marginalia.

    Many thanks to LTer g026r for getting this project started!

    See the wiki page for details on how to help, or discuss on the Talk thread.

    Labels: flash mob, flash-mob cataloging, legacy libraries

    Thursday, March 10th, 2011

    Books in Space!

    A small band of intrepid catalogers (benjclark, JBD1, 2wonderY, staffordcastle, and katya0133) did a mini-flash-mob catalog project this week that was out of this world … literally!*

    Working from a list of books aboard the International Space Station in 2008, we were able to create a LibraryThing catalog for the space station’s leisure library (and since then we’ve been able to add some additional books from articles which mention books brought by visitors to the station). We’re definitely on the lookout for other books aboard the ISS (I even tweeted the station commander), so if you know of any, please let us know!

    I have to say my favorite among the titles is Jules Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days

    * Sorry, I couldn’t help it.

    Labels: flash mob, flash-mob cataloging

    Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

    Flash-Mob Cataloging: NCSU & Arts Together

    A hearty gang of 21 volunteer catalogers from the Metadata & Cataloging Department at North Carolina State University Libraries helped out over two weekends in January at the Arts Together community school (LT Profile page) in Raleigh, adding their preschool book collection to LibraryThing.

    The catalogers added the school’s monthly curricular themes as collections in the catalog (February, for example, is “The Animal Kingdom/Feelings“) and supplemented those with a series of tags. Coordinator Erin Stalberg reports that her favorite tag is “Community Helpers” – if you check out the titles so tagged, you’ll soon see why!).

    See more photos from the flash-mob here.

    Over the two weekends, the flash-mob teams added a total of 1,145 books – well done! We were happy to send a box of stickers and t-shirts to the volunteers, and always encourage similar projects! If you’re interested in forming a flash mob for a library near you, check out Tim’s blog post, the How To Flash-Mob with LibraryThing wiki and the Flash Mob Cataloging Talk group. If your organization could use the help of a flash-mob, please get in touch with me and I’ll be happy to help coordinate it!

    Labels: cataloging, flash mob, flash-mob cataloging, NCSU

    Thursday, December 16th, 2010

    Libraries up: C.S. Lewis, Dickinson, Yeats, Mann, Tufte

    It’s been a while since we’ve done an update on the Legacy Libraries project, but that doesn’t mean the volunteers haven’t been plugging away. In fact just in the last few days we’ve seen a few major completions:

    The library of C.S. Lewis (2,166 books) has been cataloged from the holdings of Wheaton College (IL), where it is now housed, thanks to the efforts of BOB81bokaicnbDisassemblyOfReasoniowaboy277janepriceestradaMrsBond, and zwoolard. His top shared libraries (weighted) are rwb24 and jfclark; among the other Legacies his collection most resembles those of T.E. Lawrence and Robert Graves. Check out his author cloud too (lots of G.K. Chesterton, F. Marion Crawford, Roger Lancelyn Green, and George MacDonald).

    Some of the members who helped assemble these Legacy Libraries:

    Since November 2008 a small but very dedicated team of users (jcbrunner, LolaWalser, GirlFromIpanema) have been working on the very large collection of Thomas Mann’s books, now held (mostly) at the Thomas Mann Archive in Zurich. That project is now complete, with a grand total of 3,282 titles (the largest chunk of which were by Mann himself, with Strindberg, Nietzsche, and Goethe also well represented – see the full author cloud). Mann’s top shared LT libraries (weighted) are Hughie2 and suedwind2.

    Another interesting recent completion is the addition of the known books read by/belonging to Emily Dickinson (163 titles). Though we know Dickinson read and probably owned many more books, these are those most closely associated with her. This project was undertaken by nbt00, and completed by benjclark. Dickens, Charlotte Brontë, and Edward Hitchcock are the names that pop out of her author cloud. Dickinson’s shared libraries are heavily skewed toward other Legacies: the Mordecai Family, Herman Melville, and Dante Gabriel Rossetti top the list (top shared among non-Legacies is Django6924).

    Another long-running Legacy project was William Butler Yeats, whose catalog eventually amounted to 2,284 titles. Assistance for this was provided by Tim, michael_p, mountebank, inge87, and myself (JBD1). Yeats also had many copies of his own works; other well-represented authors include Rabindranath Tagore, Arthur Symons, Ezra Pound, John Masefield, T.S. Eliot, and William Blake (author cloud). Like Dickinson his shared libraries are weighted toward Legacies, with Lawrence, Lewis, and Alfred Deakin leading the pack.

    In November some of us got the opportunity to work on a special flash-mob catalog project for a living author: the research library of Edward Tufte (197 titles), which was sold at Sotheby’s on 2 December. Professor Tufte graciously allowed us to add the titles (which include some really amazing works) to LT, which we were happy to do. Catalogers included thornton37814, Katya0133, jcbrunner, jburlinson and me.

    As far as the Libraries of Early America project goes, I’m focused at the moment on the Signers of the Declaration of Independence in an attempt to find library information for all 56 of them. You can track progress on the project wiki: so far fifteen libraries have been entered, I have full or partial lists for eight more that I’ll be adding, and there are still a few outstanding queries. Recent additions include Stephen Hopkins (RI) and George Taylor (PA). If anyone has individual books or sources to add to this list, I’ll be delighted to know of them (and if you live in Philadelphia or Annapolis and want to undertake an LT-mission, we’ll be happy to reward you for your efforts!).

    The list of Legacy Libraries in progress remains impressively long; if you want to join in, please do! Contact the LTer listed on the page, or me, and we’ll be happy to get you started. If you have a potential Legacy you’d like to get started on, or want to chat about the projects, come on over.

    Labels: flash-mob cataloging, legacies, legacy libraries