Historical Postcard Collection available online

The Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library’s Historical Postcard Collection has been digitized is now available online through the Princeton University Library’s Digital Collections website: http://arks.princeton.edu/ark:/88435/d217qp492

The Historical Postcard Collection consists of over 500 postcards documenting the buildings and environs of the Princeton University campus. Featuring both monochrome and color postcards, the bulk of the collection ranges in date from 1900 through the 1960s. Both unmarked and canceled postcards exist in the collection.


Continue reading

New Accessions at the Mudd Library: April 2008

As mentioned last month, Mudd staff will post lists of new accessions to the Princeton University Archives and Public Policy Papers each month. The list below includes information on items and collections accessioned in April 2008. As always, anyone interested in additional information about the accessions listed below should contact the library through our general email account.

Public Policy Papers

David A. Morse Papers Accrual, 1949-1972

Edwin S. Corwin Papers, Series 3, Professional Correspondence, Digital Files, 2008

Jessie Wilson Sayre Papers Digital Files, 2008

Charles Woodruff Yost Papers Accrual, 1933-1974

Princeton University Archives

Class of 1936 60th Reunion Planning Materials for George Washington Program; Our Side of Paradise Manuscript by Gail Tirone; and a Class of 1871 Ribbon.

Nassau Literary Magazine of October 1870; Record Books of the Class of 1871, Issues 10-15; and Photocopied Sources on Thomas Harvey Skinner Class of 1809 and Benjamin Skinner Lassiter Class of 1871.

Campus Club Records, 1909-1976
Consists of drafts of the Campus Club Constitution as amended in 1976, a 1924 Certificate of Incorporation, and several financial documents relating to the mortgage of the Campus Club property.

Campus Club Deed

Office of the Treasurer Accrual, 1986-2006

Reunion Magnets, 1992-2006

Michelle L. (Robinson) Obama ’85 Public Information File, 1985
Materials document Obama’s participation in various campus activities during her undergraduate years at Princeton.

Office of Communications Records, 1963-2008

Year Book of the Cannon Club, 1951

Princeton Sterling Silver Spoon, circa 1930s

Antonin Scalia Talk, “The Role of the Courts in a Liberal Democracy,” March 7, 2008
Talk given on the occasion of having been granted the American Whig-Cliosophic Society’s 2008 James Madison Award for Distinguished Public Service. [Closed during Scalia’s lifetime.]

Center for Research on World Political Institutions Files, 1952-1958

MARAC Finding Aid Awards

I am pleased to announce that four Mudd finding aids have been awarded MARAC’s 2008 Fredric M. Miller Finding Aid Award. The award, which comes with a $250 cash prize, has been given to the Mudd finding aids as a group and was presented at the Spring MARAC meeting last week. I submitted a representative sample for each of Mudd’s major processing projects in 2007 – a list of the finding aids and projects is below. Please join me in congratulating the winners: Casey Babcock, Adriane Hanson, Jennie Cole, Dan Brennan, Rosalba Varallo, and Christie Lutz. This is also a nice bit of recognition for the last several years of work on EAD and finding aids that involved many of us in RBSC Technical Services, especially Cristela Garcia-Spitz and Don Thornbury and John Delaney in Firestone.

Finding Aid Award Winners:

NHPRC Economics Papers Processing Project:

W. Arthur Lewis Papers: processing and finding aid by Adriane Hanson.

New Jersey Historical Commission General Operating Support Grant:

H. Alexander Smith Papers: processing and finding aid by Casey Babcock.

Council on Foreign Relations Processing and Digitization Project:

Council on Foreign Relations Digital Sound Recordings: processing, finding aid, and project management by Jennie Cole.

Princeton University Archives Processing Project:

Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs Records: processing and finding aid by Dan Brennan and Rosalba Varallo, processing supervision by Christie Lutz.

New Accessions at the Mudd Library

The Mudd Manuscript Library typically adds between 100 and 150 items or collections to its holdings each year. As part of our commitment to publicly providing information about our collections, we will be including a monthly listing of new accessions on our blog. Anyone interested in additional information about the accessions listed below should contact the library through our general email account.

In addition to the monthly listings here, an rss feed on newly cataloged resources at Mudd is available via the Princeton University Library webpage (be sure to select Seeley G. Mudd Library from the “location” drop down menu). We are also, as part of our efforts to revamp our accessioning processes, creating, updating, and posting finding aids on the library’s EAD website within several weeks of the accession’s arrival at the library.

Continue reading

Digitizing Special Collections: Shifting Gears

Last Friday, Dan Linke, Don Thornbury, and I gave presentations reporting on recent conferences and workshops that we’ve attended. (See the previous post for Dan Linke’s electronic records presentation.) My presentation is available here.

Rather than give a session by session review of the last few conferences I’ve attended or presented at (the Society of American Archivists Annual Meeting, the Digital Library Federation’s Fall Forum, and the Society of Georgia Archivists Annual Meeting), I decided to discuss some of the more provocative ideas from the OCLC/RLG Services’ report “Shifting Gears: Gearing Up to Get Into the Flow,” which addresses many issues relevant to archives, special collections, and digital libraries, both at Princeton and elsewhere. The report was inspired by the “Digitization Matters” forum held at SAA 2007. (Audio of the forum presentations is also available online.)

Given some of the ongoing discussion we’ve been having at Princeton, one of the most resonant parts of the report for me is the portion related to description, particularly the urging to “take a page from archivists” and “stop obsessing about items.” As archivists, we have experience and expertise in describing large (and small) collections of materials; we should make use of our abilities in this area and not limit ourselves to the item-level, bibliographic cataloging approach that has dominated digital collections, especially since the majority of collections we are digitizing consist of unique and non-published material. Bill Landis’ talk at the Digitization Matters forum discusses this issue in greater detail.

For those interested in more specific information about individual sessions, the SAA 2007 wiki and DLF’s conference website have a number of presentations up and available. And as I mentioned on Friday, anyone who missed Mark Greene’s presidential address at SAA’s closing plenary session should read the text online.

New Finding Aids From Princeton University Archives Processing Project

I am pleased to announce the availability of several new EAD finding aids resulting from the Princeton University Archives Processing Project. Processing and finding aids for all three collections were completed by Dan Brennan.

Finding aids for all Mudd library collections (478 finding aids in total) are now available and searchable on the EAD site at http://diglib.princeton.edu/ead . Please contact Dan Santamaria with any questions or comments

New Finding Aids:

Dean of Undergraduate Student Records:

Department of Politics Records

Office of Government Affairs Records

Online Access to All Collections at Princeton’s Mudd Manuscript Library

Staff at the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library at Princeton University have recently completed a project aimed at providing online access to all of the Mudd Library’s collections, both processed and unprocessed.

In addition to a number of ambitious processing projects, in the fall of 2006 the library began a retro-conversion project, resulting in the conversion of all legacy electronic finding aids to Encoded Archival Description. Collection-level MARC cataloging was completed for all collections lacking finding aids, and the MARC records were then converted to EAD, primarily through the use of XSL stylesheets and Terry Reese’s MarcEdit software. With the new EAD finding aids, descriptive records, at at least the collection level, for all of Mudd’s collections are discoverable in the Princeton University Library’s OPAC, the Department of Rare Books and Special Collection’s EAD website, union catalogs and databases such as OCLC’s WorldCat and ArchiveGrid, and via common internet search engines such as Google and Yahoo. As of November 2007, 478 records for Mudd Library collections are available.

Staff will continue to add to the collection-level records through the creation of series, box, or file-level inventories. The Mudd Library is also currently revising accessioning procedures in order to ensure that both collection-level MARC records and EAD finding aids are produced at the time of accessioning. We also plan to increasingly link finding aids to digital surrogates of material in collections and to explore additional ways for users to interact with finding aids and the material that they represent.

For additional information please visit the Princeton University Library’s Department of Rare Books and Special Collections Finding Aids website at: http://diglib.princeton.edu/ead or contact Dan Santamaria, Assistant University Archivist for Technical Services.