Academic Libraries

Librarian Did It Because "Everyone Was Doing It"

College Librarian in China Admits He Replaced Art With Fakes from ABC News.

A former chief librarian at a Chinese university admitted in court Tuesday to stealing more than 140 paintings by grandmasters in a gallery under his watch and replacing them with fakes he painted himself.

For two years up until 2006, Xiao Yuan substituted famous works including landscapes and calligraphies in a gallery within the library of the Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts.

He told the court in his defense that the practice appeared to be rampant and the handling of such paintings was not secure. He said he noticed fakes already hanging in the gallery on his first day on the job. Later, after he replaced some of the remaining masters with his own fakes, he was surprised when he noticed his fake paintings were being substituted with even more fakes.

Notre Dame's Hesburgh Libraries receives $10M gift

The main Hesburgh Library is in the midst of a major renovation. The gift will be used in part to fund renovation of the future home for the Navari Family Center for Digital Scholarship in that building, as well as to establish an endowment to support digital library services and research projects related to the center, the university announced Friday.

From Notre Dame's Hesburgh Libraries receives $10M gift - South Bend Tribune: Local

Birkbeck awarded $741,000 grant for new humanities open-access model of publishing

Birkbeck, University of London has been awarded a three-year grant of $741,000 from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to cement and expand a new model for open-access publishing in the humanities disciplines.

The Open Library of Humanities platform, directed by Dr. Martin Paul Eve and Dr. Caroline Edwards - both faculty members in Birkbeck's School of Arts - will allow access to peer-reviewed scholarly journal articles without requiring readers to pay.

From Birkbeck awarded $741,000 grant for new humanities open-access model of publishing — Birkbeck, University of London

Dutch universities start their Elsevier boycott plan

“We are entering a new era in publications”, said Koen Becking, chairman of the Executive Board of Tilburg University in October. On behalf of the Dutch universities, he and his colleague Gerard Meijer negotiate with scientific publishers about an open access policy. They managed to achieve agreements with some publishers, but not with the biggest one, Elsevier. Today, they start their plan to boycott Elsevier.

From Dutch universities start their Elsevier boycott plan | Univers

Sioux Falls Man Donates Collection Of Nearly 18,000 Books

The University of Iowa has struck gold. Not the kind that lies in the federal reserve, but one of paper in a Sioux Falls man's basement. After 20 years of collecting, he is donating his one-of-a-kind collection of 17,500 books worth an estimated three quarters of a million dollars.

From Sioux Falls Man Donates Collection Of Nearly 18,000 Books | KDLT.com South Dakota News - News, Sports, and Weather Sioux Falls South Dakota

Mapping Books: Mapping pre-1600 European manuscripts in the U.S. and Canada

Unsurprisingly one can see the concentration of pre-1600 European manuscript holdings along the east coast. In a league table of manuscript holders New York, Washington, and Philadelphia(!) come out on top by volume but in terms of individual institutions the Huntington and Folger with their extensive holdings of pre-1600 documents come out on top.

From Mapping Books: Mapping pre-1600 European manuscripts in the U.S. and Canada

A Copy of the Original Star Wars Script Unearthed in a Canadian Library

The all things Science Fiction site, i09, tells of an interesting find at the University of New Brunswick library,

"File this under “Why we need libraries and librarians”: A copy of the original shooting script for Star Wars Episode IV was found sitting on a shelf in the University of New Brunswick’s library in Saint John. And it may settle whether or not Han shot first."

Robert Darnton closes the book | Harvard Gazette

As of June 30, the celebrated historian, digital library pioneer, and champion of books will leave the University he first saw as an undergraduate in 1957. A scholar of Enlightenment France and of the history of the book, he returned to Harvard in 1965 to join the Society of Fellows, decamped to Princeton University in 1968 for 39 years, and came back to Harvard in 2007.

From Robert Darnton closes the book | Harvard Gazette

There's a New Chick at the Library

...a peregrine falcon chick that is.

MassLive reports that a baby chick has hatched on the rooftop of the W. E. B. DuBois Library at the U of Mass. There appear to be a few more still incubating.

The hatching was announced on Twitter, with photos taken from the library's falcon webcam . Enjoy!

A Winning Librarian

From 2Paragraphs (written for the modern attention span):

500 Questions is the new TV quiz game where contestants try to answer a series of rapid-fire questions. The show is being broadcast for seven consecutive nights. Tonight, May 27 is the sixth night (8pm on ABC). .

The contestant who came closest to answering all 500 Questions was librarian Steve Bahnaman. The affable, knowledgeable man works at the Campbell University library.He planned to get a PhD in religion but “that ended up not being something I wanted to do.” Turns out he preferred “being around research and helping people with research.” Bahnaman will return to his job $110,000 richer after answering 167 of the 500 Questions.

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