Cocoanut Grove Entrance
Cocoanut Grove Entrance, from the Brearley Collection

This month’s total items added is 6,077. That includes a couple of substantial collections: The Boston Public Library’s Press Photography from the Brearley Collection at 1,138 items and the Historical Society of Old Newbury’s Snow Historical Photograph Collection at 1,279 items.

Dennis Brearley collected the works of Boston photojournalists from the 1920s-1970s.  A representative photo is the Cocoanut Grove entrance photo. (Left)  What’s been added from the Snow Historical Photograph Collection is only a fraction of what the Historical Society holds.  The Moulton Castle photo (Below right) is one to whet our appetite for more.

Digital Commonwealth also has re-harvested over 1,700 items from the City of Boston Archives, but sometimes the smaller collections contain gems, too.  The Thayer Memorial Library added a history of Lancaster and the Milford Town Library added 200 photos from the Paul E. Curran Historical Collection, including one of the largest piece of granite ever quarried in Milford. (Below center)) That’s a big rock.

Boston Public Library

Moulton Castle, Newburyport
Moulton Castle, Newburyport, from the The Snow Photograph Collection


Childe Hassam (1859-1935). Prints and Drawings  – 97 items
English Caricature and Political Satire, 18th and 19th Centuries – 97 items added to existing collection
James Gillray (1756-1815). Prints and Drawings – 164 items
Norman B. Leventhal Map Center Collection – 672 items added to existing collection
Press Photography from the Brearley Collection – 1,138 items
Thomas Rowlandson (1756-1827). Prints and Drawings – 641 items

City of Boston Archives

7 collections – 1,785 items re-harvested

Historical Society of Old Newbury

Snow Historical Photograph Collection – 1,279 items

Milford Town Library

Paul E. Curran Historical Collection – 200 items

Thayer Memorial Library 

Lancaster, Massachusetts. History 1643-1879 – 4 items

Largest piece of granite from Milford, MA
Largest piece of granite from Milford, MA, from Paul E Curran Historical Collection

 

Broadway in Lawrence sewer map
Broadway, from Lawrence, Mass. Engineering Dept. City Sewers

It’s the quirky collections that will delight you if you give them a chance.  Not that there isn’t incredible value in six collections added by the New England Historic Genealogical Society, Canton Public Library’s Canton Historical Commission Photos or the Boston Public Library’s Thaxter/Fields correspondence.  Some people will be so pleased yet more nautical charts have been added by the Atwood House Museum of the Chatham Historical Society or yet more Sacco-Vanzetti materials – this time from the Harvard Law School Library.

For my money, though, there’s a certain fascination with the Lawrence Public Library’s 724 items from that city’s Engineering Department on city sewers.  It sounds ridiculous and then you look at them.  They’re maps of the sewer system.  (See left.) You get to see the city’s streets at a micro level.  They even show where the manholes [sic] are!  They’re hand drawn with lovely, legible script.  There are notes on why the sewer was laid on this street, at this elevation.  What a wealth of detail.  File it under things you never knew you wanted to know.

Now, I don’t want to leave you down in the dumps, so let’s welcome the South Hadley Public Library to the Digital Commonwealth by highlighting their two new collections: Canal Park Committee Collection and Scott Family Photographs.  While the latter is a pretty traditional, but still wonderful collection of 19th century photos, the former is a collection of slides the Canal Park Committee used for talks on the history of the Canal and related sites and institutions.  The images cover a range of historical eras and subjects.  In addition to locks and gates, power plants and buildings, there are some lovely landscapes.  Let us leave the industrial behind and spend a few moments with nature. Ah, the flowering crab – much more attractive than its name suggests. (See below.)

Atwood House Museum of the Chatham Historical Society
Nautical Chart Collection of the Chatham Historical Society – 39 items added to existing collection

Boston Public Library
Celia Thaxter correspondence with Annie Fields, 1869-1893 – 289 items

Canton Public Library
Canton Historical Commission Photos of Canton – 170 items

Harvard Law School Library
Sacco-Vanzetti Collections – Harvard Law School Library – 80 items added to existing collection

Flowering crab along canal
Flowering crab, from Canal Park Committee Records

Lawrence Public Library
Engineering Department. City Sewers – 724 items

Malden Public Library
Local History Digital Collection – 2 items

New England Historic Genealogical Society
6 collections – 469 items harvested

South Hadley Public Library
Canal Park Committee Collection – 295 items
Scott Family Photographs – 86 items

Two small birds on a bough
Two Small Birds on a Bough Stow Wengenroth (1906-1978). Prints and Drawings

Although summer slips away too quickly for some of us, those of us who wilt in the heat and humidity are happy to see the end of July.  If you’re not, don’t fret.  August is promising more of the same.

The Boston Public Library was busy this month, adding to the Leslie Jones Collection as well as adding over 100 items of Thomas Wentworth Higginson Correspondence.  Fans of the 2013 Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Anders Zorn exhibit will be happy to see the BPL’s Zorn etchings.  Allow me to draw your attention to the Stow Wengenroth Prints and Drawings, though.  The exquisite Two Small Birds on a Bough (left) is from this collection, which includes other bird drawings and some lovely Maine scenes.

Medford Historical Society & Museum has added significantly to its already impressive Civil War Photograph Collection.  The Lawrence Public Library has also added more photographs plus a new collection of World War I-related items.  The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute Library began the harvesting season early with 64 new items to their collections.

The heavy hitters this month are the Massachusetts Historical Society (4,161) and Springfield College Archives and Special Collections (5,181), who re-harvested 4 new collections.  I’m not sure that the Arthur and Madeline Slicer Turnvereine Stein Collection is one of the newly-harvested collections, but I offer the jovial barrel-shaped character stein image below because we all need a cool drink of something during the dog days of August.

Boston Public Library
Anders Zorn (1860-1920). Etchings and Other Works – 204 items
Leslie Jones Collection – 6 items added to existing collection
Stow Wengenroth (1906-1978). Prints and Drawings – 372 items
Thomas Wentworth Higginson Correspondence – 156 items

A barrel shaped character stein
A barrel shaped character stein A. and M. Slicer Turnvereine Stein Collection

Lawrence Public Library
Art Work of Lawrence and Vicinity Photograph Collection – 64 items added to existing collection
James Regan – 9 items

Massachusetts Historical Society
 1 new collection – 4,161 new items re-harvested

Medford Historical Society & Museum
Medford Historical Society Civil War Photograph Collection – 826 items added to existing collection

Springfield College Archives and Special Collections
3 new collections – 5,181 new items re-harvested

Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute Library
64 new items re-harvested

Architectural design for Henry Bowen cottage
Design for a cottage for Henry C. Bowen, Esq. from Historic New England General architectural and cartographic collection

The Boston Public Library continues to add to existing collections, although a brand new collection – 32 items from John Sullivan Dwight’s correspondence regarding Brook Farm – snuck in while no one was looking.  Needham Free Public Library added more than 3,500 items to its historical house collection as well.

The largest addition was from Historic New England (HNE) – 139 new collections, over 54,000 items.  Here be treasures: clothing, photos, architectural drawings (left), samplers (below right), quilts, furniture; everyday objects and priceless art. Browsing these collections is almost as good as touring the HNE collections storage facility in Haverhill – or one of the many HNE house museums.  I highly recommend doing both.  Until you can, though, browse these great collections.

 

Boston Public Library
American Civil War 20th Massachusetts Regiment (Collection of Distinction) – 1 item added to existing collection
Book of Common Prayer (Collection of Distinction) – 1 item
Carte de Visite Collection – 21 items added to existing collection
Colonial and Revolutionary America – 4 items added to existing collection
Colonial and Revolutionary Boston (Collection of Distinction) – 5 items added to existing collection
Early, Rare, and Exceptional Items from Special Collections, Rare Books – 9 items added to existing collection

Needlepoint alphabet sampler
Alphabet Verse Sample from Historic New England Digitized Museum Collections

Incunabula (Collection of Distinction) – 5 items added to existing collection
John Sullivan Dwight correspondence regarding Brook Farm, 1840-1848 – 32 items
Medieval and Early Renaissance Manuscripts (Collection of Distinction) – 17 items added to existing collection
Paintings and Fine Arts Collection at the Boston Public Library – 1 item added to existing collection
Spanish and Portuguese Literature (Collection of Distinction) – 1 item added to existing collection

Historic New England
139 new collections – 54,104 records harvested

Needham Free Public Library
Needham Historical House Collection – 3,583 items added to existing collection

All of May’s contributors are return customers.  The Boston Public Library has added significant holdings of prints and drawings.  The Atwood House Museum of the Chatham Historical Society has contributed more nautical charts while the Wilbraham Public Library has digitized more photographs. Special mention has to be made of the Lawrence Public Library, which has added fourteen collections ranging from 1 to 68 items.

House, people Lawrence Cyclone Photo Collection
House, people, from Lawrence, Mass. Cyclone July 26, 1890 Photograph Collection

Most striking are the photographs of the aftermath of the “Great Cyclone” of 1890.  Eight people died and 65 were injured.  The tornado did $60,000 worth of damage.  ($1.5 million in today’s money)  The house on the left is just one of many that did not survive the storm.

On a happier note, Lawrence Public Library also digitized a collection of sheet music.  It almost doesn’t matter how tuneful the songs are when the covers are this colorful. (See below.)

Atwood House Museum of the Chatham Historical Society
Nautical Chart Collection of the Chatham Historical Society – 40 items added to existing collection

Boston Public Library
Francis Seymour Haden (1818-1910). Prints and Drawings – 115 items
George Cruikshank (1792-1878). Prints and Drawings – 86 items
Henri Fantin-Latour (1836-1904). Lithographs and Other Prints – 478 items
William Hogarth (1697-1764). Prints – 162 items

Lawrence Public Library

 V for victory march, from Lawrence Public Library Sheet Music Collection
V for victory march, from Lawrence Public Library Sheet Music Collection

Alfred I. Earle – 1 item
Augustinian Priests Photograph Collection – 13 items
Bernard Sullivan Photographs – 3 items
Bob Dziadosz – 1 iteM
Elsie Marsden Photographs – 3 items
Father James T. O’Reilly – 2 items
Fred H. and Anna C. Sargent Photographs – 2 items
Hurricane, September 21, 1938 – 17 items
Lawrence, Mass. Before Redevelopment Photograph Collection – 58 item
Lawrence, Mass. Cyclone July 26, 1890 Photograph Collection – 68 items
Lawrence, Mass. Mayors Photograph Collection – 51 items
Lawrence, Mass. United States Post Office – 2 items
Panama Pacific International Exposition – 2 items added to existing collection
Sheet Music Collection – 27 items

Wilbraham Public Library
Wilbraham Town Archives Photographic Collection – 143 items

Avant l'assaut. Images of World War I Battlefields. Franklin Historical Museum.
Avant l’assaut, from Images of World War I Battlefields (Franklin Historical Museum)

All those April showers (rain and snow alike) brought over 3,300 new items to the Digital Commonwealth.  The largest donation came from the National Archives at Boston with its Watertown Arsenal Photographs collection.  The photos of bright shining new armaments contrast sharply with the Franklin Historical Museum’s riveting Images of World War I Battlefields collection.  (See Avant l’assaut to left.)

On balance, the Noble & Cooley Center for Historic Preservation and Jacob Edwards Library (Southbridge) have added images of everyday life in small town Massachusetts.  The Boston Public Library enhances the everyday with the artistic and, happily, the humorous.  In this case, most of us might associate running and bulls with Ernest Hemingway and Pamplona.  For Henri Toulouse-Lautrec, the association becomes running from bulls – and there is nothing macho about it.  (See La vache enragée below.)

Boston Public Library
Emily Tennyson Letters, 1858-1873 – 83 items
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901). Prints and Drawings – 351 items
Mary Cassatt (1844-1926). Prints and Drawings – 8 items
Paintings and Fine Arts Collection at the Boston Public Library – 1 item added to existing collection
Walt Whitman Collection (1819-1892) – 1 item

Franklin Historical Museum

La vache enragee. Henri Toulouse-Lautrec. BPL.
La vache enragée, from Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901). Prints and Drawings (BPL)


Images of World War I Battlefields – 48 items
Maps of Franklin, Massachusetts – 9 items

Jacob Edwards Library
New Topographical Atlas of Worcester County – 3 items

National Archives at Boston
Watertown Arsenal Photographs – 2,833 items

Noble & Cooley Center for Historic Preservation
Life in Granville, Massachusetts Collection – 11 items
NCCHP Museum Collection – 2 items added to existing collection
Noble & Cooley Business Correspondence Collection – 1 item added to existing collection
Noble & Cooley Catalog Collection – 1 item
Noble & Cooley Employee Collection – 3 items added to existing collection
Toy Manufacturing Industry – 1 item
Trade Catalog Collection – 13 items added to existing collection

Tintype portrait of unknown man from Unidentified People and Places (Granville Public Library)
Tintype portrait of unknown man from Unidentified People and Places (Granville Public Library)

March came in like a lion and then refused to leave like a lamb.  Can we get a refund from Mother Nature?  Perhaps a few extra days of fall?  Digital Commonwealth never sleeps, though; witness the many additions to the collections last month.

My personal favorite proves that bad hair days are not a 21st century phenomenon.  This unidentified gentleman (left) comes from the Granville Public Library’s Unidentified People and Places collection.  I am sure he is happy to be unidentified.  Wouldn’t you be, with this look?

The remaining collections are from some old reliable contributors and some new ones.  Kudos to the newbies who added large collections and the vets who added to existing collections.  I personally know some folks who will be delighted that the Medford Historical Society is adding to its Civil War photo collection.

I admit my taste runs more to the Art Nouveau cover for Beverly’s Balance (see below), a play given by the Waban Women’s Club on May 4th 1917.  Which only goes to show that Digital Commonwealth always strives to provide something for everyone.

I hope to see you at the Annual Conference tomorrow in Worcester – another instance of Digital Commonwealth providing something for everyone!

 

Boston Public Library
Norman B. Leventhal Map Center Collection – 6 items added to existing collection

Granville Public Library
Barlow Album – 110 items
Churches – 6 items
Countryside and Scenes – 47 items
Houses and Other Structures – 29 items
Noble & Cooley – 6 items
People, Portraits and Groups (Identified) – 68 items
Schools and Class Photos – 30 items
Unidentified People and Places – 28 items

Historical Society of Old Yarmouth
Historical Society of Old Yarmouth Archives & Local History Collection – 1,157 items

Jamaica Plain Historical Society
Jamaica Plain Historical Society Photo Gallery – 3 items added to existing collection

Medford Historical Society & Museum
Medford Historical Society Civil War Photograph Collection – 906 items added to existing collection

Beverly's Balance from Waban Historical Collection (Newton Free Library)
Beverly’s Balance from Waban Historical Collection (Newton Free Library)

Needham Free Public Library
Needham Historical House Collection – 2,989 items added to existing collection

Newton Free Library
Frank A. Day Junior High School Class of 1954 – 1 item
Mayor Howard Whitmore, Jr. collection 1929-2008 – 1 item
Meadowbrook Junior High School Class of 1963 – 1 item
Newton Free Library Branches, Auburndale, Newton Centre, Newton Corner, Newton Highlands, 1930-1959 – 24 items
Waban Historical Collection – 470 items

University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries Special Collections and University Archives
32 new collections – 6,771 new items re-harvested

Wayland Historical Society
Wayland Historical Society Collection – 23 items

Path of Life I M. C. Escher (1898-1972). Prints and Drawings (BPL)
Path of Life I M. C. Escher (1898-1972). Prints and Drawings (BPL)

This month, the Boston Public Library (BPL) added 36 items from its M.C. Escher prints and drawings collection.  It also happens that this month the Museum of Fine Arts opened an exhibit of M.C. Escher prints.  Great minds really do think alike.

In addition, the BPL added items to six existing collections as well as lithographs, etchings and drawings of James McNeill Whistler, a Commonwealth-born artist most famous for his mother’s portrait.

The Leicester Public Library has uploaded a collection of architectural drawings while the Atwood House Museum of the Chatham Historical Society and the Jamaica Plain Historical Society have added new items to existing collection.

It appears winter is not done with us yet, so let the wonders on Digital Commonwealth warm your day and inspire your spirit.

 

Atwood House Museum of the Chatham Historical Society
Nautical Chart Collection of the Chatham Historical Society – 49 items added to existing collection

Boston Public Library

Boston Printmakers Collection – 110 items added to existing collection

Colonial and Revolutionary Boston (Collection of Distinction) – 7 items added to existing

collection

Incunabula (Collection of Distinction) – 2 items added to existing collection

James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903). Lithographs, Etchings, and Drawings – 239 items

M.C. Escher (1898-1972). Prints and Drawings – 87 items

Medieval and Early Renaissance Manuscripts (Collection of Distinction) – 36 items added to existing collection

Paintings and Fine Arts Collection at the Boston Public Library – 1 item added to existing collection

Stereograph Collection – 1 item added to existing collection

Jamaica Plain Historical Society

James Michael Curley Negatives – 71 items added to existing collection

Leicester Public Library

Leicester Public Library Architectural Drawings c. 1895 – 19 items

 The observatory, Smith College, Northampton, Mass.  from Anna Maria College Blumsack Travel Postcards
The observatory, Smith College, Northampton, Mass. from Anna Maria College Blumsack Travel Postcards

Have you kept your New Year’s resolution to digitize your historical treasures? These institutions did.  Anna Maria College’s The Travel Postcards of Charles Bumsack Collection includes this view of Smith College’s Observatory (left).  If you explore more, you’ll also find views of the Crab, Dumbbell and Horsehead Nebulae.  I kid you not.

If whimsy is not your cup of tea, the BPL has added some significant correspondence collections and Barre Historical Society has added maps. (See example below.)  Wilbraham Public Library chips in some photographs of the Glendale section of town while the Center for the History of Medicine (Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine) has added prints, sculptures, photos and more in its six collections.

Earlier this month Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow, so we have six more weeks of winter. Plenty of time to visit all these great collections.

Anna Maria College

Travel Postcards of Charles Blumsack – 120 items

Barre Historical Society

Barre Historical Society Map Collection – 11 items

 Map of the town of Barre, Worcester County, Mass. from Barre Historical Society Map Collection
Map of the town of Barre, Worcester County, Mass. from Barre Historical Society Map Collection

Boston Public Library

Alphonse Legros (1837-1911). Prints and Drawings – 1943 items added to existing collection John Brown: Correspondence relating to John Brown and the raid on Harpers Ferry, West Virginia – 227 items
Sophia Hawthorne correspondence with James and Annie Fields, 1851-1904 – 252 items

Center for the History of Medicine (Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine)

Harvested 6 collections – 3623 items

Wilbraham Public Library

Glendale Collection – 44 items

Frozen  fountain on the Common, from the Stereo Slide Collection of the Lawrence Public Library
Frozen fountain on the Common from the Stereo Slide Collection of the Lawrence Public Library

Admit it.  You took it easy last month.  After exams or while planning office parties, you let some things slide.  The digitization team working on the Lawrence Public Library collections added twenty three collections in December: 23.  No slackers there.  Take the Stereo Slide Collection for example.  It contains 108 items, including the Frozen Fountain on the Common slide (Left).  Is it too soon after our own deep freeze to appreciate this icy monument?

Maybe you would find the variety of the Hamilton Historical Society’s collection of photos of parades, historic houses, town celebrations and prominent citizens cozier.  For Civil War students, we have letters from the Jubb brothers courtesy of the J. V. Fletcher Library in Westford.  As always, we have maps.  December saw the Leventhal Map Center add yet more to their collection while the Wilbraham Library’s Maps Collection included the Hampden and Hampshire highway map below.

Boston Public Library

Norman B. Leventhal Map Center Collection – 233 items added to existing collection

Hamilton Historical Society

Hamilton Historical Society Collection – 2,408 items

 J. V. Fletcher Library

Jubb Brothers Civil War Letters – 83 items

Lawrence Public Library

Advertisements – 10 items
Aerial Photograph – 1 item
Arlington Mills – 8 items
Art Work of Lawrence and Vicinity Photograph Collection – 19 items
Boston Bridge Works – 8 items
David Burke – 1 item
Forrest C. Hinckley Photograph Collection – 11 items
Gary Keating – 1 item
George H. Farrell Photograph – 1 item

Highway map, Hampden and Hampshire counties, Mass. from the Wilbraham Library Maps Collection
Highway map, Hampden and Hampshire counties, Mass. from the Wilbraham Library Maps Collection

John Deacy Photograph – 1 item
John J. Murphy – 1 item
John McCann Photograph Collection – 5 items
Kenneth Kerwin Photographs – 2 items
Lawrence City Mission – 1 item
Lawrence, Mass. School Committee – 1 item
Massachusetts Commandery of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States – 1 item
Massachusetts Legislature 1888 25th Anniversary Reunion – 1 item
Massachusetts National Guard – 1 item
Ora Beal Photographs – 3 items
Rendle Homestead – 1 item
St. Patrick’s School Class of 1931 – 1 item
Stereo Slide Collection – 108 items
United Textile Workers of America, Local 1113, Arlington Mills – 16 items

Wilbraham Public Library

Wilbraham Library Maps Collection – 21 items

USS Constitution Museum

War of 1812 Collection – 87 items added to existing collection