Stanford Libraries has a sizable collection of facsimiles of rare manuscripts that are used in research and teaching. Just to name a few, we have facsimiles of unique manuscripts such as the Book of Kells, the Codex Manesse, Boccaccio's Decameron, and many more.
A new online exhibit, Beautiful Books: A collection of some of Stanford's rare and antiquarian books, highlights Special Collections' efforts to digitize books with unique or noteworthy features. It includes fine examples of engraved and woodcut illustrations, astronomical diagrams, typographical innovation, fine bindings, and more. The books are artifacts of multiple points throughout history, from the earliest printing in the late 1400's to the 20th century.
Stanford’s Main Library, known today as the Green Library Bing Wing, is one-hundred years old this year. Scholars Select: Special Collections in Action, an exhibit of books, manuscripts, and objects chosen by faculty who make frequent use of the collections will be on display in the Bing Wing January 24 — April 14, 2019. It is the first in a series of events planned as part of a yearlong “Green Library Beyond 100” celebration. The exhibit opening reception will be held on Thursday, January 24, from 4:00 to 6:00 pm in Green Library's Munger Rotunda.
On January 24-25, 2019, the East Asia Library will host a symposium on Chinese political imagery entitled History, Images, and Politics in the PRC: An International Workshop, co-sponsored by Stanford Libraries, the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, and the Confucius Institute.
Sanborn maps are a favorite of any map librarian. What's not to like about them? They give us a view into the history of our country in a way that few other maps do. They show the growth and decline of towns and cities. They track the changing use of buildings over time. At times they tell us who lived and worked in specific areas. We peek into the past to understand what kept people entertained, be it an amusement park, a skating rink, a movie theater, or a bar. The Sanborn Fire Insurance Company began producing these maps in the late 19th century for towns and cities throughout the United States in order to provide information to insurers about the composition and use of buildings to allow for the correct underwriting of policies. The maps include: building footprints; building material shown by color, height and number of stories; uses such as dwellings, hotels, churches, and chicken coops; street widths, water pipes, hydrants, and cisterns. This provides historians, genealogists, urban planners, and ethnologist with a wealth of information about the nation's past.