Archive for the ‘Exhibits’ Category

This Just In: Recently Acquired Gifts and Purchases

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

A mini-exhibit of recent acquisitions in the History & Special Collections for the Sciences section of UCLA Library Special Collections is on display at the Louise M. Biomedical Library (4th floor public reading room) through 30 April 2014.

Items are headlined:

  • Collecting all sides of an issue
  • Everyone’s first book must be a book of verse
  • Failed separation of monozygotic (cow) twins
  • History of toilets
  • It’s a book … it was a book … it’s an artist’s book
  • Vaccination armband

This exhibit is part of an occasional series, “This Just In: Recently Acquired Gifts and Purchases”.

Russell Johnson
Curator/Librarian
History & Special Collections for the Sciences
UCLA Library Special Collections

Grow(ing) Up! The UCLA Library Baby Record Books Collection

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

 

Selections from the UCLA Library’s Baby Record Books Collection are on exhibit in the UCLA Powell Library Rotunda through April, 2014.

“Grow(ing) Up!” celebrates the 10th anniversary of the collection’s founding.

Baby books contain categorized headings and spaces to guide parents to record memories about developmental milestones and activities in a child’s first few years. The memory books provide places to gather photographs, locks of hair, and other mementos.

In March, 2004, local antiquarian bookseller and UCLA alumna Barbara Rootenberg donated a copy of a London physician’s brief work from 1885, The Parents’ Medical Note-book. She asked us, “What medical information do baby books collect?” A lot, as it turns out, from physical developmental milestones to details about vaccinations, illnesses, and accidents.

No other libraries were collecting the books with vigor, so we bought a few (mostly through eBay, some at swap meets, some from booksellers) and accepted books as donations.  A decade later, we haven’t stopped, even at 1400 copies spread across more than 750 titles and editions since the 1870s.

Although our collection development strategy focuses on infant development, health, and illness, we are collecting comprehensively—every title and edition we do not have, and multiple copies of some when they are filled-out.

The books and their handwritten and pasted-in contents have been used for research and teaching in pediatrics, printing history, economic and social status, material culture, linguistics, architecture, advertising, folklore, depictions of family, and other topics and disciplines.

Russell Johnson
Curator/Librarian
History & Special Collections for the Sciences
UCLA Library Special Collections

A Few Bones, Picked

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

Just in time for October 31: a mini-exhibit on skulls and skeletons, at the UCLA Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library.

In the lobby, spend time with patent medicine calendars based on the late-19th century “skeleton sketch” illustrations of St. Louis physician/artist Louis Crucius. In the adjoining case, a skeletal tribute to the UCLA Tobacco-Free Campus initiative sits next to Frederik Ruysch’s early-18th century bizarre natural history tableaux.

We just received the Ruysch work back from the UCLA Library Conservation Laboratory. Amanda Burr recounts her experience with the volume in her October 30th posting on Preservation, “a weblog about preservation, conservation, and the stewardship of the UCLA Library’s collections.”

Upstairs, on the 4th floor, find Albinus’ human skeleton posing with Clara the rhinoceros (1767), Cheselden’s vignette of using a camera obscura to accurately draw his skeletons (1733), Jacques Gamelin’s work on bones and muscles intended specifically for artists (1779), and Bern Dibner’s 1963 history of Roentgenology.

Russell Johnson
History & Special Collections for the Sciences
UCLA Library Special Collections

In the News: Stork Delivers Baby Boy; Need a Royal Record Book? (A new “flash” exhibit in the Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library)

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

In response to recent news out of St. Mary’s Hospital in London, we recommend a title or two from our UCLA Library Baby Books Collection to consider as the royal record book for George Alexander Louis.

Ethel Elaine Barr’s 1902 memory books—one (with a red cover, Biomed HQ 779 B268hi 1902 RARE) for a king, one (with a blue cover, Biomed HQ 779 B268h 1902 RARE) for a queen—are “illustrated in free-hand paper cutting” and include an appropriate coat of arms (or “diaper of arms”) for the nursery. (more…)

Labs on the Go: Scientific Tools for Collecting Empire, 1600 – Present

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

Frontispiece portrait of the author from Georg Eberhard Rumpf’s Het amboinsch kruid-boek (Herbarium Amboinense), 1750 (Biomed * QK R937h 1750 v.1 RARE)

An undergraduate student-curated exhibition of scientific objects from UCLA Library Special Collections continues through September in two locations on campus: Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library (4th floor) and Powell Library Building Rotunda (2nd floor).

Marissa Petrou, the History of Science doctoral student whose GE Cluster students created the project from concept to completion, provided an introduction to the exhibit, which we share here with her permission: (more…)

The Hippocratic Oaths … Plural

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

Portrait medal of HippocratesOn Friday, May 31st, students of the David Geffen School of Medicine Class of 2013 received their degrees and hoods, after which Dean/Vice Chancellor A. Eugene Washington administered the Hippocratic Oath.

But which “Hippocratic Oath”?

The pledge to practice medicine conscientiously and honorably comes in many varieties.  The current UCLA oath was adapted by now-Dean Emeritus Sherman Mellinkoff and differs significantly from the version recited by the first graduating class in 1955, for example.

A mini-exhibit by History & Special Collections for the Sciences, in the Biomedical Library (1st floor, in the lobby), includes six-century old texts, commencement programs, an academic medical badge presented by Nicholas II of Russia to a new doctor in 1915, portrait medals, and a leaf from “the” Hippocratic tree at Kos, to briefly illustrate the history of the Hippocratic Oaths … plural.

The Hippocratic Oaths … Plural (Six Centuries of Texts, Six Decades of Commencements) is on view through June 23rd.

[The portrait medal of Hippocrates (copper, 95 mm), seen above, was designed by Jacques Devigne for the Paris Mint in 1983. It is Sonnenschein #0650 in the Ralph R. and Patricia N. Sonnenschein Collection of Medical and Scientific Portrait and Commemorative Medals.]

 

Russell Johnson
History & Special Collections for the Sciences
UCLA Library Special Collections

Smoking in the Library, the Lab, the Cafeteria … Before the UCLA Tobacco-Free Campus

Friday, May 10th, 2013

MEDUCLA 1958 (UCLA School of Medicine student yearbook)

On Earth Day, April 22nd, the whole of UCLA joined the hospitals and health science campuses to become tobacco- and smoke-free environments, according to an announcement from the UCLA Newsroom.

A mini-exhibit in History & Special Collections for the Sciences, in the Biomedical Library (4th floor, up the ramp from Stack level 9), uses yearbooks, archival photos, postcards, and advertisements to show the other side of the coin, when smoking and tobacco use were taken for granted in surprising (to us) circumstances.

UCLA’s Tobacco-Free Campus [facebook page]

UCLA Tobacco-Free Task Force

UCLA’s Tobacco-Free Policy

UCLA Policy 810: Tobacco-Free Environment

Russell Johnson
History & Special Collections for the Sciences
UCLA Library Special Collections

GIANTmicrobes at the Biomedical Library

Friday, December 7th, 2012

 

History & Special Collections for the Sciences has purchased each new release of GIANTmicrobes® since 2004 and recently passed the century mark. 108 “plush stuffed-animal microbes [realia]” currently are on display in a case in the lobby of the Biomedical Library.

GIANTmicrobes are made to look like bacteria, blood cells, viruses, and other microbes and critters magnified up to a million times, but in plush fabric with added eyes. Each toy is accompanied by explanatory text on a hangtag card with a color illustration of the actual microbe on which the toy is based.

The Library uses GIANTmicrobes in exhibits and classes alongside rare books and manuscripts on related subjects, from bed bugs to cholera to typhoid fever. We are one of a very few libraries which are cataloging and preserving the educational toys for future generations, so that in 50 or 100 years researchers and visitors may come across a rack of carefully-stored “plush stuffed-animal microbes” and wonder, “what the heck are …”

(Image from <http://www.giantmicrobes.com> is reproduced with permission of the company.)

Russell Johnson
History & Special Collections for the Sciences
UCLA Library Special Collections

Public Science: Peepshows, Caskets, and Microscopes

Monday, July 16th, 2012

An undergraduate student-curated exhibition of scientific objects from UCLA Library Special Collections continues through September in three locations on campus: Biomedical Library (4th floor), Powell Library Building Rotunda, and Department of Special Collections (A-level, Young Research Library).

Marissa Petrou, the History of Science doctoral student whose GE Cluster seminar students created the project from concept to completion, provided an introduction to the exhibit, which we share here with her permission:

Peepshows, caskets, and microscopes all are things found in vaults and back-room storage areas in UCLA Library Special Collections that have a wealth of historical value. Yet the lives of these objects extend beyond the Library.

(more…)

In the News: Maurice Sendak (1928-2012) and Atomics for the Millions

Friday, June 15th, 2012

A mini-exhibit of reproductions of the late Where the Wild Things Are children’s book author/artist Maurice Sendak’s first illustrations in a mass-market  publication, Atomics for the Millions, is on display in the Science and Engineering Library (SEL, 8270 Boelter Hall) this month.

Sendak’s high school physics teacher, Hyman Ruchlis, co-authored the book in 1947 with Maxwell Leigh Eidenhoff, who had been a research group supervisor of Manhattan Project laboratories at Columbia University and Chicago University. Atomics was pitched as an “amazingly clear and non-technical book [that] actually enables the reader to understand the basic principles behind the development of atomic energy – - without any previous scientific or mathematical training.”

Peter D. Sieruta’s blog, Collecting Children’s Books, describes the origins and contents of this early popular-press science book, and how Ruchlis recruited Sendak to illustrate it.

Since Sendak’s death last month, bloggers have posted accounts of earlier appearances of Sendak illustrations in high school and other local Brooklyn, New York publications.

SEL is displaying UCLA’s two copies of the first edition of Atomics for the Millions: a circulating, library cloth-bound copy, and a “special collections” copy with the elusive and sought-after illustrated dustjacket. The paper in both copies has a slightly-browned but still very serviceable appearance because, as the back of the title page notes, “the quality of the materials used in the manufacture of this book is governed by continued postwar shortages.”

Russell Johnson
History & Special Collections for the Sciences
UCLA Library Special Collections