Month: August 2011

Walter Benjamin on Book Collecting

Walter Benjamin

Walter Benjamin

When I first learned about Walter Benjamin and this particular essay, I searched online with no success for the opportunity to read it. I eventually ordered a copy from Amazon. For this post, I have taken the liberty to quote from the essay. The entire essay is definately worth reading but here are the “high points” IMHO. Enjoy!

“I am unpacking my library. Yes, I am. The books are not yet on the shelves, not yet touched by the mild boredom of order. I cannot march up and down their ranks to pass them in review before a friendly audience. You need not fear any of that. Instead, I must ask you to join me in the disorder of crates that have been wrenched open, the air saturated with the dust of wood, the floor covered with torn paper, to join me among piles of volumes that are seeing davlight again after two years of darkness, so that you may be ready to share with me a bit of the mood – it is certainly not an elegiac mood but, rather, one of anticipation – which these books arouse in a genuine collector. For such a man is speaking to you, and on closer scrutiny he proves to be speaking only about himself. Would it not be presumptuous of me if, in order to appear convincingly objective and down-to-earth, I enumerated for you the main sections or prize pieces of a library, if I presented you with their history or even their usefulness to a writer? I, for one, have in mind something less obscure, something more palpable than that; what I am really concerned with is giving you some insight into the relationship of a book collector to his possessions, into collecting rather than a collection. If I do this by elaborating on the various ways of acquiring books, this is something entirely arbitrary. This or any other procedure is merely a dam against the spring tide of memories which surges toward any collector as he contemplates his possessions. Every passion borders on the chaotic, but the collector’s passion borders on the chaos of memories. More than that: the chance, the fate, that suffuse the past before my eyes are conspicuously present in the accustomed confusion of these books. For what else is this collection but a disorder to which habit has accommodated itself to such an extent that it can appear as order? You have all heard of people whom the loss of their books has turned into invalids, or of those who in order to acquire them became criminals. These are the very areas in which any order is a balancing act of extreme precariousness. “The only exact knowledge there is,” said Anatole France, “is the knowledge of the date of publication and the format of books.” And indeed, if there is a counterpart to the confusion of a library, it is the order of its catalogue.

(…)

ActualIy, inheritance is the soundest way of acquiring a collection. For a collector’s attitude toward his possessions stems from an owner’s feeling of responsibility toward his property. Thus it is, in the highest sense, the attitude of an heir, and the most distinguished trait of a collection will always be its transmissibility. You should know that in saying this I fully realize that my discussion of the mental climate of collecting will confirm many of you in your conviction that this passion is behind the times, in your distrust of the collector type. Nothing is further from my mind than to shake either your conviction or your distrust. But one thing should be noted: the phenomenon of collecting loses its meaning as it loses its personal owner. Even though public collections may be less objectionable socially and more useful academically than private collections, the objects get their due only in the latter. I do know that time is running out for the type that I am discussing here and have been representing before you a bit ex officio. But, as Hegel put it, only when it is dark does the owl of Minerva begin its flight. Only in extinction is the collector comprehended.

(…)

O bliss of the collector, bliss of the man of leisure! Of no one has less been expected, and no one has had a greater sense of well-being than the man who has been able to carry on his disreputable existence in the mask of Spitzweg,’s “Bookworm.” For inside him there are spirits, or at least little genii, which have seen to it that for a collector – and I mean a real collector, a collector as he ought to be – ownersliip is the most intimate relationship that one can have to objects. Not that they come alive in him; it is he who lives in them. So I have erected one of his dwellings, with books as the building stones, before you, and now he is going to disappear inside, as is only fitting.”

——–
Walter Benjamin: “Unpacking my Library: A Talk about Book Collecting,” in Illuminations, Engl. trans. (London: Fontana, 1982), pp. 59-60, 63, and 66-67.

Walter Benjamin

Rare Book School Video

Rare Book

Here is a video from the folks at Virginia Rare Book School. Enjoy!

Rare Book

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Philanthropist, Owner of Magna Carta, Donates 13.5 Million to Duke Libraries Rare Books

Press Release: Duke University

Duke University trustee David M. Rubenstein will give $13.6 million to the Duke University Libraries in support of the Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library, President Richard H. Brodhead announced Wednesday.

In December 2007, Rubenstein purchased the last privately owned copy of the Magna Carta at Sotheby’s auction house in New York and, since then, has loaned it to the National Archives in Washington D.C., to allow the public to view the document. Earlier this year, Rubenstein donated $13.5 million to the National Archives for a new gallery and visitors center.

The donation is the largest ever to the libraries. In recognition of Rubenstein’s gift, the special collections library will be renamed the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, following approval by the Board of Trustees.

The gift is the largest commitment Rubenstein has made to Duke. In 2009, he donated $5.75 million to help the Sanford School of Public Policy meet a $40 million fundraising target for its transition from an institute to Duke’s 10th school. In 2002, he contributed $5 million toward the completion of Sanford’s Rubenstein Hall.

“A great library is central to the university’s transmission of knowledge,” said Brodhead. “Nationally, David Rubenstein has been a strong supporter of libraries and archives, and of the way the preserved past can increase present understanding. We at Duke are grateful for this magnificent gift, which will ensure access to documents that are part of our shared intellectual and cultural heritage.”

The Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library is central to Duke’s teaching and research mission. Its collections, which range from ancient papyri to the records of modern advertising agencies, number more than 350,000 printed volumes and more than 20 million items in manuscript and archival collections. All told, its holdings document more than 20 centuries of human history and culture. Like all Duke libraries, it is open to the public.

The special collections library is also home to the University Archives and several research centers, including the Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture; the John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture; the John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising & Marketing History; the Archive of Documentary Arts; and the Human Rights Archive.

“The Rubenstein Library will be a distinguished, enduring institution that will collect, protect and make accessible rare and unique documents, satisfy intellectual curiosity, stimulate learning and facilitate the creation of new scholarship,” said Deborah Jakubs, the Rita DiGiallonardo Holloway University Librarian and vice provost for library affairs. “David Rubenstein’s generosity enables us to create the kind of home for special collections that Duke deserves, designed with the students and scholars of today in mind. Researchers well beyond our campus will also benefit from this gift.”

“Libraries are at the heart of any great educational institution,” said Rubenstein. “This renovation and modernization program will help ensure that the Rare Book and Manuscript library’s priceless collection is preserved and accessible to scholars and the public for decades to come.

“When I was a student at Duke I worked at the library, so this gift also reflects my appreciation for that opportunity and the important role it played in my academic experience,” Rubenstein added.

The special collections library, housed in the original West Campus library, is scheduled to be renovated in the final phase of the Perkins Project, a multi-year library renovation project that began a decade ago. The renovation will transform one of the oldest and most recognizable buildings on West Campus into a state-of-the-art research facility where students, faculty and visitors can engage with the libraries’ collection of rare and unique scholarly materials.

The Perkins Project began with the construction of Bostock Library and the von der Heyden Pavilion, both completed in 2005, followed by the renovation of Perkins Library between 2006 and 2008. The final phase is slated to begin in 2012 and will focus on the original 1928 West Campus library building and its 1948 addition.

This portion of the library complex is at the very heart of the campus designed by the Horace Trumbauer architectural firm; the cornerstone for the university is visible on the façade of the 1928 library building. Situated at the intersection of the West Campus quadrangles, it is easily accessible to scholars, students and visitors.

The planned renovation will increase the research, instruction, storage and exhibition capabilities of the special collections library. It will also address the need for a secure stack area where special collections can be shelved in an appropriately controlled environment. The entire stack core will be removed — from basement level to roof — and replaced with a new floor structure that will support high-density shelving.

Updates will also extend to the Mary Duke Biddle Rare Book Room and the Gothic Reading Room. The charm and character of these signature Duke spaces will be preserved, but their finishes, furnishings, lighting and technology infrastructure will be enhanced.

Finally, the library’s main entrance will be redesigned with new doors, windows and lighting to give the entire library complex a more unified and welcoming presence on the historic West Quad.

Construction work is expected to take place in phases beginning late in 2012. In the meantime, Duke officials are developing plans to relocate library services and staff during the renovations, which are expected to take several years.

A Baltimore native, Rubenstein is co-founder and managing director of The Carlyle Group, a global alternative asset manager. He graduated magna cum laude from Duke in 1970 and serves as vice chair of the university’s Board of Trustees.

Rubenstein is an active civic leader and serves on numerous boards, including those of the Smithsonian Institution, Johns Hopkins University, the University of Chicago, The Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

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Guide to Preserving Your Rare Book Collection

Source: Paul Fraser Collectibles

Few things can be more personal and cherished than a book. Here’s how to take care of them…

Many collectors go misty-eyed at the thought of dust on a page – and rare book collecting can take this passion to a new level. But rare books are also among the most delicate collectibles, and it is vital that you know how to properly look after your collection.

Handle them as little as possible

It’s a shame not to read them… Yet, if you are a collector of antique books hoping to build a profitable alternative investment, then the less you handle your books the better.

Leafing through your first edition of The Great Gatsby (these, incidentally, have sold for hundreds of thousands at auction) or even a limited first edition Harry Potter has the danger of knocking serious sums of money off the book’s price.

The reason? Every time you touch a book, you leave small marks and layers of dust that are invisible to the naked eye. These, over the course of time, can degrade your book’s pages.

Antique books are often bound in flimsy leather or cloth and are very delicate artefacts. A basic run-down of things you should avoid in order to preserve them includes:

– High humidity

– Sunlight

– Heat

– Dust

– Rough treatment

– Dust jackets

Dust jackets aren’t simply for show

They also serve a valuable purpose, keeping everyday and often invisible dust particles away from your books. As such, a good dust jacket can greatly boost a book’s value on the collectors’ markets.

For instance, when a 1925 first edition copy of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby sold for $180,000 at auction, it was largely down to the book’s well-preserved and rare dust jacket.

So, wherever and however you store your books, keep them wrapped snugly in their jackets. You’ll definitely thank yourself for it in 30 years.

Storing and positioning your books

The best place to store your books is in a specially-made archival box. These boxes can be bought online, or your local book dealer may be able to point you in the right direction.

Archival boxes are made of acid-free materials and contain an alkaline buffer. This prevents harmful pH factors from acting upon your prized first editions and browning the pages.

Another key tip for storage is: place your books upright, rather than on top of each other, to retain their original shape. If possible, place similarly sized books next to one another. This prevents a larger specimen warping next to its smaller companion.

In other words, a “comfortable fit” is the best way of describing how to stack your books. Whatever you do, don’t jam them in.

If you can’t face the prospect of putting your collection away in a box, or wish to display them to impress the neighbours, place your books spine-outwards on a high shelf, preferably behind a glass case away from small children and the dog.

Also, make sure your shelves are lined with polyester. This prevents the shelves’ wood or paint from adversely affecting the books’ covers or pages.

Storage temperature

Whether you keep your books on display or hidden away, their location in your house is vital.

High humidity can ruin a first edition. Such conditions, often found in basements and attics or even simply near to exterior walls, can lead to mould and also attracts insects.

Your best bet is to store you books in an area with a temperature of around 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Also keep them away from sunlight, which has the nasty habit of fading both cloth and leather.

Leather bound books are particularly tricky to preserve. Keep them away from both high humidity and low humidity, as leather is prone to cracking in the wrong conditions.

Do a bi-annual inspection

Although you’ll want to touch your rare books as little as possible, it is important to keep an eye on them.

Take your books out for a bi-annual inspection, to ensure that that the ravages of winter or the roaring summer have had no adverse effect. Your inspection should be conducted with special auctioneers’ gloves, easily purchasable on the internet, to stop you getting dust on them.

If you do find dust, a gentle wipe with a special dust-collecting cloth should do the trick. And if you find any more significant problems? The first rule is: take a deep breath, step away and do not try to fix it yourself.

Unless you are a book restorer, you will probably do more harm than good and could significantly damage the condition – and investment potential – of your books. Instead, take it to a professional for advice and expertise. It will be worth it in the long run.

Handling your rare books

When handling you books, grasp them firmly by the spine. If you must open them, dust them first to avoid any particles falling in among the pages. Also, place the book in specially-designed book holder to keep it supported.

Follow these steps, and you can ensure that your book collection’s condition and lifespan will more than match the immense pleasure and profit that rare books can bring.

Click here to view our books and manuscripts for sale

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Book Bound In Human Skin

Source: Canberratimes.com.au
BY SALLY PRYOR, CULTURAL INSTITUTIONS REPORTER
08 Aug, 2011 04:00 AM

Book bound in human skin

Book of Poems Bound in Human Skin

At first glance, its just an old book of poems, bound in slightly grubby beige leather with gold lettering and gold-edged pages.

But open it up and you might want to drop it and recoil when you read the inscription on the first page – “Bound in human skin”.

The book, part of the National Library’s collection, is one of only two known examples in Australia of anthropodermic binding, a practice that is described in book collecting circles as not rare, but uncommon.
Binding books in human skin dates back to the 16th and 17th centuries, and is usually seen on the odd medical textbook in the libraries of eminent universities, although there are examples throughout history of books bound in the skin of criminals or dead lovers.

The National Library’s version, with its macabre handwritten inscription, bellies the rather mundane contents pastoral poems by five second-rate 18th century poets.

Manuscripts librarian Elizabeth Caplice says there is no way of knowing whose skin it was, or even why it was bound this way in the first place.
The tanning process would have destroyed all traces of DNA, and were it not for the inscription, its gruesome origins could well have been overlooked, resembling as it does ordinary pig or calfskin.

The library has no shortage of exotically bound books – rare books reference librarian Andrew Sergeant has handled volumes bound in stingray, emu, snake and mother-of-pearl, to name a few.

But none comes close to this unprepossessing volume of English poems, which is part of one of the library’s founding collections, the Petherick collection, acquired from Australian bookseller and collector Edward Petherick in 1911.

Mr Petherick’s vast collection would become the basis of the Australiana section of what was then the Commonwealth National Library (now the National Library of Australia).

But he was also a great bargain hunter, and it’s likely that he came across this book somewhere in London, saw it as a fascinating curio and added it to his own collection, without knowing anything about its origins.
And the book itself, first published in Paris in 1829, gives little away.
Another version, in its original French binding, is also in the library’s collection, but, as evidenced by a small sticker on the inside of the cover, at some stage, this one was taken to a bookbinder on Fleet Street in London, called C.Egleston, who bound it in human skin.

Ms Caplice, who began researching the book in response to a request from a Melbourne writer, said all inquiries led to – ahem – a dead end when she discovered the bookbinder’s premises had burnt down in the 1890s.

She said such books were often the subject of great controversy when they surfaced on the open market, because the practice of binding books in human skin was often associated with Nazism.

Even though this book dates back to some time well before World War II, stories of lampshades made of the skin of Holocaust victims often come to mind, although such stories have never been verified.
“[Such books] are so rarely connected with the Nazis, and only a minority are acts of atrocity,” she said.

“The Nazi connection is not prominent its more to do with human history. Medical research was done with cadavers, and medical books were bound with materials to hand at the time.”

But even though this version is much more recent than the medical textbook examples, she pointed out that it was bound during the Victorian period, a time of great deference and drama when it came to relics of the dead.

“Back when these were most frequently produced, it was just a different view of life and death,” she said.

And the book itself, first published in Paris in 1829, gives little away.
Another version, in its original French binding, is also in the library’s collection, but, as evidenced by a small sticker on the inside of the cover, at some stage, this one was taken to a bookbinder on Fleet Street in London, called C.Egleston, who bound it in human skin.

Ms Caplice, who began researching the book in response to a request from a Melbourne writer, said all inquiries led to – ahem – a dead end when she discovered the bookbinder’s premises had burnt down in the 1890s.

She said such books were often the subject of great controversy when they surfaced on the open market, because the practice of binding books in human skin was often associated with Nazism.

Even though this book dates back to some time well before World War II, stories of lampshades made of the skin of Holocaust victims often come to mind, although such stories have never been verified.
“[Such books] are so rarely connected with the Nazis, and only a minority are acts of atrocity,” she said.

“The Nazi connection is not prominent its more to do with human history. Medical research was done with cadavers, and medical books were bound with materials to hand at the time.”

But even though this version is much more recent than the medical textbook examples, she pointed out that it was bound during the Victorian period, a time of great deference and drama when it came to relics of the dead.

“Back when these were most frequently produced, it was just a different view of life and death,” she said.

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ABE’s Top 10 Most Expensive Sales in July 2011

Source: ABE.com

ABE’s Top 10 Most Expensive Sales in July 2011

1. The Museum of Far Eastern Antiquities, Stockholm, Bulletin (vols 1-71) – $7,091
Founded by Johan Gunnar Andersson in 1929, this journal publishes articles by scholars on all aspects of ancient and classical East Asia and adjacent regions, including archaeology, art, and architecture ,history and philosophy, literature and linguistics, and related fields.

2. Picasso de 1916 à 1961 by Jean Cocteau – $5,932
Published in 1962 by Rocher of Monaco, this book is signed in pencil by Pablo Picasso and Jean Cocteau. It contains 24 lithographs drawn by Picasso. One of 255 copies. Pierre Bertrand, who was Cocteau’s publisher, collected 11 of the poet’s texts reflecting his friendship with Picasso.

3. Masterpieces of Science Fiction (57 vols) – $5,900
Bound in leather and published by Easton Press, this collection of science fiction contains many of the genre’s most important books including A Canticle for Liebowitz; Dandelion Wine; The Day of the Triffids, Dune; The Foundation Trilogy, The Moon and the Sun, and The Time Machine.

4. Paul Klee: Catalogue Raisonne (Vols 1-9) Paul Klee, et al. – $5,500
Published by Thames & Hudson, this collection of Klee’s work contains more 5,000 pages, over 8,500 illustrations and 850 color plates, and apparently took 10 years of research to put together. Klee (1879-1940) is one of the most significant artists of the 20th century. Volume III is devoted to Klee’s Bauhaus period (1919-1922) and includes many of his best known art such as masks, clowns, acrobats and ballet dancers.

5. Anatomy: Descriptive and Surgical by Henry Gray – $5,000
Published in 1858 by John W. Parker and Son, this first edition, first printing, sold out very quickly and was reprinted many times. It features 363 detailed anatomical drawings by Henry Vandyke Carter. Embossed cloth binding with a gilt-lettered spine.

6. Neuvieme Plan de Paris Ses Accroissements sous le Regne de Louis XV by L’Abbe Delagrive – $4,500
Published around 1737, this is an extensively decorated map of Paris and its suburbs during the reign of Louis XV, who ascended to the throne at age five. It features an illustration of the Roman goddess Minerva with winged putti (male babies with wings), a wreathed shield of the Ile de France, and a depiction of Mercury passing a serpent-decorated gold sceptre to the Minerva.

7. Japoniae Insulae Descriptio Ludoico Teisera Auctore – $4,250
A beautiful 1598 map of Japan drawn by the Portuguese Jesuit Luiz Teixeira in pink, yellow, green and blue. This was the first map of Japan to appear in a western atlas. It also shows parts of Korea and China. The map is an important milestone in cartography of the Japanese islands and surprisingly accurate – it was used until 1655.

8. Biblia Sacra Latina – $4,250
A facsimile copy of the Gutenberg Bible printed in 1985 in two volumes and bound in full dark faux calf. Bibliographer Francois Guillaume de Bure discovered the original copy of this book in Cardinal Mazarin’s library hundreds of years after Gutenberg’s death. Mazarin was France’s chief minister of France from 1642 to 1661 and a noted collector. Mazarin’s personal library was the basis for Bibliothèque Mazarine – France’s oldest public library.

8. Notre Dame de Paris by Victor Hugo – $4,196
Otherwise known as The Hunchback of Notre Dame, this book (whose title translates as ‘Our Lady of Paris) is the famous illustrated 1844 edition with an ivy green morocco binding.

9. On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin – $4,033
The third edition of his historic book printed by John Murray in 1861 and rebound by the Chelsea Bindery in dark green morocco. This edition contained extensive updates from the second.

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Internet Archivist Seeks One Of Every Book Written

Source: Huffington Post
By: MARCUS WOHLSEN 07/31/11 05:16 PM ET

RICHMOND, Calif. — Tucked away in a small warehouse on a dead-end street, an Internet pioneer is building a bunker to protect an endangered species: the printed word.

Brewster Kahle, 50, founded the nonprofit Internet Archive in 1996 to save a copy of every Web page ever posted. Now the MIT-trained computer scientist and entrepreneur is expanding his effort to safeguard and share knowledge by trying to preserve a physical copy of every book ever published.

“There is always going to be a role for books,” said Kahle as he perched on the edge of a shipping container soon to be tricked out as a climate-controlled storage unit. Each container can hold about 40,000 volumes, the size of a branch library. “We want to see books live forever.”

So far, Kahle has gathered about 500,000 books. He thinks the warehouse itself is large enough to hold about 1 million titles, each one given a barcode that identifies the cardboard box, pallet and shipping container in which it resides.

That’s far fewer than the roughly 130 million different books Google engineers involved in that company’s book scanning project estimate to exist worldwide. But Kahle says the ease with which they’ve acquired the first half-million donated texts makes him optimistic about reaching what he sees as a realistic goal of 10 million, the equivalent of a major university library.

“The idea is to be able to collect one copy of every book ever published. We’re not going to get there, but that’s our goal,” he said.

Recently, workers in offices above the warehouse floor unpacked boxes of books and entered information on each title into a database. The books ranged from “Moby Dick” and “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame” to “The Complete Basic Book of Home Decorating” and “Costa Rica for Dummies.”

At this early stage in the book collection process, specific titles aren’t being sought out so much as large collections. Duplicate copies of books already in the archive are re-donated elsewhere. If someone does need to see an actual physical copy of a book, Kahle said it should take no more than an hour to fetch it from its dark, dry home.

“The dedicated idea is to have the physical safety for these physical materials for the long haul and then have the digital versions accessible to the world,” Kahle said.

Along with keeping books cool and dry, which Kahle plans to accomplish using the modified shipping cointainers, book preservation experts say he’ll have to contend with vermin and about a century’s worth of books printed on wood pulp paper that decays over time because of its own acidity.

Peter Hanff, acting director of the Bancroft Library, the special collections and rare books library at the University of California, Berkeley, says that just keeping the books on the West Coast will save them from the climate fluctuations that are the norm in other parts of the country.

He praises digitization as a way to make books, manuscripts and other materials more accessible. But he too believes that the digital does not render the physical object obsolete.

People feel an “intimate connection” with artifacts, such as a letter written by Albert Einstein or a papyrus dating back millennia.

“Some people respond to that with just a strong emotional feeling,” Hanff said. “You are suddenly connected to something that is really old and takes you back in time.”

Since Kahle’s undergraduate years in the early 1980s, he has devoted his intellectual energy to figuring out how to create what he calls a digital version of ancient Egypt’s legendary Library of Alexandria. He currently leads an initiative called Open Library, which has scanned an estimated 3 million books now available for free on the Web.

Many of these books for scanning were borrowed from libraries. But Kahle said he began noticing that when the books were returned, the libraries were sometimes getting rid of them to make more room on their shelves. Once a book was digitized, the rationale went, the book itself was no longer needed.

Despite his life’s devotion to the promise of digital technology, Kahle found his faith in bits and bytes wasn’t strong enough to cast paper and ink aside. Even as an ardent believer in the promise of the Internet to make knowledge more accessible to more people than ever, he feared the rise of an overconfident digital utopianism about electronic books.

And he said he simply had a visceral reaction to the idea of books being thrown away.

“Knowledge lives in lots of different forms over time,” Kahle said. “First it was in people’s memories, then it was in manuscripts, then printed books, then microfilm, CD-ROMS, now on the digital Internet. Each one of these generations is very important.”

Each new format as it emerges tends to be hailed as the end-all way to package information. But Kahle points out that even digital books have a physical home on a hard drive somewhere. He sees saving the physical artifacts of information storage as a way to hedge against the uncertainty of the future. (Alongside the books, Kahle plans to store the Internet Archive’s old servers, which were replaced late last year.)

Kahle envisions the book archive less like another Library of Congress (33 million books, according to the library’s website) and more like the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, an underground Arctic cavern built to shelter back-up copies of the world’s food-crop seeds. The books are not meant to be loaned out on a regular basis but protected as authoritative reference copies if the digital version somehow disappears into the cloud or a question ever arises about an e-book’s faithfulness to the original printed edition.

“The thing that I’m worried about is that people will think this is disrespectful to books. They think we’re just burying them all in the basement,” Kahle said. But he says it’s his commitment to the survival of books that drives this project. “These are the objects that are getting to live another day.”

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More Incredible Libraries

I will be adding images of incredible libraries over the next few weeks. Enjoy!

Strahov Theological Hall; Statue of John the Evangelist Holding a Book

Strahov Theological Hall; Statue of John the Evangelist Holding a Book

Strahov Theological Hall - Original Baroque Cabinets

Strahov Theological Hall - Original Baroque Cabinets

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