10,000 Items Catalogued (Cont.)

Posted on
Sailing Orders
“CSS Virginia Orders for Observers of Battle of Hampton Roads Reenactment” from MS0164, Irwin M. Berent Collection.

So how, you might ask, does a small Library and even smaller Photographic Services staff undertake and complete the digitization and cataloguing of 10,000 items in the space of 12 months? We may have declared victory, but victory belongs as well to a veritable army of interns and volunteers we found when the crisis was upon us. Twenty-two young men and women from around the Commonwealth came to our aid when we most needed them. They gave us anywhere between 12 and 162 hours apiece of their service. Considering how detail-oriented and repetitive the work can be, even 12 hours is grueling.They added not only much-needed labor but also a great spirit of camaraderie and good humor to the place. We are so grateful to them! And we hope they learned something about archival and library science in the mix.

I have asked a few of these volunteers to write in and tell us which piece they remembered most and why. What you will see are their own words. Here, then, is what Ashley wrote:   Read more

10,000 Items Catalogued (Cont.)

Posted on
Virginia's ram
Virginia‘s ram

In my last post, I said that the Library had just completed a massive cataloguing project of items related to the U.S. Steam Battery Monitor and the C.S. Ironclad Virginia. These items came from 59 different archival and research collections. Among them are extremely rare photographs collected by an early Monitor “groupie” in the 1880s by the name of Frank Pierce, letters from sailors aboard Monitor and from witnesses to the Battle of Hampton Roads, both Union and Confederate, unique plans and drawings of Monitor, and receipts from vendors for materials used in her construction. There are also research notes of people who did important historical work on the two ironclads and genealogical work on their officers and crew. Here, then, is an annotated summary of some of the collections we have catalogued. Enjoy!

   Read more

10,000 Items Catalogued

Posted on
IMLS
IMLS logo

Almost exactly one year ago today, staff member Aya Eto brought to your attention a project we had then just begun in earnest, a project to catalog 10,000 items relating to the construction, service, destruction, legacy, and research on the U.S. Steam Battery Monitor and the C.S. Ironclad Virginia. You can read what she wrote here and see a few of Jacob Nicklis’s letter’s home to his father. Nicklis died in the foundering of Monitor off Cape Hatteras in 1862.

   Read more

Concordia Flies the Blue Peter!

Posted on
Papa
Papa (formerly known as Blue Peter), courtesy of easyflags.co.uk.

For the first time in over 2 years, the raised hulk of the Costa Concordia hoisted the Blue Peter, the flag now simply known as Papa that indicates a ship is ready to sail. And so, tugs rotated her and headed nor’nor’east and away from the coast of the Isola del Giglio. Exceptional photographic coverage of the moment can be found here.

It is strange coincidence that led to our cataloguing a book just yesterday on the Concordia that was published in 2006. Entitled simply Costa Concordia, this lovely book by Tiziana Lorenzelli gives the reader a great sense of the splendor of the liner just after it was launched. It was clearly the pride of Costa Crociere, the cruise ship company that had the liner built. This book is rather haunting to me in the same way our Titanic materials are. People died aboard this ship, and it is hard to square the beauty of it with its terrible fate and the tragedy of 32 lives confirmed lost.   Read more

Way Back Wednesdays

Posted on
Library Interior January 15, 1935

Instead of Throw Back Thursdays, here at The Mariners’ Museum we have decided to do Way Back Wednesdays (we have too many Thursday events to do the former).  I posted several photographs last month that showcased our objects and park, so most of my photos this month (all but one) will show you what the interior of our great institution used to look like.

These first two images show what our library used to look like.  The one on the left shows the general library space in January 15, 1935 with tables for researchers in the center among the books.  The setup is a bit different now as visitors to the library can no longer do research among the general collection, but in the research room outside of the collection.  Our library is also no longer located on our campus, but about a mile away on the Christopher Newport University Campus, which helps it to be a great resource for researchers and students.  The second image is from 1953 and shows the card catalog room (with ladies that have so obviously been staged, hah!).  Our library is a fantastic resource as it holds the largest maritime history collection in the Western Hemisphere.  Click HERE to check out more about the library.   Read more