Manuscript Digest – March 2018– This complimentary e-digest, launched in 2012, covers significant acquisitions and sales, manuscripts lost and found, rare books and ephemera, document conservation, and more.

In the News

Dec’ed Out
Washington Post, February 18, 2018
Hidden behind wallpaper during the Civil War. Stashed in a box for decades. Stuck behind a file cabinet. How this lost copy of the Declaration of Independence survived and surfaced.

It’s a Lock
The Two-Way/NPR, February 16, 2018
Talk about a hair-raising experience. A college archivist cracked open an old book and found a lock of hair. Whose? We hate to spoil the surprise. Still, we cannot tell a lie.

Will and the ‘P’ Word
New York Times, February 7, 2018
Did Shakespeare crib? Plagiarism software has found a match between 11 of his plays and someone else’s work. Poaching? Nah. But this may have been the book on Will’s bedside table.

Ransom’s Roots
Ransom Center Magazine, February 21, 2018
A hundred years ago, the Wrenn Library went to Texas, and the Harry Ransom Center was born. What was in the Wrenn, and what does it say about how book collecting has changed?
• A word from the outgoing curator of the Boston Athenaeum

Archival Revival
Irish Times, February 8, 2018
In 1922 the Dublin records office went up in flames. Centuries of history were gone. Or were they? Working from the inventory list, researchers aim for a virtual resurrection.

Spanish Cypher
BBC, February 3, 2018
After 500 years, Spanish intelligence has cracked the code King Ferdinand used in messages to his top general. What’s revealed — and what’s next? The Voynich Manuscript?

Manuscript vs. Machine
The Verge, February 1, 2018
The headlines were all a-twitter. A computer had done what scholars couldn’t. It had conquered the cryptic Voynich Manuscript. Except … probably not. Here’s why.

What ‘Kells’ Tells
The Independent, February 7, 2018
Viking raids. A major epidemic. Scholars have unearthed the brutal backstory of the Book of Kells. And it’s upended what we thought we knew about the iconic medieval manuscript.

The Departed
The Guardian, February 5, 2018
The Book of Kells is missing leaves. A suitcase full of Hemingway’s early work is missing altogether. A look at the lure of lost books and why original manuscripts matter.

Jobs Lot
iDrop News, February 23, 2018
English lit dropout seeks employment. Computer skills: check. Special abilities and interests? See how Steve Jobs answered on a 1973 job application, now up for sale.

NYC Rare Book Week
March 7–14 • New York City
> Go for it

In the Reads
What did A. Hamilton read? The New York Society Library knows — and tells.
> Check it out