Manuscript Digest – August 2020 – 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

New Buyers for Old Paper?
Robb Report, July 22, 2020
The COVID shutdown has ushered in a new era of online auctions and a new cohort of buyers — millennials. Will digital natives pay top price for manuscripts, sight unseen?

Quiet Sale, Quite a Price
Art Newspaper, July 6, 2020
Records quietly shattered when a 15th-century Quran sold at auction for £7 million. The sale was quiet, but it’s raised a rustle about provenance.

‘King James’ Rules
Washington Post, July 20, 2020
He shoots, he scores! A rare LeBron James rookie card has doubled the previous record price for a modern trading card. Who bought the NBA star’s card and what it netted.

Queenly Sum
The Scotsman, July 31, 2020
Mary, Queen of Scots reigned fast, died young, and left a legend that just won’t quit. This summer her richly illuminated prayer book has sold for … well, a queen’s ransom.

Women of Note
NPR, July 24, 2020
Sister Föben. Sister Katura. Sister Hanna. A sharp-eyed scholar spotted their names in a manuscript at the Library of Congress. Are they America’s first known female composers?

Librarian Squad
American Heritage, July/August 2020
Remember the Monuments Men? Meet the “Information Hunters” — a band of librarians and archivists on a mission in World War II. Historian Kathy Peiss shares their saga.

The Bright Ones
Fine Books & Collections, July 1, 2020
Ashley Cataldo wowed the crowd when the Manuscript Society toured the American Antiquarian Society last year. Now she’s one of Fine Books’s “Bright Young Librarians.”
• So is Tamar Evangelestia-Dougherty of Manuscript Society member Cornell U. Library.

Beeline to Brooklyn
Brownstoner, July 21, 2020
Feeling cooped up? Take a virtual tour through time and space on the Brooklyn Historical Society’s new map portal. Maps go back to the 18th century. And affordable real estate.

The Best Medicine
Smithsonianmag.com, July 31, 2020
Before TikTok or Instagram, people found ways to make light of dark days — like the 1918 flu. Wearing masks. Avoiding crowds. Canceling sports. It’s all there. And topical today.

From Our Blog

Anti-Slavery Manuscript Project — Volunteer

In the late 19th century, family and associates of abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison gave a number of his letters and other documents to the Boston Public Library. They are now in the Anti-Slavery Collection. The Boston Public Library is asking for volunteers to help transcribe the collection. Learn about the project and how you can be part of it.

On Value – Secrets from a rare book dealer > Listen

On Paper – How-tos for making medieval manuscripts > Watch

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