GREAT EXPECTATIONS! NEW AND PENDING ARRIVALS!
It’s late Saturday afternoon and I’m just getting to my second blog for the week. It’s not that nothing of note has been happening in the library. Quite the contrary! Rare books cataloguer Dr. Nicolae Harsanyi is away on vacation, digital library specialist David Almeida is expecting a new addition to the family any day now, and we’re still juggling visits by VIPs, swarms of Miami Dade Public School children, and a flurry of FIU students doing last minute research during the “end of the semester crunch.” Even the students taking my Great Depression and New Deal Era in Film and History class have been booking appointments all week long in order to complete their curatorial displays. Their projects are to be exhibited at the Green Library this coming Tuesday—but more on this in another blog!
But I would be remiss if I didn’t take enough of a breather to acknowledge the generosity of one of the Wolfsonian-FIU’s long-time supporters and board members, Frederic Sharf, and his wife, Jean. Just a few short weeks ago, several very large boxes filled with a veritable treasure-trove of gifts arrived in the museum’s loading dock. Among the numerous color chromolithographic prints, paintings, and other materials slated for the museum collection were more than fifty exceedingly rare books. The view books graphically document the Spanish-American War of 1898 and the rising naval power of the United States; the Philippine American War, 1899-1902; the Russo-Japanese War, 1904-1905; and the Japanese conflicts in Manchuria, China—most of the latter from the Japanese perspective. The donation of the Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Collection fills a void in our own collection of late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century military and colonial propaganda and materials documenting Japan’s rising empire in the Far East. We are very grateful to Fred and Jean for this powerful demonstration of their faith in the future of this institution, and for their continued generosity and support. While we have just begun the process of cataloging and creating digital images of the donation, a few more highlights from the library portion of this new collection may be viewed on our gift acknowledgement webpage: http://www.librarygifts.wolfsonian.org/