Digital Resources of the Week: The National Trust Library Historic Postcards

Postcards have always been a popular souvenir and a fun way to send a quick message home while on vacation. Often depicting famous buildings or landscapes, The National Trust Library Historic Postcard Collection suggests that “these postcards also provide unique evidence of the evolution in American architecture, with rare glimpses of buildings or places that may no longer exist or have dramatically altered over time.”

The National Trust Historic Postcard Collection has over 20,000 postcards. The University of Maryland’s University Libraries’ Digital Collections provides images of many of these postcards. Browse by state (there are 830 postcards depicting aspects of Pennsylvania) or enter a keyword search such as Philadelphia, ocean, or flower.

 

Biscayne Bay in Miami, Florida, circa 1908
Biscayne Bay in Miami, Florida, circa 1908

Want to see more postcards? Search the UArts Libraries’ catalog for the subject postcards. We have many beautiful books including one about Philadelphia postcards from the early 1900s. Happy travels this summer!

 

Philadelphia's City Hall, circa 1901-1907
Philadelphia's City Hall, circa 1901-1907

Digital Resource of the Week: Rare Book Room

Through the publishing house Octavo, the Rare Book Room currently has over 400 digitized books available to read online. Many of the books are beautiful examples of the histories of print design, typography, and illustration.

You can search by subject such as literature (where you will find Shakespeare’s work), graphic arts (including a work by Bodoni), music (mostly Beethoven and Mozart), or photography (the Pennsylvania Railroad Photographs from the 1870s are here).

Many of the libraries that hold the original materials are right here in Philadelphia! In the drop-down menu for Find by Library, check out The American Antiquarian Society, The American Philosophical Society, the Ewell Sale Stewart Library of the Academy of Natural Sciences, The Historical Society of Pennsylvania, The Library Company of Philadelphia, the Rosenbach Museum & Library, and the University of Pennsylvania Library.

Please note that you will have to allow pop-ups on your web browser to use the site.

Here are some highlights of the collection:

A book of hours - "Horae Beatae Mariae ad usum Romanum" - from 1524
A book of hours - "Horae Beatae Mariae ad usum Romanum" - from 1524
Louis Renard's "Poissons, Ecrevisses et Crabes, de Diverses Couleu" (1719)
Louis Renard's "Poissons, Ecrevisses et Crabes, de Diverses Couleu" (1719)

 

Lewis Carroll's "Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass" illustrated by Blanche McManus, 1900
Lewis Carroll's "Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass" illustrated by Blanche McManus, 1900
German Christian text, unknown author, circa 1475
German Christian text, unknown author, circa 1475

Digital Resource of the Week: Getty Research Institute’s Digital Collections

The Getty Research Institute (GRI) works collaboratively with the collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Conservation Institute, and the Getty Foundation.

Sketchbook of Pompeii by Sir William Gell (1830)
Sketchbook of Pompeii by Sir William Gell (1830)

 

The Getty Research Institute‘s mission “is dedicated to furthering knowledge and advancing understanding of the visual arts.” To meet this goal, the Institute has many digital collections, including images of art, architecture, photography, and primary sources such as artists’ letters.

The GRI’s digital collections can be searched a variety of ways. For example, search by medium to discover drawings or photographs. Search by subject to limit to Latin America or Modernism.

The Institute also has a Photo Study Collection of about a million of its photographs available online. The Collection acts as a reference tool for studying antiquities and Western art.

At the end of this month, GRI will launch the Getty Research Portal, “a free online search platform providing global access to digitized art history texts in the public domain.” These digitized art books will provide easy access to critical scholarship. Stay tuned to learn more!

El Lissitzky (1923) "Schaumachinerie" (Show machinery)
El Lissitzky (1923) "Schaumachinerie" (Show machinery)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Digital Resource of the Week: The Morgan Library and Museum

The Morgan Library and Museum is a terrific collection of art, music, and literature. Located in New York City, their website offers online exhibitions, music manuscripts, videos, and more.

Manāfi˓-i al-ḥayavā (The Benefits of Animals), in Persian. Persia, Maragha, between 1297 and 1300, for Shams al-Dīn Ibn Żiyā˒ al-Dīn al-Zūshkī
Manāfi˓-i al-ḥayavā (The Benefits of Animals), in Persian. Persia, Maragha, between 1297 and 1300, for Shams al-Dīn Ibn Żiyā˒ al-Dīn al-Zūshkī

Exhibitions of the library and museum holdings are diverse – from In the Company of Animals to Jim Dine: The Glyptotek Paintings to Auld Lang Syne: The Story of a Song. Many of the exhibitions have an online version with an essay and additional resources. You can also browse through highlights of the collection including Medieval and Renaissance manuscripts, music manuscripts, and paintings and sculpture.

There are videos available on topics such as the famous Dutch manuscript, The Hours of Catherine of Cleves and Princeton professor Cornel West discussing Jane Austen.

Jean de Brunhoff's Histoire de Babar Maquette
Jean de Brunhoff's Histoire de Babar Maquette

The Morgan Library and Museum has an active blog highlighting different items in the collection. New at the Morgan showcases new acquisitions by the Library and Museum. Secrets from the Vault, another theme of the blog, includes posts about interesting items like John Ruskin’s Puppet Show and Death or Castration? The Pains of Circus Management.

If you like the collection, check out Pierpont Morgan Library (Pierpont Morgan was an avid collector in the late 1800s) as an author in the UArts Libraries catalog.

Digital Resource of the Week: National Gallery of Art Learning Resources

The National Gallery of Art has terrific web resources for students and teachers of visual art. NGA Learning Resources offers learning packets, media, and online resources for teaching everything from 15th century European art to 21st century American art. Search by resource format, subject, or artist name. For instance, there is a teaching packet on Art Since 1950, a podcast of an interview with artist Jim Dine, and a slideshow of the Golden Age of Chinese Archaeology. Many of the resources are available as a pdf, podcast, or a webpage. Others you can request to borrow from the National Gallery of Art – just create an account! It’s free!

 

Girl Seated by the Sea by Robert Henri 1893
Girl Seated by the Sea by Robert Henri 1893

Looking for more ideas on teaching visual arts? Check out the UArts Libraries subject guide on Art Education. Also, search the catalog for the subject heading Art – Study and Teaching.