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Vol 11 No 4 – April 2013

Rare Books at the McGoogan Library of Medicine

John Schleicher
McGoogan Library of Medicine
Omaha, Nebraska

The library of medicine at the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) began developing its rare books collection as early as the 1920s, initially financed by the College of Medicine and greatly expanded through gifts from faculty and alumni collectors, including Leon S. McGoogan, M.D.  At present, the McGoogan Library rare books collection numbers nearly 4,500 volumes—2,140 owned by the state of Nebraska and 2,298 comprising the Orr Collection, on permanent loan from the American College of Surgeons.  The collection includes medical and general science volumes dating from the 1490s, and includes works that are historically valuable, unique or hard to find.  Some of the volumes that can be found in the collection are:

  • Vesalius’ De humani corporis fabrica libri septem, 1555
  • Newton’s Opticks, 1730
  • Jenner’s An inquiry into the causes and effects of the variolae vaccinae, 1798
  • Gray’s Anatomy, 1858
  • Darwin’s Origin of Species, 1859

The library staff works closely with our campus public relations team to promote the library overall, and our special collections.  The following article, “Curling up with a rare book,” appeared in our daily online newsletter “UNMC Today” in December 2012, as well as in our campus blog “A Day in the Life of UNMC.” (more…)

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The Disaster Communication Summit

The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men,
Gang aft agley,

From “To a Mouse” by Robert Burns

In 2012, the NN/LM MidContinental Region, the Greater Midwest Region, and Dan Wilson from the Emergency Preparedness and Response Toolkit started planning an event focused on the issues surrounding communication and disaster preparedness. The meeting was scheduled for March 7-8, 2013 in Chicago. Rooms had been reserved, presenters and workshop instructors confirmed, and participants registered.

But then the emergency struck. Sequestration happened and Cindy Love, from the NLM Disaster and Information Management Research Center, had her travel rescinded three days before the event. Cindy was scheduled to present in a morning session and teach the workshop “US Response to Disasters and Public Health Emergencies.” The day before, Mother Nature decided that a snow storm should hit the East coast canceling Dan Wilson’s flight out of Virginia (and cutting off his electricity). Dan was the host of the summit and the instructor for the “10 Steps to Service Continuity Planning” on the second day of the event. Just before the event one of the keynote speakers got sick. The planning team scrambled. (more…)

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Smarten Up Your Library: Hosting an NLM Traveling Exhibition

Amanda K. Sprochi
J. Otto Lottes Health Sciences Library
Columbia, Missouri

 This past February, the J. Otto Lottes Health Sciences Library hosted a traveling exhibit from the National Library of Medicine History of Medicine Division, entitled “The Henkel Physicians: a Family’s Life and Letters.”

The Henkel Physicians Exhibit

The Henkel Physicians Exhibit

In October 2011, the National Library of Medicine History of Medicine Division (HMD) advertised opportunities for libraries to host one of their travelling exhibitions. The requirements to host an NLM exhibition are pretty minimal: a certain amount of floor space, a commitment to send the exhibit on via FedEx to the next exhibitor, and some general care guidelines. In looking over the offerings, I became interested in “The Henkel Physicians: a Family’s Life and Letters,” about a family of physicians—grandfather, father, and son—who practiced in the Virginia Shenandoah Valley during the 19th century, encompassing the years of the Civil War and Reconstruction. The Henkels’ family correspondence is held in the History of Medicine Division archives and encompasses letters written from 1786-1940. Much of this collection has been digitized and can be viewed online via the HMD online digital collections: Physician’s Lives in the Shenandoah Valley. (more…)

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