Way before the existence of the large online library catalogues we are now familiar with, libraries users would have had to visit a library to find if it held the material they were interested in, or they might be able to consult a printed catalogue. Today, these printed catalogues are valuable to researchers and librarians interested in what libraries used to have on their shelves and how the library’s contents changed over time. They tell us about former library management practices and collection development. They offer an insight into what was considered appropriate reading material. Where libraries no longer exist, historic catalogues are important witnesses to how knowledge and information circulated among communities. They are occasionally also a source of information about who could use the library and on what terms.Continue reading “Library by the sea: the first printed catalogue of the Bamburgh Castle Library”
A post by Learning Coordinator Charlotte Spink and Infinity Intern Ailsa
In early summer 2022, I was approached by the Careers & Enterprise and Disability Support Service to join their Infinity Internship Programme. Infinity places Durham University students with autism in paid internships both inside and outside the University with the aim of benefitting both parties. The programme aims to access a pool of often untapped talent, promote diversity and inclusion and develop students’ knowledge and skills.
Applicants go through an application and recruitment process to ensure they are a good fit for the host organisation. In July our first Infinity Intern – Ailsa – arrived at the Oriental Museum.Continue reading “Infinity Internship”
Continue reading “eResource of the month: Mass Observation Online”
A pioneering social research organisation, Mass Observation was founded in 1937 by anthropologist Tom Harrisson, film-maker Humphrey Jennings and poet Charles Madge. Their aim was to create an ‘anthropology of ourselves’, and by recruiting a team of observers and a panel of volunteer writers they studied the everyday lives of ordinary people in Britain. This resource covers the original Mass Observation project, the bulk of which was carried out from 1937 until the mid-1950s, offering an unparalleled insight into everyday life in Britain during these transformative years.
A post by archivist Andrew Gray
August means summer holidays. And for many of us, summer holidays means days at the beach. So this month, we celebrate the beaches at South Shields, and in particular the development of the foreshore north of the pier (Littlehaven beach) in the 1920s.
Our item of the month comes in the middle of this development, so first some context. The end of the 19th century saw the transformation of local government, culminating locally in the formation of South Shields County Borough in 1889. In 1896, the Corporation had got Parliament to pass the South Shields Corporation Act, “… to make better provision for the health and good government of the Borough and for other purposes.” This gave the local authority extensive powers (among others) to acquire new lands, to regulate the use of the seafront and public bathing, and to lay out and manage public parks. During the first decades of the 20th century, they took advantage of their new powers, and development of the foreshores at South Shields was typical of this new ambition.Continue reading “Item of the month: From tea rooms to decontamination centres – developments at South Shields sea front in the 1920s “
Earlier this year, after many months of planning and preparation, we launched our new Things To Do website! After undergoing a bit of a revamp, we wanted our new website to provide information about all our wonderful venues, research and learning and engagement, all in one place!
Our museums, collections and venues welcome hundreds of thousands of visitors each year and are home to more than 100,000 objects from over 60 countries worldwide. Our new website was developed to showcase each of our venues and to make it easy to plan your visit to our sites.Continue reading “Welcome to Durham University Things To Do!”
A post by Vicky Bishop
I am a student on the MA Museum and Artefact Studies course, and one of the course requirements is to complete a 20 day work placement. I have been lucky enough to spend my work placement with the great team at the Billy B. This may seem strange – surely the library is not a museum? – but actually there are a lot of similarities for they both hold collections which are available (in different ways, granted) for public consumption and research, and there are many shared professional skillsets and practices. The university recognises this synergy, for the university’s libraries and museums are part of the same directorate: University Libraries and Collections, or ULC for short.Continue reading “Work Placement at the Bill Bryson Library”
A post by Ellie Rylance, Megan Shannon, and Perry Li
A team of twelve students from the MA Museum and Artefact Studies course in the University’s Department of Archaeology are working to produce an exhibition which will be opening in the Museum of Archaeology on the 16th June. ‘Throwing it Out There: The Archaeology of Ritual, Rivers and Rubbish’ will focus on the rich ritual history of the rivers of County Durham from the Bronze Age to the medieval period and beyond.Continue reading “Upcoming Student Exhibition: Throwing it Out There “
The Sudan Archive recently accessioned the papers of Philip Ingleson (1892-1985) and his wife Gwen (née Fulton, 1896-1986). Philip Ingleson was Governor of Darfur from 1935 until his retirement in 1944, his period in office probably extended due to the war. Unusually, Ingleson also served as governor in Halfa (1931-1932), Berber (1932-1934) and Bahr el Ghazal provinces as well. He thus must be one of the few people to have governed in north, south and west Sudan; he began his career in the Sudan Political Service in 1919 as an Inspector in Um Kedada, Darfur.Continue reading “Item of the month: First world war novel or anonymised memoir: ‘The Crown Prince’s Jewels’”
A post by Faculty Librarian Ben Taylorson
I’m not really one for new year’s resolutions, but one thing I wanted to make sure I did in 2023 was make full use of the volunteering time that Durham University generously provides for staff. I have done a bit of volunteering through work before, at a foodbank and preparing Christmas treats for children. But with an entitlement of 35 hours of volunteering time to use, I set about finding something that I could do across the course of the whole year, via the Staff Volunteering Newsletter.
I’m quite an outdoorsy type, so I settled on litter picking/beach cleaning. The university work closely with SeaScapes to improve the state of our beaches and ultimately protect the fragile marine environment, and run monthly beach cleans (starting in April) on 1st Wednesday of every month 10 – 12pm.Continue reading “Cleaning up”
A post by Faculty Librarian Colin Theakston
Some of you may not know this, but the BIOSIS Citation Index is included within Web of Science.
This database includes cited references to primary journal literature on biological research, medical research findings, and discoveries of new organisms. It covers original research reports and reviews in botany, zoology, and microbiology, and related fields such as biomedical, agriculture, pharmacology, and ecology, and interdisciplinary fields such as medicine, biochemistry, biophysics, bioengineering, and biotechnology.Continue reading “eResource of the month: BIOSIS Citation Index”