marthawells: Atlantis in fog (Atlantis)
marthawells ([personal profile] marthawells) wrote2019-01-31 07:23 am

Archives Visit

Yesterday a friend came up to visit and I got us a tour of the SF/F collection at Cushing Memorial Library and Archives. We saw so much stuff, I should have taken notes, but let's see:

* A proto-SF book from I think 1640? called the "Lunar World" where the author described what he thought a spaceship trip to the Moon would look like.

* Andre Norton's portrait and her SFWA Grandmaster award.

* The boxes for my collection of letters and manuscripts, plus a bunch of our friends' collections, plus cool people's boxes like Samuel Delany's and George R.R. Martin's.

* The boxes for the media fanzine collection and the fan vid collection dvds.

* And because the rare book collection is right there, we saw a real Sumerian cuneiform tablet and got to hold it.

* We got to see (and smell) a book with 400 year old smoke trapped in its pages.

* A 1500s occult book that has an inscription to Beelzebub written in blood.

* A Coptic scroll.

* Papyrus fragments

I posted a few pictures on Twitter
beccaelizabeth: my Watcher tattoo in blue, plus Be in red Buffy style font (Default)

[personal profile] beccaelizabeth 2019-01-31 02:01 pm (UTC)(link)
very cool
theoldone: (Default)

[personal profile] theoldone 2019-01-31 02:19 pm (UTC)(link)
That sounds Awesome!
celli: An image of Murderbot with the quote "This sounded like a great plan in that it didn't involve me" (Murderbot great plan)

[personal profile] celli 2019-01-31 02:45 pm (UTC)(link)
aurumcalendula: gold, blue, orange, and purple shapes on a black background (Default)

[personal profile] aurumcalendula 2019-01-31 02:50 pm (UTC)(link)
That sounds so awesome!
lizziebelle: (rose)

[personal profile] lizziebelle 2019-01-31 07:15 pm (UTC)(link)
Wow! Amazing stuff!
cassyblue: a green caterpillar in a space suit with a rainbow pride badge (Default)

[personal profile] cassyblue 2019-02-01 12:42 am (UTC)(link)
that's so cool!
vicki_rae: (Default)

[personal profile] vicki_rae 2019-02-01 10:11 am (UTC)(link)
Oh wow, very cool.
mizstorge: Picture of a Pictish serpent. Caption reads "Unredeemed Slytherin" (Default)

[personal profile] mizstorge 2019-02-01 07:27 pm (UTC)(link)
That Coptic scroll is interesting. The Egyptian language used the Coptic alphabet from the 2nd-3rd centuries CE, but the Coptic language wasn't standardized until the 4th century. Meanwhile, use of parchment codices began in the 1st century CE, achieved parity with papyrus scrolls in the 3rd century, and supplanted papyrus scrolls by the 6th century. So the likely date of production for the Coptic scroll you saw would have likely been between 100-500 CE. (yes, I'm a papyrology nerd!)

Wondering: did the book with 400 year old smoke trapped in its pages smell as you expected? Old book + wood smoke, or more like incense?
mizstorge: Picture of a Pictish serpent. Caption reads "Unredeemed Slytherin" (Default)

[personal profile] mizstorge 2019-02-02 05:12 pm (UTC)(link)
That's an evocative description, and an amazing experience!
jesse_the_k: harbor seal's head with caption "seal of approval" (Approval)

[personal profile] jesse_the_k 2019-02-02 10:07 pm (UTC)(link)
That's the magic of an archive, from the oldest to the right now.