NCSU Library Exhibits
Recent Acquisitions in NCSU's Special Collections, 1999
The NCSU Libraries' Special Collections Research Center has been busy acquiring new manuscript collections, archival materials, and rare books during the 1998-1999 fiscal year. These volumes represent the types of rare books the Research Center has purchased and include some of the highlights for the year. Collection purchases focused on main collecting areas such as engineering, architecture, design, and history of science, in particular entomology, forestry and science education. New acquisitions totaled over 550 books for the year.
Jablonsky, Carl Gustav & Herbst, J. F. W. Natursystem aller bekannten in-und auslandischen Insecten, als eine Fortsetzung der von Buffonschen Naturgeschichte. Nach dem System des Ritters Carl von Linne bearbeitet: Kafer. Berlin: J. Pauli, 1785-1806. 10 volumes.
Macer, Floridus (Odo de Meung). De viribus herbarum. Herbarum varias qui cognoscere vires. Paris: Bacquelier, ca. 1515.
Christ, Johann Ludwig. Naturgeschichte, Klassification und Nomenclatur der Insecten vom Bienen, Wespen, und Ameisengeschlecht. Frankfurt am Main: Hermann, 1791. 2 volumes.
Johann Ludwig Christ (1739-1813), an 18th-century expert in apiculture, produced only this one master work. The volume is a true gem: with its 60 stunning hand-colored illustrations of bees and wasps, it enhances an already strong collection of bee literature held by Special Collections.
Christ's work complements the university's existing scholarly research in the order Hymenoptera. This interest in hymenopteran systematics finds its foundations in the Mitchell Bee Collection, a specimen collection of more than 34,000 bees collected by former NC State professor T. B. Mitchell and housed in the NCSU Department of Entomology's Insect Collection at the university. Dr. Mitchell's collecting efforts culminated in a revision of bee classification. The Mitchell Collection, along with approximately 40,000 additional hymenopteran specimens, is of great value to systematics scholars.
Mensuration of Superficies. Vellum Bound Manuscript. 1794?
This unique manuscript is a student's exercise book on learning to measure solids. The beautifully handwritten text contains geometric problems and answers along with eye-catching diagrams illustrating the solution to the problems. The student author whimsically intersperses his problem solving with bits of poetry and axioms for good living. No personal information is known about the author of the text, except he "Left Mr. Stubbs 11th of May 1794" presumably having completed a course of study. The student is likely to have been an apprentice to an engineer, merchant, or mariner. This one-of-a-kind item is a great addition to Special Collections' science education collecting initiative.
This work, written for the Dutch National Postal, Telephone and Telegraph Service, is considered a classic in graphic design. The illustrations and layout are capricious and eye-catching. Intended for children, the text was used to teach children about modern communication techniques and devices. The original Dutch edition is very scarce in the United States; only three copies are listed in United States libraries.
August Roesel von Rosenhof (1705-1759) was a painter and engraver by training and a naturalist by avocation. He became inspired by the drawings of Maria Sibylla Merian (1647-1717), a noted 17th-century botanical and entomological illustrator, and he devoted himself to the painting of insects from live specimens. The work is profusely illustrated with more than 300 hand-colored, detailed engraved plates, and despite the age of the publication, the colors remain fresh and vibrant. Attesting to the scholarly value of Roesel's text, L. C. Miall notes in his The Early Naturalists 1912), "On the whole, the description [of aquatic beetles] is quite as good as that given in most popular books of our own day, but the figures are much better than those which we are accustomed to see."
The Natuurlyke Historie was first published in German between 1746 and 1761, and is considered one of the most important entomological publications of the 18th century. After Roesel's death, the fourth volume was completed by Roesel's son-in-law, Kleemann. Kleemann also completed a supplement to the work, which is included in this set.
French, James Weir. Machine tools commonly employed in modern engineering workshops. London: Gresham Publishing Company, 1911.
Loewy, Raymond. [Set of 7 lithographs and 1 serigraph in deluxe portfolio with 1 lithograph issued loose]
Seguy, E. A. Insectes; vingt planches en phototypie coloriees au patron donnant quatre-vingts insectes et seize compositions decoratives. Paris: Chartre et Van Buggenhoudt [1929?]
The Insectes is a set of 20 remarkable insect prints produced in Paris by the French designer Eugene Alain Séguy circa 1928. Each hand-colored print was produced using the pochoir technique, a printing process employing a series of stencils to lay down the colors; this technique accounts for the prints' strikingly fresh and vibrant colors. Séguy was especially inspired by exotic and colorful creatures of the natural world that most designers had overlooked. He fashioned meticulously detailed entomological drawings not from actual specimens, but from illustrations in scientific publications. The Insectes portfolio features 80 insects from around the world and 16 abstract entomological wallpaper designs.
Rankine, William J. M. A Manual of Civil Engineering. London: Griffin, Bohn, 1862. First Edition.
Essig, Daniel J. Metamorphosis III. Asheville, N. C.: Dan Essig, 1999. Dan Essig was born in 1967 and studied at the Center for the Book at the University of Iowa, Penland School of Crafts, and Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. In Metamorphosis III he used ancient Coptic sewing techniques for binding, traditional handmade paper stained with natural dye extracted from walnut hulls, and found objects such as insect wings and mica to produce this most-unique book that augments the Special Collections Research Center's design and cultural entomology collections.
The text block consists of 10 blank folio signatures with insect wings embedded in the handmade paper. The cover is made of spalted and curly maple and contains two windows covered with mica. The front-cover window houses a Cicada in its larval stage. The inside back-cover window houses a Cicada in its adult stage, which give the title to the piece, "Metamorphosis III."
Poehlmann, JoAnna. Beelines (from the stamp collection). Milwaukee, Wisc.: J. Poehlmann, 1996.
Sears, Roebuck and Company. Sears Wallpaper and Wall Oilcloth. Chicago, Ill.: Sears, Roebuck and Co., 1954.
Polonceau, Antoine Remi. Notice sur le nouveau systeme des ponts en fonte suivi dans la construction du pont du Carrousel. Plaches. Paris: Carilian-Goeury, 1839.
Batemean, John Frederic & Revy, Julian John. Channel Railway. Description of a Proposed Cast-iron Tube for Carrying a Railway Across the Channel Between the Coasts of England and France. London: Vacher & Sons, August 1869.
Gorey, Edward. The Bug Book. New York: Epstein & Carroll; distributed by Random House, 1960.