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All Adoptable Books

Below are all books that we have available for adoption including those for acquisition, preservation and digitization.

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Smith's illustrated astronomy: designed for the use of the public or common schools in the United States; illustrated with numerous original diagrams.

By Asa Smith. New-York: Published by Cady & Burgess..., 1849.

You can play a part in a Smithsonian Libraries' Exhibition! This book will be featured in our forthcoming exhibition in July 2015.

Asa Smith, the Principal of a New York City public school, felt there was a need for an introductory astronomy textbook both affordable and accessible to “common readers” who may lack the mathematical background presumed by more sophisticated options. Smith’s goal was to “present all distinguishing principles in physical Astronomy with as few words as possible; but with such ocular demonstrations, by way of diagrams and maps, as shall make the subject easily understood.” The woodcut diagrams that face the Q&A-style lessons were drawn on the blocks by Smith himself, and then engraved, and he felt these “ocular demonstrations... shall make the subject easily understood.” Interest in astronomy had grown in the United States in the years leading up to 1848, when the first edition appeared. This copy is the 4th edition (New York, 1849), but Smith’s successful work would be reprinted and put to use in schools for nearly two decades.

Condition and treatment:
This book has the original paper-covered printed publisher’s binding. The spine covering is torn and almost completely detached from the covers, and the first and last leaves are detached.
The conservator will re-attach the loose leaves and re-back with toned heavy-weight Japanese paper.

By Monck Mason. London: F.C. Westley, 1838.

Help support Smithsonian Libraries' Exhibitions! This book will be featured in our forthcoming exhibition in July 2015.

Monck Mason’s Aeronautica is his second published account of a historical balloon flight he made from London, England to Weilburg, Germany in 1836. Accompanied by fellow famed balloonists Charles Green and Robert Holland, the trio travelled nearly 500 miles, a record distance for the time. Mason’s personal detailed narrative, which includes illustrations made from his own sketches, launched him to momentary fame and provided inspiration for Edgar Allan Poe’s balloon hoax published in the New York Sun newspaper in 1844. Poe boastfully claimed that Mason had traversed the Atlantic Ocean in three days by means of a navigable balloon, something that wouldn’t be achieved, though it took nearly twice the time, until 1978.

Condition and treatment:
The sewing is intact on this full cloth-covered case bound book. The upper portion of the spine covering is detached, and the hinges to both the upper and lower covers are weakened and loose. The conservator will reinforce the weak hinges with toned linen to match the original cloth covering, and reattach the loose section of the spine covering.

"Description of an artificial hand" [Reprint of article from Mechanics’ magazine].

By George Cayley. London, Tyler and Reed, 1845.

Help support Smithsonian Libraries' Exhibitions! This book will be included in our forthcoming exhibition in July 2015.

Sir George Cayley, sometimes called the “English Leonardo” due to his wide-ranging achievements in engineering, was an important pioneer in aeronautics and aerial navigation in the early-to-mid 1800’s. While best known for his contributions to flight, Cayley turned his engineering talents toward creating an artificial hand for the wounded son of a tenant farmer. He wished to make a more affordable and versatile model. His innovative design mimicked the articulation and control of human movement, and contains features used in modern prostheses. A description of his invention first appeared in this article in the Mechanics’ magazine in March of 1845.

Condition and treatment:
This volume has a half leather binding with marbled paper covers. The upper cover is completely detached. Conservators will replace the front cover with board covered in similar marbled paper and reattach to spine.

Journal of the [1st-6th] annual General Council of the Indian Territory. 6 separate items.

by the Indian Territory General Council. Lawrence, Kansas, 1871-1875.

In accordance with the 1866 treaty between the U.S. and the Cherokee Nation and the Choctaw, Chickasaw, Muskogee (Creek), and Seminole tribes, a council composed of delegates from each tribe met annually to enact legislation for the Indian Territory (now part of Oklahoma). These reports list the delegates, their debates, and their decisions. We lack the third annual report (1872) in this set.

Condition and Treatment: Original printed paper wrappers, variously colored and brittle; the pamphlets are stab-sewn and glued into early or mid- 20th-century acidic binders. Some of the wrappers have broken loose at the edge of the gluing or suffered other damage or wear, and some interior pages are torn. Remove the pamphlets from the old binders, dis-bind and re-sew them through the fold. Repair the damaged paper using Japanese paper and wheat-starch paste. Create a custom archival enclosure for each.

E78 .I5I622 SCNHRB (6 items)
By Samuel G. Goodrich. New York: J. C. Derby, 1856

You can play a part in a Smithsonian Libraries Exhibition! This book will be featured in our upcoming exhibition in July 2015.

Samuel G. Goodrich was an American bookseller, publisher, and writer well known during his lifetime for his engaging educational works for children. Writing under the pen name Peter Parley, Goodrich crafted fictional stories grounded in the science and knowledge of the time. Goodrich’s The Balloon Travels of Robert Merry, published in this format in 1856, appeared serially in his Merry’s Magazine in the years prior. Goodrich incorporated geography, aeronautics, and general science into a ballooning adventure tale across Europe with intrepid young travelers, whose ages were around those of Goodrich’s intended readers.

Condition and treatment:
This book has a full cloth-covered case binding with gold stamped designs on both covers and spine. The front cover is detached. The conservator will remove the spine lining and replace it with layers of Japanese paper, and will re-back with toned linen to match the original cloth covering.

Pamphlet bindings
Amount: $250.00
Hundreds of small publications transferred from the general collections, including Linnaean dissertations and a botanical manuscript with hand-drawn and -colored illustrations, are taped or glued into old acidic “pamphlet” folders that need to be replaced.

Condition and treatment:  Conservators will remove the publications from the acidic folders, dry-clean the pages and wash them in de-ionized water buffered with calcium carbonate (pH7), re-sew the publication with an acid-free paper wrapper, and make a custom-fitted, four-flap enclosure for it.
Directions for making collections in natural history, prepared for the National Institute for the Promotion of Science.
by Henry King. Washington: Gales and Seaton, 1840.
This slim pamphlet, prepared for a short-lived organization that preceded the founding of the Smithsonian Institution, is one of a numerous collection of early instructions for collecting specimens of plants and animals.  These publications reflect the growing recognition of the importance of proper preservation techniques and record-keeping for natural-history collections, as private collections evolved into public museums through the 19th century.
Condition and treatment: Conservators will remove the publication from the acidic folder, dry-clean the pages and wash them in de-ionized water buffered with calcium carbonate (pH7), re-sew the publication with an acid-free paper wrapper, and make a custom-fitted, four-flap enclosure for it.
[Botanical dissertations].  14 separate items.

by Carl Peter Thunberg.  Uppsala, 1781-1828.

In 18th- and 19th-century Europe, it was standard practice for university professors to write their students’ dissertations; the student’s job was to explicate and defend the thesis.  At the University of Uppsala (Sweden), first Linnaeus and then Thunberg wrote hundreds of these botanical papers, usually focused on taxonomic and systematic matters – either describing and naming genera and species or analyzing basic issues of classification.  The Cullman Library holds dozens of the small, individually published papers, many of them housed in old acidic pamphlet-binders.

Condition and Treatment:  No covers; variously stab-sewn and/or glued into old acidic pamphlet binders.  Remove from the binders, wash as needed, and create a new binding for each item using Cave Paper (O.Malley Crackle as the color).

QK495 [… various] SCNHRB

The language of botany: Being a dictionary of the terms made use of in that science, principally by Linnaeus….  

by Thomas Martyn.  London: B. and J. White, 1793.

Thomas Martyn was Regius Professor of Botany at Cambridge University and an early adopter of Linnaean classification and nomenclature, which he promulgated in his public lectures.  In this work, based on a paper given to the Linnean Society in 1789, he defines hundreds of Linnaean terms and clarifies conceptual aspects of the Linnaean system, which is the foundation for the work of modern researchers at the NMNH.  
Insectes diptères du nord de la France.

by Justin Macquart.  Lille, 1826-1834.

Based in Lille in northern France, Macquart was one of three brothers who all became naturalists in the early 1800's – one an ornithologist, one a botanist, and Justin an entomologist who specialized in Diptera (flies).  As a contributor the Suites à Buffon and in his independent works, Macquart named thousands of new species of flies, and his publications are an important source for current research in the Department of Entomology at the National Museum of Natural History.

Condition and Treatment:  Modern brown buckram case, with marbled end-papers; the text-block is over-sewn (also modern) but sound.  The binding has deteriorated to the point that the case is almost completely detached from the text-block, held by a single sewing cord; the front fly-leaves and half-title page are also detached, and there are general signs of wear.  Remove the buckram covers; re-attach the title leaves with Japanese paper and create a new linen case for the volume with new archival end papers.

QL535.4 .F8M17 SCNHRB
Volcanoes and Earthquakes... ; from the French by Mrs. Norman Lockyer; with sixty-two woodcuts by E. Riou.

By Frédéric Zurcher and Elié Margollé. London: R. Bentley, 1868.

You can play a part in a Smithsonian Libraries' Exhibition! This book will be featured in our forthcoming exhibition in July 2015.

First published in Paris in 1866 as part of as series called Bibliothèque des Merveilles (Library of Wonders), Zurcher and Margollé’s work on volcanoes and earthquakes reflects the public’s increasing interest in science in the mid-19th century. Geological science had become a source of great fascination. Covering volcanoes from Etna and Vesuvius in Italy to those in the Americas and the Pacific and Indian Oceans – and even those on the moon, this book is enhanced with dramatic illustrations of eruptions and the geological formations that result, including massive craters and island caves composed of basalt blocks and pillars.

This little volume of geological marvels is illustrated by Edouard Riou, well known for his illustrations for six of Jules Verne’s Voyages Extraordinaires novels, including Voyage au centre de la terre (Journey to the center of the earth) in 1864, an adventure story that takes the reader under the surface of the earth, and into our geological past, via volcanic passages. Riou also illustrated another work of popular science, Louis Figuier’s La terre avant le deluge (The earth before the flood), in 1863, a widely read work on geology with Riou’s depictions of the earth’s extinct inhabitants, which had a significant influence on Verne’s underground tale.

Condition and treatment:

This volume has a full cloth-covered case binding. The sewing is weak and broken throughout the textblock, and leaves are loose and in danger of becoming detached.

Conservators will separate the case from the text-block and disbind the book. The signatures will be re-sewn, and the spine relined with Japanese paper. The text-block will be re-attached to the case using sewing supports reinforced with Japanese paper at the interior joints.

The Palace and Park
Amount: $300.00
The Palace and Park: Its Natural History, and Its Portrait Gallery, Together with a Description of the Pompeian Court.

London: Crystal Palace Library: Bradbury and Evans, 1854.

Help support Smithsonian Libraries' Exhibitions! This work will be displayed in our forthcoming exhibition in July 2015.

The Crystal Palace, built to house the Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations in London in 1851, the first of many World’s Fairs, was an innovative and iconic structure built of plate glass and cast iron. In 1854, the building was moved from its original location in Hyde Park, London, and reconstructed in the London suburb of Sydenham. This guidebook describes the new exhibitions within, including elaborate courts displaying works of art and industry, as well as natural history and anthropology exhibits.

The gardens surrounding the Crystal Palace were no less remarkable: they contained the first models ever built of prehistoric life forms, created by Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins. It was an astonishing and novel experience for the public, to stand beside an iguanodon in its “habitat.” British paleontologist Richard Owen, something of a celebrity scientist, penned the text describing the dinosaurs and other extinct creatures on display in the section, "Geology and Inhabitants of the Ancient World."

Catalogue des mammifères et des oiseaux observés en Algérie. 

by Victor Loche.  Paris, [1858].

This small work supplements the official reports of the Exploration Scientifique de l’Algérie (see separate listings).  The official birds and mammals volumes of the Expedition by Commandant Victor Loche (1806-1863), an active collector in northern Africa during and after the Expedition, were the last issued and were preceded by this work in which Loche first described and named several new species.  For that reason this catalog is an important adjunct to the expedition reports.  It is quite rare, being held by only seven libraries in the U.S. 
by Sir John Pringle. London: Printed for W. Strahan, and T. Cadell, 1783.
These six discourses, which were presented “on occasion of six annual assignments of Sir Godfrey Copley’s medal,” discussed a great variety of subjects, including “different kinds of air,” the torpedo, and the preservation of the health of mariners.
Condition and treatment: This volume has a full leather binding with decorative gold stamping on the covers and spine. Leather is missing from the front and back cover joints and both are loose. The joints needs to be reinforced, and - after lifting the leather- they need to be covered with toned Japanese paper.
Q.F.F.Q.S. Dissertatio gradualis, De gravitate corporum terrestrium, quam, consensu ampliss. facult. philosoph. in Reg. Academ. Upsal. sub praesidio... Dn. Samuelis Klingenstierna...; publico examini modeste subjicit, Arvidus Arvidi Roman, Nericius, in Audit. Carol. Min. ad d. 17 Junii, anni MDCCXXXVII. horis ante meridiem consuetis.
Samuel Klingenstierna, praeses. Arvidus Arvidi Roman, respondent.
Upsaliae: Literis Höjerianis, 1737.
Graduate dissertation defended by A. A. Roman at the University of Uppsala discussing the effects of gravity upon terrestrial bodies.
[together with:]
Dissertatio gradualis de gravitate lunae . . .
Samuel Klingenstierna, praeses. Gabriel Kolmodin, respondent.
Holmiae: Literis Wernerianis, 1734.
Dissertatio gradualis de gravitate aeris. . .
Samuel Klingenstierna, praeses. Johann Kristiern Duraeus, respondent.
Upsaliae, Literis Wernerianis, 1732.
These three scarce dissertations, all relating to gravity, were presided over by the noted scientist Samuel Klingenstierna.
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