7 November 2017 saw a milestone in the ‘William Hunter’s Library: A Transcription of the Early Catalogues’ when we launched a draft version of the transcription of Museum Records 3, the Trustees Catalogue of Printed books compiled in 1783-1785. This list recorded the books found in Hunter’s London home in Great Windmill Street that were destined to travel to the University of Glasgow as part of Hunter’s bequest to the university of his museum and library. Our launch attracted about 40 interested participants who listened to a series of mini talks by Julie Gardham (PI for the project), Michelle Craig (member of Team Hunter and PhD scholar working on provenance in Hunter’s Library), and me (Project Manager).
The draft version of the catalogue is now available from Glasgow Enlighten: http://eprints.gla.ac.uk/151114/. This will be fully updated and a final version will be uploaded before the project finishes at the end of December. There is also an Excel version which researchers may find useful since this includes modernised author names and titles as well as standardised forms of places of publication. This will also be updated and uploaded in a final form later this year.
My original scheme to provide a blog entry for each letter in the catalogue has not come to pass. I made it to ‘K’ by last July. Thanks to the efforts of members of ‘Team Hunter’, that is the Project Assistants who worked on the project from April to October and our Museum Studies Placement Student, the scheme is more complete than it might seem:
L is for Latin Scientific Poetry
Dr David McOmish (Project Assistant), ‘William Hunter’s Library: Latin Scientific Poetry‘
M is for the Mysteries of Elizabeth Canning and the Gowrie Conspiracy
Jennifer Young (Project Assistant), ‘William Hunter’s Library: Cases of Conspiracy‘
P is for Plague
Dr Jade Scott (Project Assistant), ‘William Hunter’s Library: Plague, Pestilence, and the Physician‘
O is for Ownership
Michelle Craig (Project Assistant), ‘William Hunter’s Library: Provenance‘
R is for a Recipe for Chocolate (and American Exploration)
Ellie King (MSc Museum Studies Placement Student), ‘William Hunter’s Library: Auctions and Americana‘
S is for the Sizes and Shapes of Books
Jasna Zwimpfer (Project Assistant), ‘William Hunter’s Library: the Shapes of Books‘
T is for Hunter’s Trustees
Dr Karen Baston (Project Manager), ‘William Hunter’s Library: Who were the Trustees?‘
I am currently working on completing a transcription of Museum Records 2, Hunter’s ‘Common Catalogue’ as he called it. Team Hunter finished both MR 1, Hunter’s catalogue of his medical books, and MR 3, the Trustees catalogue, and made a start on MR 2. It is hoped that all three manuscripts will be fully transcribed and matched to each other and to their modern online library catalogue records before the project ends.
Next year will see the continuing development of a digital resource which will use our work to create records that link our work to both library catalogue records and digital images of the pages of MR 3. All in time to celebrate Hunter’s 300th birthday on 23 May 2018.