Wednesday, June 2, 2021

The Smith College Library Rap

Melville biographer Newton Arvin was Professor of English at Smith College in Northampton, Mass. The Library honored in Jodi Shaw's great Library Rap has a large collection (18.5 linear feet; 43 boxes) of Newton Arvin papers. In 1938, as mentioned a few years back in the Melvilliana post
Smith College got Philip Hale's library of 2000 books from Mrs. Hale his widow, including first editions of Whitman's Leaves of Grass and Melville's Moby-Dick

Springfield MA Republican - May 5, 1938
via Genealogy Bank

Does one of the Smith College Libraries still have Philip Hale's copy of Moby-Dick? What did Jodi Shaw say in that Smith College Library Rap?
"You go online and you take your pick

 From the Five College Catalog just one click."

With one or two maybe three clicks I found two first editions of Melville's Moby-Dick. Remember, five colleges. One of the two 1851 volumes is at AC = Amherst College. The other is at SC/RBR which I guess means Smith College/Rare Book Room? "Special Collections, there are three parts...
And the rare books, you know the written word

The name is Mortimer I don't know if you heard

The collection is deep the collection is wide

 From medieval manuscripts to literary archives."

 Yes! Acquired by "Gift: Mrs. Philip Hale, 1938" and described as follows:

SC/RBR: Original blue cloth (front free endpaper wanting; inner front hinge cracked); signature of Philip Hale cut and mounted on front flyleaf.
LOCATION: SC Rare Book Room Stacks / 825 M495m 1851

Just one click, after all:

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