Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is renowned as an urban wildlife habitat. Though it is especially famous for its birds, this summer an aquatic species has attracted attention. A spectacular bloom of bryozoan Pectinatella magnifica is now in progress in Willow Pond. Librarian Mary Sears joined graduate students from Harvard's Museum of Comparative Zoology and Prof. Abigail Smith of the University of Read more about Expedition to Mt. Auburn
This post is part of a series on the collection of ornithologist William Brewster (1851-1919) at the Ernst Mayr Library, written by Elizabeth Meyer, library project assistant.
“The conditions which govern the singing of birds are a constant puzzle to me,” Brewster wrote in his journal after decades of ornithological study.  We have some solid information now about how and why birds make certain sounds , but Brewster didn’t know the difference between songs and calls; that sounds can serve to attract mates and
The other week I participated in WikiCite 2017, a conference, summit, and hackathon event organized for members of the Wikimedia community to discuss ideas and projects surrounding the concept of adding structured bibliographic metadata to Wikidata to improve the quality of references in the Wikimedia universe. As a Wikidata editor and a librarian, I was pumped to be included in the functional and organizational conversations for
This spring I was an intern at the Ernst Mayr Library and Museum of Comparative Zoology Archives of Harvard University. I worked with Robert Young, the Special Collections Librarian/archivist. My project taught me how to compose a finding aid from scratch, while bringing together information about multiple collections. In the case of the Hubert Lyman Clark papers, for which I created the finding aid, there were multiple relevant collections accessioned at different times that needed to be synthesized into one document to successfully
Digitization is not a new activity for libraries and cultural heritage institutions, and indeed has become a critical tool for preserving and providing access to archival collections including rare books, manuscripts, and photographs. The potential research value of digitized collections is also not a new phenomenon. However, translating images of content into machine readable data that can be searched, sorted, and otherwise manipulated had not received much attention until crowdsourcing, citizen science
As a part of the Field Notes Project, the Ernst Mayr Library is digitizing the journals, correspondences and photographs of William Brewster (1851-1919), a self-trained ornithologist and specimen curator at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology (MCZ), the first president of the
During 14-17 March 2017, the Biodiversity Heritage Library held its Annual Meetings in Singapore, hosted by the National Library Board. The meetings were attended by 24 BHL partner representatives from nine countries.
My project at the Missouri Botanical Garden focuses on access to illustrations in BHL’s corpus of biodiversity literature. I’ve dipped my toes into the related areas of interface design for digital special collections exhibitions, digital humanities, metadata, social media outreach, and rare books in the course of my studies and work. The possibility for engagement and exploration of cultural heritage in the digital environment is infinitely exhilarating. I am fortunate to be able to dive into these topics while making concrete progress on a project that will serve
In considering how to consolidate my thoughts from Code4Lib 2017, I spent some time reviewing the pre-conference workshops and the interesting and directly relevant talks from last week. Ultimately, as I am sure many other attendees discovered, I found that the framework of the conference and a lot of our work as library technologists was best examined by Christina Harlow in her keynote “Resistance is Fertile.”1 There were many (many