Featured Collection: Emily Dickinson Collection, 1862-1907

In April, 1862, The Atlantic published an article by Thomas Wentworth Higginson titled “Letter to a Young Contributor.” He received a direct reply from a young poet named Emily Dickinson. She included four examples of her poems and asked if he thought her work was “alive.” Higginson responded and offered her a positive review and…
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Books for Podcast Fans: Dear Sugars

In their long-running Dear Sugars podcast, authors Cheryl Strayed and Stephen Almond answer their listeners’ biggest, most heart-wrenching life questions. Many podcasts offer listener advice - I've enjoyed Totally Married and Anna Faris is Unqualified myself. The Sugars, however, have transformed advice-giving into a true art. They respond deeply to each listener, and their advice…
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Anti-Slavery Manuscripts: How We’re Dividing the Data

A note from IMLS Postdoctoral Fellow, Samantha Blickhan on the logic behind how we decided to make a fairly large collection of manuscripts more manageable in our transcription project: Crowdsourcing can be an effective tool for classifying really large datasets, and Anti-Slavery Manuscripts (ASM) is no exception. The dataset is made up of about 12,000 letters written during the 19th…
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A Not-to-be-Missed Series Debut

The Last Place You Look  Lepionka introduces wonderfully flawed Roxane Weary, a gutsy, risk-taking, bisexual private investigator who doesn't know when to quit. Still reeling from her cop father's death on the job, she reluctantly becomes a death row inmate's last shot at proving his innocence. Fueled by sugar, alcohol, and bad relationships, she discovers…
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All About That Box

Even though the Rare Books and Manuscripts department is closed to the public, we're bustling with activity behind the scenes! As we prepare for the upcoming major construction project which will help ensure the long-term preservation of our materials, we here at the conservation lab are all about boxes. While we would love to build…
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Digital Commonwealth

I'd like to introduce you to the rare and interesting historical materials that the Boston Public Library makes available online through Digital Commonwealth.  We’ll mostly be doing that through featuring images and collections that we think are particularly interesting or speak to current events in some way.  But I thought it would be best to…
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