New ex-libris database online!

The Pratt Institute Libraries have launched a new phase in their initiative to provide electronic access to high-quality digital images for research and teaching.

Pratt Institute: A Historical Snapshot of Campus and Area features a searchable database of images, including ex-libris, from the Libraries' Digital Collections.  

Thanks to a grant from the Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) through the New York State Regional Bibliographic Databases Program, the Libraries are now able for the first time to provide access to four unique collections from Pratt’s Archives and Special Collections. 

One of the most important of these is the Pratt Institute Ex-libris Collection, which consists of approximately 1,200 nineteenth- and twentieth-century bookplates donated to Pratt Institute many years ago and virtually inaccessible to the greater public until now.  These plates, mostly black and white but some in colour, feature finely detailed engraving or etching and serve as outstanding examples of period book art and typography. International in scope, the collection includes bookplates by important American bookplate artists such as William Fowler Hopson, Edwin Davis French, Joseph Winfred Spenceley, Arthur Nelson Macdonald, and Sidney Lawton Smith.  Other prominent artists include Samuel Hollyer, Elisha Brown Bird, David McNeely Stauffer, Edmund Henry Garrett, Jack Butler Yeats, and a number of important Dutch, English, German, Hungarian, Swedish, and Spanish artists. 

Because the bookplates currently digitized represent only 10 percent of the entire collection, the Pratt Institute Libraries’ ultimate goal is to make the entire collection available online.  Pratt Institute: A Historical Snapshot of Campus and Area is accessible via the Internet to the public as well as the Pratt community, and can be searched by creator, title, subject, keyword, and other data fields.

For those of you who are not very familiar with internet navigation:

Open your browser and make sure that your Pop-up blocker is off. The link below will bring you to the home page of the project. When you have opened it, click on “View collection”. Scroll the list of collections and click on ‘Pratt Institute Ex Libris Collection’… and enjoy the images! Link: http://library.pratt.edu/digital/metro.html

Need more information? The librarian and archivist who kindly sent us this information is Mr. Paul Schlotthauer, and he can be e-mailed at pschlott@pratt.edu. Also, not all the authors of the ex-libris are identified – if you recognise one or have more accurate information, please send the information to Mr Schlotthauer!