Written by UMASCS Librarian, Claire Clough
We have some exciting news to share with you – we have become the newest member of the Google Arts & Culture family! The University of Reading Special Collections are now on Google Arts & Culture.
For the first time, you can explore treasures and stories from the University of Reading Special Collections on the Google Arts & Culture platform. Our collections sit alongside cultural content from all over the world.
Now more than ever, we are delighted to provide this virtual opportunity to experience our extensive collections online. This week our service has re-opened to the public and in the coming weeks we will be launching new digital services which will be talking about on social media using #StillSpecial.
From books in chains to historical manuscripts
We had some decision making to do when choosing items to add to Google Arts & Culture from our 5km of archives and 40,000 volumes of rare books! But we are delighted to have added a selection of material that highlights treasures from across our collections (from books in chains to historical manuscripts). There is a particular focus on our holdings of Victorian and early 20th century children’s literature and medieval manuscripts.
Treasures available for you to see online include this beautifully hand decorated manuscript from c. 1500 and wonderful pictorial children’s book covers, like The coral island by Ballantyne published in 1902 (below).
The house that biscuits built
Special Collections brings together the University of Reading’s collections of rare books, archives and manuscripts. The collections are a remarkable resource for collections-based learning and research. You can learn more about the collections we hold and how we work to provide access to them from teaching and research (physically and digitally) in a story which also includes a brief history of our wonderful building.
We look forward to adding more treasures and stories in the future.