“Guardian angel” of the Cole Library: Dr Nellie B. Eales

      Members of the Library staff came rapidly to recognise her sprightly, bright-eyed figure making its way to the Cole Library for a quiet and productive morning’s work. She had a cheerful greeting for all her friends, acquaintances and colleagues and many came to admire the astonishing vigour with which she laboured day […]

LGBT History Month: Publishing pacifism, ‘perversity’, and prosecution

Written by Anna Murdoch, Graduate Trainee Library Assistant. You never quite know what you could find browsing the shelves in the rare book store, and how you could reach into the archives of both Special Collections and the MERL to find connections to a particular work. As a former English Literature student, I particularly enjoy the […]

Best lookers rather than best sellers: Gaberbocchus Press

Written by Fiona Melhuish (UMASCS Librarian) “There is a madness about various Gaberbocchus books which is the spice of life, an ingredient somewhat lacking in the world of impeccable book production”. (Ruari McLean in ‘Quarterly News Letter of the Book Club of California, Summer 1956) Gaberbocchus Press was founded in 1948 in London, by Stefan […]

Reading Readers: Lost in Translation in George Bell and Macmillan Publishers Archives

This month’s blog comes from one of our ‘Reading Readers’, Anna Strowe, who’s been looking at the archives of the publishing companies of George Bell & Sons and Macmillan. George Bell & Sons consists of correspondence, ledgers & miscellaneous records from 1813–1976. The Archive of Macmillan at the University of Reading is vast and mainly consists […]

Buried Treasure on Campus? A closer look at the Overstone Library

Currently working at the University of Reading as Staff Engagement and Communications Officer, Jeremy Lelean previously worked as a dealer in antiquarian and collectable books. In today’s blog, Jeremy takes a closer look at the Overstone Library, the foundation collection of the University Library.  I work in science communication, most recently with research into soil, and when […]

Born on this day? The strange case of Nancy Astor’s birthday

This weekend we celebrate Nancy Astor’s birthday, said to be on the 19th May. But is there more to this birth date than meets the eye? Head of Archive Services Guy Baxter takes a closer look at the mystery surrounding Nancy Astor’s birth. The first female MP to take her seat in the British House […]

A selection of Royal Wedding Cakes from Huntley & Palmers

Inspired by the “Royal Wedding Fever” surrounding the upcoming nuptials of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, Librarian Bethan Davies takes a closer look at the archive of Reading biscuit manufacturers Huntley & Palmers, and their bakes for previous Royal Weddings!  Primarily known for producing biscuits, Huntley and Palmers resisted selling everyday cakes until after World War […]

Book Covers and Robinsonades: Exploring the Crusoe Collection

This month’s blog post was written by Chloe Wallaker, a final year BA English Literature and Film student at the University of Reading. Chloe has been researching our Crusoe Collection as part of her Spring Term academic placement based at Special Collections.  Today marks the 299th anniversary of the publication of one of our favourite […]

Return of the Red Rose

The Gild of the Red Rose was a literature and theatre society founded in 1897, by W.M. Childs. The group was open to staff and students, hosting dramatic performances and readings for many years. The group was not disbanded until the late 1980’s. The Gild was built on customs, titles and phrases that may be […]