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Contours of the Premodern World

At the James Ford Bell Library

Specimens of Cloth from Captain Cook’s Voyages and “The Mysterious Mr. Alexander H. Shaw”

Compiled by Anne Good, Assistant Curator at the James Ford Bell Library In May, I wrote a blog post on sources for studying cloth in the collection of the Bell Library. I included in this...

Jane Squire and the longitude question

By Anne Good, Assistant Curator Since I'm still new to the collection at the James Ford Bell Library, I make time occasionally to page through the printed catalog that was published in 1994 and to...

A Biography of Candida Xu at the James Ford Bell Library

Guest post by Gail King, Retired Asian Studies Librarian, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University One of the holdings of the James Ford Bell Library is Histoire d'une dame chrétienne de la Chine, ou...

Connecting Threads at the James Ford Bell Library

By Anne Good, Assistant Curator When James Ford Bell provided the core collection of books to found this library back in 1953, his main interest was trade. He wrote, “Trade, to me, is an expression...

Sugaring and Spring

Guest post by Dr. Jacob Jurss, University of St. Thomas, Adjunct Department of History In November 2020, I wrote a short piece for the James Ford Bell Library facebook page centered on two Seth Eastman...

The first European exploration of the Red Sea

Guest post by Roger Lee De Jesus , Researcher at the Center for History of Society and Culture (University of Coimbra, Portugal) and CHAM - Centre for the Humanities (NOVA FCSH / UAc) João de...

Cayenne: From “Un Lieu de Rencontre” to a French Colony

Guest Blog by Gayle K. Brunelle, Professor Emeritus, California State University, Fullerton The Guyanas, the coast of which has often been dubbed the “Wild Coast” since Sir Walter Raleigh’s 1595 visit to the Venezuelan region...

A map that reveals and conceals at the James Ford Bell Library

By Jeff Bishop W. Jeff Bishop provides guest commentary on the Bell's "Map of the British and French dominions in North America" by John Mitchell and Thomas Kitchin (1774). Jeff is the Director of the...

American Images

By Anne Good, Assistant Curator The map of "Virginia and Florida" published by Henricus Hondius, based on the work of his father, Jodocus, and Gerhard Mercator (Bell Call #1628 oMe, vol. 2) was not the...

The Great Auk

By Anne Good, Assistant Curator Most biologists agree that a “sixth extinction” is currently underway due to human activity in the natural environment. Just how far into it we are is a matter of debate,...
Handwritten note, marking the antipode of London on a map of the Americas, ca. 1603.

The other side of the world

By Anne Good, Assistant Curator Preparing for a class presentation on early American maps led me, serendipitously, to a fun discovery: antipodes -- specifically the antipode of the Bell Library. I was searching UMedia for 16th...

New year; new blog!

By Anne Good, Assistant Curator In 2019, Bell Curator Maggie Ragnow and the incredible photographer, Natasha D’Schommer, collaborated to produce the book Tulips, Chocolate & Silk: Celebrating 65 Years of the James Ford Bell Library....

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