Tremaine-Arkley-Croquet-web We’re excited to announce that the second phase of our Arkley Croquet Collection digitization project has been completed! The collection was donated to the library by Tremaine Arkley, a former player for the U.S. National Croquet Team, and we’ve been scanning paintings, illustrations, engravings, advertisements, photographs, and lots of other items depicting croquet! Here are a selection of some of our favourite (or you can check out the entire collection here, or some earlier images from the collection on Flickr). Croquet_Bay7A_0018

([A fan, depicting five women playing croquet])


([A rest from croquet])


(Jacques croquet mallets and requisites)


(Costumes de jeunes filles)

We’ve also redigitized all of the stereographs that were part of this collection, and every one of them now includes a 3D anaglyphic version of the image! Usually to see a stereograph in proper 3D you would need a special viewer, but now you can replicate the experience with simple red/blue 3D glasses. Here’s a previous blog post we did on this process. Croquet_Box8_0044

(Main Street)



After just over a year of work we’ve recently completed making the UBC Fish Collection notebooks available online!

These notebooks contain over 11,000 records featuring data on almost a million different specimens of fish! (If you’re not sure if that’s a lot, it’s the third largest collection of its kind in Canada.) Some of the records date back more than 100 years, and the information contained in these records will be invaluable to scientists studying how life in the oceans has changed in the last century.

This project was done in collaboration with the Beaty Biodiversity museum, and you can find more information about the Fish Collection on their website.



You may have seen some pages from the Logroño Antiphonary, a 16th century Spanish chant manuscript, showing up on our Flickr account. (If you haven’t, you should go look! It’s a pretty neat example of an illuminated manuscript and features lots of musical notation.) To go along with that manuscript we’ve started scanning some other selections of UBC Rare Book sand Special Collections‘ holdings of material from the thirteenth to sixteenth centuries!

First here’s a page from the Old Testament of the Biblia Germanica, the ninth German Bible published in 1483.


Here’s a page from the Books of Hours, Catholic prayers and devotions written in France in the 15th to 16th centuries.


Similar to the Logroño Antiphonary is the next item, a 15th century Italian Gradual (hymn) showing music notation.


Next is Ein gesprech des Teütschen Lands, vnd der hoffnung, dise gegenwertige Kriegsleü̈ff betreffend : jn Welschland beschriben vnd hernach welscher sprach verteütschet, which is written in some archaic form of German that the internet is unable to auto-translate for me. It’s apparently a discussion about the political and spiritual aspects of the 1546 crisis, and perhaps you know what that crisis is (I don’t!).


Finally, we have a page from a 14th century Latin Vulgate Bible, this one was framed, so it took a bit more work to scan!


RBSC has several dozen items in this collection, so we’re going to continue to upload more items in the future. We hope you take a look!

We announced earlier this year that we were going to be digitizing a huge collection of photos and postcards that were donated to us by local art dealer Uno Langmann. This is quite a large project, but we’ve been diligently working away at scanning images, and creating metadata for each of them!

We’re happy to announce that the collection has now gone live! There are only two albums up right now, but many more will be going up in the coming months. Here’s a preview of some of the images that are currently online.

These first few images are from an 1867 album called Views in British Columbia with photos by Frederick Dally. It is a large bound volume and the photos and the book are in quite good shape! The images are of towns, roads, people, mining, landscapes, and buildings, among others, mostly in the Cariboo region near Quesnel.


Barnard’s Stage starting from Yale


The Hamilton family


Street scene, Barkerville, Williams Creek


The Never Sweat Tunnel Company

These next images are from an early 1900s album called Fraser River Bridge created by Armstrong, Morrison, and Co. The photos depict the building of the Fraser River Bridge (also known as the New Westminster bridge or the Fraser River Swing bridge) at various stages. Includes images of the consulting engineers and contractors for substructure of the bridge. These photos aren’t in quite as good shape as the other album, but they still look pretty good!


[Men riding a train]


Sinking Crib Pier 9


General View, Looking South


General View, Looking South

Keep watching this blog or our Twitter account for updates on when new albums are uploaded!

2014 is the centenary of the First World War. The war started in late July of 1914 and commemoration of the war and the people who died will begin at the Bastille Day celebrations in France on July 14th. While there will undoubtedly be more posts about this in the next four years, we figured we’d show some of the World War One images we have in our collection.

First, we have a collection of WWI era posters and broadsides. You can find them on our website (along with some posers from WWII), or on our Flickr page.


We also have a large number of newspapers from the 1914-1918 time period in our British Columbia Historical Newspaper collection. These can offer some really fascinating information and insight into the war providing news articles, letters from soldiers, and pieces such as this FAQ on enlisting from the July 9th, 1915 issue of the Nicola Valley News.


Finally, a few months ago we mentioned that we were digitizing the World War I British Press Photograph Collection, well we’re still working on that project (it was over 6000 photos!), but we have replaced all of the images in our online collection with newer (and better!) images. We’re hoping to have the rest of the collection online at some point this year.


 (Official Photographs taken on the British Western Front in France: Scene in a newly-captured village – Children soon make friends with Tommy.)




A few months ago we let you know that we were going to start digitizing Discorder, the music magazine published by UBC’s community radio station CiTR.

Well, we’ve just about completed digitizing every issue from the 1980s (and might well be finished by the time you read this), so we figured now might be a good time to show you some of our favourite covers from that decade! Check them out.


(January, 1984.)

1984_05_0000(May, 1984.)


(December, 1985.)


(May, 1986.)


(August, 1986.)


(October, 1987.)


(May, 1988.)

1989_01_0001(January, 1989.)

We’re not sure when we’ll have this project finished and online, but it should be by the end of the year! To see what more recent issues of Discorder look like you can take a look on Issuu.

As you might have heard we’ve been planning on expanding into a new space for several months. It finally happened on Friday, and we’re mostly moved in now!


Here’s the room we’re moving into. I wish we’d taken some photos when it was just a vast empty white room before the carpet was installed.



Here are the computers that we use with our ATIZ scanners. We took them off while moving things.


Here are the ATIZ scanners being prepared for the move. I had no idea they even folded down like this!


We put them on carts to move them.


Adjusting the tables in the new room.


And here they are with the scanners and computers set up!


We’re planning on having some more computers on the other side of the room, but so far there’s just the one.


So what’s going to go in the vast empty space that held the ATIZ scanners?


Our TTI scanner!


Putting dollies under the TTI so we can slowly roll it across the floor.


It barely fit between the pillar and the desks. We had one inch of space to spare!



It actually brushed against one of the lights. So close!




And done! There’s lots more space over on this side of the office now.


Plus we were able to move one of our scanners over to where the TTI was and install a white board on the wall. So many changes!

We’re very pleased to announce that we’ve successfully joined The Commons on Flickr! You can check out the announcement on our blog.


We marked the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Empress of Ireland, one of the worst naval disasters in Canadian history.

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