Letter, Charles R. Darwin to John Burdon-Sanderson, August 15, 1873 - pg. 1

Letter, Charles R. Darwin to John Burdon-Sanderson, August 15, 1873 – pg. 1

Letters can provide insights in to the details of lives which have otherwise been documented in the extreme. Case in point, Charles Darwin, regarded as the progenitor of modern evolutionary theory. His work in this area is widely known but he also had many other interests including the study of insectivorous plants such as Drosera (sundews) and Dionaea (Venus flytrap). He worked in this area with the noted English physiologist Sir John Burdon-Sanderson to elucidate the mechanisms of their actions and published the results of the research in Insectivorous Plants. Above is the first page of a letter from Darwin to Burdon-Sanderson suggesting that he test for electrical charge in the leaves of Dionaea and offering to send specimens for the research. You can read the rest of this letter here and view the entire collection of letters held by the University of British Columbia Library here.

A page from 熊廷弼、楊漣書札 [Xiong Tingbi & Yang Lian shu zha] showing 龐鏡塘藏 [Pang Jingtang's] seal (circled)

A page from 熊廷弼、楊漣書札 [Xiong Tingbi & Yang Lian shu zha] showing 龐鏡塘藏 [Pang Jingtang’s] seal (circled)

In January 2014 the UBC Library Digitization Centre will start a project to digitize titles from its Asian Library rare book collection. The project is a collaboration between the UBC Library and the Sun Yat-sen Library of Guangdong province in China. There are many rare and unique titles in the collection which makes is of particular interest to scholars in China and around the world. There is currently a pilot collection and titles will be added as materials are digitized and metadata is created. The image above is from the title 熊廷弼、楊漣書札 [Xiong Tingbi & Yang Lian shu zha], a work on the history of the Ming dynasty, and shows a page with various seals including that of 龐鏡塘藏 [Pang Jingtang] (circled in red) for whom one part of the collection is named. Pang Jingtang owned a variety of important works on history, literature and military matters.

(Click image to enlarge)

The Westland television series was produced and hosted from 1984 to 2007 by Mike Halleran and broadcast on the Knowledge Network in British Columbia. The content of the show covers a broad range of environmental issues of importance to the province as well as more generally including forestry practices, wildlife conservation and human impact on the environment. Both the broadcast tapes (in varying forms of video) and the raw production footage was donated to the UBC Library in 2011. We have now made the broadcast footage available in our digital collections portal. This still is from an episode called “Back from the Brink: The efforts to save Vancouver Island Marmots from extinction.” Enjoy!

A beautiful glass plate negative from the Rosetti studios in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. This image depicts Siwash Rock located on the northwest edge of Stanley Park in Vancouver. These negatives have a great depth to them yielding lustrous digital images. Check out the other images in the collection (N.B. We are in the process of upgrading the images in the collection to match the resolution of this one. Please stay tuned.)

Unity in our love of man

The Berkeley Posters collection, housed in Rare Books & Special Collections at the UBC Library, comprises 250 posters from the years 1968 to 1973. Covering anti-war and pro-social justice themes the posters run the gamut of concerns of the time such as the Vietnam War and corporate responsibility. Produced by student and underground groups on the University of California Berkeley campus and around the San Francisco Bay Area the posters feature striking art and often used found materials such as used continuous form paper as in the featured image above (note the dot-matrix or line printing on the poster verso [back]). Highly ephemeral in nature the posters were collected by Helmut Jung of Gold River, British Columbia and donated to the UBC Library.

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