A few weeks ago, Dr. Michael Springer and Dr. Mark Janzen brought a group of students from the University of Central Oklahoma to London to research and catalogue books given to Lambeth Palace Library by the Dutch Church following the Second World War. Details of the gift are unrecorded, and the students are helping to understand the size and scope of the works that comprise a small but important part of the Lambeth Palace Library collection.
The students are undergraduates and postgraduates majoring in History or Museum Studies at the university. In addition to the cataloguing work the students are learning about book history as well as acquisition, provenance, conservation, and collection management. During their time in London they also had a chance to interact with librarians and archivists from Lambeth Palace Library, the London Metropolitan Archives, the British Library, and the Institute for Historical Research. Holden Wren, MA student in History, noted “This entire experience gives me a clearer view of my own career goals.”
The information gathered will be used to update the library catalogue and may pave the way for some of the books to be added to the Dutch Short Title Catalogue, making these works more accessible to scholars around the globe. By the end of the two-week project, the group had catalogued 240 books and identified about 60 more works not previously known to be from the church. There is much more work to be done, and the efforts thus far suggests the Dutch Church collection is larger than former estimates of 200-300 books. The group plans to return next summer to continue their work. We look forward to welcoming them again and thank them for all their hard work this year.