Online Catalogs and the Retrospective Conversion of Special Collections

HOWARD PASTERNACK

Abstract

The perspective in this paper is that of a systems librarian who, in the course of the last four years, has worked closely with special collections staff at Brown University to develop specifications for retrospective conversion and to load special collections records into Brown’s online catalog.


Brown University devotes a significant portion of its resources to the acquisition, organization, service, and preservation of rare books and special collections. The John Hay Library at Brown is devoted entirely to special collections. It houses some 250,000 monographs, 300,000 pieces of sheet music, over two million manuscript items, and sundry collections of broadsides, . . .

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