Administering the Cataloging of Special Collections Materials



In this paper I will consider the context and the institutional climate in which rare book and special collections librarians catalog 19th-century materials, and indeed, materials from any century. My perspective on this rather sobering topic is not just that of an administrator’s who manages workflow systems and never sees any real books, let alone books from the 19th century. As the Head of the Rare Materials Cataloging Unit at Duke University, I do have time-consuming administrative responsibilities, but I also continue to set rare materials cataloging policy, to answer cataloging questions, and to catalog some rare materials myself. I . . .

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