Wednesday, 19 March 2014

American Antiquarian Society update: GIGI

Since my post in January 2012, the American Antiquarian Society has launched its Digital Image Archive, called GIGI with beautifully presented tif-format thumbnails. This is in addition to other stand-alone digital projects and online exhibitions. Of particular interest to ephemerists are the 1415 broadsides (Browse and select broadsides).  A keyword search for ephemera yields 3018 results at the time of writing (of 10,000 results from a keyword search in the General Catalogue). There are links from the catalogue into GIGI where appropriate, so the advice to scholars is to start there.

All very exciting for those of us who don't have Readex and want to browse the collections of the AAS.   There is advanced searching too within GIGI.

Search for broadside in GIGI (C) American Antiquarian Society
A list of collections represented includes the following categories of ephemera:
Album cards; Billheads; Broadsides; Christmas cards; Civil War envelopes; Currency; Election Ballots; Invitations; Membership Certificates; Menus; Postcards; Ream Wrappers; Sheet Music; Trade Cards; Valentines; and Watch papers from Graphic Arts, and Trade catalogs from Books. There are also hundreds of prints.

The AAS blog also has posts about ephemera (e.g. the recent post about Irish ballads for St. Patrick's Day) and a very active Twitter account: @AmAntiquarian


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