Press Releases


Monday, May 5, 2008
More than two centuries of natural history illustrations from the collections of the Smithsonian Institution Libraries are featured in a 300-page volume recently released by Assouline Publishing. The book, “Botanicals,” brings to life stunning hand-colored engravings, etchings and lithographs of flowers, fruits and butterflies.

Monday, November 20, 2006
The Smithsonian Institution Libraries will host the 2006 Dibner Library Lecture on Wednesday, Dec. 13 at 5 p.m. in the Commons of the Smithsonian Castle. In commemoration of the anniversary of Benjamin Franklin’s birth, Joyce E. Chaplin, the James Duncan Phillips Professor of Early American History at Harvard University, will be the guest speaker. A specialist in early American history, Chaplin is the author of “The First Scientific American: Benjamin Franklin and the Pursuit of Genius” (2006).

Wednesday, March 1, 2006
Eight of the world’s major natural history and botanical libraries are working together to develop a strategy and operational plan to digitize the published literature on biodiversity that they jointly hold and make it freely accessible to all on the Web. The project, the Biodiversity Heritage Library, will establish a major corpus of publications drawn from each of their collections. Much of the published literature is rare or has limited global distribution and is available in only a few select libraries.

Saturday, May 7, 2005
The world’s largest published book, according to Guinness World Records, recently was donated to the Smithsonian Institution Libraries by Mr. and Mrs. Theodore P. Janulis of New York. Measuring a full 5 feet by 7 feet when open and weighing 133 pounds, “Bhutan: A Visual Odyssey Across the Last Himalayan Kingdom,” by Michael Hawley, is a visually stunning photography book, capturing more than 100 images of the small Asian country’s rich landscape and culture.

Tuesday, March 1, 2005
The Smithsonian Institution Libraries enjoys a unique and dual role within the Institution itself. On one hand, the Libraries is an internal service provider, meeting the needs of the Institution’s curators and researchers. On the other hand, it is a public educator in its own right because of its active exhibition program and its progressive Digital Library initiative, which brings important, rare and valuable works from the Libraries’ collections to the widest audience possible through the World Wide Web.