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Devills in the Archives



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  • The Lover is Absent 6 April, 2017
    The Lover is Absentnew from above/ground press: The Lover is Absent, by Jessica Smith The Lover is Absent Jessica Smith $5 published in Ottawa by above/ground press April 2017 a/g subscribers receive a complimentary copy Jessica Smith, Founding Editor of Foursquare and name magazines and Coven Press, serves as the Librarian for Indian Springs School, where s […]

I work at a high school library. It’s not a straightforward high school library– it’s a boarding prep school, so the kids are smart, and the library is used as a combination reference library and reading/public library by the students, the faculty, and the families that live on campus.  One of my tasks is overseeing the Archives, which is managed by an emeritus faculty member (he is an amazing guy– he fought in WWII and has taught here for over 50 years). Although the Archives contain some interesting items, it’s mostly photographs of students and alumni gatherings, which I am very slowly digitizing and putting on Flickr.  That’s all fine and good, but I went to library school to think about how to digitally archive unique materials, especially artists’ books, especially 3-dimensional artists’ books.

Well, today the Book Arts Gods smiled on me, and my archivist unearthed, unwrapped, and bestowed upon me this insane little book. Apologies for the picture quality– I only have my iPad with me. The text is about the evils the Devill [sic] has brought upon the author:

I don’t know anything about this book except the recipient listed on the address label used to be employed here. The archivist contacted him to see if he wanted the book back, and he doesn’t.



  1. sarah louise says:

    um, wow. Not to be a total know-nothing, but what *is* it? And who is GV?

    • It’s a mystery! The book has a charred wood cover and the pages are charred, but only around the edges, like the charring is intentional. Judging from the condition of the paper, the shoelace-like binding thread, and the modern spelling and punctuation, I think this is a fairly recent text (like, 20th C).

  2. sarah louise says:

    Kewl. will look at it later, as I’m really supposed to be checking DDC numbas.

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