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Pamphlets and minor library material : clippings, broadsides, prints, pictures, music, bookplates, maps online

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Types of









Chapters and Authors l t B r, » h'?

"American Library History," Mr. Bolton. Prmted.
"Library of Congress," Mb. Bishop. Prmted.
"The State Library," Mr. Wyer, Printed.
"The College and University Library," Mr. Wybr.

"Proprietary and Subscription Libraries," Mb. Bolton.

"The Free Public Library," Miss Lord. Printed.
"The High-School Library," Mr. Ward. Printed.
"Special Libraries," Mr. Johnston. Printed.


and Administration




"Library Legislation," Mr. Yust. Printed.
"Library Architecture," Mr. Eastman. Printed.
"Furniture, Fixtures, and Equipment," Miss Eastma;..
XII. "Administration," Dr. Bostwick. Printed.

XIII. "Training for Librarianship," Miss Plummbr. Printed.

XIV. "Library Service," Dr. Hill. Prmted.

XV. "Branch Libraries and Other Distributing Agenciep,

Miss Eastman. Prmted.
XVI. "Book Selection," Miss Bascom. Printed.
XVII. "Order and Accession Department," Mr. Hoppik

XVIII. "Classification," Miss Bacon. Printed.

XIX. "Catalog." Miss Hiss. In preparation.

XX. "Shelf Department," Miss Rathbone. Printed.

XXL "Loan Work," Mr. Vrrz. Prmted.

XXII. "Reference Department," Dr. Rich-vrdson. Printed.

XXIII. "Government Documents," Mr. Wyer. Printed.

XXIV. "Bibliography," Miss Mudge. Prmted.

XXV. "Pamphlets, Clippmgs, Maps, Music, Prints." Print 1
XXVI. "Bookbmding," Mr. Bailey. Printed.

Special Forms
of Worl£

XXVII. "Library Commissions and State Library Extension, or

State Aid and State Agencies," Mr. Wynkoop.

XXVIII. "The PubUc Library and the Public Schools," Mr.

Kerr. In preparation,
XXIX. "Library Work with Children," Miss Olcott. Printed .
XXX. "Library Work with the. Blind," Miss Chamberlain,

P'rliitod. '. • . ; .',' • -
XXXI. "Museums, Lectures,' Art' Galleries, and Libraries,"

.". Ma;'RA'». .IS'bw ifi hAndV.
XXXII. "Library Priiitiiig,'!' Mr. Wai/tbb. Printed.



There are many things beside books which libraries properly
may collect, though there certainly are things collected by some
libraries which seem quite outside their warrantable field and
far more appropriate in museums. In a broad way may it
not be said that all products of the book arts, that is, of writing,
printing, binding, and illustration, may be considered as proper
components of a library? With this definition in mind the
library may collect in addition to printed and bound books
(i) manuscripts, (2) pamphlets, (3) broadsides, (4) clippings, (5)
maps and plans, (6) music, (7) prints, (8) photographs and pic-
tures, (9) bookplates ; to which some libraries have added lantern
slides, victrola records, moving-picture films, phonograph
records, and perhaps other classes of material unknown to the
writer. This chapter will consider as proper library material
all of the first nine named above except manuscripts, and will
try to indicate some of the ways in which these different classes
of material may be organized for use, or, failing of independent
treatment, to cite the chief contributions of others in the
appended bibliography.

Manuscripts will be omitted as they relate to the large
field of archives, the organization and administration of which
is a separate science. Manuscripts and archives are often, and
appropriately, in the custody of libraries, but their care and
use are so unique that they can scarcely be considered in this
chapter. In recent years the terms archival science, docu-
mentation, archivist, have grown up as part of the nomen-
clature of this separate science. The Library of Congress
issued in 19 13 Notes on the care, cataloguing, calendaring, and
arranging oj manuscripts, by J. C. Fitzpatrick, and there are
other guides still more detailed.



Nothing so straitly challenges Mr. C. A. Cutter's definition
of the functions of a library — "to get, to keep and to use" —
as a consideration of the best treatment for pamphlets. Most
libraries, indeed, if their librarians be wise, will not keep even
all the bound books which come to them, but the enormity of
rejecting unsuitable gifts seems less with pamphlets and minor
material. Only the very largest libraries, not a dozen in this
country, will "get" everything they can; still fewer will mean
to "keep" (in the permanent sense) everything they get.
The "keeping" will be modified consciously or unconsciously
by such reservations as "till worn out" or "as long as useful"
or "till later or better material appears." The same con-
siderations give serious pause to the librarian who would
observe the thoroughly valid counsel of perfection "bind
everything you keep," which in these days is more likely to be
amended to read "bind everything you are sure will be kept

Despite these revisions of Mr. Cutter's terse program the
ideal ultimate form for all printed library material is the bound
book. No pamphlet while unbound ever gets the same respect
and consideration from staff or students as when bound, nor
is it so well protected against dust, loss, and injury. The ideal
treatment of pamphlets would bind and fully catalog each one
separately. The moment they are grouped in volumes some-
thing is conceded to the ideal, for there is a loss in effective,
separate classification and shelving. The same is true of music,
broadsides, clippings. The utmost safety would seem to result
from making them up in bound volumes, yet they are more
easily and effectively used when left unbound and every library
will find current use for a large number of pamphlets, clippings,
broadsides, pictures, etc., which are of so ephemeral a value
that it does not seem worth while to consider permanent
preservation. The few great reservoir libraries will save
everything in permanent form, but many small and some larger


libraries will expect to wear out in immediate use, or to throw
away if not worn out when the keen "first use" is over, the
greater number of separate pamphlets, i.e., those which do not
form parts of serials. Many libraries recognize this in the use
of the vertical file for pamphlets and clippings. Earlier devices
for holding unbound material are envelopes, manila folders,
filing boxes, pamphlet cases, and strawboard or pulpboard
covers, all designed for the temporary accommodation of
material of this sort, which has not proved its permanent worth
or which the library is not yet ready to bind.

The feature of chief significance about pamphlets and minor
printed material is its enormous increase in quantity and in
reference value within twenty or twenty-five years. It has
lately been said (E. E. Slosson, New York Libraries, November,
1 91 5), "The least valued volumes in the library are those with
the finest bindings. The most valued are those with no bind-
ings at all. The efficiency of a library is in proportion to the
amount of unbound literature it contains." This makes the
effective handling of pamphlets a bigger and more important
library problem than ever before and increases opportunities
for wasting time, labor, and money on them, while it increases
also the returns from time and money wisely spent. This
treatment, too, will differ in libraries of different types. In those
few libraries which circulate nothing all the material may be
bound without hindering its utmost use, while circulating libra-
ries will find unbound material much more mobile and avail-
able for a far greater number of separate borrowers and purposes.
The various kinds of material are treated separately below.


Pamphlets are defined: "A printed work consisting of
sheets, generally few, stitched but not permanently bound"
{Standard Dictionary); "A printed work consisting of a few
sheets of paper stitched together but not bound" {Century


Dictionary); "A thin limp book" (Cutter). Most libraries
will probably agree on the following definition: a piece of
printed matter which consists of more than two printed pages
and which has no other binding than the pamphlet itself or a
paper cover. Strictly construed, this will include all unbound
periodicals, sequents, and parts of books commonly called
continuations, which appear from time to time. While all
unbound periodicals and continuations are pamphlets, they are
not usually so considered,' and the various ways of treating them,
looking toward their initial recording and their ultimate form
for use, are so well recognized that they need not be dwelt upon
here. Here, again, the ideal procedure looks toward the ulti-
mate preservation of every number of a periodical in a bound
volume to form part of a set, and the only problem the separate
parts present is the safest care and the easiest use during the
time they remain unbound awaiting completion of the volumes.
There have been, it is true, sober suggestions of "librisection, "^
which advocate resolving every number of a serial into its
separate articles and treating each one fully and alone as to
binding, filing, classification, cataloging, etc., but such schemes
are fanciful rather than practical in any but libraries on very
special subjects, handling much material neither indexed nor
likely to be. Most libraries, however, will receive currently a
good many periodicals valuable enough to accept as gifts,
sometimes even to pay for, perhaps even of some permanent
value, but which because of scanty funds or for other reasons
of policy they will not plan to bind at all or in permanent and
definitive form; many of them will not even be long kept. For
such titles it is imperative that the current periodical check
list shall show, not only that they are not to be bound, but

' Biscoe, Pamphlets. In Papers prepared for the world's library
Congress. 1893, pp. 826-35.

'Public libraries, 15:158, 186. Independent, 67:1125-28, November
18, 1909. Library association record, 17:540-47, 1915.


exactly what is to be done with the numbers at the end of the
year or when the volume is complete. They may be kept on
the permanent shelves indefinitely unbound (some libraries
keep their unbound periodicals in an alphabetic file by titles),
cut up for the clippings file or picture collection, sent to the
duplicate collection, or to hospitals or kindred institutions.

The serials and other continuations having thus been
disposed of, perhaps the true, simon-pure pamphlet had better
be defined as one that is complete in itself and has no present
or prospective relation for purposes of binding, filing, or use
with any other pamphlet. These may be treated in several
ways, first assuming that, on receipt, a tentative selection has
been made and material of no apparent value or interest to the
particular library has been discarded. The definitive selection
will come later after doubtful pamphlets have been given a
chance to prove their value. They will at first be either:

(i) Classified and filed unbound in pamphlet boxes, cases, or
folders, with or next to the books on the same subjects. If
cataloged at all, generally only an author card would be made,
the classification providing reasonably for the subject side.
When enough pamphlets accumulate bearing the same class
number, they are considered for binding in a "pamphlet
volume." The criteria which influence this consideration
will vary according to the aim, size, policy, etc., of the
library. DupUcates will usually be weeded out, and "sep-
arates" from serials which the library is regularly binding, or
at any rate those on subjects in which the library does not
distinctly specialize, will usually be discarded, as well as
material palpably too trivial for permanent preservation
(who is omniscient enough to do the latter?).

(2) Classified, perhaps cataloged by authors, and filed in a
separate arrangement apart from, though as near as possible
to, the books on the same subjects. Such arrangement may
be in the same folders, cases, or boxes suggested in (i), on
separate "pamphlet" shelves, or in the conventional vertical


file, one on each stack level, with one in the reference room
for the freshest material. The vertical file, admirable as
it is for temporary care of strictly fresh, current pamphlets
is too clumsy and expensive in money and precious floor space
to be seriously considered for all pamphlets in large libraries.
Its use is away from the desideratum of having all material
on the same subject in the fewest places. Vertical file space
can be conserved, and at the same time the most fugitive
material well cared for, by using the file only for pamphlets
of not over four pages, for clippings, and for pictures.
(3) Each pamphlet may be bound separately, probably in a
cheap board cover of suSicient weight and permanence to
give it a definitely bound appearance, and classified and as
fully cataloged as all other books, taking its place on the
regular shelves. There are no reasons save those of economy
for treating pamphlets differently from books, and great
libraries are never thoroughly equipped for research so long
as any distinction is made between them.

J. I. Wyer, Jr.


1876 Cutter, C. A. Preservation of pamphlets. Library journal,
1:51-54, November, 1876.
For discussion of the paper, see pp. 101-6.

1885 Mann, B. P. Care of pamphlets. Library journal, 10:399-

400, December, 1885.

1886 Homes, H. A. Unbound volumes on library shelves. Library

journal, 11:214-16, August-September, 1886.

1887 Swift, Lindsay. Pamphlets and continuations of serials.

Library journal, 12:350-54, September-October, 1887.
1893 Biscoe, W. S. Pamphlets. Library journal, 18:236-38,
July, 1893.

Practically a condensation of the article printed in American Library
Association, Papers prepared for its annual meeting, 1893 (also published


under the title "Papers prepared for the World's library congress"),
pp. 826-35.

For a discussion of the paper, see Library journal, i8:C66-67, Sep-
tember, 1893.

1897 Thwaites, R. G. Gathering of local history materials by
public libraries. Library journal, 22:82, February, 1897.

1899 Foye, C. H. Care of pamphlets. Library journal, 24:13-
14, January, 1899.

1903 White, W. F. New Paltz system of treating pamphlets and
art material. Public libraries, 8:301-6, July, 1903.

1906 Merrill, W. S. Taking care of pamphlets. Public libraries,

11:502, November, 1906.

1907 Brown, Zaidee. What to do with pamphlets. Library

journal, 32:358-60, August, 1907.

1909 Cochrane, J. M. Arranging pamphlets. Public libraries,

I4:254-5S> July, 1909-
American Library Association. Papers and proceedings, 31:
400-8, 1909.

Tillinghast, W. H. Treatment of pamphlets in Harvard College
Library, pp. 400-3.

Josephson, A. G. S. Treatment of pamphlets in John Crerar Library^
pp. 403-4-

Hiss, S. K. Treatment of ephemeral material in the public library,
pp. 404-8.

Spofford, A. R. Book for all readers. Pamphlet literature,
1909, pp. 145-56.

1910 Drury, F. K. W. On protecting pamphlets. Library journal,

35:118-19, March, 1910.
Bowerman, G. F. Some notes on binding. Library journal,

35:258-59, June, 1910.
Wilson, L. R. A satisfactory method of arranging pamphlets.
Public libraries, 15:278-79, July, 1910.
191 2 Brigham, H. O. Indexing and care of pamphlets. Library

journal, 37:668-71, December, 1912.
1914 Flagg, C. A. The pamphlet question. Bulletin of Maine
state library, October, 19 14.


1916 Bailey, A. L. Binding pamphlets. (In his Library book-
binding, pp. 205-8).
Dickey, P. A. The care of pamphlets and clippings in libraries,
pp. 28.


Value. — From the days of the first scrapbook, appreciation
of the value of clippings seems steadily to have grown. News-
paper men early saw the worth of an up-to-date file of informa-
tion not to be had from books, and the first "morgue" was
begun in Chicago in 1869. The first clippings bureau (Paris,
1880) gave a new impetus to their use, and in 1896 there was
issued in New York the ^^ Clipping Collector: a monthly maga-
zine devoted to the collection of newspaper clippings for pleasure
and profit," but this journal was short-lived. Libraries have
long recognized the value of clippings in reference and debate
work with far more unanimity than they have the best methods
of caring for them effectively. Now almost every progressive
library has a collection in some form.

Library Treatment. — After having decided the important
question of the scope of the collection and arranged for the
regular examination of duplicate newspapers, magazines,
pamphlets, etc., and for service from clippings bureaus, the
more puzzling questions present themselves of preparation,
classification, arrangement, and care.

Mounting. — Clippings may be kept unmounted in manila
pockets, folders, or envelopes, using preferably one for each
subject. In this form they are harder to keep correctly arranged
and to use, likelier to be damaged or lost, but less costly to
prepare and easier to mail. It is difficult to predicate permanent
value of clippings, but whenever such value seems certain they
should be carefully mounted and inclosed in a binder. Even
for temporary use some libraries mount clippings on manila
sheets, 8X10 inches, leaving margins for adding date, class
number, or subject heading.


Arrangement. — Arrangement will depend on the type of
library to be served. The commonest ways are an alphabetic
arrangement by subjects and a classified arrangement like that
of the books on the shelves. For a public library or any small
collection of clippings the alphabetic arrangement, being self-
indexing, probably is easiest for both patrons and assistants
to use. The Readers' Guide and other more specialized current
periodical indexes are helpful in choosing subject headings, since
they deal with similar material.

The advocates of a classified arrangement believe that if it
is best to classify books, it is no less helpful to arrange other
printed material in the same way. A classified arrangement
facilitates reference from shelves to files and allows easy transfer
of material back and forth between shelves and clipping files
if desired. Clippings often require closer classification than
books, and any system of classification calls for a subject index.
Special libraries have sometimes adopted new schemes for
classifying pamphlets and clippings, but one of the standard
library classifications is strongly recommended. The dis-
advantage of attempting to work out a special classification is
set forth by L. B. Krause in Engineering Record, p. 760,
December, 191 5.

Filing. — The old, unsatisfactory way of keeping miscel-
laneous clippings in scrapbooks has been almost entirely super-
seded by one of the following methods :

(i) Envelopes arranged in boxes or drawers as a separate collec-

(2) Pamphlet boxes arranged with the books on the shelves.
This method has the advantage of keeping all material on
the same subject together. Unless separate boxes are used
the clippings are likely to be crushed among the pamphlets,
though this can be avoided by putting them in envelopes.
To care for such a collection more effectively the pamphlet
boxes are sometimes kept in one place and arrangement
instead of scattered through the shelves with the books.


(3) Vertical file cases.

With a labeled manila folder for each subject, heavy guide
cards for the larger divisions, and the material arranged
chronologically in each folder to facilitate "weeding" and
to make easy the use of the latest cHppings, the vertical file
offers one of the most satisfactory methods for keeping such
material. Cross-references on sheets the size of the folders
should be freely inserted in the file.

Clippings collections may be "weeded out" as considera-
tions of space and available help may dictate, though where
room is plenty and the clippings are kept carefully arranged
by date the presence of older material does not interfere with
the use of the later. A description of the method of "auto-
matic weeding" used in the Newark Public Library is in
Miss McVety's "The vertical file" (see bibliography).

Circulation. — Clippings are usually loaned as freely as books;
some libraries keep a reference collection as well as one for
lending. The "package libraries" now so widely used in
university extension and debate work are largely made up of
clippings and pamphlets.


For other references on clippings, see H. G. T. Cannons' BibHog-
raphy of library economy, 1876-1909 (London, 1910), p. 318; Library
work, cumulated, 1905-11 (H. W. Wilson Co., 191 2), p. 116, and sup-
plementary material in the monthly numbers of the Library journal,
January 1914-date, under section Library work.

The New York Public Library in its Municipal reference library
notes, 2 : 14-45, January 5, 1916, has a "List of references on systems
and methods of ofiice filing." This is a selected list of articles of
more recent date, covering the filing of ofl&ce records, drawings, and
various material including clippings.

1901 Carr, H. J. Preservation and use of newspaper chppings.
Penn Yan, N.Y., 1901. pp. 20.
Also in Library journal, 26:872-73, December, 1901.


1907 Ebersol, C. E. Clippings, the system and index: an inex-
pensive, simple, unlimited yet accurate newspaper and
magazine clipping system. Ottawa, 111., 1907. News-
paper clipping CO.
The system is based on an abridgment of the "Decimal classification."

Part 2 of the book consists of a topical index of 100 pp.

1909 How to keep a scrap-book. Independent, 67:48-50, July,

Foster, P. P. Reference libraries for busy men. Independent,
67:1125-28, November, 1909.
The advantages of a vertical file system described by the librarian of
tlie Editorial reference library of the Youth's companion.

1 910 Dickinson, A. D. Anti-librisection: a reply to Mr. Foster.

Public libraries, 15:158-59, April, 1910.
McCollough, E. F. Practice versus theory: a reply to
Mr. Dickinson. Public libraries, 15:186-87, May, 1910.
Foster, P. P. The new encyclopedia. Public libraries,

15:236-37, June, 1910.
Ashley, R. E. A systematic scrap-book. Machinery, 1 7 : 205-7,
November, 1910.
An engineer describes the use of looseleaf binders for preserving clip-
pings, prints, sketches, etc.

191 1 Mahanna, C. G. Filing and indexing of engineering data.

Machinery, 17:544, March, 191 1.
Describes the use of manila envelopes (6| by 9^ inches) for holding
clippings. Asserts the superiority of actual clippings and extracts over
references to periodicals.

191 2 Hicks, F. C. Newspaper libraries: Clippings. Educational

review, 44:179-87, September, 1912.
Describes the methods used in the "morgues" of several large news-

1913 Special libraries association. Report of the committee

investigating the use and methods of handling and filing
newspaper clippings, 1913. pp. 6.
By Jesse Cunningham. Also in Special libraries, 4: 157-61, September
-October, 191 3.


Luce, Robert. The clipping bureau and the Hbrary. Special
hbraries, 4:152-57, September-October, 1913.
"An exposition of the methods of the chpping bureau and a defense
of its work."

1915 McVety, M. A., and M. E. Colegrove. The vertical file.

(Dana, J. C. Modem American library economy, 1915,
V. 2, pt. 18, sec. i).
Includes in general directions "Preparation of clippings," pp. 18-19,

Hasse, A. R. A practical clipping collection for a public
library. Bulletin of the New Hampshire public libraries,
New ser., 11:150-52, December, 1915.
Practical and full of inspiration for the collector.

1916 Hudders, E. R. Clippings. (In his Indexing and filing.

1916. pp. 143-45)-
Minute directions as to mounting and filing.

Florence Woodworth

The best dictionaries agree that a broadside is a single sheet
of paper printed on one side only, usually without arrangement
in columns. No limits of size are noted or recognized. Hand-

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Online LibraryAmerican Library AssociationPamphlets and minor library material : clippings, broadsides, prints, pictures, music, bookplates, maps → online text (page 1 of 3)