While the Society has an extensive library on our subjects of interest, we have never had a comprehensive catalog, and even the partial catalogs were done only on paper. Thus the colletion is hugely underutilized because of the challenge of knowing what our holdings include.
Thanks to a substantial grant from a member, we now have an opportunity to correct this. The grant will provide for all expenses involved in purchasing the equipment, computers, and software needed to catalog the entire collection. For this, our sincere thanks.
To date, we have spent little on equipment, and nothing on computers and software, due to equipment donations and our use of Open Source software. The bulk of the expenditures have gone to providing space in which to work. In July 2012, the collection was moved into a larger storage space where there is enough room for storage shelving. In April 2014, the space available was doubled in size, and steel library shelving installed. By October 2014, all cataloged books were shelved in this new area and newly cataloged books are being added to the shelves as they are processed.
The cataloging software we have chosen is Koha, which is free and open source software with substanital community support. It is fully compatible with modern library standards, plus it has enough flexibility to accommodate our own unique needs.
At present, there are over 3300 books in the system. They are available through our Online Catalog. This allows the world to see what we have in our collection, just as you can for most academic libraries in the world, and perhaps your local public library as well. We expect use of the library collection to grow in concert with the growth of the Catalog.
To access the Catalog, just click on Catalog. There is no need to log in unless you want to suggest purchases. Do please let us know if you have any trouble with the Catalog, or if you wish assistance accessing the books.
Just do not expect all 20,000-odd books and periodicals to be listed at once! Cataloging is a slow and laborious process. While it can be speeded if a volume is on file at facilities like the Library of Congress, many of our books are old or privately printed, and will have to be cataloged by hand. You sould expect these volumes to be processed later, as our initial focus is on putting up a serious number of volumes first.
We invite volunteers from the greater Orlando area to join the work. With the newly added space, we are able to set up a small work area near the books, which should speed the process substantially. It also permits researchers to visit the collection in person.
Watch this space, and the newsletter Augustæum, for news of progress.
This page maintained by the Webmaster in consultation with the Library Committee. Last modified 17 February 2016.