Local Horticulturist Gifts Rare Botanical Folios

Virginia L.T. Gardner is a pansy person, even though her initial encounter with the flower wasn’t successful.

The Santa Barbara resident, who grew up in Pennsylvania, came to love gardening and all things botanical as a small child because her grandmother had an enchanting 18-acre home that included a hillside rock garden, a woodland, apple orchards, a vegetable garden and more.

“My grandmother once let me plant a totally improper plant at the base of a tree: a pansy, because I loved pansies so much and wanted to, even though it wouldn’t grow there,” Gardner said.

Michael & Nan Miller Donate Major Operetta Archive

To find Michael and Nan Miller’s home in the Los Angeles area, just look in the driveway for a car with the license plate “OPERETT.”

To say that the Millers are operetta aficionados doesn’t do them justice. The couple’s home was custom-built to hold their massive collection of 60,000 recordings, 10,000 pieces of sheet music, 9,000 books, 5,000 vocal scores, and numerous posters, programs, postcards, radio broadcasts, and more devoted to operetta and early musical theater.

The Evolution of UCSB Library’s Cartographic Collections & Services

Fifty years ago, the UCSB Library created a separate unit to collect maps and aerial photographs. In 1979, the Map Room was renamed the Map & Imagery Laboratory (MIL) in order to acknowledge its role in supporting research and teaching on campus.  In the time since, MIL has evolved into one of the largest unique collections of cartographic materials in the nation. In particular, our collection of historic aerial photographs presents an unparalleled view of landscape change in California and beyond.

Music Academy of the West’s Archives Find Home at UCSB Library

The Music Academy of the West and the UCSB Library have renewed a partnership to preserve and digitize the Academy’s archive of open reel tapes and transfer the organization’s paper archives to the UCSB Library, where they will be available for research, teaching, and personal enjoyment. Located in nearby Montecito, the Music Academy of the West has been developing “the next generation of great classically trained musicians” through its summer conservatory program and festival since 1947.

Student Assistant Spotlight: Wyatt Young

UCSB Library is pleased to introduce a new “Student Assistant Spotlight Series,” posts written by our student employees that highlight the types of projects they work on. Our inaugural post is written by Wyatt Young, a fourth-year undergraduate majoring in History with a minor in the History of Art & Architecture. Wyatt has been working in Special Research Collections as a Processing Assistant for the past year. His areas of interest are public history, museum studies, twentieth-century U.S. culture, and the historiography of collections.

Alexandria 2.0: Making the Old New Again

The Library of Alexandria, ancient Egypt’s hallowed center of classical learning, was designed to be a universal research center that contained all the books—or scrolls—in the world. Fast-forward 2,300 years. UCSB Library’s contribution to today’s version of a universal library is the Alexandria Digital Research Library (ADRL), an online platform we built to store and deliver the Library’s distinctive collections of digital research materials.

Welcome

The Department of Special Research Collections acquires, preserves, and makes accessible rare, valuable, or unique materials that support UC Santa Barbara students, faculty, and research programs, as well as the scholarly community. The department's holdings are non-circulating but are available for research in the reading room during posted hours.

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