Room 26 Cabinet of Curiosities

Of fishes and salvage

Posted in Beinecke Library, Modern General Collection by beineckepoetry on March 12, 2009

Images prepared for a volume of a multi-part Traite general des Pesches (i.e. Peches), edited by H. M. Duhamel du Monceau.
While the focus of the volume, developed over the 18th century and finally published in its entirety between 1769-1782, is on varieties of fishing and methods of catching them, it also discusses matters related to life along the seashore. such as the droit de varech, the important understanding of the legal limits of salvaging materials washed ashore from shipwrecks.

History Repeating

Posted in Beinecke Library, Modern General Collection by beineckepoetry on March 5, 2009

A comic image from a special edition of a French magazine from 1902,
focusing on the folly of the stock market.

Tagged with: , , , , , ,

The Infant’s Encyclopedia

Posted in Beinecke Library, Modern General Collection by beineckepoetry on February 26, 2009

Enciclopedia de la Infancia, a complete run of a little-known periodical published to educate children by the director of the Escuela Normal Mercantil in Valparaiso, Chile in 1857.
The editor, Enrique M. de Santa Olalla, appears to have produced the majority of each issue by hand.


Production photographs, film stills, and program from Borderline, an experimental silent film produced in 1930 by Pool Films. Posted in conjunction with the Beinecke Library’s current exhibition, Paper Trail: Documenting 20th-Century Film in the Archive (February 9 through March 31, 2009). The exhibition features  scripts, notes, photographs, scrapbooks, and printed matter documenting the work of such filmmakers as Boris Kaufman, Mary Ellen Bute, Stan Brakhage, Gerard Malanga, and H. D., Bryher, and Kenneth Macpherson.

Paul Robeson and Kenneth Macpherson


Kenneth Macpherson


From the set of Borderline


Paul and Eslanda Robeson


Kenneth Macpherson and H.D.


Borderline, APool Film with Paul Robeson (Program)

About Borderline

The only full-length feature film produced by Pool Films, Borderline was written and directed by Kenneth Macpherson; actors included Macpherson and his Pool Films collaborators H.D. and Bryher along with other friends. The only professional actor in the film was Paul Robeson. The film explores issues of race, class, sexuality, and gender in what H. D. referred to as “[a] particular borderline town of some indefinite mid-European mountain district.” Of the characters in the film, the poet writes: “they are borderline social cases, not out of life, not in life….” Macpherson attempts in Borderline to explore a visual representation of various conscious and unconscious mental processes and extreme psychological states, reflecting the group’s abiding interest in psychoanalysis and the possibilities it might represent for experimental artistic expression.

These and related materilas can be found in the H.D. Papers (YCAL MSS 24) and the Bryher Papers (Gen Mss 97).

The Great Mirror of Folly

Posted in Beinecke Library, Modern General Collection by beineckepoetry on April 4, 2008

An image of John Law as Don Quixote, from the volume:
Het Groote Tafereel der Dwaasheid, Amsterdam, 1720,
the focus of a conference to be held at Yale University,
April 17-19, 2008:


Room 26 Cabinet of Curiosities features new acquisitions, unique documents, and visual and textual curiosities from the collections of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. This ongoing exhibition is curated by Tim Young, Associate Curator of the Modern Books and Manuscripts Collection, and Nancy Kuhl, Associate Curator of the Yale Collection of American Literature. Additional information about these and other materials in the Beinecke Library’s collections can be found at the Library’s website: