Welcome to campus! Longtime followers of Et Seq. may know that the Library’s Historical & Special Collections staff often submit posts under the heading “852 RARE.” With the start of a new academic year, we wanted to provide a quick reminder of how the name “852 RARE” came to be. The name pays homage to the MARC (Machine Readable Cataloging) designation for items in the rare book collection; in other words, in Harvard’s HOLLIS catalog record, the 852 RARE field identifies the materials in the Library’s collection which are part of its Historical & Special Collections.
Watch this space for occasional 852 RARE announcements about new exhibits (one is coming soon!); stories about fascinating, unique, beautiful, and occasionally weird items from our collections; and information useful to those who wish to use HSC’s collections – and we hope many of you do.
In addition to rare books, Historical & Special Collections encompasses early and modern manuscripts, prints, photographs, objects, and The Red Set—a collection of Law School faculty, organizational, and student publications made famous in The Paper Chase.
Welcome, and we hope to see you soon!
– From the staff of HSC: Karen Beck, Jane Kelly, Ed Moloy, Mary Person, and Lesley Schoenfeld