Volume 3 Number 1 Newsletter of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Libraries
When John Carter and Graham Pollard exposed the noted nineteenth century British bibliographer Thomas J. Wise as a forger by applying chemical analyses to tbe papers he used, they also attracted tbe curiosity of Frank W. Tober, a physical chemist with graduate degrees from Virginia Tech and Yale.
Tober's professional interest in the case evolved into an avocation of collecting a variety of literary forgeries and related materials, particularly those involving Sise and Wise's associate in the forgeries, Harry Buxton-Forman. Typically, Wise and Buxton-Forman would furtively produce small editions of single poems of Romantic and Victorian poets. They would then portray these books as private editions that predated known published editions.
Because of Wise's prominence in the bibliographical world, it was not until the 1930s that the books were suspected to be forgeries.
Today, Tober owns an extensive collection, including about half of the known Wise/Buxton-Forman forgeries and nearly 100 letters written by Wise. Other materials in the Tober collection relate to the Shakespeare forgeries of William Henry Ireland and John Payne Collier; the forgeries of American novelist Frederic Prokosch; Thomas Chatterton's poems; and the Ossian forgeries of the eighteenth century. Tober has also built collections on printing, papermaking, and marbling; gathered the memoirs of associates of Napoleon at St. Helena; and collected dozens of limited edition press books. Tober credits the diligence of Robert Fleck, Jr., owner of Oak Knoll Books and Press in New Castle, Delaware, with helping him acquire many items in the collection.
In an act of appreciation to Virginia Tech for providing him with a graduate fellowship vital to his continued education, Tober has bequeathed these valuable collections to the university, where they will be housed as the Frank W. Tober Collection in the Special Collections Department of the University Libraries. His Wise/Buxton-Forman materials may constitute the largest such collection in private hands.
The Virginia Tech alumnus, who received a Master of Science in chemical engineering in 1941, has also willed $200,000 to the university to prepare, publish, and distribute a commemorative catalogue devoted to the collection and to maintain and enhance the books and manuscripts in the collection. Another endowment of $150,000, which Tober willed in memory of his wife, Ellen Brady Tober, who died in 1990, will support a rare books intern in Special Collections.
What makes the collecting of these books interesting are the "various complexities relating to these forgeries," Tober recently stated. He also said that the investigation into the Wise/Buxton-Forman materials "reads like a scientific detective story."
The initial exposure of the forgeries by John Carter and Graham Pollard, announced in a 1934 publication, included examinations of "the chemical composition of papers used, the styles of type employed, unique fonts that were clearly linked to a specific printing company, and errors in the selection of texts used to create the forgeries," Tober said. Nicolas Barker and John Collins recently re-examined the evidence, and Collins is citing from much of Tober's Wise/Buxton-Forman forgery collection in a forthcoming book.
In a recent interview, Tober said that his Napoleon collection also includes two letters signed by the French emperor. "If they are forgeries, I can move them from one collection to the other," he joked.
Tober already has placed several books related to forgeries in the Special Collections Department, including three bibliographies by Wise, one of which is inscribed by the forger. The materials to follow will provide the library with a collection that Glenn McMullen, head of the depanment, calls "extraordinary in its depth and in its research potential."
According to McMullen, "Future biographers of Thomas J. Wise and future students of literary forgeries will profit from Frank Tober's care and persistence in assembling his collection. We are honored by his decision to place the collection at Virginia Tech and to provide the means for it to continue to grow."
The rapidly growing number of personal computers and the increasing use of world-wide computer networks are changing the nature of academic publishing. Over 25 electronic journals are now published around the world, most of them by universities in the United States.
Virginia Tech and its University Libraries are part of this academic publishing revolution. Nearly three years ago Virginia Tech launched the Scholarly Communications Project, described by its director, Lon Savage, as a "pioneering effort to explore new means of scholarly communications as well as explore new ways to reduce costly distribution of print publications normally done through commercial publishers."
Originally reporting to Communication Network Services, the project moved administratively to the University Libraries in July 1991. Paul Gherman, university librarian, notes that the Scholarly Communications Project "is an imponant endeavor which appropriately belongs in the library. It has already received national recognition, and it will bring even greater recognition to Virginia Tech in the future. The project will involve us in a new publishing medium which will be increasingly integral to the library's mission."
Since 1988, the project has implemented several innovations in scholarly communications. It publishes one electronic journal and has helped another publication take advantage of new technology and new ideas in electronic communications to produce a print journal.
Working with the Virginia Tech Department of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management, in 1991 the project began publishing electronically the Journal of the Academy of Hospitality Research (JIAHR). By actually producing and managing an electronic journal, the project has been able to address and resolve real-life problems unique to electronic publishing, distributing, and archiving.
Electronic Journals at Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech has taken a leading role in addressing the technical and public service issues surrounding electronic journals. Its library was one of the first to provide the full text of electronic journals. These are accessible through the online information system of the mainframe computer.
Five titles are currently available: New Horizons in Adult Education, Electronic Journal of Communication, Postmodern Culture, Public-Access Computer Systems Review, and Journal of the International Academy of Hospitality Research. Four are published by universities in the United States (JIAHR at Virginia Tech). The bilingual Electronic Journal of Communication is a joint publication of the University of Windsor, Ontario, and Kent State University.
To view the journals a user must log on to the mainframe. From the READY prompt, or from within PROFS, enter INFO LIBRARY E-JOURNL. Select "View electronic journals" and choose the desired title. You will then need to select the issue you wish to view. Once you have accessed the journal itself, you will have the option of choosing an article from the table of contents.
Some of the journals offer abstracts of articles. Each article is treated as a separate file so you must return to the table of contents to select the next article, rather than page through the entire journal. You have the option of printing or downloading an article-check the instructions on the first screen of each issue.
The Scholarly Communications Project also publishes one print journal, The International Journal of Analytical and Experimental Modal Analysis. The Project is using new electronic technology to improve and speed up press work such as editing and typesetting, and is investigating ways to distribute and archive issues electronically . Savage has also begun discussions with other members of the Virginia Tech faculty about publishing additional electronic journals in the future. He has been working with College of Education Professor and editor Darrel Clowes to publish Community Services Catalyst as an electronic journal in addition to its current paper format. Savage added, "In the near future Catalyst will also be available without charge via BITNET and INTERNET," world-wide computer networks.
According to Savage, the Scholarly Communications Project has much to offer through electronic communication. One advantage is economics. Costs of electronic journals are low compared to print publications because expenses for printing (paper, ink, and press-time) as well as mailing (wrappers and postage) are almost nonexistent.
Production time, or the time it takes from first submission of a scholarly paper to receipt by journal subscribers, can be reduced as well. Members of an editorial board and reviewers can be physically remote yet able to share texts and make editorial changes rapidly through telecommunications. At every step in the publishing process, communications are as rapid as the lines that carry the texts and messages, and are not dependent on the postal service or even on returning phone calls.
The Scholarly Communications Project is also addressing a serious handicap to electronic publishing: difficulties sending graphics with standard telecommunications software. The editors of the JIAHR have had to turn down at least one excellent scholarly paper because the charts and graphs it included could not be sent in the same format as the text. The project has been working with experts at Virginia Tech in an effort to resolve problems with on line graphics communications. Once graphics can be communicated electronically as easily as text, electronic journals will appeal to a much wider audience of publishers, editors, and readers.
CompendexResearchers who use Engineering Index to locate citations can now turn to CompendexPlus, a CD-ROM database.
CompendexPlus indexes engineering and other technical journals, technical reports, proceedings, and conference papers. In addition to covering all areas of engineering, it also covers applied physics, electronics and instrumentation, and light and optical technologies.
Available in yearly segments since 1987, the database indexes over 4500 journals and other publications and contains approximately 200,000 records for each year of coverage. It is updated quarterly.
CompendexPlus is available on workstations in the fourth-floor Science Reference area and in the Electronic Reference Area on the second floor of Newman Library. Users may bring diskettes to download citation lists and print the files at their convenience later. Printers are also available on-site.
For more information on CompendexPlus, contact Bill Kownacki at 1-5440 or at KOWNACKI on VTVM1.
Lexis/NexisWhether you are tracking an elusive business fact or searching for legal documentation, Lexis/Nexis can provide a wealth of online information. Hundreds of full-text files grouped in "libraries" are on this legal and business research system developed by the Mead Data Corporation. Nexis offers news and business information, while Lexis offers legal, legislative, and regulatory information including statutes, codes, and court cases.
The database can be accessed at the Electronic Reference Area on the second floor of Newman Library and is available at no cost to the academic community. Online training and practice databases are available on the system. Group training and consultation on specific applications can be provided by Jan Spahr, at 1-5257 or JSPAHR on VTVM1.
The dedication of a series of multi-paneled paintings from the Mountain Lake Workshop was held at Newrnan Library on October 16. "Writing on the River" includes "Broad Channel," a 29-foot multi-paneled work of art created by Virginia Tech Professor Ray Kass with the assistance of student participants of the workshop, plus five smaller multi-paneled paintings originated by the students. Kass and his students made the paintings for the space on the ground floor of the library adjacent to the book ramp and Special Collections.
"I wanted to do something that dealt with the New River," Kass said, "something of geographic importance."
Kass's assistant Jeffrey Cornwell coordinated the project. Another student assistant, Bryson Van Nostrand, created the plans and designs for use of the library space. For the paintings, the artists used random numbers from the I Ching, determined in an earlier workshop by avant-garde musician John Cage, to designate random points of various sizes on blank pieces of watercolor paper. The students connected the points intuitively using a mixture of colors and brushes selected by chance, Kass said. "Once the initial configuration was established on paper, other participants painted over it at intervals in a spirit of free association," he said.
For his "Broad Channel" piece, Kass had taken vines from the Yellow Sulphur Springs area, traced them, and used the resulting patterns on the panels. Also, at the Miles C. Horton, Sr., Center, where the project was done, Kass incorporated into the painting the vorticella, a commonly occurring single-celled aquatic protozoa that Miles C. Horton, Jr., has studied.
Kass then invited the students to contribute to the contextual image of the paintings by putting light paint over the vines. After that, he interacted with their marks by applying successive layers of paint. As a result, Kass said, the participants' responses and his own style established the intuitive nature of the painting.
As the panels received layers and layers of washes, most of the configurations were partly or wholly covered, Kass said, making them almost subliminal in nature. Then the panels were covered with beeswax, stretched, and intuitively assembled in the present polyptychs, which are framed by boxes made by George Hutchins of Hutchins Cabinet Shop in Floyd.
"I was trying to create an interactive process with the workshop participants that would indicate the diversity of life similar to that of the nature of the New River," Kass said. "I wanted to experience the local values of the New River and New River people."
The project, which cost about $5,000, was supported in part by the Miles C. Horton, Sr., Research Center, the College of Arts and Sciences, Hutchins Cabinet Shop, and the Mountain Lake Workshop. Documentation of the process will be kept in the Special Collections Department of the University Libraries.
No longer need you leave your home or office to search the ERIC, Agricola, or MLA Bibliography CD-ROM databases in the library. Instead, use your own PC and CBX connection or modem to call the databases on the library's CD-ROM network. The only additional requirement is Aterm, the terminal emulation component of the PC Anywhere software used by the library to make remote access to the network possible, available for under $100.
The procedure is a simple one. Upon initiating a call with Aterm, at the "CALL, DISPLAY OR MODIFY?" prompt, enter "c 13195" to connect to the library's CD-ROM network. You will be prompted for a password. Upon entering the password, the network menu will appear. ERIC, Agricola, and MLA Bibliography are among the menu selections. When you've completed your search and exited from your database, select "End the remote session" from the menu, and the system will be freed for another user.
Agricola corresponds to the printed index Bibliography of Agriculture and contains bibliographic records from the National Agricultural Library and other cooperating institutions in agriculture and related sciences. Records describe journal articles, book chapters, monographs, series, micoforms, audiovisuals, and maps. Coverage begins in 1970 and discs are updated quarterly.
ERIC, the database of the Educational Resources Information Center, corresponds to two printed indexes. Resources in Education covers research findings, project and technical reports, speeches, unpublished manuscripts and books on education, and Current Index to Journals in Education covers articles on education from over 780 education-related journals. Coverage begins in 1966 and the database is updated quarterly.
MIA International Bibliography corresponds to the printed index of the same name. It contains indexing for books and articles on literature and modern languages. Coverage begins in 1981, with quarterly updates.
To obtain a password or additional information on remote access and other aspects of reference materials in electronic formats, contact Alan Armstrong at 1-9224, or ARMSTRNG on VTVM1.
Lowell Ashley, principal cataloger, has been appointed by the president of the Music Library Association (MLA) to chair a Video Working Group, charged with submitting recommendations to the MLA Bibliographic Control Committee concerning problems and issues in the cataloging and processing of music-related video materials.
E. Alan Armstrong, electronic reference services librarian, along with Nikhil Jain, programmer, and Harry M. Kriz, automation librarian co-authored an article, "An Environmental Approach to CD-ROM Networking Using Off-The-Shelf Components,' in CD-ROM Professional, Vol. 4, No. 4 (July 1991).
Paul Gherman, university librarian, was invited to speak on "Scholarly Communication and the Electronic Journal" for the Third Annual National Library Week Lecture Series held at the University of South Florida, April 17, 1991. He also delivered a talk, "Setting Budgets for Libraries in an Electronic Era," to the American Association of University Presses in Naples, Florida, June 22, 1991. He adapted this speech for publication under the same title in The Chronicle of Higher Education, August 4, 1991. With Paul Metz, principal bibliographer, he co-authored an article, "Serials Pricing and the Role of the Electronic Journal," appearing in the July 1991 issue of College and Research Libraries.
Donald Kenney, assistant to the universitv librarian, and Linda Wilson coordinator of reference services, have been appointed for a three-year term as editors of the Journal of Youth Services in Libraries of the Association for Library Service to Children and the Young Adult Library Service Association of the American Library Association.
Victoria Kok, head of the Veterinary Medicine Branch Library, is serving as the 1991/92 chair of the Veterinary Medical Library Section of the Medical Library Association.
Harry M. Kriz, automation librarian delivered a talk, "Evolving Library Strategic Systems through Software Leveraging," at the SPIRES Fall Workshop, October 7-9,1991, at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Troy, New York
Charles Litchtfield, chief, Library Automation Division, gave a presentation on "The MARC Format for Holdings and Display" at the Library Information Technology Association (LITA) Preconference to the American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, June 28,1991.
Gail McMillan, serials cataloging team leader, presented a paper, 'Embracing the Electronic Journal: One Library's Plans," at a plenary session of the North American Serials Interest Group at Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas, on June17,1991. She also led a workshop, "Applications of the USMARC Format for Holdings," at the LITA MARC Holdings Preconference to the ALA Annual Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, on June 28. At the ALA Annual meetina of the Association of Library Collections and Technical Services (ALCTS) Committee to Study Serials Standards on June 29, she presented a paper, "Applying Z39.44-1986." She presented another paper at the same conference, for the LITA/ALCTS Retrospective Conversion Discussion Group on June 30, entitled "Serials Retrospective Conversion: Implementing the MARC Holdings Format."
Glenn McMullen, head of special collections, gave a presentation to the Roanoke Valley Civil War Roundtable on "Two Virainians in the Confederate Medical Corps: Harvey Black and John S. Apperson," in June 1991.
Marilyn Norstedt, head of cataloging, presented "Team Cataloging at Virginia Tech, or What's Your Favorite Chili Recipe?" at the ALCTS Cataloging and Classification Section Heads of Cataloging Discussion Group, on July 1,1991, at the ALA Annual Conference, Atlanta, Georgia.
Bruce Obenhaus, reference librarian, gave a presentation, "Geographic and Cartographic Information in U.S. Government Publications" at the Annual Meeting of the National Council for Geographic Education, November 9,1990.
Frances O. Painter, director, Administrative Services Division, was one of three panelists discussing "Economic Crisis: Danger and Opportunity for Libraries," in a program sponsored by the Association of College and Research Libraries, University Libraries Section, at the ALA Annual Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, June 30,1991.
Linda Richardson, acting chief, Reference Services Division, gave a presentation on "Getting Information from the Economic Censuses" at the 6th Agricultural Economics Reference Organization Meeting on October 13,1991, at Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana.
Laura Katz Smith, manuscripts curator in the Special Collections Department published an article, "The International Archive of Women in Architecture" in the Summer 1991 issue of Feminist Collections: A quarterly of Women's Studies Resources.
Jan Spahr, government documents librarian, has been appointed to the Li brary Instruction Committee of the Law and Political Science Section Association of College and Research Libraries.
Recent events have given us hope that relief is in sight and that our space needs may be met. A preplanning study has been completed for a book storage and preservation building which will hold one million volumes. This building could be completed by 1995-just in time to relieve our immediate space crisis. Once completed, we would transfer 250,000 volumes now stored in rented off-campus space to this new facility. An additional 300,000 volumes in Newman Library that our computer system tells us have not circulated in several years would also be moved. By removing these books from Newman, space will be made available for new library materials of much greater interest to our patrons.
We have also been assured that when a new bookstore is built, the old bookstore will be converted for library use. We have developed preliminary studies on the best use for this space. Several vital undergraduate services, including the reserve collection and library media services, seem to be logical choices for relocation to the bookstore. These heavily used collections can function autonomously from other services in Newman. We would also like to create a number of group study rooms where students can discuss their assignments without disturbing others. Increasingly, students have class projects which require them to work together as teams, and few places exist on campus where this type of study activity can take place. The bookstore building will also give us space for additional study seats to meet the needs of Virginia Tech's growing student body.
Paul M. Gherman