Author Archives: John J. Burns Library of Rare Books and Special Collections at Boston College

About John J. Burns Library of Rare Books and Special Collections at Boston College

The University’s special collections, including the University’s Archives, are housed in the Honorable John J. Burns Library, located in the Bapst Library Building, north entrance. Burns Library staff work with students and faculty to support learning and teaching at Boston College, offering access to unique primary sources through instruction sessions, exhibits, and programming. The Burns Library also serves the research needs of external scholars, hosting researchers from around the globe interested in using the collections. The Burns Library is home to more than 200,000 volumes and over 700 manuscript collections, including holdings of music, photographic materials, art and artifacts, and ephemera. Though its collections cover virtually the entire spectrum of human knowledge, the Burns Library has achieved international recognition in several specific areas of research, most notably: Irish studies; British Catholic authors; Jesuitica; Fine printing; Catholic liturgy and life in America, 1925-1975; Boston history; the Caribbean, especially Jamaica; Nursing; and Congressional archives.

A New Weapon: Highlighting Irish Hunger Strikes in Two Recently-Opened Collections at Burns Library

Prison hunger strikes became an integral part of protesting in the struggle for Irish independence over the course of a century. Two recently opened collections at Burns Library, both newly processed, include materials that reflect how hunger strikes were used … Continue reading

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From the Bronx to Belfast: Michael Schwartz, Photojournalist with a Compassion for Children

Born in the rough-and-tumble Bronx in 1944, photojournalist Michael Schwartz became attracted to the still tougher neighborhoods of West Belfast during the late stages of the political conflict known as “The Troubles.” During the decade leading up to the 1998 … Continue reading

Posted in Archives & Manuscripts, Archives Diary, Featured Collections & Books, Irish Studies, Recent Acquisitions, Staff Posts | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A Rare Vellum Printing

A book may be interesting on the basis of its physical features, its intellectual content, or its history of ownership. Here we have the trifecta: a book of unusual, even beautiful, material construction, containing a text of scholarly interest, and … Continue reading

Posted in Cataloger's Corner, Irish Studies, Jesuitica, Rare books, Recent Acquisitions, Staff Posts | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

The Williamite War

This is the first in a series of seven blog posts highlighting and summarizing important events in Irish history, and Burns Library resources which aid in further study of the topic.   Burns Library holds many Irish history resources and is … Continue reading

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Swift, Satire, and BC Students

Does Swift’s searing satire lose its keen edge as the story is re-represented over time, country and culture?  This was a question that arose last spring as students in Colleen Taylor’s English Literature class, Satire and Society, explored editions of … Continue reading

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Dreams of Art & Glory: Book Craft by the Roycrofters

One of the many advantages of working in a special collections library is the opportunity to browse in the stacks. I regularly browse while checking the climate control monitors throughout the building. During one such walk-through, a suede binding resembling … Continue reading

Posted in Exhibits & Events, Fine Press, Rare books, Recent Acquisitions, Staff Posts | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment