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B.M. Bower Western Novels Collection.

  • Book Collection
  • 1910-1950

The B.M. Bower Western Novels Collection, acquired in 2015, consists of over 70 American western novels written by Bertha Muzzy Sinclair (known as B.M. Bower) and her husband Bertrand Sinclair. Many of the books in this collection also feature pictorial cover art.

Bower, B.M.

Eric Gill Book Collection.

The Eric Gill Collection includes works by and about Eric Gill (1882-1940), works illustrated by or designed by him, and works by and about his pupils and contemporaries. Eric Gill made contributions in numerous fields--as printer, type designer, letter designer, sculptor, engraver, stone cutter, and author.

The collection has been actively developed since the 1970's, and includes many rare, variant editions of Gill's works. The Library's Private Press Collection includes related material within the Hague and Gill Press Collection and the St. Dominic's Press Collection.

Gill, Eric

Gustav Seide Jakob Lorber mysticism collection

  • Book Collection
  • 1961-[2015]

Collected by Gustav Seide, this collection includes primarily works by 19th century German mystic Jakob Lorber and his circle such as Gottfried Mayerhofer. Also included are works by other mystics including Emanuel Swedenborg and religious texts including the Bhagavad Gita. Of particular note is a complete set of Lorber’s seminal work “Das große Evangelium Johannis” of the Great Gospel of John.

Seide, Gustav

Henry Fischer Schwaben Heimatbuch Collection.

  • Book Collection
  • 1918-2008

Original accession includes over 115 Heitmatbücher (German for "home books") that document the stories and histories of the villages that were inhabited by the Danube Swabians (German: Donauschwaben) in Central Europe: Romania, Hungary, and the former Yugoslavia. Many of these books also contain genealogies, some dating back to the 18th century. The Heimatbücher are a unique and rich resource for anyone interested in the history and migration of the Donauschwaben people.

An addition to the Henry Fischer Schwaben Heimatbuch Collection contains 13 items documenting the history and genealogy of Donauschwaben people living in southeastern Europe. Many of the titles are rare, having been created by and for the communities and published in only small print runs.

A genealogist, Mr. Fischer has devoted much of his life to documenting the history of his people and to collecting these Heitmatbücher.

Henry H. Crapo Dance Collection.

  • Book Collection
  • 1604-1985

The Doris Lewis Rare Book Room houses a sizeable special collection of rare materials related to the history of dance and ballet. The nucleus of the dance collection is the 150 items donated in 1975 by Dr. Henry Crapo, a former University of Waterloo faculty member. Dr. Crapo has continued to support the collection over the years.

Dr. Crapo's donation contains some rare and beautiful works on ballet: works by Negri, Caroso, Noverre, De la Cuisse, Arena, Dumanoir, Blasis and Bakst. The subject strengths of the collection reflect Dr. Crapo's interests in choreography and dance notation.

Of the seventeenth-century materials found here, some of the finest are Negri's Nuove inventioni de balli (Milan: 1604); Caroso's Nobilita di Dame (Venice: 1605), and Du Manoir's Le mariage de la musique avec la dance (1664).

The largest addition to the dance collection was the 300-volume collection acquired with the assistance of a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grant in 1982. This collection, with imprints ranging in date from 1687 to the mid-twentieth century, adds a new research dimension in the form of illustrated works containing lithographs and engravings of the period of the Romantic ballet. The provenance of the majority of works in this collection--a portion of the personal library of George Chaffee--a leading dance writer of the twentieth century, accounts in part for its strength. Many of the books Chaffee consulted in his research for his most famous writings on ballet are now a part of the Waterloo collections.

In 1985, another grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council made it possible for the Library to purchase over two dozen books supportive of the Crapo Collection.

Special Collections & Archives has prepared a digital exhibit featuring some of the items from the Henry H. Crapo Dance Collection.

Library of George Santayana.

  • Book Collection
  • 1863-1952

The collection consists of 350 titles from the personal library of the philosopher and man of letters, George Santayana (1863-1952). The subject focus of this portion of Santayana's library, purchased by the University of Waterloo Library during the 1960's, could be characterized as interdisciplinary, with works in philosophy, literature, religion, and history. Many of the books were presented to Santayana by their authors. The collection is supplemented by reference and critical materials related to the life and work of Santayana as well as editions of Santayana's own writings. First or early editions of most of Santayana's works are included.

One of the most interesting and significant features of the Library of George Santayana is that many of the books from his personal library contain annotations in his own handwriting. These notes reveal his opinions and thoughts about the writings of others. The collection includes Santayana's own copies of his three-volume autobiography, with his corrections and notes to his publisher.

Sol Eisen Collection of Canadiana, Americana, Mexicana and Incunabula.

The Sol Eisen Collection of Canadiana is a collection of 179 rare, and in some cases, previously unrecorded, books, pamphlets, and printed ephemera from Quebec, Ontario, and Western Canada. The collection was presented to the University of Waterloo Library by Morton Eisen of Toronto in 1993. Sol Eisen (1898-1974), a Toronto lawyer, first began his "collecting hobby" with baseball cards in 1911. The focus of his collection eventually turned to rare books, and the variety and quality of the material he acquired are testimony to the diligence and enthusiasm with which he pursued his hobby.

Highlights of the Sol Eisen Collection of Canadiana include its earliest imprint, Nehiro-Iriniui Aiamihe Massinahigan (1767), a book of prayers and catechism for the Montagnais Indians by the Jesuit missionary, Jean Baptiste de La Brosse. This is one of the few books ever to be printed in the Montagnais dialect. Also important among the early imprints is, Traite de la loi des fiefs (1775), a compilation of four publications by Francois Cugnet which sets forth the basic principles of the civil law of the French Regime (still in force in the Province of Quebec).

Several imprints are of great rarity. Included in this category are a children's book printed in Brockville in 1826 entitled, First Book for Children; an 1839 edition of Wilson's Border Tales; and two previously unknown almanacs, The Upper Canada Almanac and Provincial Calendar for the Year of Our Lord 1831, and The Toronto Farmers' and Mechanicks' Almanack for the Year of Our Lord 1838. Other items not noted in the standard bibliographies include an 1879 broadside printed in Winnipeg entitled, A Grand Display of Manitoba Products ... Selected for the Ottawa Exhibition. Only one other copy is known to exist of Swift's York County Almanac for the Year 1832, which is also of interest by virtue of its printer, William Lyon MacKenzie.

Other notable items include two books printed in the Cree language at Moose Factory, one in 1896, and the other in 1859.

Urban Planning Town Guide Collection.

  • Book Collection

Special Collections & Archives holds a variety of town guides from cities across the UK. Most significant urban centres in the British Isles are represented, and there is a comprehensive collection of guides to places which became Greater London in 1965.

The guides can provide a benchmark for assessing the very substantial changes which have affected British urban places in the past 60 years, and may be of interest to researchers in a variety of disciplines.

The town guides vary in size from a slender brochure of 30 pages for a small Urban District to large-format volumes of over 300 pages for a major City and County Borough such as Liverpool.