RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts & Cultural Heritage (formerly Rare Books and Manuscripts Librarianship, RBML) is the Association of College & Research Libraries' journal covering issues pertaining to the world inhabited by special collections libraries & cultural heritage institutions.

Current Issue: Spring 2023

RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage, Volume Twenty-Four, Number 1, Spring 2023

Research Article

Spring 2023

Shelving Special Collections Materials by Size

Sigrid Anderson, Kristine Greive, Juli McLoone, Jo Angela Oehrli

Shelf space is a precious commodity in libraries, especially for special collections, which rarely deaccession materials. To deal with this problem, many librarians try to maximize efficiency in their shelving approaches. A common solution to space constraints is adjusting shelves to store materials by size categories. This approach is understudied, however, and projects to reorganize materials by size are often undertaken with little more than anecdotal evidence or intuition to support them. Using a reorganization of the oversize materials at Special Collections at the University of Missouri as a case study, this article lays out some concrete ...

Recently Published

Editor’s Note (to Future Readers—Especially You Newer Ones

Richard Saunders

Moments of change provide opportunities for reflection. I am fairly sure that function is part of what makes us human. When I assumed the editor’s chair for RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage, I knew that I would eventually turn over that chair to a successor. ...

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Manuscripts in the Flesh: Collections-Based Learning with Medieval Manuscripts at the University of Victoria

Shailoo Bedi, Heather Dean, Adrienne Williams Boyarin

Instruction with primary sources in cultural heritage institutions has shifted dramatically from show-and-tell tours of collections to hands-on learning opportunities. However, how students engage with primary sources, and the effectiveness of primary-source instruction, remains an emerging area of study. There is a growing body of professional literature and online resources supporting primary-source instruction, but there are few studies of the impact of collections-based teaching on learning ...

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Placing Papers Update: The Black and Latino Experience in the Literary Archive Market

Amy Hildreth Chen

Placing Papers: The American Literary Archive Market (University of Massachusetts Press, 2020) discussed the post–World War II trade in authors’ papers. One finding of Placing Papers was how well Black writers did on the market as measured by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) rank of their papers’ housing institutions and the frequency with which Black authors were paid for their materials. However, this boon for Black writers only occurred once colleges and universities sought to improve the diversity of their holdings. In this update to Placing Papers ...

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