Here at the Digitization Centre we are fascinated and excited by the vast amount of primary-source material that our digitization work exposes us to.  Whether a document of historic significance, a beautiful illustration, or even a particularly fine typeface, we are frequently amazed by the materials we’re working to share with the world.  So much so, that not only will we crowd around to ogle a particularly interesting specimen, but we’ve started decorating our workplace with copies of some of our favorites.  But why stop there?  Surely, we can’t be the only ones geeky enough to appreciate such “gems” in our collections, and so we’ve decided to share them here with you.  Below you will find some of our favorites, hand-picked by staff from both existing and upcoming collections.  We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!  

TIP: To view full resolution versions of the images on any size screen, click to enlarge and then right-click and select “open image in new tab.”


Explore Open Collections: UBC Publications

Posted on March 9, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
What do the Science Undergraduate Society, UBC Botanical Garden, and Frederic Wood Theatre have in common? They’re all part of our UBC Publications collection! You might expect to find yearbooks, student handbooks, and the Ubyssey—and you wouldn’t be wrong—but UBC Publications also includes a diverse assortment of reports and publications from university organizations. Check out what’s been going on the last 100 […]


World Travel Photo Album

Posted on March 2, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
We can’t deny it (nor do we want to!): we have an inspiring collection of travel-related items. The Chung Collection’s Canadian Pacific Railway Company materials kindle the romance of adventuring the continent by train or the globe by cruise ship, and many travelogues, maps, photographs, and other ephemera are are nestled in our other collections. There’s one particular item that’s causing some serious wanderlust right now: […]


It’s Reading Week here at UBC!

Posted on February 20, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
It’s hotly debated whether students use this week to catch up on the homework they’ve neglected, or indulge in the reading-for-fun they put off during the term, or to do absolutely no reading and enjoy all the other activities that Vancouver has to offer. Ironic or not, we’re running with reading as this week’s theme for exploring our collections. Before we share a few of […]


Love and Croquet

Posted on February 14, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
After scrolling through just a few pages of the many images in the Tremaine Arkley Croquet Collection, it quickly became apparent that croquet just had to be the topic for our Valentine’s week post. Because croquet is definitely flirty. As evidenced even in our own collection by the many items surrounding the period, the sport was wildly popular in the Victorian era: a time […]


Color Our Collections 2017

Posted on February 6, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
  Following #ColorOurCollections last year was so much fun, we decided to bring some pages to our blog. We’ve selected from a few sources to show off just a bit of the variety in our digital collections, and we think we’ve found a little something for everyone, from landlocked to nautical and town to country—including persons, places, things, and […]


A Ramble in British Columbia

Posted on February 2, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
There are over 1,300 items in B.C. Historical Books, a collection showcasing the history of British Columbia from 1783 to 1952 (and, eventually, beyond). Early works include travelogues that tell tales of grand landscapes, meeting strangers, and surviving in the wilderness. One book that caught our attention is B.C. 1887 : A Ramble in British Columbia. Have you read the Lazy Tour […]


Indulging Our Sweet Tooth

Posted on January 27, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
Perhaps you’re the type to want a sugary afternoon pick-me-up. Maybe you look forward to a sweet end after a long, tiring day. Perchance the ides of winter has you craving comfort foods. Or, you just might subscribe to the let-them-eat-cake lifestyle. Whatever the case, it’s not quite the end of January, and if you’re one of the 65% of Canadians looking to use the new year […]


Happy Birthday, A.A. Milne!

Posted on January 18, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
English author A.A. Milne was born this week (January 18th) in 1882. Beloved for his creation of Hundred Acre Wood, the home of Winnie-The-Pooh, Milne’s work captured the imaginations of children and adults alike, and our collections include many shoutouts to the author and his famous fictional friends. From inspiring a faculty party in 1942 to maintaining top-villain status in […]


Cats in Stacks

Posted on January 12, 2017 by kristina mcguirk
A recent article from the American Library Association reported on the decline of library cats. A documentary 20 years ago cited 201 cats living the dream in American libraries, including such famous felines as Dewey and Browser. However, a recount in 2016 found only 39 library cats. While the Digitization Centre certainly can’t have a pet on the premises (that hair […]


Happy Holidays!

Posted on December 21, 2016 by Alyssa Hamer
Other than the colder weather, the long, dark days of December, and an exponential increase in the consumption of peppermint mochas, a sure sign of the impending Christmas holidays are the end of exams. With the stress of studying and final papers now passed, we thought it would be a great time to dig in […]


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