Rare Book Librarians' Meeting

The Bibliographical Society of Australia and New Zealand held its 2009 conference at the University of Queensland from 20-22 July. Although the Society has been running for 40 years this was only the second time that its annual conference has been held in Brisbane.

On Thursday 23 July, following on from conference events at UQ, the State Library of Queensland hosted a meeting of rare book librarians from university, state and public libraries. Many had travelled from as far away as Western Australia and New Zealand to attend the BSANZ conference and took the opportunity to come to the State Library to view its rare book collection and meet with colleagues in the field. 

    

Issues discussed included the impact of digitisation on heritage collections, conservation and security of rare materials and the importance of high quality catalogue records.

State Library staff members Irene Sourgnes and Ann Scheu facilitated proceedings with colleague Dianne Byrne leading a tour of the Bold but Faithful exhibition of collection items from the John Oxley Library currently on display in the Talbot Family Treasures Wall on level 4.

The meeting was held in the Bank of Queensland Heritage Collections Learning Room with a selection of rare collection items on display in the Fox Family White Gloves Room.

After lunch Andrew Sergeant from the National Library of Australia gave a presentation on the NLA's Petherick Collection of Australiana.

The afternoon was rounded off with a tour of the rare and restricted repository on level 4 and the Conservation Laboritory on level 5. 

Overall the response from those attending was extremely positive, the hoped-for outcome being a regular list or blog to continue the discussion.

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Overall the response from those attending was extremely positive, the hoped-for outcome being a regular list or blog to continue the discussion.

Real life observation tells us that, more often than not, those who work the hardest achieve the most.