ELISA Open Forum – The Librarian in a Post-Truth World – tickets available!

*Tickets available*
Wednesday 6th December 2017 

An ELISA Open Forum Event is planned for Wednesday 6th December 1.30pm – 6.00pm at the National Library of Scotland, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh.

The theme  of the event is ‘The Librarian in a Post-Truth World
If all facts are optional; fake news makes news; and information is just another political football – where does that leave the librarian?
Join us for an afternoon of provocation, discussion and debate plus a chance to connect with colleagues and celebrate the contribution that librarians can still make in this “post-truth” world.

Tickets (free) are now available via Eventbrite.

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ELISA Open Forum – The Librarian in a Post-Truth World – save the date!

*Save the Date* 
Wednesday 6th December 2017 

An ELISA Open Forum Event is planned for Wednesday 6th December 1.30pm – 6.00pm at the National Library of Scotland, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh.

The theme  of the event is ‘The Librarian in a Post-Truth World
If all facts are optional; fake news makes news; and information is just another political football – where does that leave the librarian?
Join us for an afternoon of provocation, discussion and debate plus a chance to connect with colleagues and celebrate the contribution that librarians can still make in this “post-truth” world.

Tickets (free) will be available soon – more details to follow on how to book via Eventbrite.

Wilfred Owen, the Advocates Library and the Stevenson connection

One hundred years ago, on the 22nd October 1917, war poet Wilfred Owen paid a visit to the Advocates Library to meet with Charles John Guthrie (Lord Guthrie). To commemorate this centenary I put together a very small, private exhibition in the Advocates Library. However, since we’re approaching Armistice Day, and it’s a sweet story, I decided to post something here too.

letter
Wilfred Owen’s letter to his mother, 22nd October 1917 from ‘Selected letters’ by Wilfred Owen; edited by John Bell, 2nd edition 1998

From the end of June to early November 1917, Wilfred Owen was resident at Craiglockhart War Hospital, receiving treatment for shell-shock. His doctor, Arthur Brock practised ergo therapy, ‘the cure by functioning’. Brock encouraged his patients to work and explore outdoors, and to experience the local community and culture.

dulce et decorum est
‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ by Wilfred Owen. Written at Craiglockhart in the first half of October 1917, revised at Scarborough or possibly Ripon in January-March 1918. Copyright: British Library/The Wilfred Owen Literary Estate. Image source: First World War Poetry Digital Archive.

When Owen learned author (and Advocate) Robert Louis Stevenson had stayed nearby as a child, he set out to visit Stevenson’s childhood haunts in the Pentland Hills. There he met Lord Guthrie who lived in Stevenson’s former house Swanston Cottage. Stevenson’s family spent summers at Swanston from 1867 to 1880. When Lord Guthrie took the lease in 1908 the property was still much as it had been in Stevenson’s time. Wilfred Owen had tea with Lord Guthrie at Swanston, at which time the judge persuaded him to undertake some “historical research work” – leading to Owen’s visit to the Advocates Library.

Stevenson remembered Swanston Cottage with fondness and a detailed description of its unusual architecture featured in his story St. Ives: being the adventures of a French prisoner in England. Owen read St Ives while at Craiglockhart and enjoyed it so much he wrote of it to his mother, recommending she buy a copy to read herself.

book
Stevenson’s description of Swanston Cottage. Published in ‘St. Ives’ and reproduced by Lord Guthrie in ‘Robert Louis Stevenson: some personal recollections’, 1924

Lord Guthrie had also known Stevenson at university and both men were called to the Bar in 1875. Although Stevenson soon left Edinburgh to pursue his writing career, Lord Guthrie stayed in touch with Stevenson and his family until the writer’s death in 1894.

“I remain, my dear Guthrie, your old comrade, Robert Louis Stevenson” – from a letter, dated 18th January 1880

After just over 3 months of treatment at Craiglockhart, Owen was deemed fit for light duties (office work) and left Edinburgh. However, by October 1918 he was back on the Western Front where he won the Military Cross for his courage and leadership. Wilfred Owen was killed at Ors on 4 November 1918, just days before the Armistice was signed.

The centenary of Wilfred Owen’s time in Edinburgh was commemorated more generally during this past summer. You can find details here.

Mintel Analyst Talk: Brexit and the Economy at National Library of Scotland, Edinburgh. November 22, 9:15am

 

brexitbreakfastToby Clark, Mintel’s Director of Research, will talk about the implications of the EU vote for consumer confidence and household finances, and what this means for a range of consumer-facing markets. He’ll draw on broader economic data, Mintel’s exclusive research on consumer sentiment, and Mintel’s experience of how consumers react to changing economic conditions.

This is a free event.

Reserve your place on eventbrite

Chocks away!

Ooooooooh! Edinburgh from the air – in the 1930s

Tales of One City

We thought we’d end our short series on early flight pictures with a quick fly-by over Edinburgh. Our journey takes in Calton Hill, the New Town, travelling west over the West End and Water of Leith to Craigleith Quarry before looping back to the docks at Leith.

Enjoy these simply breath-taking views of 1930s Edinburgh from the air.

Calton Hill from the air. Click on the picture to zoom in!

Castle Street and George Street. Castle Street and George Street from the air. Click on the picture to zoom in!

West End of Edinburgh and Water of Leith West End and Water of Leith from the air. Click on the picture to zoom in!

Craigleith Quarry (aerial view) Craigleith Quarry from the air. Click on the picture to zoom in!

Leith Docks from the air Leith Docks from the air. Click on the picture to zoom in!

To view more great pictures of early flight in Edinburgh and beyond and to zoom into the incredible detail browse the full exhibition of early…

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The people who helped shape Edinburgh Libraries: Charles Boog Watson

I admit, I’m re-posting this mainly for the name 🙂
How do we pronounce it do you think? BooG? BooJ? Your suggestions please!

Tales of One City

On retiring from his duties as an ARP warden in 1943, aged 84 years old, Charles Boog Watson received a letter of thanks from the Civil Defence Warden’s Service. It stated,

“…and I feel that if everyone could show the same keenness that you have done everything would be easier and the world would be a better place…”

Edinburgh Libraries also owes a huge debt of thanks to Charles Boog Watson who donated many valuable items from his personal collections.

Charles Brodie Boog Watson was born on the 7 November, 1858 in Bombay, India and was educated at Edinburgh Academy. He later entered the engineering profession becoming a partner in the West End Engine Works, retiring in 1908.

For many years after his retirement, he was given a room in the City Chambers to continue his voluntary task of using the City Council records to research all aspects of the city’s history…

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ELISA visit to National Records of Scotland – Mon 16th Oct

There is an ELISA visit to General Register House on Monday 16 October between 15:30 and 17:30

The details are:
15:30 – Introductory talks in the Lord Clerk Register’s Room
– ScotlandsPeople Centre by Iain Ferguson
– Overview of the archive collections by Tristram Clarke, Outreach Officer (or a member of his team)
– Q and A

16:15 A brief tour of General Register House

16:30-17:30  Introduction to Historical and Legal Search Room services by Alison Lindsay and a chance to see the catalogues, etc in the Historical Search Room

There are up to 30 places available on the visit.
If you would like a place, please book via Eventbrite