Digitization of Hamilton Smalls

“1767 / Heartman #27 / This is the / [George Parker] Winship copy. / The only one / known.”  The New-England Primer Improved for the More Easy Attaining the True Reading of English To Which Is Added, The Assembly of Divines, and Mr. Cotton’s Catechism (1767). 10 cm.

In preparation for the digitization of the Sinclair Hamilton Collection, each volume is being examined by Roel Munoz, Library Digital Imaging Manager, and  Mick LeTourneaux, Rare Books Conservator. We are working in order by size, not date, beginning with the smallest American imprints that include woodcuts or wood engravings.

Some conservation will be done now and some will wait until after the volume is photographed, making it easier for the technicians to open and shoot the pages. Missing volumes are being located and Gail Smith, Senior Bibliographic Specialist, is revising the cataloguing to reflect the location in our new vaults.

[Above] An early conservator repaired the spine with new sewing and then, continued stitching across the title page.

[Below] This book was probably repaired by a 19th-century reader using a straight pin, which still holds three pages together.


Every binding will be photographed, front and back, as well as all blank pages, although there are very few.  If a special box was constructed for the volumes, it will be photographed also. Wish us luck.

Princeton University. Library. Early American book illustrators and wood engravers, 1670-1870; a catalogue of a collection of American books, illustrated for the most part with woodcuts and wood engravings in the Princeton University Library. With an introductory sketch of the development of early American book illustration by Sinclair Hamilton. With a foreword by Frank Weitenkampf (Princeton, N.J., 1958). Graphic Arts Collection (GAX) Hamilton