Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Digital Pioneer

Manuscript miniature showing the annunciation of the Virgin from a Book of HoursOur first digital project, Script to Pixels, was a collaboration between Joshua Shaw, Pat Cope and the Special Collections Librarian Philip Cronenwett, who passed away last weekend. Inspired by Phil's checklist of medieval manuscripts, the project took Dartmouth into the brave new world of digitization. Amazingly, it is still an incredibly useful site today. We have given it a few updates and reskinned it a few times, but the site you see is essentially the work that Phil, Joshua and Pat did nearly twenty years ago.

Phil joined the Library in 1979 as Manuscripts Curator and later became Special Collections Librarian. He left an impressive legacy: he was instrumental overseeing the cataloging of almost all of our medieval manuscripts; acquired many important modern manuscript collections; and was instrumental in maintaining the tremendous depth of our polar collections. He came to Dartmouth as a medievalist, but caught the polar bug and acquired many of the most important manuscript items in the Stefansson collection. It was during his tenure that Special Collections moved from its cramped quarters in the Treasure Room of Baker Library into the newly constructed Rauner Library in the Webster Hall.

Phil's work shaped special collections in so many ways that he is here with us every day. He will be deeply missed by those who knew him.

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