Four Decades, Three Libraries: A celebrated career in maps

Map from the Early Fine Print Collection

Map from the Early Fine Print Collection

The new Library of Birmingham is now open and map resources are progressively in place and available.  However, one of our ‘institutions’ will not be there with us. For Richard Abbott, our long-serving map librarian, retired in September 2013 and his extensive knowledge and experience will be sorely missed by customers and staff alike.  Richard joined the reference library from the geography department of the University of Birmingham in the mists of time (1971 is mooted) and his knowledge of maps and mapping has shone through ever since.  Our guess is that retirement will not dim this enthusiasm!

In advance of the move to the Library of Birmingham, Richard has been working steadfastly to improve online access to map-based material by updating entries on our archival cataloguing system (see http://calmview.birmingham.gov.uk/CalmView/).  In addition he has supervised the physical re-location of maps, atlases etc to our new home on floor 4 where a range of map cabinets are now to be found in a bright, airy and roomy space.

Map resources in Archives, Heritage and Photography

Map resources in Archives, Heritage and Photography

We wish Hilary and Richard the very best for the future wherever it may lead and feel suitably reassured that they shouldn’t get lost!

Map from the collections in the Library of Birmingham

Map from the collections in the Library of Birmingham

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3 responses to “Four Decades, Three Libraries: A celebrated career in maps

  1. Brilliant Brummagem…a ‘Gem’ of a City……with its own Gem the Jewellery Quarter with the fantastic Georgian St Paul’s Square at its Heart!!!!!!

    I welcome the new Library of Birmingham as it puts books, reading and learning on a pedestal in the City………..

    Now we NEED to do the same with ART in this great, diverse, cultural melting pot of a City in my opinion….

    The Birmingham Civic Society Public Art Forum at Eastside Projects on Thursday 29th October is the ideal opportunity to do this as the Birmingham Civic Society are seeking to create an iconic piece of Birmingham Public Art which shouts…..’BIRMINGHAM’!!! to an expectant world…….

    What about a ‘Giant Golden Pen Nib’ to celebrate Birmingham’s role in the spread of World Literacy with the making of billions upon billions of metal pen nibs in The Jewellery Quarter in the 19th Century…………????????

    Birmingham’s ‘BIG PEN’ as opposed to ‘Big Ben’!

    Truly the ‘pen is mightier than the sword’ ………or the clock in this case!!!!

  2. Reblogged this on keithbracey and commented:
    Birmingham’s ‘BIG PEN’!!!!

  3. Thank You so very much for your kind wishes!
    i’ll make sure Richard sees these lovely comments. Pending items at the moment include mowing the endless lawns in Marple and the making of a new garden gate for the old house. (this latter is not one of Richard’s many skills).

    Hilary

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