Author Archives: Anice Mills

Borrow Direct Loan Period Expanded to 16 Weeks

From the Libraries Spotlight Blog:

We heard you!

The expanded 16-week loan period for materials requested via Borrow Direct begins July 1, 2017.

The new loan period will be 16 weeks – a full semester – with no renewals. This is a change from our current 6-week loan period plus one 6-week renewal.

Thank you for your feedback. You help to make a great service even greater.

Are there other ways for us to improve?  Please be in touch with your concerns, ideas, and questions.

Borrow Direct Staff

307 Butler Library

(212) 854-7535

New Databases, March to September 2016

Please find below links to CLIO records for new databases related to the humanities and/or history acquired by Columbia University Libraries since our last newsletter was published (on March 1, 2016). For a fuller descriptive treatment of selected new databases, please see Featured Resources: New Databases in LGBTQ Studies.

20-seiki Media Jōhō Dētabēsu

African Blue Books, 1821-1953 (Microform Academic Publishers)

Archives of the Church of Uganda Online (Brill)

Art Discovery Group Catalogue (OCLC)

Brazilian and Portuguese History and Culture. The Oliveira Lima Library (Gale)










Caribbean Newspapers, 1718-1876 (Readex)

Colonial America [Module 2: Towards Revolution] (Adam Matthew)

Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library. Biblical Texts (Brill)

Digital Library Collections (Columbia University Libraries)

The Docuseek2 : Complete Collection  (Alexander Street Press)  Video Video

Eighteenth Century Drama : Censorship, Society and the Stage (Adam Matthew)









Foreign Office Files for the Middle East, 1971-1981 (Adam Matthew)

Hakchisa Nyunonmun

History of Mass Tourism (Adam Matthew)

Indian Papers of the 1st Earl of Minto, 1806-1814 (Microform Academic Publishers)

International Bibliography of Humanism and the Renaissance (Brepols)


Personal Justice Denied: Public Hearings of the Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment, 1981 (Gale)

Records of the Far Eastern Commission, 1945-1952 (Gale)

Screen Studies Collection (ProQuest)

The Selected Papers of John Jay : Digital Edition (University of Virginia Press)

Tonga Ilbo Ak’aibŭ

World Council of Churches Online : World War II Era Records (Brill)

World’s Fairs : A Global History of Expositions (Adam Matthew)


–Blogpost compiled by: Anice Mills and John Tofanelli

The Humanities & History Division Librarians Launch Morningside Heights Digital History (MHDH)

mhdh-logoWe are proud to announce the launch of our site, Morningside Heights Digital History, or MHDH.

Two years ago we announced a professional development program in the Columbia University Libraries for the Humanities & History Division. In our first iteration of the Developing Librarian project or, as we refer to it on social media, the #devlib project, our goal was to build a common project using an adaptation of the Praxis model for professional librarians.

1891map darkerAfter an initial round of “introductions” to the technologies and skills needed to design our site, we divided into teams: design, editorial, management and development. For a more detailed breakdown of our different roles, please visit our credits page. The project was built on the Omeka platform, using the Neatline plugin for the interactive map and an interactive tour of the Butler Library Mural, and the Exhibit Builder for our different exhibits. We chose the Berlin theme, and modified it to suit our needs. The research was done individually, but we shared bibliographic and archival resources. We documented the process throughout on our Developing Librarian blog.

When we set out to do this as a team, we wanted to accomplish much: to expand our ability to support and consult in digital humanities, to hone our research skills, to bridge the gap between IT and subject librarianship, and to bond as a team by sharing a common project. We feel we have accomplished all of these and more. In particular, we find all aspects of our work as a team have benefited from developing a project together. Learning to build consensus around difficult issues will have a lasting effect on all we do in the libraries and on campus.

We have always emphasized process over product in this training, but we are excited to share our web exhibit and this model for future professional development at Columbia and elsewhere.

Welcome Students!

The librarians and staff of Butler Library welcome you! We offer a full range of resources and services to support all aspects of study. We encourage you to contact us; we are eager to help you with your research.

Explore our deep collections and services through our website,

Our goal is to make Columbia Libraries' collections and services as transparent and user-accessible as possible. If you have questions about our newly re-designed website, scroll throught the tips here:

Also note these new services:

Morningside/Barnard/UTS faculty, students, staff, and provost-appointed visiting scholars with library borrowing privileges can now request electronic delivery of articles and book chapters from the general print collections of several participating libraries. For more information, see: Scan and Deliver

Quickly see what study spaces are open in the various libraries at a glance by clicking the link to Study Spaces Open Now at the top of the Library Hours page.

Butler Library Research Support Services  — we look forward to working with you!

Notes from a Summer Intern at Butler

Jennifer Ferretti writes:
I’m one of ten extremely lucky individuals enrolled in a library science program chosen out of an applicant pool from both the U.S. and Canada to become an Association of Research Libraries Career Enhancement Program Fellow for summer 2013. I’m carrying out my fellowship in the Humanities & History Division at Butler Library. I attend meetings, catalog dissertations in the institutional repository (Academic Commons), and participate in a digital humanities project on Columbia’s neighborhood of Morningside Heights. Not surprisingly, whenever I speak of my duties in H&H with people outside of the library and information science profession, I receive looks of slight shock and approval. People of this demographic generally don’t picture librarians as having a large hand in research projects that are technologically advanced and dynamic, but I predict this will soon change. As research methodologies evolve with new technology, digital humanities projects will become more popular and advanced, with librarians at the helm.
A great example of the kind of work library and information professionals are involved with these days is the Developing Librarian Project (DLP), created by the H&H librarians. Each person on the team has chosen a structure, topic, or place to research that is directly related to Morningside Heights from 1820-1950 and will curate their research in the content management system/web application Omeka as a permanent resource that is publicly accessible. While the team will create an attractive, educational resource, we will also acquire new skills and methodologies in the digital humanities. What is essentially happening is the acquaintance of challenges and questions that come up in the age of digital research to better serve the Columbia community.
The topic I’ve chosen for the project is the history of the natural and built environment of the neighborhood. If you’re familiar with Morningside Heights, you may have seen a large rock sitting behind a fence in the 600 block of 114th Street, between Broadway and Riverside Drive. The rock is schist, a durable type of rock commonly found all over Manhattan. The rock sparked a few research questions for me: What did Morningside Heights look like before Columbia University was built? What did it look like before anything was built? How has it evolved? I’ve begun my research in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library as well as utilizing the databases offered on the Columbia University Libraries website. I’m excited to see where primary sources take my research and to be part of such a forward thinking team.
Jennifer A. Ferretti is concentrating on digital humanities at the School of Information and Library Science at Pratt Institute.

Welcome Summer Session Students!

Welcome to the Summer Session! We hope you have a wonderful experience using the collections and services in the Libraries.  Butler librarians are here all summer to answer your questions and help you with your research.

The librarians in Butler can assist you with a range of research support services in the areas of history, literature, philosophy, religion, performing arts, and gender & women's studies.

Summer library hours are now in effect. See the Hours page to get specific information about Butler's hours.

If you have research questions or want to learn more about using the new Libraries website or the CLIO database, please feel free to ask a librarian during our in-person research service hours:
Digital Humanities Center (DHC), room 305: 11-1
Butler Reference Room, room 301: 1-5pm

You can also reach us via email or chat with us online on the Ask a Librarian webpage.

Have a great summer!

Congratulations Class of 2013!

The Butler Librarians and staff congratulate the Class of 2013! We wish you all success in your future endeavors.

This doesn't have to be the end of a beautiful friendship. You will still have access to our licensed electronic databases for a period of three months beyond the degree conferral date.

And if you are in the neighborhood, recent alumni will be able to enter the libraries for a period of four months (120 days) after the date of graduation using their student ID cards. After four months, alumni must obtain a free Alumni Card in the Library Information Office in Butler Library.

For more information on alumni privileges, see:
Columbia University Libraries Alumni & Friends

Access to Columbia's Libraries for Alumni

Have a great summer and CU Later!

Keep Calm and Study On

Students, we know you're working hard and you've got a lot to do,  but we encourage you to take a break from studying to relax and recharge.

Tonight, Tuesday May 7, Butler Library is hosting Alice!’s Stressbusters from 8pm to Midnight in Butler 203. Come for free neck and back rubs and some mellow activities.

Tomorrow, Wednesday May 8, Columbia University Libraries is sponsoring the annual Butler Library Study Break from 9pm to 11pm in the Butler Lounge. Join us for free coffee and bagels, along with games, giveaways, and (new this year) Star Wars origami. Butler librarians will be on hand to answer any of your last minute research questions.

We librarians see you in Butler all year long and we salute you for your work ethic and your commitment to your studies.Take some time this week to recharge, re-hydrate, and stay energized. Go get 'em!

HathiTrust: Digital Library Unveils New, Improved Webpage

HathiTrust is a shared collection of over 10 million volumes of digitized book and journal content. Columbia University is a member of this international partnership of 60-plus research libraries committed to the long-term preservation and availability of the cultural record.

HathiTrust recently unveiled a new website, with a new design and new features. You’ll now see a consolidated search area and prominent links to user collections, hand-picked books, and the mobile interface.

Links to social media, the HathiTrust Research Center, and HathiTrust projects provide updates on activities and invite engagement. Users can now log in from anywhere on the site, and the login area of the homepage highlights the benefits of logging in to users from partner institutions.

A new online reading interface increases the amount of space available for reading books, while still keeping reading controls and bibliographic information readily accessible.

Options for searching the bibliographic catalog and full-text of works have been combined into a single tabbed search, with help information to guide users in deciding which search to use. A persistent search header allows searches to be performed from any page on the website.

Make sure you log in as a Columbia University user to access the largest number of volumes and features.

If you have any questions about how to access this resource from CLIO or the web, or how to use its features, please contact the Butler Library reference staff.