Royal College of Physicians Library visit
Another day, another medicinal garden – this time at the beautiful home of the Royal College of Physicians Library where rare books librarian Katie Flanagan showed a group of fellow professionals from ALISS around. It was a genuinely varied trip, taking in both the modern and the historic – on one hand the library is home to cutting edge collections and document supply which caters for members, fellows and staff (including the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence). On the other, it houses extensive collections of historic material which reflect the varied (and occasionally esoteric) interests of its members.
Following on from this week’s theme of library destruction we heard a rare tale of woe – the original library, formed in 1518, was almost completely destroyed in the great fire of London (only a year after the College had been robbed of the majority of its silver collection). All but 100 books were lost. The current rare books collection is based on the library of the Marquess of Dorchester who donated his private library of 3,400 books to make up for the losses.
25th June 2012