Tag Archives: harvard

Roland Thaxter’s Sketchbook, from the Biodiversity Heritage Library

You can find some amazing things in online archives. Below are some pages from a sketchbook by a botanist named Roland Thaxter, who lived from 1858-1932 (read more about him here).


The actual sketchbook is in a library at Harvard, but it is shared via The Biodiversity Heritage Library, which “works collaboratively to make biodiversity literature openly available to the world as part of a global biodiversity community.”

Source: Roland Thaxter sketch book, – Biodiversity Heritage Library


Andrew Croswell’s 19th Century Notebooks

I love stumbling on interesting antique notebooks like this!

“Andrew Croswell (1778-1858) was a student at Harvard University in the late 1790s. He later studied medicine in Plymouth, MA, and practiced there and in Fayette and Mercer, ME. In the collections [at the Massachusetts Historical Society] we hold two notebooks that were kept by Croswell. The first is a mathematical notebook which contains definitions and problems in geometry, trigonometry, and surveying. The second is a physician’s notebook that contains notes on the treatment of diseases and injuries, as well as the use of some medicines.

The second notebook, relating to various diseases and treatments, is text-heavy in its content. Croswell – who had very nice, neat, and even handwriting – copied observations from published medical texts, especially the work of Dr. Benjamin Rush.”

See lots more beautiful pages at: Massachusetts Historical Society: the Beehive

Take Note Conference

A reader named LC tipped me off to this interesting conference happening this coming weekend at Harvard:

“Take Note” brings together scholars from literature, history, media studies, information science, and computer science to explore the past and future roles of note-taking across the university. Panelists will discuss the history of note-taking in different disciplines as well as the potential of emerging digital annotation tools.

Part of the conference is a virtual exhibition, with online images of some examples of note-taking throughout the ages.

Anyone can view it here.


Thanks for the info LC!