Books and their Covers: Bookbindings in the Reed Collections


August 18, 2015 through November, 2015
Library’s flat and wall cases

The art of bookbindings mirror in miniature the changes in style and design in the world around us. From the 16th century to the present, books in this exhibit have been selected from the Reed collections to show the breadth of these designs, from the vellum covering of a sewn-through-the-fold paper text block to the accordion-folded artist’s book. Displayed are various binding structures, examples of endpaper designs, early bindings, publishers’ stamped cloth bindings, and the creativity of book artists.

Reed in the Global Sixties

May 1 – June 15, 2015
Library flat and wall cases


This exhibit highlights how the political and social phenomena experienced across the U.S. unfolded on campus. The students of History 309, taught by Shane Dillingham this semester, explored youth culture and social movements throughout Latin America during the long ’60s, contextualized into a global perspective. In their investigation of Reed College’s engagement with black politics, women’s liberation, and U.S. foreign policy, they concluded that while Reed is rightly regarded as a very insular, somewhat myopic space, the campus was not immune to the influences of social and ideological forces from around the globe.

Emilio Pucci: Fashion Impressario Reed MA ’37

January 15 – April 15, 2015
Flat Library Cases


The world-renowned fashion designer, Emilio Pucci, had a special relationship with Reed College, having attended Reed in 1936/37. President Dexter Keezer traded tuition, room, and board for Pucci’s time and expertise as a ski instructor, giving Reed the first ski team and, incidentally, giving the world the first of Pucci’s designs with the ski uniforms. On display are items, photos, and documents that connect Pucci to Reed and follow his long association with the college.

Encyclopedias: The Art of Organizing Knowledge

September 30–December 31, 2014
Flat Library Cases


Encyclopedias and dictionaries trace their history back to the ancient Greeks at the least. Pliny the Elder’s Naturalis Historia is accepted as the first true encyclopedia—in 37 volumes, and dictionaries date to the same period. Reed is fortunate in owning a remarkable collection of representative compilations, from Pliny in a 1600 German blackletter edition through Diderot’s Encyclopédie and a 1798 American version of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. Taken from the library’s special collections, the exhibit fills the library’s four flat cases and the wall case behind the reference desk.

New in Reed Digital Collections!

The library is happy to announce two new additions to Reed Digital Collections.

Nicholas Wheeler Physics Lectures

Nicholas Wheeler taught Physics at Reed from 1963 to 2010. Although his writings were never published, 27 volumes of his lecture notes on all the topics he taught were written out in his clear calligraphic script and bound for deposit in the Reed Library. These notes have become something of a cult classic and are still sought out by graduates of his classes. They have now been digitized and are presented in this collection for consultation and access by all.

Early Printing and Writing Collection

The Early Printing and Writing Collection consists of complete letters, documents, and manuscript books from all over Europe and several New World countries. Examples range from the early 15th century into the 20th century, with emphasis on the 16th and 17th centuries. From letters to tally books, archeological reports to war statistics, and Inquisition warrants to legal battles, these items are also of great historical interest worthy of scholarly study. They are unique and are only now available for such study.

Birds in Books

May 22 – August, 2014
Flat Library Cases


The variety and beauty of birds represented in books is amazing. From the well-thumbed bird guide to Thomas Bewick’s The History of British Birds, these feathered, winged, two-legged, warm-blooded egg-laying vertebrates are illustrated in every conceivable way. Selections from the library’s special collections will be on display showing both the oddities and beauties of this class of animal.

Small Presses: Celebrating the Joy of Reading and the Beauty of the Book March 11 – June, 2014


Presenting a selection of small press editions from Reed’s special collections, this exhibit shows works from the late 19th century England, with the seminal work of William Morris, through the small press movement in early 20th century America, the Pacific Northwest, and contemporary artist’s books.

Located in the Library flat cases just past the circulation desk and the wall case by the reference desk.

The Reed Library holds over four thousand titles in its rare books and
artist’s books collections. Many are limited editions produced by small,
independent presses. This exhibit presents a selection of small press
editions from Reed’s collection, beginning in the late 19th century England
with the seminal work of William Morris and surveying trends in the small
press movement in early 20th century America, the Pacific Northwest and
contemporary artist’s books.

Charles Rhyne: Scholarly Art Historian & Conservationist January 17–March 7, 2014


The Reed Library received the papers of Charles Rhyne, Professor Emeritus, from his wife, Barbara, after his death on April 14, 2013. The exhibit displays selected materials representing the breadth of his research and dedication to teaching, art conservation, high quality digital imagery and the use of the web, the paintings of John Constable, art exhibitions, and his three important scholarly websites.

Located in the Library flat cases just past the circulation desk.

Russia and Reed

November 1, 2013 – January 31, 2014
Library flat cases and wall case

From the first class in Russian grammar in 1939 to the Russian Language House to students’ Russian travels, Reed has long been interested in things Russian. On display is a selection of Russian materials from the library’s special collections: maps, photographs, rare books, propaganda posters, and materials related to Russian faculty and student travels.

A. E. Doyle at Reed

August 23 – November 2013
Library Flat Cases

A. E. Doyle (1877-1928), perhaps the most important Portland architect, designed the iconic first buildings at Reed–Eliot Hall and the Old Dorm Block. Anna Mann, Prexy, the Student Union, and the Woodstock Houses followed soon after. Appointed to the Reed Board of Regents in 1919, he was integral to campus history until his death. Reed acquired his architectural library in the 1990s.