UM Libraries Join HathiTrust

UM Community Now Has Access to 2.6 Million More Texts

Coral Gables, Florida, – October 13, 2011

The University of Miami has become a member of HathiTrust (, a partnership of major academic and research libraries collaborating in an extraordinary digital library initiative to preserve and provide access to the published record in digital form.

William Walker, Dean and University Librarian, announced today that the University’s HathiTrust membership will give the UM community access to an additional 2.6 million public domain books published before 1923. The volumes were primarily scanned from the collections of American and British research libraries, including The University of Michigan, Stanford, the New York Public Library, Oxford University, and Harvard,  primarily as part of the Google Books Project.

“University of Miami students and scholars will now have access to a significantly richer online collection of early imprints in all disciplines. The HathiTrust content gives the UM community access to a wealth of materials that were published long before the University was established, and it helps raise our resources to even greater stature,” said Walker.

As members of the Trust, members of the UM community will be able to search the Trust catalog and download imprints in the public domain. This will allow UM users to create private libraries of these electronic imprints. The UM Libraries will also be able to contribute digitized works that can be uploaded into the Trust’s repository.

For information on how to access HathiTrust content see

About the HathiTrust

Launched in 2008, HathiTrust has a growing membership currently comprising more than fifty partners.

Over the last two years, the partners have contributed more than 9 million volumes to the digital library, digitized from their library collections through a number of means including Google and Internet Archive digitization and in-house initiatives.

HathiTrust serves a dual role. First, as a trusted repository it guarantees the long-term preservation of the materials it holds, providing the expert curation and consistent access long associated with research libraries. Second, as a service for partners and a public good, HathiTrust offers persistent access to the digital collections. This includes viewing, downloading, and searching access to public domain volumes, and searching access to in copyright volumes. Specialized features are also available which facilitate access by persons with print disabilities, and allow users to gather subsets of the digital library into “collections” that can be searched and browsed.

Franz Liszt’s 200th Birthday!

Hungarian composer Franz Liszt (1811-1886) is considered by many to be “the supreme piano virtuoso of the 19th century” and is certainly among the greatest pianists of all time. Liszt’s solo recital tours of Europe in the 1840s evoked such an enthusiasm among his admirers that the craze was christened “Lisztomania”—predating the frenzy of “Beatlemania” by 120 years! To celebrate Liszt’s 200th birthday, the Marta and Austin Weeks Music Library is pleased to present a selection of scores and images of this prodigious composer and performer.

Meet the Staff: Lesbia Orta Varona

Nineteen sixty-six: a time before computers and online catalogs when microfilm was the norm and the Cuban Heritage Collection had not yet been established. Nineteen sixty-six: the year Lesbia Orta Varona joined the staff at the University of Miami Otto G. Richter Library. She has seen the library grow and change, welcoming new technology and adapting to the evolving needs of its patrons.

Lesbia’s journey with books began at an early age. She was a librarian at the national library in Havana, Cuba until 1962 when she and her husband decided to come to the States around the time when Cuban-U.S. relations broke down. Lesbia learned of an opening at Richter through her aunt, who was working at the UM library at the time.

Working part-time at the library while pursuing a bachelor’s degree at UM, Lesbia eventually went on to obtain a Masters in Library Science from Florida State University after three summers of intensive study.

“Now I look at my past and I don’t understand how I was able to do everything in order to achieve what I wanted. So for me it was very important to get that degree because it guaranteed in a certain way my future as a librarian,” Lesbia recalls.

Starting in acquisitions, Lesbia eventually moved on to work with U.S. government publications, all while collecting Cuban books and periodicals on the side. She remembers when, as the head of the Microforms and Reserves Department, computers were finally implemented for online cataloging in the 1980s. The Cuban materials she accumulated would later become part of today’s CHC collections.

A move to the 8th floor to work with Esperanza de Varona followed, and in 2003, with the help of a gift from The Goizueta Foundation, the Roberto C. Goizueta Pavilion was built on Richter’s second floor to house the Cuban Heritage Collection.

After all this time, Lesbia still finds pleasure in her work as bibliographer for the collection. “I am very happy with my job. I love to meet new people. I love to be able to help the students or anybody that comes from another university or institute [with their research]. It is important to feel like you can help other people to go ahead in their endeavors.”

When asked what’s next for her, Lesbia laughs and says “retirement,” although she’s not looking forward to it.

Apply for 2012 Graduate Fellows

Now accepting applications for 2012 Graduate Fellowships

All application materials for the 2012 Graduate Fellowships are due on February 1st. The CHC Graduate Fellowships are available for both pre-prospectus and dissertation research. Application guidelines and form .

CHC Graduate Fellow Clarisa Mondejar presents her research on life in Havana during the Spanish-American war

The Cuban Heritage Collection (CHC) Graduate Fellowships provide assistance to graduate students who wish to use the research resources available at the Cuban Heritage Collection at the University of Miami. Fellowships are available to doctoral candidates engaged in studies at a U.S. institution and whose families currently reside in the United States. The goal of the CHC Graduate Fellowships is to engage emerging scholars with the materials available in the Cuban Heritage Collection and thus contribute to the larger body of scholarship in Cuban, hemispheric, and international studies. Up to 12 fellowships will be awarded annually in two categories: (1) Research Fellowships, which will support graduate students who wish to use the Cuban Heritage Collection as a primary resource for a dissertation. (2) Pre-Prospectus Summer Fellowships, which will allow doctoral students to determine how the Cuban Heritage Collection may serve their research needs as they prepare the dissertation prospectus. The deadline for applications is February 1, 2012.

For more information and instructions on how to apply, see the Graduate Fellowships page.

To learn about research that past graduate fellows have undertaken, see the Current and Past Fellows page.

Paperless University

The University Libraries’ Digital Scholarship and Programs is proud to announce Paperless University, a new blog about our experiences becoming a paper-free department at the Otto G. Richter Library. Armed with iPads, we have spent the past two months learning what it takes to live without paper in the office environment, and are using the blog to share our knowledge with the world and foster a community of University of Miami students, faculty, and staff interested in the concept of going paperless.

Currently, our six department members constitute the blog’s only authors, but we hope to change this soon. We welcome and encourage other people from the UM community willing to go paperless in some aspect of their lives-whether as librarians, staff, students, researchers, or faculty-to register as authors and begin sharing. Comments on posts are also encouraged. We aim to make the site as participatory as possible, and are actively recruiting people to join us.

Bryanna Herzog serves as the blog’s managing editor, and is the contact person for questions related to it. “We’d love to welcome other authors from the University of Miami to the blog, and hope that browsing its posts will inspire some of you to join us.”

Sharp Focus: Photography Exhibit Event

Sharp Focus: A reception and presentation to celebrate the acquisition of the Michael L. Carlebach Photography Collection

Thursday, November 3, 2011
Reception 6:30 p.m. | Program 7:00 p.m.

Please join us for a special evening with University of Miami Professor Emeritus, photojournalist, and author, Michael L. Carlebach, along with University Professors J. Tomás López and Michelle I. Seelig, for a lively and insightful conversation on the influence of his work and the art and function of visual communication.

Carlebach’s photographs have been published in Time, People, The Miami Herald, and The New York Times.  He has written several scholarly histories of photography, including American Photojournalism Comes of Age and Working Stiffs: Occupational Portraits in the Age of Tintypes.  His latest book, Sunny Land: Pictures from Paradise, features a compilation of his unique view of life in South Florida.  An exhibition of his work is currently on display in the Richter Library.

J. Tomás López, MFA, is a professor in the Department of Art and Art History and head of its Electronic Media program at UM.  A renowned photographer, his images are included in the permanent collections of many museums worldwide, among them, the Library of Congress and the Bibliothèque Nationale de France.

Michelle I. Seelig, Ph.D., is a professor and the program director of Visual Journalism for the School of Communication at UM.  Her published scholarly works and research interests address the responsibilities of content producers in visual communication and examine the environmental photographer’s use of images to build awareness and evoke meaningful action.

Otto G. Richter Library
1300 Memorial Drive
University of Miami
Coral Gables

Seating for this event is extremely limited.  R.S.V.P. by October 27th to 305-284-3551 or

The Lynda and Michael Gordon Exhibition Program