Grants and gifts

Gift Supports Life Science Collections

Posted October 31st, 2007 by Heather Denny

drosophila_small1.jpgA $400,000 gift from the Clive W. Lacy and Mona M. Lacy Trusts was recently awarded to the Libraries to fund library collections in the life sciences. 

The gift will impact many areas of research at MIT’s biomedical research centers, as well as MIT’s Department of Biological Engineering, Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), and Brain and Cognitive Sciences Department.  New collections in the life sciences will help support vital research in the fields of developmental biology, stem cells, genetics, and genomics.

In the past the Clive W. Lacy and Mona M. Lacy Trusts has also provided essential funding for library reference collections.  The Lacy family’s connection to MIT includes several MIT alumni; Clive W. Lacy ’15, John W. Lacy ’42, Thomas B. Lacy ’48, and William R. Lacy ’43.

HP and MIT Create Non-Profit Organization to Support Growing Community of DSpace Users

Posted July 18th, 2007 by Heather Denny


Today HP and the MIT Libraries announced the formation of the DSpace Foundation, a non-profit organization that will provide support to the growing community of organizations that use DSpace, an open source software solution for accessing, managing and preserving scholarly works in a digital archive. Jointly developed by HP and the MIT Libraries beginning in 2002, today more than 200 projects worldwide are using the software to digitally capture, preserve and share their artifacts, documents, collections and research data.

The foundation will assume responsibility for providing leadership and support to the ever growing DSpace community and promote even wider distribution and use. Michele Kimpton, formerly of the Internet Archive (, will serve as Executive Director of the DSpace Foundation. Prior to joining DSpace, Kimpton led web-archiving technology and services at the Internet Archive where, as one of its founding directors, she initiated and managed several open source software projects to collect, access and preserve web pages from national libraries and archives.

See full story

FACADE project aims to “future-proof” digital architectural files

Posted June 14th, 2007 by Heather Denny

MIT’s Stata Center, Photo by Andy Ryan

Photo of MIT’s Stata Center by Andy Ryan

A $724,415 grant from The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has been awarded to the MIT Libraries to address the challenge of preserving digital Computer-Aided Design (CAD) files.

CAD has revolutionized the architectural industry, giving architects the ability to create astounding three-dimensional models.  However CAD models exist only in proprietary digital formats that are ever-changing and short-lived, making them difficult to preserve and manage over time.  Using the designs of renowned architect Frank Gehry and his work on MIT’s Stata Center as a test bed, the FACADE (Future-proofing Architectural Computer-Aided Design) project will study CAD architectural documents and create preservation strategies to stem their potential loss.

Over the next two years the MIT Libraries’ Digital Libraries Research Group (DLRG) will work with MIT’s School of Architecture and Planning to research the primary software products (such as CATIA®, AutoCAD® and Microstation®) that produce architectural CAD models. With the guidance of former dean of the School of Architecture and Planning Bill Mitchell, the researchers will examine the role of CAD files in the life cycle of modern architecture and building construction including the entire digital and paper trail from early designs and sketches to internal communications regarding onsite revisions. They will seek strategies for long-term preservation of this material and also investigate the optimal use of digital preservation archives, such as the DSpace digital repository system, to provide open-source solutions.

Read the full article in BiblioTech (pages 8-9)
Visit the FACADE project web page

Music at MIT oral history CDs

Posted June 1st, 2007 by Christie Moore

The Music at MIT Oral History Project was established by the Lewis Music Library in 1999 to document the history of music at MIT; a recent grant from Lionel Kinney ’53 will allow the program to expand. Library assistant Forrest Larson has conducted several interviews each year and some are now available on compact disc.

Click on a name to see the Barton library catalog record:


  • Jeanne Bamberger. Interview no. 1, May 27, 2005; Interview no. 2, June 7, 2005.
    ML385.M86.B36 2006 v.1-2
  • John Corley. Interview no. 1, August 19, 1999; Interview no. 2, September 3, 1999; Interview no. 3, December 10, 1999.
    ML385.M86.C67 2006 v.1-3
  • Cherry Emerson. Interview no. 1, November 28, 2000; Interview no. 2, November 30, 2000.
    ML385.M86.E46 2006 v.1-2
  • Stephen Erdely. Interview no. 1, March 24, 1999; Interview no. 2, August 4, 1999.
    ML385.M86.E74 2006 v.1-2
  • Herb Pomeroy. Interview no. 1, December 14, 1999; Interview no. 2, April 5, 2000; Interview no. 3, April 26, 2000.
    ML385.M86.P66 2006 v.1-3
  • Claudia Von Canon. Interview no. 1, October 3, 2001; Interview no. 2, October 9, 2001.
    ML385.M86.V66 2006 v.1-2

CDs circulate for 3 days (limit of 5, no renewals). The Lewis Music Library is located in Bldg. 14E-109 and library hours are posted on the web.

Facsimiles of early music manuscripts

Posted May 22nd, 2007 by Christie Moore

Thanks to a memorial donation from Dr. Richard Breed ’73, the Lewis Music Library has been able to order facsimile editions of several important medieval and renaissance music manuscripts. These editions are of great value for teaching early music and music notation in general, and they are also beautiful in themselves. Here are some recent arrivals.

Click on an image to see its Barton library catalog record:


Frühe Lautentabulaturen im Faksimile
= Early lute tabulatures in facsimile.
M140.F78 2003
[Special Collections]


Il codice Squarcialupi: Ms. Mediceo Palatino
87, Biblioteca laurenziana di Firenze.
M2.S72 1992
[Special Collections]


Biblioteca apostolica vaticana, MS Urbinate
Latino 1411.
ML94.5.B53814 2006
[Special Collections]


Hildegard, Saint. Lieder: Faksimile
Riesencodex (Hs. 2).
M2112.H44.S9 1998
[Special Collections]


Basses danses dites de Marguerite d’Autriche.
GV1796.B28.B27 1987
[Special Collections]

The Lewis Music Library is located in Bldg. 14E-109 and library hours are posted on the web.

Lewis Music Library receives $250,000 to fund oral history project

Posted January 31st, 2007 by Heather Denny

The Lewis Music Library recently received a $250,000 gift from Lionel Kinney (1953) to support the Music at MIT Oral History Project. The project was started by the library in 1999 to document the history of music at MIT through recorded audio interviews with current and retired MIT music faculty, staff, former students, and visiting artists.


For over 100 years, music has been a vibrant part of MIT’s culture. Kinney’s gift will help ensure this legacy is preserved for the historical record by providing the funding needed to conduct in-depth interviews with five individuals per year for the next five years. It will also allow the library to identify key interview subjects and obtain information about MIT’s music history that has not been documented in other sources.

As interviews are completed, they will be available for listening in the library. Written transcripts will also be available. For more information about the project and to see a list of recorded interviews, go to

MIT awarded $1.5 million for research on new search technologies for digital libraries

Posted December 13th, 2006 by Heather Denny

MIT recently received a $1,500,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for the next phase of a project that promises to create new search technologies for digital libraries.

The project, called SIMILE, brings together researchers from the MIT Libraries Digital Library Research Group (DLRG) and the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) to create next-generation search technology using Semantic Web standards–a group of standards developed by the World Wide Web Consortium to promote large-scale interoperability and reusability of content on the Web.

“With digital content increasing at a rapid rate; searching for, sorting through, and managing millions of digital documents is a serious challenge for today’s libraries and the libraries of tomorrow,” said MacKenzie Smith, Associate Director for Technology at MIT Libraries. Semantic Web technologies offer a way to make searching and navigating large digital libraries easier.

The new SIMILE work funded by the Mellon Foundation will focus on building software tools that can be used with large collections of digital content from the higher education and cultural heritage sectors. These will include authoring and editing tools, searching and browsing tools, tools for data management, and storage technologies to meet the needs of scholars, researcher and students. SIMILE technology will also be applied to DSpace, the open source digital archiving platform created by the MIT Libraries and Hewlett-Packard to manage and make accessible millions of digital documents including research articles and scientific databases.

$75,000 d’Arbeloff grant funds library instruction for first-year chemistry students

Posted December 13th, 2006 by Heather Denny

The Libraries were awarded a $75,000 grant from the d’Arbeloff Fund for Excellence in Education to introduce first-year students to the scientific research process and provide them with the skills needed to find, evaluate and use information successfully. The project will focus on students taking 3.091, Introduction to Solid State Chemistry, a large freshman level chemistry course with an enrollment of over 400 students. Students will be taught how to:

Identify and critically evaluate a variety of potential sources of information relevant to their course work.
Determine the most appropriate tool(s) or resource(s) for their information requirements and develop effective search strategies for their use.
Properly cite information sources used in assignments.
Gain skills that are transferable to new subject areas and valuable throughout their educational careers.

The d’Arbeloff Fund for Excellence in Education was established through a generous $10 million grant from Brit, SM ’61, and Alex d’Arbeloff. Projects funded in the program are designed to enhance and potentially transform the academic and residential experience of MIT’s undergraduate students. Funding for the Libraries’ project is provided for one year, with the possibility of continuation for a second year. For more information on library instruction programs see:

Archives December exhibit announces a grant from the Fred J. Brotherton Charitable Foundation

Posted December 1st, 2006 by Lois Beattie

William Barton RogersMIT’s founder, William Barton Rogers, was born 202 years ago on December 7. It is appropriate, then, that the Institute Archives and Special Collections, in its December Object of the Month exhibit, announces a grant from the Fred J. Brotherton Charitible Foundation to perform conservation work on one hundred documents from the Rogers papers, one of MIT’s most important historical collections. The grant includes funds to convert the guide to the Rogers papers to EAD (Encoded Archival Description), an encoding standard for electronic archival finding aids, to make information about the collection available on the World Wide Web.

Tango Club donates CDs to the Lewis Music Library

Posted November 20th, 2006 by Christie Moore

The MIT Tango Club recently made a donation of 89 compact discs to the Lewis Music Library. The gift includes historic performances by artists such as Rodolfo Biagi, Miguel Calo, Francisco Canaro, Angel D’Agostino, Juan d’Arienzo, Carlos di Sarli, Edgardo Donato, Osvaldo Fresedo, Pedro Laurenz, Ricardo Tanturi, and Orquesta Tipica Victor.

The first discs are on the shelves and ready to circulate. To find them, go to Barton advanced search, set “Formats/Types:” to CDs, and search for the subject Tangos.

Other subjects you can explore:
Popular music — Argentina.
Popular music — Argentina — 1921-1930.
Popular music — Argentina — 1931-1940.
Popular music — Argentina — 1941-1950.
Popular music — Argentina — 2001-2010.
Underground dance music.

Music compact discs circulate for 3 days (limit of 5, no renewals). The library is located in Bldg. 14E-109 and library hours are posted on the web.