Disability History Hackathon, or…How to crowdsource over 200 websites!

To mark Disability History month, 24 volunteers assembled in the History Faculty on a cold and grey last day of term with an additional 12 joining the event via Teams. The mission? To find quality websites for a Bodleian Libraries’ guide on disability history resources. Prof Rob Iliffe opened the event by thanking all for contributing to the Faculty’s commitment to foster teaching and research in disability history.

Photo shows a tiered lecture theatre with participants looking towards the speaker.

Photo by Rachel D’Arcy Brown

After lunch and a handy crash course on advanced Google searching by Bethan Jenkins, students, researchers, librarians, and staff from the University’s Disability Advisory Service (DAS) settled down with their laptops to surf the web. Individuals were given broad topics to focus on. In just under two hours, an astonishing 226 resources were recorded, covering all periods and forms of disability. This is a fantastic achievement by the volunteer hackers and more than we could have hoped for.

The History Faculty Library trainee, Alice Shepherd, will next design a user-friendly version of the guide and add helpful contextual information. When completed at some point in 2023, the guide will be open to anybody in the world who is interested in disability history and looking for research resources. Watch this space!

Photo shows a laptop on a table in the History Fculty Common Room

Photo by Helen Young

As an event format, this jointly organised hybrid hackathon was a great success and will be a template for similar initiatives in the future. It used an inclusive, accessible, and collaborative approach to crowdsource quality resources for research and the public good. And it was fun! There may have been cake in between and drinks at the end for the survivors….

The effort to collate quality resources has not stopped. Individuals wishing to nominate a resource for the disability history guide are warmly invited to do so, using the input form at https://oxford.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/disability-history-hackathon-input-form.

Our thanks and gratitude also go to the History Faculty and their staff for supporting the event in many ways, and to all the library and DAS staff who helped with the organisation and delivery of the event.

Dr Sloan Mahone, History Faculty & Isabel Holowaty, Bodleian Libraries

Disability History Hackathon Friday 2 December 2022, 14:00-18:15 – please join us

Snippet from Bodleian Library  MS. Bodl. 264, 74v, showing a group of blind men following each other

Bodleian Library MS. Bodl. 264, fol. 74v, Bodleian Library, CC BY-NC. Click to view in Digital.Bodleian.

Calling all staff and students of Oxford University: are you interested in disability history? Do you like locating quality research materials on the internet? Please join us and a group of volunteers at the Disability History Hackathon on Friday 2 December to find resources for a guide to Disability History resources.

Cartoon image of an owl wearing headphones and working on a laptop.After brief training on advanced Google searches, you will work individually or in small groups on identifying research resources (databases, archives, websites, etc.) on an aspect of disability history of your choice. You will create brief descriptions for each resource.

We expect to spend up to 2 hours on the Hackathon with a tea / coffee break in between and a reception at the end.

You will be able to join in person in the History Faculty, George St, or remotely. All rooms are accessible. This is event is organised for staff and students of Oxford University. Spaces are limited so early booking is recommended. Register here.

What will you get out of it?

  • Discover research materials for disability history
  • Learn advanced Google search from a professional librarian
  • Network with other researchers
  • Join a community-led project to create an online guide for disability history

What do you need?

Photo of a paralysed child strapped in a walking frame and wearing splints. From R.W. Lovett, Treatment of Infantile

Robert Williamson Lovett, Treatment of Infantile Paralysis (1916) – Wellcome Collection, United Kingdom – CC BY

An interest in, knowledge of or enthusiasm in disability resources and/or disability history.

Technical requirements:

  • Remote: computer with Teams or Zoom, camera and microphone
  • Onsite: a laptop; ideally Eduroam wifi account (wifi access can be provided)
  • Recommended: headphones or earphones

More information about the day, handouts, slides, etc. will be shared with participants in advance.

Contact library.history@bodleian.ox.ac.uk if you have any questions.

UK Disability History Month 2022

To mark UK Disability History Month, from 16th November to 16th December, we have highlighted some of our collections in order to create a display focusing on the history of mental health.

In addition to the books on our display we also have a selection of e-books exploring the topic, which can be read remotely. Click on the book covers below to access their SOLO records. You’ll just need to sign in using your Single Sign On (SSO).

If you’re interested in further investigating disability in research and teaching, Wadham College are offering a free Cross-College Curriculum Diversity Workshop on the 4th November. See here for more details.

To find out more about UK Disability History Month please visit their dedicated website here.

Black History Month 2022

To mark Black History Month, from 1st to 31st October, we have created a display from our collections focusing on contemporary discourses surrounding issues of imperialism, discrimination, and experiences of systemic racism.

As well as physical books we also have a variety of e-books which explore these issues. The following e-books are available online for Oxford University members to read remotely – just make sure you sign into SOLO with your ‘Single Sign On’ first. Click on the book covers below to access their SOLO records.

Throughout October the University will be hosting a series of exhibitions and lectures for Black History Month. See here for more details.

For more information about Black History Month 2022 please visit the dedicated website here.

Undergraduate and Taught Postgraduate Welcome Tours 2022

Welcome tours to the Radcliffe Camera (including the History Faculty Library) are now available for undergraduates and taught postgraduate students to book.

You can book a place on one of our tours here:

Getting started: Undergraduates and taught postgraduates | Bodleian Libraries (ox.ac.uk)

Tours last approximately 30 minutes and will run on the following dates and times in 0th and 1st weeks of Michaelmas Term:

Wednesday 5th to Friday 7th October – 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm

Monday 10th to Friday 14th October – 11am, 3pm

We look forward to welcoming you to the library and introducing you to our collections and services.

Book launch 24 February: The Global Merchants by Joseph Sassoon

Join Joseph Sassoon in conversation with Professor Abigail Green (Brasenose College, Oxford) for the launch of his new book, The Global Merchants: The Enterprise and Extravagance of the Sassoon Dynasty (Allen Lane, 24 Feb 2022) (9780241388648).

Thursday 24 February, 5.15-6.15pm, Lecture Theatre, Weston Library

Book your free ticket now.Cover of J. Sassoon's Global Merchant book.

Joseph Sassoon opens the family archives to tell the story of one of the great business dynasties in the East of the nineteenth century.

The Sassoons were Jewish exiles from Ottoman Baghdad who forged a mercantile juggernaut from their new home in colonial Bombay.

In the process they formed a vast network of agents, informants and politicians and came to bridge East and West, culturally as well as commercially.

History Day 2021 on 4 November

[re-blogged from https://historycollections.blogs.sas.ac.uk/programme/]

History Day 2021 on a background an early printed map

History Day 2021 will take place on Thursday, 4 November 11am-4.30pm. It will be held online in Zoom.

History Day brings together students, researchers and anyone with an interest in history with professionals from archives, libraries, publishers and other organisations with history collections from the UK and beyond. It is a free annual one-day event that is created collaboratively between the Institute of Historical Research and Senate House Library.

History Day 2021 has an environmental history theme. It will explore collections that capture the experiences of ordinary people, collectors and scientists, looking at nature, landscape, climate change and much more. View the programme.

You will also be able to explore content from a great variety of libraries, museums, galleries, archives and history organisations.

Sign up here and enjoy your day!

Maps and Mapping for Historians

Sheldon Tapestry Map of Oxfordshire

Sheldon Tapestry Map of Oxfordshire

Wed. 12 Feb. 3-4pm, Bahari Room, Weston Library

Please assemble by 2.55pm at the latest at security point, Parks Road entrance, having stored any bags in £1 lockers first.

Digital mapping with Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is widely used both in academia and commercially. The first part of the talk will focus on how GIS can be useful for Historic research with examples of how students can incorporate their own data onto a map and create interactive web maps which can help tell a story in engaging and novel ways.

Presenter: Heidi Clough

The second part of the class will focus on the Bodleian map collection which houses 1.5 million maps. From the Universe to the ground beneath our feet and from Ambridge to Zanzibar we have maps of everywhere, and all these maps are available for study. We have in our collections the oldest single sheet map of the Country as well as one of the most important agriculture maps with the plan of the field systems around Laxton from 1635. These and other beautiful and important maps are on display in our Talking Maps exhibition.

Tour leader: Stuart Ackland

Please note that there is limited availability. Email Isabel.holowaty@bodleian.ox.ac.uk if you are interested.

 

Researching Archives training session

NEW SESSION ADDED! This session will also run Tue 25 Feb, 2-3.30pm.

Are you looking to level up your researching skills? Want to start your archival research and don’t know when to start? This session, run by Weston Library Senior Archivist Lucy McCann is for you!

Fri 28 February, 2-3.30pm

Lecture Theatre, Weston Library

This session provides an introduction to using archives for research and will cover

  • defining archives
  • archival arrangement
  • the practicalities of working with archival material
  • finding relevant archives
  • archives in the Bodleian, the University and further afield
  • web archives

No need to book. Just turn up.

Ecclesiastical History Sources for Postgraduates sessions

We are pleased to announce two sessions of interest to Postgraduates studying ecclesiastical history:

Ecclesiastical History for postgraduates: Introduction to using the Special Collections at the Weston Library

Thurs 30 Jan, 11am-1pm, Horton Room, Weston Library (make sure you store your bags in £1 lockers first)

This session will provide a practical introduction to using special collections at the Bodleian Libraries. We will outline the nature of the main Bodleian collections and explain how to find research material using online and printed finding aids. (This will include practical exercises for which a laptop will be useful.) We will end with the practicalities of ordering and handling manuscripts and how to cite them in your work.

Presenter: Matthew Holford (Tolkien Curator of Medieval Manuscripts) and Mike Webb (Early Modern Curator)

Please note that there is limited availability. Email Isabel.holowaty@bodleian.ox.ac.uk if you are interested.

Ecclesiastical History for postgraduates: Digital resources

Thurs 13 Feb, 11am-1pm, Horton Room, Weston Library (make sure you store your bags in £1 lockers first)

A two hour seminar during which key online resources relating to church history, covering largely Christianity from medieval to early 20th century, will be demonstrated. The resources include bibliographical and reference tools, digital source materials and how to keep up-to-date with new publications. Presenters: Isabel Holowaty (History Librarian) and Hilla Wait (Theology & Philosophy Librarian)

Please note that there is limited availability. Email Isabel.holowaty@bodleian.ox.ac.uk if you are interested.