Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I See Dead People's Books

I See Dead People's Books is a group on LibraryThing that works to enter the libraries of famous dead people as LibraryThing catalogs -- also known as "Legacy Libraries". It is a very diverse group of people from Thomas Jefferson to Tupac Shakur and numbers 49 individual libraries at this time.

Do you read what they read?

Marie Antoinette has 737 books in her library and her own member page. There are no heavy treatises on philosophy or theology, no law books, just piles of novels and plays, with a sprinkling of reference books and history. It seems Marie read for pleasure as do most of us.

Benjamin Franklin has 3,742 books in his library. The following are a few of the tags used: Politics and Government (273), Great Britain (238), Parliament (156), United States (147), History (125), Poetry (113), Church of England (88), Sermons (87), Medicine (82), Electricity (76).

Marilyn Monroe has 261 books in her library. At the time of her death, Monroe's library contained volumes covering a wide range of topics, including religion, literature, cooking, and politics. There were over 400 books, but when they were auctioned by Christie's not all were recorded.

Many more libraries are in progress and you can see the list here. It is interesting to go poking through the books of the rich and famous.

Thomas Jefferson
Danilo Kis
Tupac Shakur
Wolfgang Mozart
Isabella Stewart Gardner
Sylvia Plath
Marie Antoinette
Marilyn Monroe
Aaron Copland
Mary Hartford
T. E. Lawrence
PA General Assembly
Susan B. Anthony
Alfred Deakin
Walker Percy
John Adams
W.H. Auden
Ezra Pound
Ernest Hemingway
Henry Lee
Lady Jean Skipwith
James & Mary Murray
Cuthbert Ogle
George S. Patton, Jr.
John Worthington
James Smithson
F. Scott Fitzgerald
John Muir
Mather Family (Increase, Cotton, &c.)
Samuel Johnson
Samuel Roth
Joseph Smith
Hans Peter Koch
Lewis Morris
Sarah Willoughby
Benjamin Franklin
Charles Lamb
Dabney Carr
Comte de Fortsas
Theodore Dreiser
Robert E. Howard
Joseph Priestley
Elbridge Gerry
William Wilberforce
Franz Kafka
John Askin
Jackie Gleason


Blogger Sheri Fenley said...

How very interesting. From a tour of the Special Collections at the University of the Pacific here in Stockton recently, I can tell you that all of the furniture from John Muir's library is in the reading room of the UOP's Special Collections and all of his journals are housed there as well. The drawings in those journals are extraordinary, do minutely detailed.

March 17, 2009 at 12:38 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home