A.G. Leventis Scanner Operator

The A.G. Leventis Foundation has generously funded a two-year post for a scanner operator (the A.G. Leventis Scanner Operator) to work on digitising items from the Library's collection.

June - September 2019

Aaron Fordwoh was appointed and started work on 10 June. A new scanner was bought for the project from the John Casey bequest, and Aaron has started working on some of the tract volumes which have not previously been digitised. Some of these have presented interesting challenges, as when they were originally bound, any oversized pages were folded along the edges to fit the standard binding size - the folded edges have become very fragile along the folds over the years. It is very helpful to digitise them now before they disintegrate completely.

September 2019-June 2021

The areas of collection prioritised for this project are now as follows:

  1. The diaries, notebooks, sketchbooks and published works from the Robert Wood collection (27 volumes): http://archives.ulrls.lon.ac.uk/Details/archive/110018917 (copy & paste the link into the browser)
  2. The travel diaries of Theodore and Mabel Bent (25 volumes): http://archives.ulrls.lon.ac.uk/Details/archive/110018900 (copy & paste the link into the browser)
  3. Tract volumes held by the library. Selected items (around 150 out of 5,395) from these were digitised in 2015. There are many remaining tracts to digitize, bound into 483 volumes.

Our scanner operator, Aaron Fordwoh, made solid progress on this work until the global pandemic and national lockdown forced us to close the library on 19 March 2020. Initially Aaron was able to do some work remotely improving the metadata and page numbering for the scanning already done. From May 2020 we took advantage of the government furlough scheme for this role, and intend to use the money saved to extend Aaron’s contract by two months to make up much of the time lost.

From late July Aaron was able to work in the library again and resume the scanning project. To date, the following scanning has been done:

  • 3.83 TB of data
  • 256 Volumes, 2,398 chapters (208 tracts, 48 manuscripts)
  • 130,692 pages (116,817 tract pages, 13,875 manuscript pages)
  • Appoximately 65,346,025 words

Digitised volumes are now starting to be made freely available to all via links in the library catalogue, or at the following location:

Vesuvius sketch: Page from the sketchbook of Giovanni Battista Borra, 1751 (volume 16 of the Wood Collection)

Theatre at Laodicea: Page from the sketchbook of Giovanni Battista Borra, 1751 (volume 16 of the Wood Collection)

Illustration from Furtwängler, Adolf, Neue Denkmäler antiker Kunst. 1897