The Library’s newest crowdsourcing campaign are the vast notebooks of Frederick Hockley, a 19th century British Spiritualist who believed he could communicate with the dead.
The Library’s Rare Book and Special Collections Division holds a dazzling array of 15th-century woodcuts. Taken together, they display the experimentation of artistry and design in the years following the invention of the printing press.
In 1619, German astronomer Johannes Kepler wrote “Harmonices Mundi” (“Harmony of the Worlds”), a book that tried to understand the mystery of the polyhedral designs of viruses. Four centuries later, the same designs are seen in the building blocks of COVID-19. The Library has copies of Kepler’s work in the Rare Books and Special Collections Division.
Nearly 50,000 title pages that accompanied copyright registrations dating back to the foundation of the country are now online for the first time, featuring works by some of the nation’s most famous authors.
French zoologist Pierre Belon began modern scientific study of fish in 1551 with the publication of “L’historie naturelle des estranges poissons marins,” or, “The Natural History of Strange Marine Fish.”
Reginald Scot’s 1584 book, “The Discoverie of Witchcraft” is one of the most influential books on magic ever published. The Library of Congress has a first edition.