I’m sure that most of you who are into obscure textiles information, know about the Digital Archive of Documents on Weaving, Lace and Related Topics. Ralph Griswold scans out-of-copyright books, and makes them available for download as PDF’s.
In my silk research adventures, I’ve gotten hold of a lot of fascinating old books. Some of them are decades old, and others stretch back a couple of centuries. Some of them have information on hand-processing silk which has faded from modern knowledge in most of the West.
I’ve started a collaboration with Ralph, sending him my books a couple at a time to scan and render into PDF’s. He’s posting them on the Archive, and I’m also making a Library Page on wormspit.com.
Right now, there are only two – more will be posted as the scans are completed. Presently on the virtual shelf, a short book for young readers called “The Story of Silk,” and a fascinating in-depth “Letter from the Secretary of the Treasury” – a remnant of one of the many attempts to establish silk in the US. Currently in the works, an 1830’s translation of Chinese manuscripts, and a Young Learners type book on sericulture.
Oh my gods … seriously!!!
*runs over and downloads/prints everything new there*
You gave me the website a while ago, and I have printed everything there. Now this whole silk passion is expanding outside the SCA and I can’t get enough.
Thank you so much!
Hee… I’m glad you’re enjoying it! I know that he’s added a couple of pieces outside of the stuff I’ve been sending him, recently – so definitely worth checking out again.
Awesome! I love arcane knowledge, even though I have no practical use for it. I don’t really need to know about the history of silk/weaving/lace to use it, but it’s so much FUN!
The thing for me is, there’s no Alden Amos Big Book of Silk Reeling – there has not been a good modern English book on how to work with silk by hand published in American or England for over a century. I’ve finally found some sources out of India, and they’ve been very helpful – but for me, a lot of the older books are practical as well as historically interesting.
And yes, much fun! I’m working on a transcription of an early 1600’s book – they would clean the silkworm’s trays with wine, and cense them with burning gums and herbs. I should get treated so well!
LOL! Sounds like they had a life I’d envy- right up to the point where I got dropped in hot water. And the diet would be monotonous!
The Texas A&M Insect Collection over here has a couple of drawers of different silks made by different moths (most seemed to be roylei x pernyi crosses). Dunno how helpful that would be, and it’s probably nothing spectacular, but if you are driving through the area, it might be worth a look for your project. I can take pictures of the stuff as well if you wish
actually, I got to visit with Ric Peigler, who donated some of the cases… I would indeed like to visit some time, there are apparently several good items there.
You know, there is a large number of people (librarians, publishers, etc.) who are wholly opposed to what Google is doing. It baffles me. In terms of preservation and accessibility, Google is doing a remarkable service.
Is it wrong of me that I’m looking at the oak and pecan fallen bits and thinking firewood and carving wood?
Well deserved, in my opinion. Congratulations.