Edward Gorey

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Edward Gorey

apr 17, 2015, 11:08 am

"The Edward Gorey Personal Library collection at San Diego State University library comprises over 21,000 books. These are the actual books that Edward St. John Gorey (1924-2000) collected and read in his lifetime. 5,437 titles are cataloged now. ..." -- http://library.sdsu.edu/egpl

I actually see over 6,000 in the SDSU catalog. There is an RSS Feed for the catalog, so we could catch up to what's been cataloged so far, and then maybe have someone who is willing to keep up via the RSS Feed as new books are cataloged. Just an idea. I think Edward Gorey would be a very popular addition.

apr 17, 2015, 11:18 am

Another fabulous potential LL.

I'm unable to commit to helping, but wanted to indicate my interest if that helps others make a decision on where to devote resources. Much appreciated, I think the Legacy Library feature on LT is a peerless resource.

apr 17, 2015, 11:23 am

I'd help.

apr 20, 2015, 11:13 am

Oh man. This would be so great!

Redigerat: apr 20, 2015, 4:17 pm

I'd love to help out on this one!

ETA: April's State of the Thing is going out tomorrow, and I'm including a mention, so hopefully that will get some more eyes/potential helpers.

apr 20, 2015, 4:51 pm

They're definitely not just including Gorey's own books, though, so if folks are going to dig into this one, beware - the first results are recent editions of Gorey's works in various languages. So we'll need to figure out what's up with those (looks like it may be just a few, at least).

maj 7, 2015, 1:19 pm

So, is our first step to contact the Special Collections department to ask what's up with the book published after 2000? (I can do that, if no one else wants to.)

maj 22, 2015, 12:17 pm

I contacted the library to point out the issue. The librarian who got back to me said those books were sent by the Gorey estate and she'll fix the collection locations so that they show up only as part of the Gorey Collection, but not as part of the Gorey Personal Library. She also said she'd keep an eye out for this sort of thing in the future.

maj 23, 2015, 12:30 am

That complicates things, but it's still a wonderful project. Would love to help out.

maj 23, 2015, 2:39 pm

So, the other big problem I see is that they are apparently still in the process of cataloging the library. (The original post says that there are 5,437 titles that have been cataloged, but searching the terms "Edward Gorey Personal Library" now returns 6257 results.) So, do we want to start working on it with the understanding that we may have to go back through the collection again to add more books, or do we want to wait until the cataloging is done (however long that takes)?

maj 23, 2015, 3:24 pm

Are they cataloguing in a linear fashion, adding to some "tail", or interspersing books by category? If it's the former, I don't see a problem with starting to list here even if more are being added. The latter could present a serious chore, though.

maj 25, 2015, 1:47 pm

The original post says there are "over 6000" entries, and acknowledges Gorey's library is an ongoing project at SDSU.

Also: "There is an RSS Feed for the catalog, so we could catch up to what's been cataloged so far, and then maybe have someone who is willing to keep up via the RSS Feed as new books are cataloged. Just an idea."

My original proposal was to catalog what's there and have someone volunteer to be the "caretaker," plugging in new additions via the RSS feed. It wouldn't matter if they intersperse by category since new editions will be pushed via RSS feed. You'll only see the new stuff.

Lots of LLs are ongoing, and present chronology issues (I'm looking at you Arthur Conan Doyle).

maj 27, 2015, 7:05 pm

My apologies for not reading your original post more carefully; I think your "caretaker" idea is a good one. How do you think we should split up the books that have already been cataloged? (There don't appear to be lot numbers or box numbers in the records, but maybe we could split them up by publication date?) What kind of extra information (if any) do you think we should put in the comments? Maybe a link back to the SDSU catalog record?

maj 28, 2015, 2:21 pm

Absolutely a link back to the SDSU record, and I'd propose adding whatever they've included in their "notes" section on each title. That way you could search for, say, volumes that have marginalia. It'd be great to get an image of his blind stamp and any other provenance markers he used (perhaps a bookplate at some point?) to include in his gallery.

maj 28, 2015, 3:06 pm

Could someone link to the list to be entered and designate chunks that we could claim, so as not to interfere with each other?

maj 29, 2015, 6:02 pm

>15 LolaWalser:

There isn't a static list. You have to go to the SDSU catalog and do a search on "Edward Gorey Personal Library" to retrieve all of the books in the collection. I think we're still trying to figure out how to split it into "chunks," under the circumstances.

Redigerat: maj 30, 2015, 10:49 am

If it's certain new additions are made only to the end, why don't we copy-paste pages into a Wiki and divide them there?

ETA: I mean catalogue page numbers, not the entire title lists!

maj 31, 2015, 2:51 pm

>If it's certain new additions are made only to the end . . .

Unfortunately they're not. The search results can be sorted in a few different ways, such as title, author, publication order and reverse publication order, but there's no way of sorting them by date added to the catalog, as far as I can tell. (And even if there was, we might still run into issues with things like added copies, etc.)

Here's what the search results look like, if that helps (and assuming that the link isn't session based):


maj 31, 2015, 4:43 pm

Oh, I see. Looks like there's nothing to it but to wait until they finish...

jan 14, 2016, 9:19 pm

Hi, I'm the curator of the Edward Gorey Personal Library and would be happy to help you out or to answer any questions or take suggestions. :)

jan 14, 2016, 9:42 pm

>20 lsalem123:

Hello! Thanks for dropping by! So... I suppose the first question is, is there now a "stable" catalogue of Gorey's books available online that we could use to create a Legacy Library here on LT?

jan 14, 2016, 11:04 pm

Lets see. What do you mean? I could upload csv records but then with each reload would annotations people make in LT be lost?

jan 14, 2016, 11:07 pm

for example, if there were 5,000 records loads and people annotated them but then we got another thousand catalogued, I think we'd have to reload the entire 6,000 overwriting the first load? So, we'd need a complete catalogue.

jan 15, 2016, 9:24 am

I'm pretty sure you can upload just the new records, without having to reload the whole collection all at once.

jan 15, 2016, 12:05 pm


jan 15, 2016, 1:41 pm

>23 lsalem123:

if there were 5,000 records loads and people annotated them but then we got another thousand catalogued

Sorry, I don't understand--are you saying you're still in the process of cataloguing the collection? Because that's what stopped us from using the records available so far.

>24 benjclark:

It depends on where the new additions end up. Wasn't that the problem above--there was no way for us to identify the chronologically new as they were being mixed up with the older records?

jan 15, 2016, 2:16 pm

Yes, that is right. We have a certain number with cataloging completed. That number will continue to increase although not as quicklyas we'd like.

jan 15, 2016, 2:19 pm

oh i can do the chronologicalbit on my end. so f that was the issue i think we're good. The semester starts next week so I will chime in again once I getback to workon the collection. Meantime, happy to field any questions!

jan 15, 2016, 3:08 pm

>28 lsalem123:

Hi! Well... I suppose we're still facing the problem mentioned in >18 Katya0133:

Any chance of adding a "Date added" sort to your online record? The problem is that without that we couldn't identify the new additions, they'd get mixed up with the old stuff and we'd risk missing titles. (Constantly scanning the records for new titles popping up among those already entered just isn't practical...)

jan 15, 2016, 3:36 pm

If that's possible, that'd be great. Otherwise, see message 12 where we talked about this before.

Redigerat: jan 16, 2016, 12:03 am

>29 LolaWalser:

"Any chance of adding a "Date added" sort to your online record?"

There might be another way of handling this if lsalem123 can download the MARC records in .mrc format and send them all in the same file. E.g., run a batch report that pulls all of the bib records that have the field identifying the books as part of the Gorey Collection. In a year, run a new batch report that pulls all of the records that (1) have the Gorey Collection field but (2) aren't already in the first batch.

How this would actually work would depend on the cataloging system she's using, but I think it would be pretty straightforward from the perspective of programming logic.

One downside of my proposed method is that it would require storing the first batch of records until the second batch needed to be generated, which might not be practical in all systems. However, there might still be ways of deduping the records using something like MarcEdit, if we had local bib record identifiers to work with. Another downside of my proposed method is that we'd probably lose information about multiple copies, but I'm since I'm already trying to work around the issue of the library owning both Gorey and non-Gorey copies of a book, I'm not sure that can be helped.

Redigerat: jun 6, 2021, 7:13 pm

Det här meddelandet har tagits bort av dess författare.

jan 17, 2016, 12:34 am

>32 amarie:

"I suggest that a good starting point for comparing lists for updates would be the OCLC number."

Oooh, good call.

mar 9, 2016, 5:34 pm

Hi all, I have added thousands of titles in the Edward Gorey Personal library to Library Thing under the account frankohara as I wanted to test the load. The real name and account info is for Edward Gorey. I am certain I will get the legacy library named changed but have contacted jdl about this. Thanks for your patience with this process. Linda

mar 9, 2016, 5:54 pm

Thanks very much, Linda, that's great. How many more books do you think you'll be able to add? Looks like a truly fabulous collection.

mar 9, 2016, 6:29 pm

5,840 titles have been added. I am still tweaking things to get these to appear to the public.

Redigerat: mar 9, 2016, 9:10 pm

>34 EdwardGoreyLibrary:

Oh my, that's a large collection, and still only a minority fraction of the whole! Thank you for the work, I've marked it as an Interesting Library.

ETA There appear to be many duplicates, are these true double copies in the collection, or an issue with importing / adding titles?

mar 11, 2016, 1:39 pm

Thanks. Yes, that was pointed out so I am dedupe-ing the file and reloading. So, thank you for your patience. You can expect about half of those books 2,500.

My next step will be to run a current list to upload and I will upload but this may take a week or so. So titles you see now are in the library but are not everything catalogued.

mar 11, 2016, 9:18 pm

So far, I've had success loading 464 records. Will continue to work on this.

mar 18, 2016, 5:34 pm

I reloaded the book data and now there are 2,207 records loaded. This will be a Legacy Library soon:)

Redigerat: mar 18, 2016, 7:22 pm

Great, but it seems something about the input data has changed--the titles seem to have been "fused" with the author names, so that practically all the new additions are not getting combined into LT works. I don't know how important this could be to you, and we can of course combine everything manually...

Redigerat: mar 22, 2016, 11:15 am

Thank you! Interesting. I will look into it.

apr 22, 2017, 4:28 am

Detta konto har stängts av för spammande.

nov 1, 2018, 2:30 pm

With the new biography out, Born to be Posthumous, I thought I'd check in on Gorey's Legacy Library. Looks like not much has happened in a couple years. Anyway we can help?

mar 26, 2021, 4:09 pm

Edward Gorey's high school yearbooks (his copies) are up for auction: https://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/100267658_edward-gorey-s-high-school-yearbo...