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Coming Soon, a New Illustrated History of the National Library of Medicine

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) is proud to announce the forthcoming publication, on June 26, 2017, of a new, illustrated history of its development, from the early 19th century through the late 20th century.

Co-edited by Jeffrey S. Reznick, PhD, and Kenneth M. Koyle, chief and deputy chief of the NLM History of Medicine Division, and made possible through the research, writing, and technical expertise of staff from across the Library, this new book will appear in the popular series Images of America, by Arcadia Publishing. A hardback version of the book will be available from booksellers, and an electronic version of the complete book, including the 170+ black-and-white images which appear in it, will be freely available via NLM Digital Collections beginning June 26.

Many individuals have written about the National Library of Medicine and its origins as the Library of the Office of the U.S. Army Surgeon General. However, this book is unlike previous publications because it introduces the history of the Library primarily through images from its own rich collections, along with a handful of other images from the collections of the National Archives, the National Museum of Health and Medicine, the Smithsonian Institution Archives, and the Rudolph Matas Library of the Health Sciences at Tulane University. The book reveals the work of generations of visionary leaders and dedicated individuals who experienced the American Civil War, the world wars, the Cold War, and the dawn of the Information Age.

“We hope readers will enjoy this broad history of the Library as much as we have enjoyed crafting it in cooperation with so many colleagues and friends,” said Reznick and Koyle in a joint statement about the project. They added, “We hope it will inspire readers to learn more about the development of the Library and the many people who contributed to it, and to learn more about our institution as it exists today and serves the world from its home on the campus of the NIH (National Institutes of Health). We envision this publication as a companion to Hidden Treasure: The National Library of Medicine, produced by NLM in 2011, further inspiring readers to explore the Library’s programs and resources, to visit for a tour, and to conduct research in its world-renowned collections which span ten centuries and represent nearly every part of the globe.”

As with Hidden Treasure, the Intramural Research Program of the US National Institutes of Health, National Library of Medicine, supported the research, writing, and editing of Images of America: US National Library of Medicine.

On Thursday, July 13, 2017, beginning at 2:30 PM, a public symposium will be held to mark the June 26 release of this new book to bookstores, and its free availability via NLM Digital Collections. The program will be a part of the NLM History of Medicine Lecture Series and will take place in Lipsett Amphitheater in Building 10 on the Bethesda campus of the National Institutes of Health. All are warmly welcome!

Images of America: US National Library of Medicine includes 170+ black-and-white reproductions of a variety of historical images drawn from the collections of the National Library of Medicine, and handful of others selected from the collections of the National Archives, the National Museum of Health and Medicine, the Smithsonian Institution Archives, and the Rudolph Matas Library of the Health Sciences at Tulane University. Beginning June 26, 2017, digital copies of these original images will be available free, like the complete book, via NLM Digital Collections.

Since its founding in 1836, the National Library of Medicine https://www.nlm.nih.gov has played a pivotal role in translating biomedical research into practice and is a leader in information innovation. NLM is the world's largest medical library, and millions of scientists, health professionals and the public around the world use NLM services every day.

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