Silverman Book Collecting ContestSCUA

Book image

Celebrating reading and the pleasures of collecting, the UMass Amherst Libraries invite undergraduate and graduate students to enter the Friends of the Library Book Collecting Contest. Collections may focus on any subject or field, on individual authors or genres, or may relate to features of the book such as illustration, binding, or typography.

Ideally, collections will reflect an understanding of the material and cultural history of the book, and will address issues in book collecting such as printing history, printing technologies, circulation and reception, edition, format, or association. The books need not be rare or valuable: they may include hardcover books or paperbacks, unbound printed materials, magazines and pamphlets, or related media that support the collecting theme.

Applicants are expected to submit an annotated bibliography of their collection accompanied by a brief (500-750 word) essay describing the history, content, scope, or significance of the collection. Submission will be considered by the Evaluation Committee and winners will be announced in March. The first place award in each category will be presented to the recipients at the Libraries’ annual Dinner with Friends in April 2013.

View past Silverman recipients

Application information

Eligibility: Undergraduate and graduate students (full or part-time) currently enrolled at UMass Amherst. All items must be personally owned by the student.
Award: First place awards of $1,000 total ($750 scholarship and $250 gift certificate to the Brattle Book Shop) in undergraduate and graduate categories.
Evaluation criteria:
  1. Well-defined collection.
  2. Clarity and effectiveness of essay. Submit a 500-750 word essay (double-spaced) describing the history, content, scope, and significance of the collection and a “wish list” or plans for its future growth.
  3. Bibliography. Submit an annotated bibliography of entries, numbered, and in standard bibliographic format
Deadline for submission: March 1, 2013 (5:00 p.m.)

The Special Collections and University Archives (SCUA) and the UMass Amherst Libraries reserve the right to extend the deadline or cancel the contest if too few entries are received. The determination of number of entries required to award a winner is at the sole discretion of SCUA and the UMass Amherst Libraries.

How to apply: Complete the cover sheet and submit an electronic copy of your essay and bibliography.
Note: your name must appear only on the cover sheet.

Submissions or questions should be sent by email to askanarc [at] library.umass.edu with “Collecting Contest” in the subject line.

Download application materials (.rtf format):

Special Collections and University Archives logo