University Archives receives book collection from Holdrege doctor

Oct 11th, 2010 | By | Category: Aug. 26, Campus News

University Libraries University Libraries has received more than 11,000 books and exhibition catalogues donated by Stuart P. Embury, M.D., of Holdrege, a 1966 graduate of NU and 1969 UNMC graduate. Embury amassed what is considered one of the top private book collections on American art in the United States over 40 years.

The Stuart P. Embury, M.D., Library of American Art contains primary material and books covering all major and many minor figures in American Art, including painters, sculptors and printmakers. There are thousands of exhibition catalogues including nearly complete runs from the National Academy of Design and Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. Some of the titles were published in the 1800s.

“The UNL Libraries is proud to have the Stuart P. Embury Library of American Art and we’ve been working with Dr. Embury to renovate the archives reading room to properly house and showcase the incredible collection,” said Joan Giesecke, dean of libraries.

A celebration of the donation and renovated reading room is in the early planning stages. The cataloging of the books is almost complete. Staff will then catalog the thousands of exhibition catalogues.

Dr. Embury’s collection began soon after he moved to Holdrege and with the need to decorate the new home. Purchasing prints for the walls led to a thirst for learning more about the artist, which led to the purchasing of reference materials and catalogues.

“I bought a Mary Cassatt etching and of course I needed a book on Cassatt. This pattern was repeated many times,” he said.

Two dealers became his major source of books, one in New York and one in Philadelphia. They both sent Embury their choice items. Gradually over 40 years the collection grew to more than 11,000 volumes.

Embury said his motivation for moving the collection to the University Archives and Special Collections, is because he wants “to share it with the world.”

The University Archives and Special Collections is in Love Library, Room 29, open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., and can be reached at (402) 472-2531.

– Joan Barnes, University Libraries

Tags: , ,

Leave Comment