Moving into our house five years ago gave my wife, Jennifer Lowe, and me room to expand our libraries. I have been collecting or accumulating books with some purpose since I was eleven or twelve years old. My current collection is for the most part a reader’s library—that is to say most volumes are acquired at least with the virtuous intention of reading them at some point. And as a library reflects the reader, its patterns must say something about my interests and motivations as a collector of books—either for the works they contain or, as Samuel Pepys once said, “for the love of the binding.” One area of interest we both share is publishers’ decorated cloth bindings of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, wonderfully inventive, beautiful, and colorful designs embossed into cloth bindings used by publishers to decorate and promote their books before the prominence of illustrated dust jackets. We will introduce you to some of these items from our collections and expand to other areas of our libraries (and of the house) as time and interest allow.
Gregory Pass is a medievalist and librarian with interests in manuscript studies and book history. He is head of Special Collections at Saint Louis University. Jennifer Lowe is Rare Books Librarian at Saint Louis University.
Sunday 26 August
Potluck dinner begins at 6:00 p.m.
Gregory and Jenny begin sharing at 6:45
At their home
Saint Louis 63104