The Abbey Newsletter

Volume 25, Number 3
Oct 2001


September 11th

All Americans were gravely affected by the horrendous events of September 11. Cultural institutions in New York and Washington were also impacted by these attacks.

Carol Ramkey, the Director of the Marine Corps University Library, reports that the old Pentagon Library, which was being moved to a new location in the Pentagon, was damaged in the September 11th attack. In that the library was considered a crime scene and remains cordoned off, the actual extent of the damage is still unknown. However, it was confirmed that the back part of the library, including parts of the collection, was water damaged. Ann Parham, Army Librarian, suffered burns on her hands and face, and a broken toe, but is recuperating nicely at home. The rest of the library staff is healthy and well.

The New York Public Library reopened on September 12, but all of the branches below 14th Street have been inaccessible due to closures. No library staff were injured.

The American Association of Museums has dedicated a section of their website to assist with the distribution of information and resources. Their website is http://www.aam-us-org .

Marj and Jay Salik, the proprietors of TALAS, Inc., distributors of conservation supplies located at 568 Broadway in Manhattan, closed for a full week after the disaster. Mail continued to be delivered, but phone service was spotty at best. All TALAS employees were reported safe.

SAA Launches Electronic Mailing List

The Preservation Section of the Society of American Archivists recently launched a new electronic mailing list: saapreservation. The list will feature news and announcements of interest to members of the preservation section. To sign up, send a message to

SEPIA II Signs Contract for EU Grant

The European Commission on Preservation and Access has awarded a 3-year grant for the "Safeguarding European Photographic Images for Access" (SEPIA II) to formulate a follow-up program to the original project, which focused on the preservation and digitization of European photographic collections. The project was specifically set up to bring together representatives from different types of institutions that hold photographs. Training sessions, expert meetings, exhibitions and public events will be organized by participating institutions, in addition to an introductory text on photographic preservation for the general public. A conference in Helsinki will close off the activities in 2003.

Research Begins on Tapes and Heat-Set Products

CCI, the Canadian Conservation Institute is initiating a project to assess various tapes and heat-set products for their suitability and durability for conservation applications relating to paper. Characteristics under investigation include flexibility and brittleness, color change and carrier suitability. The project is set to run for several years. Results will be published at intervals as they become available.

Dublin Core Metadata Set Approved

NISO, the National Information Standards Organization and the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative (DCMI) announced the approval by ANSI of the Dublin Core Metadata Element Set (Z39.85-2001). DCMI began in 1995 with an invitational workshop in Dublin, Ohio that brought together librarians, digital library researchers, content providers, and text-markup experts to improve discovery standards for information resources. The original Dublin Core emerged as a small set of descriptors that quickly drew global interest from a wide variety of information providers in the arts, sciences, education, business, and government sectors.

Metadata is structured information that describes, explains, locates, or otherwise makes it easier to retrieve, use or manage an information resource. The Dublin Core was originally developed to be simple and concise, and to describe Web-based documents. The current standard defines fifteen metadata elements for resource description in a cross-disciplinary information environment. These elements are: title, subject, description, source, language, relation, coverage, creator, publisher, contributor, rights, date, type, format, and identifier.

The Dublin Core Metadata Initiative ( is an organization dedicated to promoting the widespread adoption of interoperable metadata standards and developing specialized metadata vocabularies for describing resources that enable more intelligent information discovery systems. DCMI will act as the maintenance agency for the Dublin Core Metadata Element set standard.
This standard is available for free downloading or hardcopy purchase at:

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