Houghton Library Bookplate Collection

Houghton Library's bookplate collection includes thousands of plates from collectors and libraries all over the world.
Bookplate for Harvard graduate Bishop S. Harrold. Artist unknown.
Houghton Library

Overview

The bookplate collection at Houghton Library comprises over 20,000 individual plates from book collectors and libraries all over the world.

Bookplate by Kalman Kubinyi for Cleveland printer Jack Diamond
Bookplate by Kalman Kubinyi for Cleveland printer Jack Diamond
Daniel Fearing Bookplate Collection, Houghton Library

The core of the collection is that of Daniel Butler Fearing, whose collection of over 11,500 books and nearly 4,000 bookplates on angling themes came to the library in 1915. The bookplate collection is organized roughly by subject, using categories created by Fearing and by Harvard librarians.

Images of bookplates in the collection can be viewed on Flickr. Within each category, bookplates are sorted alphabetically by collector surname. Information collected on each bookplate includes the artist, collector’s country of origin, size of the plate, and prominent pictorial characteristics (e.g. “penguin”, “tree,” “ship”.)

A detailed list of bookplates in the Houghton collection can be obtained by contacting the library.

Subject List

Categories not linked to Flickr have been cataloged in HOLLIS, but are not yet digitized.

Fearing Bookplates

Harvard Bookplates

Bookplate by J.J. Lankes for poet (and Harvard graduate) Robert Frost, circa 1923.
Bookplate by J.J. Lankes for poet (and Harvard graduate) Robert Frost, circa 1923.
Houghton Library

Library Bookplates

  • College libraries
  • College libraries, foreign
  • Special libraries
  • Public libraries
  • Public libraries, foreign

Special Artists

Bookplates in this category were designed by prominent artists, are visually striking, or did not cleanly fit into another category when those categories were created.

Accessing These Materials

Bookplates that have been digitized can be viewed via Flickr. Bookplates that have not been digitized are cataloged in HOLLIS. A detailed list of bookplates in the Houghton collection can be obtained by contacting the library.

Contact

Houghton Reference