New Digital Collection: Jane Austen’s Family Music Books Digitised and Now Available Online
The music collection of novelist Jane Austen and her family is being made freely available to access online as part of a University of Southampton digital library project.
The Austen Family Music Books is a collection of 18 albums of music containing around 600 pieces that belonged to the 19th century writer and her relations. The imaging of the books was carried out at the University’s Hartley Library Digitisation Unit.
Professor of Music at Southampton Jeanice Brooks, who led the project, says: “Jane Austen’s novels are full of musical scenes, and this collection will help literature scholars and Austen fans to better understand the real musical environment that fed the novelist’s imagination. Just as importantly, the collection provides music historians with a unique glimpse of the musical life of an extended gentry family in the years around 1800.”
This digitisation project is a collaboration between researchers at the University of Southampton and the books’ current owners, with assistance from Chawton House Library. It features albums held by Jane Austen’s House Museum (Chawton, Hampshire) and the private collections of two Austen descendants, Professor Richard Jenkyns and Mr Richard Knight. The release is in anticipation of the 2017 bicentenary of Jane Austen’s death, so events mounted for the anniversary can draw on the music Austen knew and performed herself.
About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com. Gary is also the co-founder of infoDJ an innovation research consultancy supporting corporate product and business model teams with just-in-time fact and insight finding.