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A Picture of a Book is Not a Book
Dr. John A. Buchtel
Dr. John A. Buchtel has been involved in the field of special collections, rare books, and manuscripts for the past 20 years as a curator, educator, and manager. His diverse experiences help him advocate effectively for the ongoing significance of primary sources in an increasingly virtual world, even as he seeks to leverage the use of technology in the service of scholarly discovery of original materials.
Since 2008, Dr. Buchtel has served as Director of the Booth Family Center for Special Collections at Georgetown University, with administrative and academic responsibility for Georgetown’s rare books, manuscripts, art collection and University Archives. Dr. Buchtel played a key role in several transformative additions to the collections, most notably the Paul F. Betz Collection of Wordsworth and English Literature, the John Thatcher Collection of Lives of Women Saints and Women Religious, and the papers of African - American composer Margaret Bonds.
In his previous role as Curator of Rare Books in The Sheridan Libraries of The Johns Hopkins University, Dr. Buchtel was responsible for rare book collections totaling more than 400,000 volumes in three locations, two of them housed in historic buildings. During his four years at Johns Hopkins, he collaborated with colleagues across the library to more than triple the number of faculty making object - based learning a part of their students’ educational experience.
While earning his doctorate in English at the University of Virginia, Dr. Buchtel worked for Rare Book School, the nation’s leading institute for the history of books and printing, first as Assistant Director for Programs, and then as RBS’s first Curator of Collections . The topics of Dr. Buchtel’s lectures, exhibitions and published articles include early modern British literary patronage and book dedications, education in the Renaissance, the reception history of English literary works, rare book curatorship, book collecting, and library history. Dr. Buchtel sits on the Council of the Bibliographical Society of America, for which he chairs the New Scholars Committee. He is active in the Grolier Club, America’s leading association of book collectors and bibliophiles, and the Rare Books and Manuscripts Section of the Association of College and Research Libraries.