Our national chess library

Historical knowledge and information regarding our great game.
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MJMcCready
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Our national chess library

Post by MJMcCready » Thu Jan 15, 2015 1:57 pm

Hi all, could someone help with the following questions.

1) Is the national chess library cataloged, and if so, can it be accessed on line?

2) Is the British Chess Magazine archived anywhere? I am assuming that all copies can be found in our national chess library but stand to be corrected.

3) Would the national chess library be able to answer questions regarding specific publications and whether they have them or not via email?

4) Is there anyway to find out what their policy regarding reproducing materials is? I am assuming that publications can't be taken out of the library, can they be photocopied. photographed?

ty

John Upham
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by John Upham » Thu Jan 15, 2015 3:06 pm

MJMcCready wrote:Hi all, could someone help with the following questions.

2) Is the British Chess Magazine archived anywhere? I am assuming that all copies can be found in our national chess library but stand to be corrected.

ty

All of the UK Legal Deposit Libraries should have complete runs of British Chess Magazine since 1881.

BCM is required to send them each issue by law and this is managed by a central agency.

I am not aware of the extent of the run of BCM at the NCL. BCM sends the ECF Office two copies per issue and one of these is earmarked for deposit with the NCL.

There is a long term goal to digitally recover (rather than scan simply) all volumes since 1881 and negotiations are taking place to achieve funding.

J.
Last edited by John Upham on Thu Jan 15, 2015 3:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Angus French
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by Angus French » Thu Jan 15, 2015 3:08 pm

MJMcCready wrote:Hi all, could someone help with the following questions.

1) Is the national chess library cataloged, and if so, can it be accessed on line?

2) Is the British Chess Magazine archived anywhere? I am assuming that all copies can be found in our national chess library but stand to be corrected.

3) Would the national chess library be able to answer questions regarding specific publications and whether they have them or not via email?

4) Is there anyway to find out what their policy regarding reproducing materials is? I am assuming that publications can't be taken out of the library, can they be photocopied. photographed?

ty
I suggest you try contacting either David Eustace (ECF Director of Finance) or Dave Thomas (ECF Director of Membership) re your National Chess Library questions. Last I knew (ECF Board Meeting last October), David E was tasked with looking for a new home for the Library and Dave T was going to look at an electronic record of the contents of the Library - I think with a view to performing an audit.

I like the idea of putting a catalogue online and perhaps of making some of the content available online (copyright permitting).

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MJMcCready
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by MJMcCready » Thu Jan 15, 2015 4:18 pm

John Upham wrote:
MJMcCready wrote:Hi all, could someone help with the following questions.

2) Is the British Chess Magazine archived anywhere? I am assuming that all copies can be found in our national chess library but stand to be corrected.

ty

All of the UK Legal Deposit Libraries should have complete runs of British Chess Magazine since 1881.

BCM is required to send them each issue by law and this is managed by a central agency.

I am not aware of the extent of the run of BCM at the NCL. BCM sends the ECF Office two copies per issue and one of these is earmarked for deposit with the NCL.

There is a long term goal to digitally recover (rather than scan simply) all volumes since 1881 and negotiations are taking place to achieve funding.

J.
Hi yes, The British Library should have all back issues, how about the yearbooks, they would be there too right?

John Upham
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by John Upham » Thu Jan 15, 2015 4:28 pm

MJMcCready wrote:
Hi yes, The British Library should have all back issues, how about the yearbooks, they would be there too right?
I'm guessing you mean the annual bound volumes (2015 is volume 135) rather than the BCM Quarterlies or BCM Classic Reprints?

Most libraries will take the monthly issues and bind them in-house for shelving.

Bound volumes 133 and 134 are in production as I write.

John
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MJMcCready
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by MJMcCready » Thu Jan 15, 2015 4:36 pm

John Upham wrote:
MJMcCready wrote:
Hi yes, The British Library should have all back issues, how about the yearbooks, they would be there too right?
I'm guessing you mean the annual bound volumes (2015 is volume 135) rather than the BCM Quarterlies or BCM Classic Reprints?

Most libraries will take the monthly issues and bind them in-house for shelving.

Bound volumes 133 and 134 are in production as I write.

Hi John, yes that's what I meant.

ty

John

Paul Buswell
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by Paul Buswell » Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:22 pm

MJMcCready wrote:Hi all, could someone help with the following questions.

1) Is the national chess library cataloged, and if so, can it be accessed on line?

2) Is the British Chess Magazine archived anywhere? I am assuming that all copies can be found in our national chess library but stand to be corrected.

3) Would the national chess library be able to answer questions regarding specific publications and whether they have them or not via email?

4) Is there anyway to find out what their policy regarding reproducing materials is? I am assuming that publications can't be taken out of the library, can they be photocopied. photographed?

ty
Hastings Club has all of BCM bar one year

PB

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MJMcCready
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by MJMcCready » Thu Jan 15, 2015 6:00 pm

It's such a shame that an invaluable historical resource isn't readily available to all.

Gordon Cadden
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by Gordon Cadden » Fri Jan 16, 2015 10:57 am

I have visited the National Library at Hastings, and discovered that there are only a few names in the Visitors Book.
Common sense dictates that the Library should be more accessible to ECF members, and housed in a central location.
The donated collections have not been dispersed under thematic categories. For example, you will find the Harry Golombek, and Eric Croker collections, kept apart, and housed with steel framing.
Alarm bells rang, when I discovered 19th. century BCM volumes on the Public Library Shelves. Hope that the Librarian took my advice, and kept them in the secure section of the Library. Ken Whyld decided to send his large collection of books to Switzerland.

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Fri Jan 16, 2015 12:13 pm

When I visited Hastings, everything was in store whilst a refurbishment was carried out. They happily got various items out for me and were extremely helpful.

How do you define a "central location"? Meriden is central but tricky to get to from parts of the country. London is easy to get to from most places, but not central geographically. Most people would never visit it of course. Perhaps we need to emulate the British Newspaper Archive and try to put everything online, but going through the books/magazine would take some time...

Brian Denman
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by Brian Denman » Tue Jan 20, 2015 5:13 pm

I used to visit the National Chess Library at Hastings regularly after its opening in 2007. Unfortunately very few other people came to the library and in 2012 the collection of books was transferred to the basement. Since then the general rule has been that in order to see a book you have to contact the library staff 24 hours in advance to give them time to procure the book. In other words it is not possible to just walk into the library and have a browse.

There are several collections and a good number of these are catalogued although those that arrived last were not catalogued. There used to be a computer record of the books though I am not sure whether this is currently on line. There used to be a collection of BCMs up to about 2000 and a large number of versions of the magazine called 'Chess'. There are also several BCM yearbooks up to about 1975. In addition there are many old magazines like for example Chess Player's Chronicle, Westminster Papers etc. All in all it was a very good library, but, because few people came to view it, the university library seems to have lost interest in it. I should also mention that there were a few other collections in a Hastings registry in April 2014, though I am not sure if they have now been moved.

The ECF will give information about the latest situation regarding its stored books

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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Tue Jan 20, 2015 5:21 pm

To add to what has been said here, this was previously discussed here:

http://www.ecforum.org.uk/viewtopic.php ... 30#p145997

And also on the official forum here:

http://www.englishchess.org.uk/Forum/vi ... ?f=4&t=191

I'll quote here what Ben Edgell said over there:
Ben Edgall @English Chess Federation Forum (on 12 Oct 2014) wrote:"A couple of points from the AGM about this: The FD said the cost of storing the books would be somewhere in the range of £1500- £3000pa, and said if we wanted to go down this route we shouldn't necessarily just go for the cheapest option. The number of visitors is very low. 43 visits a year some time back, been going down since then. There was a suggestion from someone that this may be partly because of where the books are located and how they are presented. Chris Priest, the Hampshire representative, suggested digitising the books, and wondered whether Google might be interested in doing it for free. Phil Ehr seemed interested in discussing this further with him after the meeting."
This was around the same time as the Board meeting minutes linked to earlier (11 October 2014).

Has there been any update since? (The deadline quoted earlier was March 2015.)

I will ask over there (now done, I think I saw some tumbleweed blowing and heard some crickets).

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JustinHorton
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by JustinHorton » Fri Jan 23, 2015 5:56 pm

The British Library catalogue record suggests that they have the BCM going back to 1881.

That said (an ex-library cataloguer writes) you wouldn't know if that record was correct or not unless somebody physically checked.
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Brian Denman
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by Brian Denman » Fri Jan 30, 2015 7:44 pm

It is very likely that bound copies of the BCM from 1881-1999 still exist in the basement of the university library. If I remember rightly, the library also has some versions of the magazine from about 2000 onwards which are not bound. The library used to possess several different collections which contained bound versions of the magazine. However, the administrators decided to send back duplicates to the ECF and in April 2014 I saw several duplicates stored in a Hastings registry not far from where the congress is held. The library also possesses the Huddersfield College Magazine, from which the British Chess Magazine evolved. Indeed there are several valuable magazines in the collection which was assembled starting from 2007.

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MJMcCready
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Re: Our national chess library

Post by MJMcCready » Wed Feb 04, 2015 9:09 am

Brian Denman wrote: There are also several BCM yearbooks up to about 1975. In addition there are many old magazines like for example Chess Player's Chronicle, Westminster Papers etc. All in all it was a very good library, but, because few people came to view it, the university library seems to have lost interest in it. I should also mention that there were a few other collections in a Hastings registry in April 2014, though I am not sure if they have now been moved.

The ECF will give information about the latest situation regarding its stored books
So not all of the BCM yearbooks are there?

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