Bookworms!

Every librarian’s worst nightmare.
Yes, they are a real thing!


Book worms are actually the larvae of beetles or weevils that eat the pages of books, their covers, or the glue in their bindings. Mmm, tasty glue…
In the Wentz Library a few weeks ago, library assistant David discovered some gnawed volumes while shifting periodicals.
It is unlikely that we have an active infestation, and these worm holes probably occurred even before the early 20th century volumes arrived at the Wentz Library, but taking an abundance of caution, we froze the items to kill any bugs or eggs that might remain in the books.

Books in the breakroom freezer. Library workers are nothing if not resourceful!

Each volume was sealed in a plastic bag to prevent moisture (we don’t want to trade worms for mold!) and stored in the freezer. The cold temperature will kill any pests that may be lurking in the pages. After a week or so, the books were removed and allowed to come to room temperature.

Books thawing in front of a heater after being frozen for 10 days

The books are part of the periodical collection and have now been returned to the shelves.

Wormholes in the pages. While it’s not unusual to see worm holes in codices from the 15th-17th centuries, I’ve never seen them in books this recent.

This is why it’s important to quarantine materials before they are added to the collection. It also highlights why food is not allowed in the library, and why spaces should be kept clean so as to not attract pests and their book-hungry babies!

New Exhibits in the Wentz Library

Archives Assistant Hannah has put together a new display of material from the library and archives.

Display case in the Wentz Library lobby

The display shows examples of Orthodox iconography and exhibits some Madonna and Child artwork, as well as a 1548 work on the Christian Orthodox faith.

Additionally, the library has been refreshed with new artwork. The lobby is decorated with various examples of the Last Supper, displaying a range of cultures, eras, and artistic styles.

Decorating the walls is art by Sadao Watanabe, Salvador Dali, and many others. Stop by the A.R. Wentz library to check out the new decorations!

Lutheran Historical Conference Report

Victoria outside the library of the Concordia campus

Last week, Assistant Archivist Victoria Jesswein attended the Lutheran Historical Conference (LHC), in St. Louis, Missouri.
Dr. Maria Erling was also there representing ULS.

Concordia Seminary campus

The conference, which meets every two years, brings together archivists, historians, historiographers and independent researchers from all over the county and from various Lutheran backgrounds. The talks ranged from the story of the miraculous recovery of rare Laestadian manuscripts to important figures in Black Lutheran History to the case for filmmaking as a way to preserve and publicize Lutheran history.

In addition to the presentations and the Business Meeting where new Board members were elected, the conference also included a trip to Perry County, MO, where, in 1838, hundreds of German (Saxon) Lutherans, led by Martin Stephan, immigrated. Following controversies, Stephan was exiled from the community and C.F.W. Walther because the leading pastor of the community.

It is from this German Lutheran settlement that the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod arose, with Concordia Seminary founded in 1839, in a log cabin school which now stands in Altenburg, MO, across from Trinity Lutheran Church, in Perry Co. The Seminary was removed to St. Louis 1849 and since 1926 has had its campus in the suburb of Clayton.

Sign on the “Log Cabin College”

In their spare time, Victoria and Maria also toured the area around St. Louis, stopping at:

-the Cahokia Mounds, the largest and most influential sites of Mississipian culture, which began 1000 years before European settlement in North America

-the Elijah Lovejoy monument, a tribute to the abolitionist journalist killed by pro-slavery partisans outside his publishing house

-the Lyman Trumbull House, a private residence which was once home to the co-author of the 13th Amendment.

The largest Cahokia mound
View of downtown St. Louis from atop the Cohokia mound
Monument to Elijah Lovejoy within the cemetery in Alton

PHL: Under Construction

The Philadelphia Krauth Memorial Branch Library has a demolition project ongoing today and likely tomorrow. This will make studying on site difficult (lots of noise!). We apologize for any inconvenience and hope you’ll check us out once the renovations are complete. – The Library Staff

New eBook and Database Trials

The ULS Library has contracted with Bloomsbury Press to trial four new databases for consideration for possible purchase. Free access has been turned on until November 15, 2021. Please take a chance to look through collections that interest you and provide the Library staff with any feedback you may have (books seem relevant or out of scope, database is difficult to use, etc.).

Yale Anchor Bible Commentaries contains the full 86-volume set of Anchor Bible Commentaries.

Yale Anchor Bible Dictionary contains the full ABD, published in the late 1990s.

T&T Clark Jesus Library logo

The T&T Clark Jesus Library contains a select list of ebooks, journal articles, and reference works on Jesus, Mary, and the context of the New Testament/early Christians. Both scholarly and more popular press titles are included.

T&T Clark Theology Library logo

The T&T Clark Theology Library contains a select list of ebooks, journal articles, and reference works. Contains various works of theology, including Karl Barth’s complete Dogmatics, and van Harn’s Commentary on the Lectionary.