Isaac Asimov (1920–1992) was one of the greatest science fiction writers of the 20th century. Many critics, scientists, and educators believe Asimov’s greatest talent was for popularizing or, as he called it, “translating” science for the lay reader. This online display features visuals and descriptions of some of the more than 600 books, games, audio recordings, videos, and wall charts included in the West Virginia University Libraries Asimov Collection.

The Association for Cultural Equity Research Center has made available online its massive collection of folklorist Alan Lomax’s material. Lomax spent his career documenting folk music traditions from around the world. The archive includes more than 17,400 digital audio files, beginning with his first recordings onto (newly invented) tape in 1946 and tracing his career into the 1990s. It also includes photographs, interviews, and lectures. Hobart Smith, Bluefield, Virginia, 1959.

Do you love Virginia Woolf's A ROOM OF ONE"S OWN?

The Voyage Out by Virginia Woolf (1915)

The Edgar Allan Poe Digital Collection was launched to accompany the 2009 Poe Bicentennial exhibition, “From Out That Shadow: The Life and Legacy of Edgar Allan Poe,” a joint venture of the University of Texas Harry Ransom Center and the Small Special Collections Library at the University of Virginia.

The Goethe University Frankfurt in Frankfurt-am-Main, Germany, began a project in February 2011 to digitize the more than 2,800 medieval manuscripts and incunabula in its collections. The 1,000th manuscript scanned was The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri, written in northern Italy in the 14th century. Other pieces include a 13th-century Parisian Bible from the Cistercian Abbey of Eberbach and the Rüst- und Feuerwerksbuch (Book of Weapons and Fireworks) of the city of Frankfurt.

Austrian Books Online is a joint project of the Austrian National Library and Google, which has digitized some 100,000 of the library’s public-domain holdings since 2010. These books can now be downloaded, read online, and searched free of charge with the help of the library’s online catalog. One treasure is the Kronyka Czeská, 1541, by Jan Severýn and Ondřej Kubeš of Žepův, based in large part on old legends and tales of the land.

The Women’s Library @ LSE (London School of Economics) digital collections include a representative selection of the personal, political, and economic struggles that have symbolized women’s battle for equality over the past 500 years. The collection includes pamphlets, magazines, journals, documents, photographs, postcards, and books.

The Florida State University Digital Library provides online access to Florida State University’s rich and unique historical collections of photos, pamphlets, maps, manuscripts, and rare books. Currently, the library highlights collections from Special Collections and Archives, Heritage Protocol, and the Claude Pepper Library, including yearbooks from 1900 to 1997, historical photos of campus, and selections from the Paul A. M. Dirac Papers.

Eighteenth Century Collections Online is a searchable database of 2,231 keyed-text editions of every significant English-language and foreign-language title printed in the United Kingdom during the 18th century, along with thousands of important works published in the Americas. A 12-year initiative between the University of Michigan Library and Oxford University named the Text Creation Partnership has produced page images.

Vassar College Libraries’ Albert Einstein Digital Collection documents a lesser-known aspect of Albert Einstein’s career: his social and political work in the US and abroad, with special attention to Jewish affairs. A gift of Morris and Adele Bergreen in 2003, the collection was formed by Einstein’s friend and executor to his will, Otto Nathan, an economist and professor at several institutions of higher learning, including Vassar. It is composed of correspondence between Einstein and Nathan...

Reading: Harvard Views of Readers, Readership, and Reading History is an online exploration of the intellectual, cultural, and political history of reading as reflected in the historical holdings of the Harvard Libraries. For Internet users worldwide, Reading provides unparalleled digital access to a significant selection of unique source materials.

The Consort, Anthony Heckstall-Smith by alexisorloff, via Flickr

Papers Past contains more than one million pages of digitized New Zealand newspapers and periodicals. Developed by the National Library of New Zealand in Wellington, the collection covers the years 1840 to 1915 and includes publications from all regions of the country.

Slavery and Abolition in the U.S.: Select Publications of the 1800s is a collaborative project between Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and Millersville University of Pennsylvania that consists of digitized books and pamphlets demonstrating the varying ideas and beliefs about slavery in the United States throughout the 19th century. The collection includes more than 70 titles published between 1787 and 1911 with some 15,000 individual pages of text and searchable transcriptions.

The Word on the Street digital collection (subtitled “How Ordinary Scots in Bygone Days Found Out What Was Happening”) is the National Library of Scotland’s online archive of nearly 1,800 broadsides. It lets you see for yourself how people in Scotland read street literature to find out what was going on between 1650 and 1910. Broadsides were the tabloids of their day.

Judy Blume!

Scary Stories

Fahrenheit 451

The Smithsonian Institution Libraries’ Galaxy of Images collection includes thousands of images representing a small portion of the more than 1.5-million printed books and manuscripts in their collections. Images are browsable or searchable by keyword or topics that include the animal world, art and design, bones and fossils, history and material culture, literature, the natural world, plants and flowers, portraits, science and invention, and trade literature.

The U.S. Geological Survey Central Regional Library in Denver has an online image collection providing access to more than 35,000 photographs, searchable by keyword, taken during geologic studies of the United States and its territories from 1868 to the present.