#1: History of Science and Technology
of the Collections
The library’s resources in this area are very extensive. They include:
||history of mathematics and logic;
||history of the empirical sciences (astronomy, physics, chemistry,
biology, earth sciences, etc, and some material on the history of
||history of technology ( history of all of the main branches of
engineering -- civil, mechanical, electrical, chemical, etc -- )
and of many other technologies, such as biotechnology, food and
textile production, transportation, materials handling, etc.
The collections comprise 3 main sections :
||the History of Science collection , comprised of rare
monographs dating from the fifteenth century to the present and
housed in the rare book rooms (labelled RBR).
||the regular collections, which contain most of the secondary sources
( journals on the history of science and technology, bibliographies,
etc.) and many primary sources (journals since the 17th century,
19th century monographs, etc.)
||the Reference collection, containing indexes, bibliographies,
biographical collections and encyclopedias.
Main Types of Questions
The types of reference questions most likely to arise can be conveniently
divided into three main categories:
||incidental questions about personalities ( scientists,
engineers, discoverers, inventors, etc), and about origins and development
(of principles, laws, theories, methods, techniques, instruments,
machines, structures, etc.)
||thematic searches arising often as part of undergraduate courses
in the history of science and technology: periods (scientific revolution,
Greek geometry, electrification, rise of the steam engines, Ptolemaic
astronomy, medieval mechanics...), and concepts (mass, ecosystem,
||specialized scholarly research by graduate students and scholars.
Some Important Resources for Categories 1 and 2
|Dictionary of scientific biography. 18 vols.
[Q141 .D45 quarto Ref. Rm.]
|Biographical memoirs of fellows of the Royal Society,
[ Q141 .R7 Ref. Rm.]
|Biographical memoirs. National Academy of Sciences (U.S.).
1877- - American scientists
[Q141 .N3 v. 39 Ref. Rm.]
Personalities, subjects, periods:
|Isis cumulative bibliography 1966-1995 : a bibliography
of the history of science, indexing literature published from 1965
through 1995 followed on the shelves by the Isis critical bibliographies
(yearly issues) 91- - Personalities, subjects, periods.
[Z7405.H5 I21 quarto Ref. Rm.]
|Technology and culture. Current bibliography in the history
of of technology: A yearly index of articles and books on the
history and philosophy of technology.
[ Z7403 .H6T43 1992 Ref. Rm.]
|Dictionary of the History of science / Bynum, W. F. et
[Q125 .D46 1981 Ref. Desk]
|Reference books for the historian of science : a handlist
/ Jayawardene, S. A., 1982.
[Z7405.H5 J4 1982 Ref. Rm.]
|The scientific revolution : an annotated bibliography /
Jayawardene, S. A., 1996.
[Z7405.H6 J39 1996 Ref. Rm.]
|The timetables of science : a chronology of the most important
people and events in the history of science / Hellemans, Alexander,
[ Q125 .H417 1991 Ref. Desk]
|A chronology of the history of science, 1450-1900 / Gascoigne,
Robert Mortimer, 1987
[Q125 .G33 1987 Ref. Rm.]
Resources for Category 3
Issues concerning questions in this category, beyond the indication of
bibliographic tools, should be referred to one of the subject specialists
if possible. The following biographic source in German is an important
resource in this case:
|J.C. Poggendorffs biographisch-literarisches Handwöterbuch
für Mathematik, Astronomie, Physik mit Geophysik, Chemie, Kristallographie
und verwandte Wissensgebiete ... , 1863 --
[Z404. P6 Ref. Rm.]
Other Reference Guides
Guide #2: Units, Dimensions,
Conversions and Formulas
Guide #3: Beilsteins Handbuch
der Organischen Chemie