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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion

General Climbing Discussion

Author
Australia Mountaineering Library
deuce4
30-Jul-2022
7:20:46 AM
Hello Chockstone

I've been doing research on the global development of climbing tools and techniques, and have been acquiring stacks of books and magazines for my research. Turns out, old rare books are cheaper than ever on Abe's Books, used to be very hard to find some old books, like Bonatti's great tales (they will get expensive again, I am sure...). Arapiles Mountain Books is also a great collector and seller.

Anyway, when my research is done (next decade or so), I am hoping to find a home for the book collection. Wondering about the historical resources here in Australia. Are there any libraries in Australia that have a good special collection of old and new mountaineering books and journals? Maybe Noddy has room for a library? ;)

My research is at bigwallgear.com (still in the early 1900s). Any leads appreciated.

Cheers
John Middendorf

davedave
30-Jul-2022
12:06:59 PM
I think Mikl manages the SRC library - https://www.sydneyrockies.org.au/copy-of-skills-development
deuce4
31-Jul-2022
2:26:14 AM
Hi Dave, can you send me Mikeís email? Sent something to the Sydney club, but looks like a general form. Thanks!

regdog55
2-Aug-2022
3:32:22 PM
Mikl is on FB, if you want to contact him. He's a member of the 'RockClimbing in the Blue Mountains' FB group, amongst other things. It might also be a good place to ask about climbing libraries.

ajfclark
3-Aug-2022
11:57:25 AM
The VCC had one at one stage.

The climbing museum in Natimuk might be worth a try too.
BA
4-Aug-2022
8:45:28 AM
Actually it has had two. One was sold off back when Chris Baxter was president and after a gap of a few years the membership decided it still wanted a library and started a new one.
deuce4
11-Sep-2022
11:58:56 AM
I wrote to the Canberra club, and they recommended instead that I just give my reference books and mags to the local gym (It is not like I want to get rid of them, I would like to see them made accessible to others). Too bad there is not a central Australian repository for climbing specific reference books, I suspect there would be a lot of interest in some future time. A place to catalog and store historical things like what Byrden Allen probably left behind... Where are his archives, I wonder?
Damien Gildea
14-Sep-2022
2:24:56 PM
Hi John,

I have a pretty decent library at home and am thinking about making it, and any additions, more widely available at some point in the future. But not at my current home, so it won't be soon :-/

I wouldn't give yours away to a gym, they'll just get trashed/nicked/thrown out.

As you say, although such books and libraries aren't valued much now, there are some gems out there that will regain value in time (though a lot of dross won't!).

There are plenty of old guys out there in the polar and mountaineering world with great collections and they can't give them away, at least to anywhere that appreciates them. Interested libraries or organisations already have what they want so they maybe pick the eyes out of any collection and the rest just goes to waste.

D

BA
16-Sep-2022
9:01:40 AM
Similar problem here. Some of my books are "valuable" but most are of passing interest only. Maybe sell the best ones, the people who buy them will appreciate them and the rest can be disposed of through gyms or whatever.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
16-Sep-2022
1:51:06 PM
Yes, itís a sad conundrum where the passionate often canít get their hands on historical classics, yet institutions undervalue them.

I donít know how many other people peruse 2nd hand book shops, but Iíve found good mountaineering and associated research material to be almost unobtanium. I gather from the proprietors that if they come across good stuff that it doesnít last long as there is a demand for it.
I once paid triple price for a Sierra Club publication that I remember being cheap as chips back in the day when I bought a copy for a friend, and years later decided I wanted my own.

To be continued Ö

* Do libraries take book collections for long term, and still have them accessible to public?
- only State or National and can only be read in the library.
* The National library (Canberra) is the go to for Australian published books. They have a copy of every Australian book published. If you produce a book Deuce4, then thatís a good place for it to end up.
* Trove website (database) lists all books available to the public from any library in Australia, provided itís currently available on a library shelf. Be aware libraries turn over their collections and remove off Trove unavailable books.
* Some large libraries employ Research Librarians and it comes down to their discretion (and available space), if they accept items to ĎStackí. Stack items arenít easily available to general public but can be accessed with appropriate protocols.
Damien Gildea
17-Sep-2022
3:13:34 PM
On 16-Sep-2022 IdratherbeclimbingM9 wrote:
>Yes, itís a sad conundrum where the passionate often canít get their hands
>on historical classics, yet institutions undervalue them.
>
>I donít know how many other people peruse 2nd hand book shops, but Iíve
>found good mountaineering and associated research material to be almost
>unobtanium. I gather from the proprietors that if they come across good
>stuff that it doesnít last long as there is a demand for it.
>I once paid triple price for a Sierra Club publication that I remember
>being cheap as chips back in the day when I bought a copy for a friend,
>and years later decided I wanted my own.


20 years ago this book was in all the local outdoor shops for about $30 or on the remainders clearance table for $5. But now...

https://www.amazon.com.au/My-Vertical-World-Climbing-8000-Metre/dp/0898863449

Book Lore in Lyneham ACT is one of the few good secondhand book shops left with a sizeable mountaineering selection.

Mistergribble
17-Sep-2022
6:28:21 PM
On 17-Sep-2022 Damien Gildea wrote:
>
>20 years ago this book was in all the local outdoor shops for about $30
>or on the remainders clearance table for $5. But now...
>
>https://www.amazon.com.au/My-Vertical-World-Climbing-8000-Metre/dp/0898863449

Hooley Dooley, I bought a copy in Bogong in Melb about 25 years ago, who needs Bitcoin!
dreapadoir
16-Oct-2023
8:03:46 PM
Hi John,

Melb Uni Mountaineering Club has a rather extensive library of mountain literature if you are still searching for a home for your stacks of books

There are 13 messages in this topic.

 

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