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Title: Charles E. Mudie Collection, 1816-1897
Primary Creator: Mudie, Charles E. (1818-1890)
Extent: 1.0 Boxes
Arrangement: The collection is arranged in two major series: correspondence and mixed materials. Correspondence is arranged in alphabetical order.
Languages: English, Italian
Scope and Contents of the Materials
The Charles E. Mudie Papers dates from 1816 to 1897. Correspondence in the Mudie Papers comprises the most voluminous resource, with letters sent to and written by Mudie and family members. A wide array of mixed materials include photographs, broadsides, passports and a travel diary from 1859. Topics from the letters shed light on Mudie's Circulating Library subscription system and the book trade, and discussions of 19th century books. Conversations about British politics, the Italian unification, European travel, the opening of Mudie's Great Hall in 1860, literary matters, family genealogy and personal matters are also recorded in the letters and mixed materials.
Collection Historical Note
Charles Edward Mudie (1818-1890) was a publisher, author, and the founder of Mudie's Select Library. Located initially in London, Mudie introduced through his innovative library the concept of lending books by way of a circulating system operated by membership. With the help of his wife Mary and son Arthur Oliver, Mudie established during the Victorian era a network with publishers and writers to support and maintain the library. Collections of books in the library were curated or selected by Mudie in accordance with Victorian morals, limiting titles to subjects pertaining to science, biographies, fiction and "adventure" (travel). The lending of books operated by having multiple copies available for subscribers to borrow. The concept of Mudie's Select Library proved successful with the opening of three branches outside of London, in York, Manchester and Birmingham. Upon his dead in 1890, his son Arthur Oliver Mudie succeeded him as Chairman of the Library.
Rare Book & Manuscript Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
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