Coloring Medieval Manuscripts & Designing Book Covers

Credit: Victor and Irene Jacobs Collection, University of Dayton Libraries

The coloring book version of Candle-Lightin’ Time by Paul Laurence Dunbar, 1904.

For the seventh year in a row, the New York Academy of Medicine Library is hosting its annual coloring festival on social media. Libraries, museums, and archives around the world have uploaded the latest batch of coloring books based on rare books, prints, and maps from their collections. Among the 100 registered institutions this year are: Stanford University Libraries, Toronto Public Library (Sherlock Holmes edition!), Eton College Library, Museum Plantin-Moretus, Harley-Davidson Archives, Denver Botanic Garden, and the American Geographical Society Library.

My personal favorite so far is the University of Dayton Public Libraries book: page one provides an uncolored template of the book cover of Paul Laurence Dunbar’s Candle-Lightin’ Time that would-be designers can beautify. The 1904 first edition sports a beautiful decorative cloth binding, designed by Margaret Armstrong, in dark green with gold stamping. But don’t let that sway you!  

All participants need to do is browse, download, print, and color! Then, using the hashtag, #ColorOurCollections, share your creations.