While visiting the museum is currently impossible, you can still immerse yourself in the history of bookbinding by exploring our collections online! Browse through the Exhibit Hall and our latest temporary exhibit Bound for Beauty in digital form, or explore objects in our Permanent Collection. Find books or periodicals in the ABM’s Reference Collection to supplement a research project or to provide historical and contemporary context to the art and craft of bookbinding. Also available is the Bookbinders Directory, a collection of over 3,000 binders, compiled from bookbinders tickets and business records.
Easily browse the online collection by visiting the website and clicking “Online Collection” underneath Collection, or by clicking this link to find the specific collection you’d like to browse! You can search for specific objects or terms by typing it into the search bar at the top (searching within a collection will only return results from within that folder). The entire online collection can be searched through the main page.
When searching, you can use common search symbols to refine your search: enclose a phrase within quotation marks “like this” to return only that specific phrase; a plus symbol will search for records that contain both terms, like + this. You can even combine the two functions for a more specific search. While all our books and periodicals are catalogued online, with a description of the contents and applicable search terms, the contents themselves are not currently digitized.
We welcome you to use our collection for research purposes, whether they are for a bookbinding project or academic paper. If you are interested in viewing any of the objects or books from our collection, you can email email@example.com to make research requests; in person visits are unavailable for the time being, but accommodations can be organized.