02 March 2014

Baby books in the UCLA Special Collections Library

I haven't looked at my baby book or those of my three children in a long time. My youngest child turns 37 in a few days so that book will bring back some great memories. Need to get that box down from the high shelf! My own mother's baby book that was started in 1926 yielded much family history information. I spent some time figuring out what the connection was to those listed as newborn and 1st birthday gift givers for her.

The University of California - Los Angeles Special Collections Library has a huge collection of baby books collected from a variety of places. The library's blog has a post from February 14th, that is titled "Grow(ing) Up! The UCLA Library Baby Record Books Collection." This year is the 10th Anniversary of the beginning of the collection.

The post's last paragraph states "The books and their handwritten and pasted-in contents have been used for research and teaching in pediatrics, printing history, economic and social status, material culture, linguistics, architecture, advertising, folklore, depictions of family, and other topics and disciplines." I sure hope that the other topics include family history.

One baby book item I found in the UCLA Library catalog:
  • Baby birth announcements, height and weight chart, and photographs for Charles Wriggins Walker, born 14 February 1914 in Buffalo, N.Y., 1914-1920.
Click here to read the full blog post.

A quick check on ArchiveGrid.org for the phrase "baby book" shows 385 entries. Keep in mind that some hits in any catalog might yield books on how to care for a baby!

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