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Rare Book Collections: Introduction to The Gonzaga Collection



In 1970 Gonzaga University became the repository, and later the owner, of about 1600 rare titles, some 3,000 volumes in all, known as the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection. These volumes reside in the vault of Special Collections on the Third Floor of the Foley Center. Most of these books, perhaps 97%, had been at Mount St. Michael’s.1 The other books in this collection are from other Jesuit institutions within the Oregon Province, principally the juniorates at Sheridan, Oregon, and at Port Townsend, Washington, as well as missions in the Alaska Territory and in Montana.

When Mount St. Michael’s closed in 1970 its books, both general holdings and rare ones, were moved to Gonzaga University. At the Mount the rare titles had been accessible by typed bibliographic description on 3x5 cards and had been assigned inventory numbers. These cards in three wooden drawers accompanied the books to Gonzaga. To date only a small proportion of the rare books have been electronically cataloged, with the result that the volumes have been, in effect, inaccessible.

Gonzaga University is pleased to announce the creation of a Finding Aid to these books, available on-site at the Foley Center Library as of September, 2006. This aid, comprised of five binders, contains copies of all existing cataloging information on those books (1,343 titles) which are not yet on the electronic catalog at Foley, and therefore are not on the international electronic library catalog, WorldCat. The cataloging materials in this Finding Aid are mainly numerous expert catalog cards, several adequate catalog cards, forty-one Library of Congress catalog records, as well as various notes by scholars concerning specific volumes. The master copy of the Finding Aid is in the Cowles Rare Books Library's Reading Room. A copy is also at the Reference Desk on the First Floor of the Foley Center so that it is accessible whenever the library is open, even during hours when the Reading Room is closed. Please note that only the master copy is going to be progressively annotated, so for the most up-to-date information, consult that version.

The information in the Finding Aid is arranged in order of the temporary alphanumeric codes assigned to them at Foley, e.g., A6 and T45. (These numbers will, of course, be superseded by the Library of Congress call numbers as the books are entered on the electronic catalog of Foley Library.) In the actual Finding Aid, though not in this on-line Introduction, a concise Shelf List follows the Introduction, to allow skimming basic information on the entire collection. Please note that each temporary code begins with the first letter of the main entry for a book, so that, for instance, one can turn to the T’s to find most of the entries on "Thomas Aquinas" (T28-T51; other pertinent entries on the angelic Doctor include E14, G62, zz021, zz062). Book stamps and other records of ownership are accessible, in part, through a preliminary list of them, also included in the first binder and online. Eventually an index will be added at the end of the fifth binder to provide fuller access until the books are on the electronic catalog.

The University is committed to making catalog records for all of these volumes accessible electronically. Since work on the Finding Aid began in August, several volumes have in fact been entered on Foley’s electronic catalog. As titles gain electronic records, that information will be noted on the master copy of the Finding Aid in the Rare Book Reading Room. Nothing, however, will be deleted from this Finding Aid.

Also, an online Inventory was created in 2003, giving quite basic information on the volumes. Use it for quick, searchable reference, but be aware that the information in that database is partial and that it was never proofread in full. In some instances, information that is correct on the catalog cards (which are copied in the pages of the Finding Aid) was entered with errors in the database. Therefore, the best source of information on the rare books at present is this Finding Aid.

Scholars outside of the geographic region of Spokane who cannot come into the Cowles Rare Books Reading Room but who have specific research interests are cordially invited to contact Stephanie Plowman, the Special Collections Librarian, for photocopies of the pertinent pages of this finding aid. The online Inventory can be used to identify which title or titles are of interest. Her email is and her telephone is (509) 323-3847. The mailing address is:

      Special Collections Department

      Foley Center Library

      Gonzaga University

      Spokane, WA 99258

Scholars are also invited to contribute information about the actual volumes in the collection. Already Professor Linda L. Carroll, Professor of Italian at Tulane University, has done so: Her notes, compiled during research with volumes from the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection in July of 2006, are included with the records below (C6, C8, C9, C10, C11, T31).

                                                                     Dr. Catherine Brown Tkacz

                                                                     Special Consultant to the President

                                                                           on Rare Books and Manuscripts

                                                                      September 28, 2006

                                                                      Revised for online display in April, 2007. 

History of the Collection

History of the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection.

The Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection is tied closely to the history of the Jesuits in the Western United States. In 1854 California was a mission territory of the Jesuit Province of Turin, Italy. In 1909, California became an independent province, expanded to include the entire Pacific Northwest and Alaska. (At that time, Alaska was a territory of the United States; it became a State in 1959.) In 1916 Mount St. Michael’s was built as the major scholasticate in the Pacific Northwest. Steady growth in Jesuit vocations in the California Province led to plans in the late 1920s to strengthen Mount St. Michael’s and quite possibly to recreate it as a theologate in anticipation of dividing the California Province. Accordingly a major expansion of the rare book collection of Mount St. Michael’s was undertaken in 1930; the books acquired then are a key portion of the present rare book collection. In 1932 the California Province was in fact divided, with the Pacific Northwest and Alaska becoming the Oregon Province. In the latter twentieth century, however, vocations diminished, and as Jesuit institutions in the Oregon Province were closed and consolidated, their rare books were often brought to Spokane. Most of the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection consists of books from the Mount itself; the rest are mainly from the former scholasticates at Port Townsend, Washington, and Sheridan, Oregon. 

Development of the Collection. In 1930 Rev. Francis Joseph McGarrigle, S.J. (b. 1888) was teaching in the Gregorianum in Rome when he was authorized by the Vatican to travel to Russia to purchase books for the Pontifical Oriental Institute in order to create their Slavic Library. Formerly the librarian at the Mount and a teacher there (1927-28), he alerted his Provincial in California of this opportunity for simultaneously purchasing books for Mount St. Michael’s. Fr. McGarrigle had studied philosophy and theology in Belgium, Italy, and Spain and was in addition a gifted linguist. The "then-princely sum of $10,000" was entrusted to him by the California Province. The world economy was suffering; Germany and Austria were particularly financially stressed, so he sought out low prices there. According to lore, he could buy a whole bookshop at a time. As a result, several rare items were acquired beyond the needs of Mount St. Michael’s, and such gems stud the collection today. "Some incredibly scholarly works, volumes of biblical criticism," went right onto the general shelves: volumes by Von Soden, the great Berlin collection of texts, etc. The rare books went into a vault at Mount St. Michael’s.2

The overall collection at the Mount consisted of over 50,000 volumes, centered on 13,000 works in philosophy. Fifty of the most important journals in philosophy were collected by the Mount, and, by agreement, Gonzaga University maintains those subscriptions.

Another Jesuit institution in the region held rare books. St. Francis Xavier Novitiate in Sheridan, Oregon, was founded in 1932.3 Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., was the librarian at Sheridan and in residence there 1961-1966.4 In 1966, when Sheridan became a scholasticate (1966-1983), its rare books were transferred to the Crosby Library at Gonzaga University. They were housed on the second floor and had a separate budget and staff. Later these would be amalgamated with the books from Mount St. Michael’s.

In 1966-1968, Fr. Schlatter was assigned to be the librarian at Mount St. Michael’s and was in residence there. When first he saw the rare materials, he was stunned to see so many rare and valuable works, unused, unguessed at. He took "incredible" items from the vault for the general collection: the Histoire littéraire de la France, for instance, and the complete run of the Journal of Theological Studies (which he had bound), begun in 1899.

After Mount St. Michael’s closed, in 1970 Fr. Leo Donald Davis, S.J., then of Gonzaga University’s Department of History, brought the Mount St. Michael’s rare books to the second floor of the Crosby Library; these books had a separate budget and staff. Some of the catalog cards from unidentified sources, copied in the present Finding Aid, may be his.

Cataloging the collection. Before the move of the books to Gonzaga, the work of cataloging the rare books began. In 1968 Thomas A. Marshall, S.J., M.S.L.S., came to Mount St. Michael from the California Province at the request of Fr. Schlatter in order to work as a "cataloger-inventory operator, compiling a formal listing of what may be described as the ‘Antiquarian holdings’ of the library," that is, its "imprints from 1484-ca1800." Although he was in residence at the Mount for "but six months" he prepared typed catalog cards with penned inventory numbers for many of these old books and also composed a preliminary assessment of them and of the Mount’s library as a whole.5

After the rare books from Mount St. Michael’s had been brought to Gonzaga, Fr. Schlatter proposed to the Oregon Province that the two collections, from Mount St. Michael’s and from Sheridan, ought to be amalgamated. A third, smaller collection came from Port Townsend when its scholasticate closed. The Province arranged for it to be stored at Seattle University, and Fr. Schlatter was assigned the tasks of identifying redundant holdings and incorporating what was of value into the collections at Gonzaga. To recompense Seattle University for their hospitality, one such redundancy, a full set of the valuable Acta Sanctorum, was given to that university. Fr. Schlatter arranged for the sale of volumes from Port Townsend that duplicated holdings from Sheridan or Mount St. Michael’s or both. For instance, three major series of editions, Corpus Christianorum and Migne in Latin and in Greek, had been at two or even three of these institutions. The proceeds from the sale of duplicates went into an endowment fund named for John H. Taylor, S.J., for the purchase of books in Classical Studies. The great majority of the books retained and comprising the bulk of the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection are indeed from Mount St. Michael’s, and these include the "cream" of Fr. McGarrigle’s collecting. From Sheridan came the first edition of Dickens’ Pickwick Papers and the notorious Paris first edition of Ulysses, valued at $10,000 (now lost).

In about 1983, the Provost entrusted control of the collections to the Crosby Library. Electronic cataloging of some items occurred. The Provincial Treasurer sold the whole collection for $150,000 to Gonzaga University in the mid or late 1980s. The price was "not one tenth of what those books were worth."6 Today, twenty years later, their value has only increased.

Unfortunately, when the books had been moved from Mount St. Michael’s, their order had been disrupted, so that they were no longer arranged in any logical system. A temporary system was devised at Crosby Library, whereby a note was made on each catalog card indicating the particular rank of shelves and the specific shelf on which a title was located. When in September 1992 the books were moved to the new library, the Foley Center, and into the specially built vault there, they remained without logical ordering. The volumes are in the climate-controlled environment of the vault, and book ends have been added as needed to give them greater stability of alignment.

In the present millennium, steps have been taken to move toward electronically cataloging the rare books. The Sunday issue of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer for October 20, 2002, featured an illustrated article on the books, calling attention to their value. In Special Collections a student was hired through a McDonald work award and assigned the task of going through the rare book card catalog that had come from the Mount and putting an alphanumeric code on each record card. The code consisted of the first letter of the main entry and then a number, beginning with 1; technically such a code is called a Cutter number, named for Charles Ammi Cutter, the librarian who devised various ways of making such codes. The student assigned Cutter numbers to "see" reference cards as well as to actual catalog records, however, which accounts for some of the gaps in the present sequence of Cutter Numbers. Acid-free cardboard staves were prepared with these cutter numbers and put into the appropriate volumes, so that for the first time since the books had been at Gonzaga, they could be arranged in logical sequence. The student was also directed to place the catalog cards themselves into the volumes, and did so. Although the "see" reference cards were discarded at this time, their prior existence is attested on the microfilm copy of the cards made decades earlier (see "Further Information").

In 2003 Sharon Prendergast, Library Assistant in Special Collections, created an online Inventory of the books not yet on the electronic Foley catalog in order to provide some quite basic access to the collection.

In Spring of 2003, Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, President of Gonzaga University, funded the Library’s commissioning Dr. Mary Lyn Hikel to report in detail on the collection and on steps to be taken toward its electronic cataloging. Her work led directly to the Library’s securing a definitive statement of ownership of these rare books. With an eye to conservation of the volumes, Gonzaga Library sought and was awarded an $8,000.00 Washington Preservation Initiative Award from the Washington State Library Association. This award funded an item-by-item survey of the collection undertaken in March 2004 by Kathleen Orlenko, who found the collection to be generally in very good physical condition. A prospectus was prepared by her, detailing the conservation work suggested for the collection.

In mid-2006 Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., President of Gonzaga University, hired Dr. Catherine Brown Tkacz as a consultant to advise toward the provision of scholarly access to the collection. The true goal here, of course, is achieving electronic cataloging. This Finding Aid is designed both to assist in that, and also to provide onsite access as swiftly as possible to all present cataloging information on the rare books.

Characteristics of the Collection.

While this Finding Aid focuses on the rare books from Mount St. Michael’s, it is important to observe that many of the valuable works from the Mount have long been incorporated into the general holdings of Gonzaga University’s library. After a survey of some of these, this narrative will return to the truly rare works.

General Holdings: Magisterial Editions. In the general stacks can be found several superb series of scholarly editions of the works of major Catholic theologians and of Christian writers more broadly, series which came originally from Mount St. Michael’s to Gonzaga. The Corpus Christianorum, Series Latina, has produced over 200 volumes since 1954, for instance.7 Pope Leo XIII authorized the critical edition of St. Thomas Aquinas since named for that pope, the Leonine edition, and this major series is now in Gonzaga’s general holdings. Likewise, the magisterial Cologne and Borgnet editions of Albert the Great are in the stacks at Foley. So is the complete 26-volume edition of the Opera omnia of Duns Scotus.8 All these series came from Mount St. Michael’s.

The entire compendium of Lives of the saints, the Bollandists’ justly famous Acta Sanctorum in seventy folio volumes, has been valued at $7,500.9 Gonzaga received the complete series (1863-1940), as well as 27 volumes from its original seventeenth-century printing, from Mount St. Michael’s and the closed scholasticates. Mansi’s Sacrorum Conciliorum Nova et Amplissima Collectio and the Maurists’ Recueil des historiens des Gaules et de la France are likewise quite valuable, as noted in 1971 by Fr. Davis.10 The fourteen folio volumes of the Acta Conciliorum Œcumenicorum came from Mount St. Michael’s.11 It is the full record, in both Greek and Latin, of the deliberations.

The major series of Greek and Latin patristic and medieval texts compiled by Jean-Paul Migne complete with the rare index volumes came from Mount St. Michael’s and were in the stacks at Gonzaga for several years, until it was decided that the rareness of their completeness (nearly 400 folio volumes in all) warranted the security of the vault in Special Collections. The complete Patrologia Latina and Patrologia Graeca, with index volumes, are now in the vault.

The Rare Books. Of the rare books from Mount St. Michael's, approximately a fifth have text blocks printed in the sixteenth century, a quarter date to the seventeenth century, and half were printed in the eighteenth century. From the "cradle days" of printing, a few books (called incunabula from the Latin word for "cradle") and some books from the nineteenth through twentieth centuries complete the collection. Theology and philosophy, in Latin, predominate. The importance of Aristotle is shown by the number of volumes of his works (A54-A60), as well as the numerous commentaries on them (e.g., G65, T31, zz011). Classical texts include Virgil (V17-V27) and Cicero (C90-C96, etc.), and patristic texts include Cyril of Alexandria (C160) and Augustine (e.g., A80-A82). Of the works of the Flemish Jesuit exegete Cornelius Lapide (1567-1637), the collection includes 39 titles in 51 volumes. The method of Fr. McGarrigle’s purchasing allowed including some works which happened to be available and were of value, although beyond the strict needs of Mount St. Michael’s. For instance, he acquired a one-hundred volume set of the complete works of Voltaire (V41).

The next few paragraphs derive from an assessment of the rare book collection prepared in 1969. Similar remarks about the collection are also found in newspaper articles published in 1971 and 2002.12

The Collection as attesting the History of Book Technology. An insightful assessment of the collection was provided by Thomas A. Marshall, S.J. After he had spent six months at Mount St. Michael’s he reported that the

"Antiquarian books" (imprints from 1484-ca1800) constitute a fine projection of the history of book technology. Typography, engraving, wood-cut illustration, binding, paper types, and "Association marks" constitute an in-depth presentation of the history of printed books that omits very very few of the significant events in the industry. The Antiquarian books run through the general topic range of the rest of the library, forming its deep, substantial roots.13

Humanism in the Collection. Br. Marshall further observed: "Our materials in late Renaissance, Reformation and Enlightenment authors are not only printed within those eras (and hence physically illustrate the times with uncommon brilliance) but are ... a projection of the humanism of those times."14

The collection as "Jesuit Identity Statement." Beyond this, the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection is valuable as "an extensive projection of the Jesuit identity":

A) The major and minor works of Jesuits are richly presented, both from the standpoint of "best editions," and from the standpoint of production within the time of the authors’ lives.

The affairs in which the Society of Jesus has been involved, historically and intellectually, are extensively developed. Our chief adversaries and friends, alike, are represented. Topics such as Gallicanism, Jansenism, and the Enlightenment are, ordinarily, covered by imprints made during the rise, creating, and denoument of such movements. The books were collected by men intensely aware of our intellectual and historical experience.

At times, the historic Jesuit himself is quite in evidence, whether one sees genteel engraved portraits of the man, or follows his marginalia, or contacts him via the myriad association marks of seals, crests, autographs, and the like.15

Thomas Marshall continued that "The total collection of books reflects a humanism, a long-range view of the various threads of culture, the various approaches to knowledge, and the assorted responses to them that various generations of Jesuits have thought significant." In short, "This ‘humanism within humanism itself’ constitutes the ‘coherence’ of the collection, makes it uniquely ‘Ours,’ and hence a major Identity statement."16 Among the assets of the Oregon Province, "the Mount’s book collection must rank among the most prestigious of them."17 It is quite significant that the Rare Book Collection is housed with the Archives of the Oregon Province, so that the two collections can be studied conjointly.

Treasures in the Vault

Treasures in the Vault

Incunabula. Quite valuable are the books printed in the earliest years of printing, before 1500. The Bruno Psalter of 1475 is the oldest printed book at Gonzaga.18 The University’s other two incunabula are from Mount St. Michael’s: The Roman Missal of 1484 records the pre-Tridentine Latin liturgy, and Gonzaga owns one of only two known copies outside the Vatican (M58).19 Fifteenth-century printers often recycled old manuscripts by using leaves cut from them in lieu of end-papers: The 1490 Summa Theologica by Antoninus is all the more valuable, for instance, because it has manuscript leaves from 1290 as its "paste downs" (A42).

Gems: St. Thomas, Luther. The 1518 edition of Thomas Aquinas’ commentary on Aristotle’s De anima is very rare: The only other known copy in the world is at Florence (T31). This volume is among the valuable sixteenth-century volumes in the collection, including the full set of Luther’s Opera Omnia (1556-1558). That is all the more valuable for its unique annotations handwritten by Philip Melancthon, Luther’s colleague (L135). Other works by Luther are also in the collection (L134, L136).

Rare tomes. The rarity of several of the volumes was attested afresh recently when Professor Linda L. Carroll of Tulane University conducted research in July 2006, focusing on Cajetan (Tommaso de Vio). Of the six volumes she studied, three appear to be the only copy (the unicum) known to exist in the world today (C7, C8, C10); for a fourth, just two other copies of the work are known (C6), and for the remaining two volumes, in each case one would have to go to Florence to the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale to consult the only other copy (C9, T31). That is, there is no bibliographic record in WorldCat or in the pre-1956 National Union Catalogue for three of these specific sixteenth-century editions owned by Gonzaga. Another instance of such rarity concerns a volume featured in the 2002 article in the Seattle Post Intelligencer: A photograph of Ludovicus de Ponte’s Vita del P. Baldassar’ Alvarez della Compagnia di Giesù (P68), published in 1631, was central in the article, and a scholar in Seattle recognized it as a volume that, as a Fulbright Scholar, she had studied in the Vatican Library, the only other known location of the book. The rarity of these early volumes by and about Jesuits emphasizes the need to make cataloging of the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection available electronically as soon as it is possible to do so.

Bibles and biblical manuscripts. The earliest volumes of the landmark Douai-Rheims edition of the Bible in English are owned by Gonzaga, as are valuable facsimile editions of major ancient manuscripts of the Bible at Mount Sinai, the Vatican, and elsewhere. The oldest complete Hebrew Bible, a manuscript in St. Petersburg, is among the facsimiles in the vault. Some, but not all of these important biblical materials have been cataloged electronically.

"Template books" on Aristotle. Two unique seventeenth-century manuscripts with commentaries on Aristotle’s Physics written by Jesuits are within the collection (G65, zz011). Moreover, these two volumes are handwritten on what may be called "template books": bound, blank books, with engraved frames for the titlepages, marbled edges, and, in one case, an engraved frontispiece, a portrait of Aristotle with a biographical description of him as its caption (G65). That volume’s marbling extends to its endpapers. The work is a reportatio, a faithful "reporting" or transcription of a course of lectures. The student John Middleton transcribed in 1670 the lectures of Pierre Grenier on Aristotle’s Physics.

The second such volume is the work of a Jesuit scholar, apparently Jean Baptiste de Fourmestraulx (zz011). He composed in 1693 a commentary on Aristotle’s De Natura and Physics. Physically, this volume is notable for the engraved border on its titlepage: ten bust portraits with names inscribed. In the top row are Aristoteles, Thomas [Aquinas], and Plato; along the left side are Seneca and Socrates while on the right side are Pythagoras and Epicurus. The bottom row consists of Erasmes [!], Porphyruis [!], and Diogenes.

These two works are valuable, then, for the texts they contain, and also for the light they shed on a late-seventeenth century practice by stationers: Clearly such "template" books were offered for sale, for use by students and scholars who would select a blank book that had an engraved form for titlepage whose decoration fit the subject. The volume with the frontispiece of Aristotle shows how popular were courses and studies of that philosopher. The volume with ten great philosophers on the titlepage shows that one could purchase a less expensive volume that would serve for a variety of subjects, focused on any one of the ten, or on a subject they were famous in. It is notable that St. Thomas Aquinas has the focal position in the decoration, being at the center of the top row of bust portraits, flanked by Plato and Aristotle. Moreover, Erasmus was also included in this group consisting mainly of pagan philosophers.

Art. Art plays a role in several of the rare books. Peter Paul Rubens did "hack work" for the Society of Jesus.20 For instance, he designed the titlepage for a folio volume on justice, published in 1621: Leonardus Lessius' De justitia et jure (L84). The artistic design of numerous titlepages, and also of the engraved ornamented initials, the ornate beginnings to chapters and books (called "headpieces") and the ornate conclusions to these parts (called "tailpieces") are themselves worthy of study. Woodcuts, also, are abundant in some volumes, notably the Dominican Missal of 1521. The folio volume of Cornelius Lapide’s commentary on the major prophets is characteristic of the collection in having a full-page engraved portrait of each prophet before the beginning of his book (L55).

In addition, several of the rare books have excellent plates within them, or consist entirely of plates. For instance, Luigi Canina’s mid-nineteenth century volumes with "magnificent plates of Greek ruins" are among the valuable books from Mount St. Michael’s (C21, vols. 1-5; C22).

Women. The Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection also provides a variety of resources for the study of women and of gender issues. A few female authors are represented, such as Anna Barbauld, the Victorian writer and reformer, and Lucy Aikin (B9). Books were dedicated to, given to, and received by women: George Meredith inscribed a copy of his first edition of Modern Love to the woman most dear to him (M45). Ava, Lady Ribblesdale, formerly the wife of John Jacob Astor, gave a copy of the first edition of a collection of short stories by Evelyn Waugh to a woman named Muriel (zz036).

Biblical women are discussed in numerous scriptural commentaries in the collection (e.g., V13). Several commentaries are dedicated to biblical books named for the women Judith, Esther, and Ruth.21 Susanna, or course, is treated extensively in commentaries on the Book of Daniel, e.g., by Cornelius Lapide (L53-55), and other women are treated in commentaries on the biblical books which record their histories. This finding aid’s index, currently in progress, will guide the researcher to many of the pertinent volumes.

Valuable evidence of the Christian tradition of respect for women is found in the Dominican Missal of 1521, in elegantly marbled slipcase and with abundant woodcuts (M56). A woodcut used for All Saints Day (fol. 232v) and also for the liturgy for one or more apostles (fol. 238v) is notable for its information about women. The depiction shows several saints, male and female, on a hillside, and above them in the sky is a scroll with the words "Hii sunt mei filii delecti" ("These are my beloved sons"), the words that God spoke of Jesus at the Transfiguration (Matt. 17:5, Mark 9:7; Luke 9:35). The inscription, however, makes the words plural, indicating that the saints have become Christlike. The presence of women in the image shows that the grammatical use of the masculine generic in the inscription was in fact understood generically. Moreover, the inclusion of women in the image for the liturgy of apostles suggests that the Western church shared the Eastern recognition of certain women (such as Mary Magdalene and the other Holy Women at the Tomb) as "Equal to the Apostles."22

First editions are among the rare books.23 It is gratifying to report that Sydney Chambers, the head cataloger at Foley, has provided electronic cataloging for several first editions in the past few weeks. Included are four first editions of Evelyn Waugh, one with illustrations by the author: Black mischief (London: Chapman and Hall, 1932), Love among the ruins (London: Chapman and Hall, 1953), Mr. Loveday’s little outing ... (London: Chapman and Hall, 1936), and Vile bodies (New York: J. Cape, Harrison Smith, 1930). Other first editions, now on the electronic catalog at Foley, are the first bound edition of Charles Dickens’ Pickwick Papers with the famous illustrations from Strand magazine; the first American edition of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Hound of the Baskervilles with Sidney Paget’s illustrations (a volume valued at $450.00), and Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The marble faun... (1860).24

Other first editions include George Meredith (1828-1909), Modern Love.... (London: Chapman & Hall, 1862) [M45]. Besides being a first edition, like the copy of the first edition kept in the Fisher Rare Book Library at the University of Toronto, Gonzaga’s copy uniquely has the poet’s autograph inscription to the love of his life, as noted on the Marshall cataloging card. The book was acquired by Fr. Schlatter when he was in Rome, for something like $2.50.

Notable persons. In addition to the Meredith volume just mentioned, other volumes owned by Gonzaga have been associated with notable persons. For instance, one volume bears the book plate of John Evelyn (1620-1706), friend of Samuel Pepys and diarist whose works form our primary literary source for life and manners in seventeenth-century England.25 The calling card of Ava, Lady Ribblesdale, former wife of John Jacob Astor, is tipped into a first edition by Evelyn Waugh, showing that she had given the book to a friend (zz036).

The most exciting set of associations, however, between these books and actual persons consists of the myriad connections between the volumes and the history of the Society of Jesus and the particular history of individual Jesuit institutions and personnages.

Jesuit history. Because these books have been owned by a variety of Jesuit institutions and sometimes annotated by Jesuit scholars, the books are a valuable resource for institutional history, intellectual history, educational history, and history of the Society of Jesus. The same point has been made by Jesuit librarians and scholars. (See also above, "The Collection as Jesuit Identity Statement.)

Jesuits in the Northwest. Education and the intellectual foundation of the faith are of basic importance in the Jesuit tradition, and this has held true in the Pacific Northwest, as is vividly attested through the book stamps in these rare books. Even the Jesuit missionaries to the territory of Alaska took with them works on theology published in 1621 and 1710 (L67, L84). Even the Juniorate library in Sheridan, Oregon, had a scholarly facsimile edition (A62) of the celebrated Book of Armagh (begun 807-08) with the earliest documents pertaining to St. Patrick and the six-volume magisterial reference work, Glossarium ad scriptores mediae et infimae latinitatis (1733-1736) by Du Cange (D34).

A preliminary list of book stamps found in the volumes of the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection is included in the the Finding Aid, following the Shelf List.

Kinds of information in this finding aid

Kinds of Information in This Finding Aid

A variety of kinds of information are found in this Finding Aid. The majority of titles, 977 out of 1343, have cataloging cards prepared specifically for the Mount St. Michael’s rare books by a trained librarian, Thomas Marshall. Forty-one have Library of Congress "NUC" cards, also prepared by trained librarians. Sixty-eight titles, acquired in and after 1989, have typed cards headed "RB" or "Rbk" (for "Rare Book") prepared by Fr. Fredric Schlatter, S.J. Forty-seven titles have other typed cards. A large group of 206 titles has handwritten cards, prepared by a student under the direction of Fr. Schlatter. Other kinds of information sometimes accompany these various cards, such as tip-ins, exhibition cards, and printout from electronic catalogs, either the Washington Idaho Network (WIN) or WorldCat. Only four titles have no information.

Marshall cards. The great majority of titles, over 70%, have catalog records prepared by a professional librarian, Br. Thomas A. Marshall, S.J., M.S.L.S. (later the archivist for the California Province), was brought to Mount Saint Michael’s in 1968 to manage the rare books. Br. Marshall cataloged the books, typing the 3x5" catalog cards himself. This card catalog, housed in three wooden library-catalog drawers, accompanied the rare books to Gonzaga University in 1970. These cards have accurate information, presented in proper cataloging format, using abbreviations of the Library of Congress and the proper terminology for cataloging rare books. Often a generous amount of detail is included; for some titles the cataloging for a single work fills three or more typed 3x5s. Information about physical condition, intellectual contents, book stamps, and artists, for instance, is often included. Although such information is not in many cases exhaustive, it is very valuable.

Moreover, Br. Marshall equipped this card catalog with cards for both "see" references and cross references. For instance, one finds in his cards "see" references such as "Cajetan.... See Quattuor evangelia" and "Nicholas of Lyra.... See Bible. Latin. Vulgate 1528" and "Moraines, Antoine, pseud. See Martinon, Jean, 1586-1602."26 Similarly, the 1573 edition of Aristotle’s works (A59, 10 volumes) was published with related texts by Zimara, Averroës, Avicenna, and Tomitano. Br. Marshall took care to include the full bibliographic description of the entire edition under the main entry of Aristotle, and also to make separate sets of cards for the works by Averroës, Avicenna, Tomitano, and Zimara, duplicating the details of just their specific works, so that appropriate cards could be filed in the catalog under the name of each author. In 2003, all such groups of cards were put into volume one of the set, so in the present Finding Aid, the cards for Zimara, Averroës, Avicenna, and Tomitano are found with Aristotle under the code A59. (Please note that, although the online Inventory indicates that these works are "Bound with" Aristotle’s Opera omnia, Br. Marshall’s cards correctly indicate that these works are published with the Opera.)

NUC cards. Forty-one titles are represented by authoritative records from the National Union Catalog (NUC), pre-1956 imprints. Someone (Br. Marshall?) photocopied and affixed those catalog records to 3x5 catalog cards. Decades before WorldCat, the primary international electronic library catalog, came into existence, the 754-volume NUC was published to give scholars and catalogers access to cataloged works by printing the catalog cards. Specifically, the NUC presents a cumulative author list representing the Library of Congress’ own printed cards as well as titles reported by other American libraries. Those libraries are identified by code on the end-papers of each volume of the NUC. Gonzaga University owns this valuable research tool, and it is housed in the handsome circular book case, custom-built for the Cowles Rare Book Reading Room, accessible both to staff and to scholars (Call number: SPECIAL COLLECTIONS Z881.A1U518). The 41 titles with NUC cards are in this Finding Aid under these Cutter numbers: A39, A61, B10, B36, B73, B84, B101, B132, C76, C91, C101, F2, F23, G27, H33, H42, H45, H46, H47, J15, J24, L14, L91a, L103, L104, L118, L136, M46, M47, O10, P61-62, P71, P78, R3, R29, S28, S35, T20, V32, W14 and W14.

Handwritten cards. After the rare books had come to Gonzaga’s Crosby Library in 1970, some books were found to be unmatched by a catalog card. At the direction of Fr. Schlatter, a student assistant, Cheryl Olsen (now Mrs. Cheryl R. Glenn of the U.S. Department of Justice), prepared basic handwritten cards with author, title, place of publication, publisher, and date. These cards were, it appears, interfiled with the Marshall cards in the three library-catalog drawers.

"RB" cards. In and after 1989, Fr. Schlatter purchased several books for the Jesuit Scholasticate Library, which had various names, including the St. Michael’s Institute. Sixty-eight books have a typed catalog card with a typed "RB" or "Rbk" (for "Rare Book") in the upper lefthand corner and, beneath the RB, a typed call number. Such cards were typed in Fr. Schlatter’s office.27 These volumes include modern books useful for the study of rare books and of classical and Christian antiquity. These cards, also, were, interfiled with the Marshall cards in the three library-catalog drawers, so that a union catalog could be maintained. The pertinent Cutter numbers here are: B19, B43, B109, B121-122, B131, C14, C68, C130, D14, E1, E9, E10, E11, F14, G22, G23, G30, G75, H44, J1, J2, K5, L15, L16, L63, L102, L119, L120, M6, M20, M26, M39, M45, M48, M54, O4, O16, O18, Q3, R27, R33, R34, S24, S47, S66, S71, S72, S77, S89, S106, S108-109, T15, T21, T75, T79, V14, V16, V17, V21, V25, V26, V27, W1, W9, W10, W11, W21-22, and W25.

Exhibition cards. In some cases, a rare book had been displayed, and a typed exhibition card remained. Those cards have been included in this finding aid, as they contain in some instances information not found in other known sources. For instance, the notable detail that the quite early volume of Antoninus’ Summa Theologica (1490) "is the only known incunabulum acquired by Rev. McGarrigle" in attested only on an exhibition card (A42).

Other information. Other kinds of material included in the photocopies of this Finding Aid are handwritten or typed notes, sometimes identified by the annotater’s initials.

WIN printout, WorldCat printout. Twenty-two titles include printout from the Washington-Idaho Network (WIN), an electronic library catalog. These records were printed before September 1992 while the books were at the Crosby Library, for librarians were working on cataloging those twenty-two titles. Included are A21, J8, and U7. Presumably the move from the Crosby Library to the Foley Center Library interrupted the plan to catalog these volumes electronically. Be aware that these printouts may not be exact matches with the rare books. In addition, a few years ago some records from WorldCat were printed and tipped into the volumes, as exact or close matches to them.

Cataloging and Scholarly Notes. In several cases, annotations have been made on the master of this Finding Aid before it was copied to create the two copies of the Finding Aid. These annotations include cataloging notes by Dr. Catherine Brown Tkacz, detailed researcher’s notes generously supplied by Professor Linda Carroll of Tulane University, and clarifying notes added by Maureen Plass. Specifically, Miss Plass was instructed to locate pale handwritten details that had not reproduced well on the photocopies and to write them darkly and legibly alongside the original.

Volumes Already in the Electronic Catalog.

Several of the rare books from Mount St. Michael’s have already been electronically cataloged and can be searched through Foley’s online library catalog and also through the international library catalog WorldCat, commonly accessed through FirstSearch. As additional volumes are cataloged, it is the plan to add the new catalog records to the existing pages of this Finding Aid, but not to remove any pages from this Finding Aid.

Some volumes were electronically cataloged several years ago. These include the original Rheims New Testament of 158228 and its companion volume, the original Douai Old Testament of 1609.29 E. A. Lowe’s masterful twelve-volume collection of facsimile portions from Carolingian manuscripts, entitled Codices latini antiquiores,30 was owned by St. Francis Xavier, the Juniorate at Sheridan, Oregon, and is made all the more valuable by the presence, inside the back cover, of an autograph letter by the author, who praises several Jesuit scholars by name.

Valuable facsimile editions of major manuscripts of the Bible are among the rare books from Mount St. Michael’s that have long been on Foley’s electronic catalog. These include the Codex Sinaiticus, both the New Testament in facsimile (1911) and the Old Testament in facsimile (1922).31 For the Codex Vaticanus, the collection includes the edition (1867) bound with the scholarly appendix (1869), and the six-volume facsimile itself (1868-1881).32 The Codex Alexandrinus is at Gonzaga in facsimile type, printed in 178633 and the later facsimile of 1816-28,34 with an entire volume of notes for the 1786 edition.35 The 1786 edition is a remarkable instance of artistry and book making, undertaken by Charles Godfrey Woide (1725-1790) :

Charles Woide, a native of Poland, was appointed assistant librarian at the British Museum in 1782. Four years later he published the first printed copy of the New Testament from the Alexandrine Manuscripts, which were given as a gift to King James in 1627 by the bishop of Alexandria. The typographical script of the printed volume was designed by Woide and cut by Joseph Jackson, who was described by Reed and Johnson as an "excellent artist". A copy was presented to the king on May 5, 1786, and was then distributed to a number of subscribers, included among them the Archbishop of Armagh, the Library of the College for the Propagation of the Faith in Rome, and the king of Poland. There were about 485 copies of the this volume printed, with twenty-five on fine paper and ten on vellum. Folio, xiv + xxxii + [262] + 90pp.36

Please note that facsimiles of other valuable and beautiful medieval manuscripts, such as the Breviary of Philippe le Bon (G30), are included among the volumes of the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection, but these are yet to be cataloged electronically.

Recently added to the electronic catalog are several modern first editions.

[Since this introduction was published, staff have determined that the following works with the following inventory codes were also electronically cataloged prior to 2003: A73, B60, B101, C105, D4, L15, E8, E13, H54, M54, P78, and V25. These include portfolios of drawings of ancient Roman marbles (L15) and the Temple of Erechtheum in Athens (E13), the edition of Milton’s Paradise Lost illustrated by Gustav Doré (M54), and a 1575 edition of Dante (D4).]

Further information on the Rare Books

Various further sources of information on the rare books exist. For instance, a microfilmed list of the record cards for the St. Michael’s books is in the Jesuit Oregon Province Archives.37 Serendipity Books, a company in Berkeley, California, prepared a plastic-covered printout of the Marshall cards, apparently from that microfilm, dividing them into two chronological groups: Part I covers 248 titles published "To 1600" and Part II treats 990 titles from "1600-1800."38 That is, 1,238 rare titles from Mount St. Michael’s dated before 1801 were included. Not included in Serendipity’s record were the twentieth-century books which accompanied the older rare books because of rarity, expense, or pertinence.

For the general holdings, as well, bound records exist. A full set of bound copies of the catalog cards from the general catalog of Mount St. Michael’s is in Special Collections.39 Likewise, a similar set of bound copies for those holdings from Sheridan are also in Special Collections.40

Brother Thomas A. Marshall, S.J., composed a preliminary assessment of the rare books and of the Mount’s library as a whole in 1969.41 Two newspaper articles have been written about the rare books: In 1971 Fr. Leo Donald Davis wrote an article on "Mount St. Michael’s Heritage: Rare Books Treasure Enriches Gonzaga," for Signum.42 The mellow calf- bound volumes in the locked display cases in the Cowles Rare Books Reading Room caught the eye of Seattle reporter John Wolfson when he visited Gonzaga in 2002 to prepare an article on the Bing Crosby collection, and when he inquired about them, Stephanie Plowman directed him to Fr. Schlatter. The result was an illustrated Sunday supplement article, "A Cloistered Treasure: Thousands of Rare Books Sit Locked Away in a Gonzaga University Vault."43

Individual volumes among the rare books have also been treated in individual scholarly articles. George T. Dennis, S.J., published his analysis of Philip Melancthon’s autograph notes in the Opera Omnia of Martin Luther, for instance.44 As noted above, some woodcuts featuring women in the 1521 Dominican Missal have been discussed in a scholarly article.45



The dedication of Fr. Robert Spitzer, S.J., President of Gonzaga University, and of the Trustees of the University to achieving fully professional, electronic access to the rare books from Mount St. Michael’s has made possible this Finding Aid as a first step toward such access. Stephen Freedman, Academic Vice President, has facilitated this process, in which the role of Eileen Bell-Garrison, Dean of Library Services, has been crucial. Upon request, Stephanie E. Plowman, Special Collections Librarian, assigned work-study students, including Anna Sophia Zingarelli and David Amaro, to making a security copy of the Marshall cards and all other cataloging materials; that security copy formed the basis for the present Finding Aid. Sydney Chambers, Cataloging Librarian, and Doug Wayman, Cataloging Assistant, have begun the work of producing electronic catalog records for the books. Miss Maureen E. Plass, my assistant, started the work of preparing the security copies of the Marshall cards and has assisted in the physical preparation of the Finding Aid. Her present work includes compiling the union index, still in progress. When complete, it will be added to the end of the last binder of this Finding Aid.

Thanks are gratefully given to Professor Linda L. Carroll, Professor of Italian at Tulane University. During a research trip to use the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection in July, 2006, she took an active interest in the books and their cataloging. She graciously provided her printed notes on several of the volumes, notes included in this Finding Aid.

Finally, Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., Professor Emeritus of History and Classics at Gonzaga University, has contributed generously of his knowledge of the collection and its history. His scholarly, vital awareness of the qualities of the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection has never flagged. In many ways it is his commitment to its intellectual and historical value which has led to the present Finding Aid and to the real hope of achieving full electronic cataloging of the volumes.



1. Estimate by Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., Professor Emeritus of History and Classics and Gonzaga University and former librarian at Mount St. Michael’s. He is the scholar who has had the greatest involvement with the Mount St. Michael’s Rare Book Collection for over forty years.2. Interview with Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., July 2006.

2. Interview with Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., July 2006.

3. Formally named "Jesuit Novitiate of Sheridan, Oregon," on April 14, 1936: Interview with Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., August 2006.

4. Interview with Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., July 25, 2006.

5. Thomas A. Marshall, S.J., MSLS, "Mount Saint Michael’s Library: Some Topics of Contemporary Interest" (January, 1969). In Special Collections, uncataloged. For more of his report, see below under "Characteristics of the Collection" and "Jesuit History and the Collection."

6. Interview with Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., June 2, 2006.

7. BR60.C49

8. BX890.D74 1891

9. Value quoted from Dr. Mary Lyn Hikel’s initial "Report on the Mount St. Michael’s Collection," February 7, 2003, p. 2.

10. "Mount St. Michael’s Heritage: Rare Books Treasure Enriches Gonzaga," Signum of Gonzaga University, vol. 3.8 (April 1971), pp. 1, 5. Fr. Schlatter has noted that, although the Mansi collection is not complete, it was begun at Mount St. Michael’s and was up-to-date when brought to Gonzaga.

11. Interview with Fredric. W. Schlatter, S.J., June 2, 2006. The call number is Oversize BR200.A3 1924. This is the Berlin edition.

12. Fr. Leo Donald Davis, S.J., "Mount St. Michael’s Heritage: Rare Books Treasure Enriches Gonzaga," Signum of Gonzaga University, vol. 3.8 (April 1971), pp. 1, 5; John Wolfson, "A Cloistered Treasure: Thousands of Rare Books Sit Locked Away in a Gonzaga University Vault," Seattle Post-Intelligencer (Sunday, October 20, 2002), Section L, pages 1-2. Another brief article treats the transfer of all the Mount St. Michael's books: Joe Erickson, "Philosophy to Inhabit Bing Crosby Library," Gonzaga Bulletin (Jan. 29, 1971).

13. Marshall, "Mount Saint Michael’s Library" (as in note 5 above), p. [3], #1.

14. Marshall, "Mount Saint Michael’s Library," p. [4], #5.

15. Marshall, "Mount Saint Michael’s Library," p. [3].

16. Marshall, "Mount Saint Michael’s Library," p. [3].

17. Marshall, "Mount Saint Michael’s Library," p. [9], #3b.

18. SPEC COLL BS1425.L3B7 1475.

19. The other copy outside the Vatican is at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, which created a record for their copy of this valuable work in January 22, 2003 ( WorldCat).

20. Interview with Fr. Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., June 2, 2006.

21. Judith and Esther: e.g., L34, L35, L36, L37; Ruth: e.g., L41, L42, L43.

22. Catherine Brown Tkacz, "Singing Women’s Words as Sacramental Mimesis," Recherches de Théologie et Philosophie Médiévales 70.2 (2003): 275-328.

23. Regrettably, the most valuable first edition, the Paris edition of James Joyce’s Ulysses (1931), has been lost. It had been given to the Sheridan Juniorate by an attorney named D’arcy, who had had it brought it in to Portland by way of Canada, thus avoiding the censors in Boston who destroyed many copies of the edition.

24. SPEC COLL PS 1862.A1 1860.

25. Interview with Fr. Fredric W. Schlatter, S.J., June 2, 2006.

26. Although it appears that the "see" references cards themselves have been discarded, many of them can be seen in a plastic-covered printout of the microfilm record of the catalog cards from Mount St. Michael’s. This printout was prepared by Serendipity Books of Berkeley, California. Printed on titlepage: Serendipity Books, Peter B. Howard, 11201 University Avenue, Berkeley, California 94702. Phone (415) 841-7455" and, at the foot of the page: "first editions / poetry / little magazines." Special Collections, uncataloged.

27. Interview with Fredric W. Schlatter, August 8, 2006.

28. SPEC COLL BS180.1582

29. SPEC COLL BS180.1609

30. SPEC COLL Z114.C677

31. NT: SPEC COLL OS BS1964.S3 1911; OT: SPEC COLL OS BS764.S3 1922

32. SPEC COLL BS1964.V3 1867 and SPEC COLL BS64.V2 1868.

33. SPEC COLL BS1964.A5

34. SPEC COLL BS764.A5

35. SPEC COLL BS764.A5

36. Loome booksellers: //

37. Evidently this is the item described in the Jesuit archives as a "microfilm shelf-list of St. Michael’s Institute holdings": JOPA: St. Michael’s Institute, Special Subjects 4:9.

38. Printed on titlepage: Serendipity Books, Peter B. Howard, 11201 University Avenue, Berkeley, California 94702. Phone (415) 841-7455" and, at the foot of the page: "first editions / poetry / little magazines." In Special Collections, uncataloged. No date.

39. Gonzaga University, Catalog of Mount Saint Michael’s Library. Spokane: Crosby Library, 1965. 7 vols. Bound, appears to be printout from microfilm of the card catalog. V. 1: A-CL, v. 2: CO-F, v. 3: G-J, v. 4: K-M, v. 5: N-Q, v. 6: R-S, v. 7: T-Z. Note on t.p. of v. 1: "Compiled shortly before the community moved out. It was supplemented and kept up to date by index card files, which are in the archives. C. Carroll, S.J., 12/27/76." Fr. Clifford A. Carroll was Director of the Crosby Library in 1976. Special Collections, uncataloged. No date.

40. Gonzaga University, Catalogue of Saint Francis Xavier Novitiate Library. Spokane: Crosby Library, 1965. Six vols. Bound, appears to be printout from microfilm of the card catalog. V. 1: A-B, v. 2: C-FL, v. 3: FO-J, v. 4: K-N, v. 5: O-SH, v. 6: SI-Z. Note on t.p. of v. 1: "Shortly before the community was moved and the house sold Index (and files supplemented this to keep it up to date." Special Collections, uncataloged. No date.

41. See note 5.

42. Fr. Leo Donald Davis, S.J., "Mount St. Michael’s Heritage: Rare Books Treasure Enriches Gonzaga," Signum of Gonzaga University, vol. 3.8 (April 1971), pp. 1, 5.

43. Seattle Post-Intelligencer (Sunday, October 20, 2002), Section L, pages 1-2.

44. "An Unnoticed Autograph of Philip Melanchthon and of Paul Eber," Medievalia et Humanistica, fasc. 9 (1955).

45. Tkacz, "Singing Women’s Words," as in note 22 above.