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COLLECTION Identifier: Houghton Library printed book provenance file, L-Q

Houghton Library printed book provenance file, L-Q


Index to ownership/provenance information primarily from printed books at Houghton Library.


  • 1942-1992


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.


1 linear foot
Collection is comprised of the file indexes to ownership/provenance information found in printed books within Houghton Library that were cataloged prior to 1992. A very few manuscript codices are also included. It does not include books transferred from Widener Library and still identified by their Widener call numbers (circa 75,000 titles), or books accessioned but not fully cataloged (circa 35,000 titles).

Each entry includes the following information: Name or initials of owner, usually as it appears in the book; type of evidence of ownership; author, title, and date of the book; and finally the Houghton call number for the book (for instance, *GC9.W4922.920b or Typ.715.67.274).

Ownership/provenance evidence includes: bookplates (often abbreviated as "plate"); signatures and initials within the book (often abbreviated as "autogr."); monograms; stamps, sometimes on the binding; labels; identified annotations; etc.

Biographical / Historical

This index originated as a card file maintained at the Library from 1942 to 1992. The card file was then closed, and information on ownership/provenance was entered only into the records in HOLLIS. As older records are updated in HOLLIS (Harvard's online catalog), provenance information is added, resulting in some overlap of ownership information in this file and in HOLLIS.

The card file consists of both typed and handwritten cards. The handwritten cards are often difficult to read, and errors of transcription are undoubtedly present.


Entries are alphabetized by the name, or initials, of the owner of the book.

No attempt has been made to regularize various forms of names found. Researchers are urged to check under variant forms of the name.

Other Finding Aids

There are three separate finding aids for the other portions of this index (A-D, E-K, R-Z). See the archives interface and search for these three finding aids by their identifiers: hou01529, hou01530, and hou01543.

General note

Indexes A-D, E-K, and R-Z are available electronically in Houghton finding aids: hou01529, hou01530, and hou01543.


Houghton Library. Houghton Library printed book provenance file, L-Q: Index.
November 16, 2018
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, literary and performing arts archives, and more. The library's holdings of primary source material are managed by an expert staff and shared with scholars, students and the public in the reading room.

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