History and fiction in an Irish bog

History and fiction in an Irish bog

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Author Erin Hart tells the tale of how conservation of a 9th-century book inspired her new novel

Author Erin Hart and musician Paddy O’Brien will help the University of Iowa Libraries Conservation Lab kick off its 30th anniversary celebration on Thursday, May 1, starting at 7 p.m.

The evening will begin with traditional Irish music on the square between the Main Library and the Adler Journalism Building. Moving into Shambaugh Auditorium, Hart will share how the discovery of the ninth century Fadden More Psalter inspired her latest crime novel, The Book of Killowen.

Fadden More PsalterFadden More Psalter. Image courtesy of erinhartbooks.blogspot.com

Hart worked with preservationists, conservationists, and scholars to include the book's actual history in her story. Discovered in 2006 in a peat bog in Fadden More, County Tipperary, Ireland, the psalter—text of the book of Psalms—was likely written in about 800 A.D. in one of the area monasteries. After conservation work at the National Museum of Ireland it is now on permanent exhibition there.

This event is sponsored by the University of Iowa Libraries, the UI Libraries Conservation Lab, and the Iowa Women's Archives.

Founded in 1984 by Conservator Bill Anthony, the UI Libraries Conservation Lab is celebrating its 30th year in 2014. Anthony established a conservation program to address the physical needs of the collections, from stabilization and simple repairs, to complex rebinding projects. In 1987 the lab merged with the newly formed Preservation Department to provide treatment to circulating and noncirculating materials in all the University Libraries.

For more information on the celebration of 30 years of preservation and conservation at UI Libraries, visit this website.


Nancy Kraft, University Libraries, 319-335-5286


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