President G. Thomas Tanselle called to order the fifty-ninth Annual Meeting of the Bibliographical Society of the University of Virginia at 4:00 p.m. in the auditorium of the Harrison Institute/Small Special Collections Library. He congratulated University Librarian Karin Wittenborg on the beautiful new Special Collections Library and expressed the Society’s pleasure at once again being a part of the Virginia Festival of the Book.
He noted with sadness the death in January of Honorary Councilor Mary Massey. Mrs. Massey was the last link with the earliest days of the Society. Her husband, Linton Massey, was instrumental in founding the society, supported it generously with time and money, and served as its president for twenty-six years. After his death, Mrs. Massey continued the family’s support, serving as Councilor from 1974 until she became an Honorary Councilor in 1992. Until 1989, the Masseys hosted lavish dinners for the Society meetings at Kinloch, their Albemarle County estate. Council members who attended Mrs. Massey’s memorial service heard Carolyn Dillard, daughter of the Massey’s longtime housekeeper, recall the Bibliographical Society dinners as symbolic of the hospitality at Kinloch. Mr. Tanselle called for a moment of silence to commemorate the passing of a loyal friend.
The affairs of the Society have run smoothly in the past year, Mr. Tanselle reported. He named the other six Council members and thanked them for their cooperative effort. He gave special thanks to staff members Elizabeth Lynch and Anne Ribble for their dedicated and efficient service.
The minutes from the 2005 Annual Meeting were accepted. After Mr. Tanselle commended the high standards of Mr. Vander Meulens editing and pronounced his continued presence on the Council as essential, David Vander Meulen, Professor in the English Department and editor of Studies in Bibliography and the Society’s other publications, was re-elected to another seven-year term on the Council. The current officers of the Society had been re-elected at the Council meeting earlier in the afternoon.
Awards for the Society’s forty-sixth Book Collecting Contest were presented. First prize of $300 and the BSUVA Rare Book School Fellowship went to Kenneth Price, a Ph.D. candidate in English, for his collection “Artists Books in Popular Editions.” Second prize of $150 went to Timothy Stinson, a graduate student in the English Department, for his collection of “Daredevil Comics and Graphic Novels.” Honorable mention, and a prize of $75, went to Elizabeth Ladner, a graduate student in the History Department, for her “Alexandre Dumas Collection.” Works from these three collections are on display in Founders Hall of Alderman Library. All three winners received a complimentary copy of vol. 55 of Studies in Bibliography. Mr. Tanselle thanked Ruthe Battestin for chairing the contest, Terry Belanger for providing the posters for the event and donating the Rare Book School Fellowship, and Mrs. Battestin, Kathryn Morgan, and Fred Ribble for judging the contest.
The great vitality and breadth of bibliographical work being done at the University of Virginia is demonstrated, Mr. Tanselle observed, in the graduate student presentations to follow. Carole Hamner Schmidt then introduced the four student speakers: Wesley Raabe, “Uncle Toms Cabin as Newspaper Serial,” Peter J. Capuano, “The First Serialized Number of Thackerays Vanity Fair,” Ania Wieckowski, “Accidentals in Dickenss Dombey and Son,” and Francix X. Connor, “Manuscript, Print, and Coterie Authorship in the Poetry of Katherine Philips.”
The meeting was adjourned at 5:40 and a reception followed in the rooms of Rare Book School.