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New digital library collection

New Resource

Blue Bonnet

The Blue Bonnet was the shipboard newsletter of the USS Houston (CA-30), a World War II-era heavy cruiser that was named for the city of Houston. The Houston was sunk in 1942 during the Battle of Sunda Strait, and her surviving crew members made prisoners-of-war. This collection includes the ship’s newsletters from the years 1933 through 1941, although not all issues are available. The newsletters are part of the larger Cruiser Houston Collection, an archival collection that documents the history of the ship and her crew. The Blue Bonnet was revived after the war by the USS Houston Survivors Association and Next Generations, and issues from the 2000s may be viewed online at their web site.

Historic map collection now available

New Resource

The University of Houston, which has previously provided access to only the Texas maps, has now purchased Digital Sanborn Maps for all states.

Digital Sanborn Maps, 1867-1970 provides academic and public libraries digital access to more than 660,000 large-scale maps of more than 12,000 American towns and cities. Users have the ability to easily manipulate the maps, magnify and zoom in on specific sections, and layer maps from different years.

Sanborn fire insurance maps are the most frequently consulted maps in both public and academic libraries. Sanborn maps are valuable historical tools for urban specialists, social historians, architects, geographers, genealogists, local historians, planners, environmentalists and anyone who wants to learn about the history, growth, and development of American cities, towns, and neighborhoods. They are large-scale plans containing data that can be used to estimate the potential risk for urban structures. This includes information such as the outline of each building, the size, shape and construction materials, heights, and function of structures, location of windows and doors. The maps also give street names, street and sidewalk widths, property boundaries, building use, and house and block numbers. Seven or eight different editions represent some areas.

Library customers may access the maps at or by selecting Digital Sanborn Maps from the “Architecture Databases” list on the William R. Jenkins Architecture and Art Library homepage.

New database: Index of Christian Art

New Resource

This thematic / iconographic index of Early Christian and medieval art objects is now available to UH students. The Index records works of art produced without geographical limitations from early apostolic times up to A.D. 1550 (extended in the case of the Morgan and Princeton Library projects to include this manuscript holdings up to the middle of the sixteenth century). Works are largely western, but art from North Africa and the Near East are also represented. Seventeen different media are represented in the archive, and these include manuscripts, metalwork, sculpture, painting, glass, and so forth. The Internet database presently contains nearly 80,000 work of art records which are accompanied by over one-hundred thousand images in color and black and white. Many of these images have never before been digitized and are published here for the first time.

Library customers may link to the index at or by clicking on the Art Databases link on our website (

ARTstor is now available

New Resource