Historic Cambridge Exhibitions

The Cambridge Public Library at 449 Broadway has two small exhibition cases dedicated to showcasing original artifacts, books, manuscripts, and unique materials from the Cambridge Room, the Library’s Archives and Special Collections.

Miniature Book Exhibition

Cambridge RoomExhibition Location: Entrance and 2nd Floor, Glass Building

The definition of a miniature book depends on who is asked. In the United States, many collectors feel that a miniature book is usually considered to be one which is no more than three inches (7.5 cm) in height, width, or thickness. Some aficionados collect slightly larger books while others specialize in even smaller sizes. Outside of the United States, books up to four inches are considered miniature by many. The Library of Congress determined a miniature book to be one smaller than 4 inches (10 cm) in spine height.

The books in this exhibit represent a variety of sizes. From 4 inches to one of the smallest in the world at .0394 inches (1 mm). All of the books on display are “real” books, with pages that turn and with text and images on the pages, or sample pages from real books.

The categories of miniature books are:

  • Macro-Mini (between 4 and 3 inches tall)
  • Miniature (between 3 and 2 inches tall)
  • Micro-Miniature (between 2 and 1 inches tall)
  • Ultra Micro-Mini (less than 1 inch tall)

This exhibition is on loan from Joseph Curran, former President of the Miniature Book Society of America, and is in honor of the 2014 Book Fair of the Miniature Book Society, which is free and open to the public on Sunday, August 17th from 12:00 to 4:00 p.m. at the Taj Boston Hotel.

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