12.07 Special Collection Children's Scope Statement Policy - Reviewed 01-2012.pdf

Cataloging and Processing of Children's Special Collections held in the Davenport Special Collections Room


  1. Richmond Tucker Collection (RTC): The Richmond Tucker Collection, donated by Judith Josephine Tucker, covers children's books published between 1700-1859.

    Titles in the collection reflect the emergence of literature for children (moral, didactic and entertaining) as it evolved in America and Britain.

    Examples of books included:

    • Be merry and wise: or, The cream of the jests and the marrow of maxims for the conduct of life, by Tommy Trapwit (1768)
    • The magic lantern, or Amusing and instructive exhibitions for young people, by Elizabeth Semple (1806)
    • Rural Scenes, or a peep into the country, by Jane Taylor (1810)
  2. Richmond Children's Books (RCB): The Richmond Children's Book collection reflects the development of literature for children published in the English language from 1800 forward.

    Titles reflect the historical context of the development of children's literature, including important authors and illustrators of children's books. The collection includes titles considered classics in English language children's literature from 1800 forward, which are important as historical milestones in children's literature or by their adoption by young readers over time.

    Titles must have been published at least 50 years earlier for inclusion in the Richmond Children's Book collection.

    Examples of books included:

    • Farm Babies, by Cecil Aldin (1910)
    • A House for a Mouse, by Cecily Englefield (1937)
    • The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett (1911)
    • Misty of Chincoteague, by Marguerite Henry (1947)
  3. Richmond Children's Series (RCS): The Richmond Children's Series collection includes books published from 1800 forward which have a repetitive character, and/or were published by the same publisher on a common subject or theme. The Series collection includes primers and readers.

    The collection also includes textbooks published by Richmond publishers. No additional textbooks will be added to the collection except those published by Richmond publishers.

    Titles must have been published at least 50 years earlier for inclusion in the Richmond Children's Series collection.

    Examples of books included:

    • Tom Swift series, by Victor Appleton
    • Nan Sherwood series, by Annie Roe Carr
    • Little Colonel series, by Annie Fellows Johnston
  4. Richmond Children's First Edition (RCF): First editions of children's books held in Richmond Public Library's Special Collections are cataloged as RCF, separate from the other collections. First editions are housed in locked cases.

    Titles must have been published at least 50 years earlier in order to be included in the Richmond Children's First Edition collection, with the exception that first edition copies of the following award winners will be collected annually: Newbery, Caldecott, Coretta Scott King, and the Virginia Jefferson Cup award.

  5. Richmond Children's World Languages (RCW): Books published in languages other than English are cataloged separately as RCW. The primary collection within the RCW designation consists of Soviet children's titles from the 1920's and 1930's. Additional titles are 20th century titles in Czech, French and German.

    Richmond Public Library will not actively collect additional titles in languages other than English. Donations of additional titles in languages other than English must be supported by an additional financial contribution, due to added costs to support non-English language collections.

  6. Richmond Children's Magazines (RCM): A small collection of important 19th and 20th Century children's magazines is included in the Special Collections. Additional magazines will not be added to the collection.

    Examples of titles held:

    • Harper's New Monthly Magazine
    • Something To Do
    • St. Nicholas
  7. Richmond Children's Reference (RCR): The Reference Collection includes the standard works from the 20th and 21st Century to support a children's literature collection. Titles provide information about specific writers and periods of children's literature.


  1. "Rare" – "rare" book is used within the ALA definition of "important" content or historical context, not rare as extremely valuable or singular.

    a. "RCB" – meaning to be "Richmond Children's Books", not "rare children's books". b. Additions to RCB must have been published at least 50 years earlier than the present date. This will establish a rolling 50-year inclusion period (ex. must be published 1958 or earlier to be considered for addition to the RCB in 2008)

  2. "Series" – describes books with a repetitive character, published by the same publisher on a common subject or theme, includes primers and readers (theme is reading, example is McGuffey, Dick & Jane):

    a. "Series" will be separated from the collection in general

    b. Designation for cataloging will be "RCS" – Richmond Children's Series

  3. "First edition" – will be separated, put into locked cases: a. Designation for cataloging will be "RCF" – Richmond Children's First Edition

  4. Dewey order – standard Dewey order is used for cataloging, and standard Dewey order is used on the shelf (Example: RCB as collection, then standard Dewey number).

  5. Illustrators – are not a separate collection; illustrators will be available through MARC tag in catalog record.
  6. Genre – will not separate by genre; through Dewey order, fairy tales, folk tales, poetry will be grouped together.
  7. Magazines – we currently have a limited number of important children's magazines. Some writers/illustrators begin their published work in these magazines, so they are an important source.

    a. We will provide minimal cataloging for the magazines, not issue-specific information.

    b. There will be no further magazine titles added to the collection or accepted from donors.

    1. The library will use judgment on accepting individual copies of magazine titles currently held based on condition; may swap out loose copies of what is already held, or keep loose copy for display purposes if the title is bound.

    c. Designation for cataloging will be "RCM" – Richmond Children's Magazine

  8. Primers and readers – will be considered "series" (see #2 above)

  9. Textbooks – will be considered "series"

    a. We hold the Johnson textbooks because they were published in Richmond.

    b. No other textbooks, unless published in Richmond, will be kept or accepted.

    c. Textbooks – describes subject-level or grade-level books/texts

  10. Richmond publishers – will consider for addition any children's books published by a Richmond publisher (none identified currently except Johnson textbooks)

  11. Duplicates:

    a. Keep one copy of an edition (may have multiple copies of a title, such as Pinocchio, but only one copy of a particular edition of the title). We will not keep a reading copy or additional copy.

    b. If have copies of the same edition (different print runs), keep the copy that is in better condition for the collection.

    c. If have different editions and the first edition is not the copy that is in the best condition, then we will keep the first edition and the better copy of a later edition.

  12. Criteria for selection for the collection:

    a. Edition

    b. Condition (cover, binding, quality/condition of the paper, cleanliness)

    c. Value (historical significance, monetary value)

    d. Fills a gap or fits within the defined scope of the collection

    e. Represents the history of the Richmond Public Library's children's collection (ex. a bookplate in the book represents a period of the Richmond Public Library)

  13. Designations for cataloging:

    a. RTC – Richmond Tucker Collection

    b. RCB – Richmond Children's Books

    c. RCS – Richmond Children's Series

    d. RCF – Richmond Children's First Edition

    e. RCW – Richmond Children's World Languages

    f. RCM – Richmond Children's Magazines

    g. RCR – Richmond Children's Reference


  1. Books added to the collection must be formally accepted by the Richmond Public Library Board (Special Collection Policy and Scope).

    a. When books have been reviewed and recommended for addition to the collection, a written recommendation will be provided to the Library Board through the Library Director. The recommendation should state the book's author, title and related information; identify the particular scope of the collection within which this title fits; value, if available; donor.

    b. The Library Board will act on the recommendation at their next regularly scheduled Board meeting.

  2. Books are generally donated in the following ways:

    a. To general book sale – sorters for the book sale identify items that may be of interest for the special children's collection, and set these aside for review

    b. Richmond Public Library – de-accessions books that may be of interest for the special children's collection, and ask that they be reviewed

    c. Individual donations to the Richmond Public Library – donors contact the Library directly

    d. Individual donations through volunteers in Special Collections – donors contact the Friends of the Library or volunteers working in Special Collections and ask if items might be of interest to Special Collections, ask that they be reviewed and returned to the donor if the Library does not accept the item

  3. Books donated (not accepted for the Special Collections) are generally sold in the following ways:

    a. General book sale – Books donated with limited value are sold through the biannual Friends of the Library book sales

    b. Sale through special arrangement – Books donated with higher value may be sold by the Library through special arrangements with individual dealers. Any sale through special arrangement should have a written agreement that specifies the dealer's fee and method of sale.

  4. Books held within the Special Collections may be sold in the following way:

    a. Books held within the Richmond Public Library (including Special Collections) are the property of the Library. They may be disposed of only within the Library's regular processes, which are guided by the City's Procurement Department and Library Board policies.

    i. Books or other items sold through dealers should have a written agreement that specifies the dealer's fee and method of sale.


Appointed: May 21, 2008

Reviewed: January 2012