Cataloging of the Basil G. Bibby Collection has recently been completed. The nearly 500 monographic titles and twenty periodical titles in the collection are now fully accessible on the University of Rochester Libraries’ bibliographic database (Voyager). The Bibby Collection is named in honor of Basil Glover Bibby, D.M.D., Ph.D. (1904-1988), director of the Eastman Dental Center (EDC) in Rochester, N.Y. from 1947 to 1970. During his years as director, Dr. Bibby acquired for the EDC library numerous titles of historical importance on dentistry, oral medicine and oral surgery. When the EDC became part of the University of Rochester Medical Center in 1997, the rare book portion of the Center’s library was transferred to the Rare Books & Manuscripts Section of the Edward G. Miner Library
Steel-engraving from the atlas to Richard Owen’s Odontography (1845)
The earliest book in the Bibby Collection is Bartolomeo Eustachi’s Libellus de dentibus (A brief treatise on the teeth) published at Venice in 1563. About half the collection was printed before 1900, and includes such classics as Pierre Fouchard’s Le chirurgien dentiste (Paris, 1728); Joseph Hurlock’s A practical treatise upon dentition (London, 1742), the first English-language book on children’s teeth; John Hunter’s The natural history of the human teeth (London, 1771); A.L.B.B. Jourdain’s Traité des maladies et des operations réellement chirurgicales de la bouche (Paris, 1778), the first specialist text on oral surgery; Joseph Fox’s The natural history of the human teeth (London, 1803), the first work on orthodontics; numerous editions of Chapin A. Harris’ The dental art, a practical treatise on dental surgery first published at Baltimore in 1839; Sir Richard Owen’s two-volume Odontography (London, 1840-45); Norman William Kingsley’s A treatise on oral deformities (New York, 1880), etc., etc. The periodicals portion of the collection includes full runs of the American journal of dental science (60 vols., 1839-1909), The British journal of dental science (75 vols., 1856-1930), The Dental cosmos (78 vols., 1859-1936), etc.
When Dr. Bibby’s collection was transferred to the Miner Library, all the books on dentistry, operative dentistry, oral biology, etc. previously in its historical collections were moved to the Bibby Collection. Since then, we have continued to develop the collection through purchases carefully made on the antiquarian book market.
Wood-engraving from Alfred Coleman’s Manual of dental surgery and pathology (Philadelphia, 1882)