Sabin Americana 1500-1926
Based on Joseph Sabinʼs bibliography, Bibliotheca Americana, this digital collection from Gale Cengage provides a variety of material published about the Americas between 1500 and 1926. Included are works from Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Cuba, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States, and Venezuela.
Sources for this review include information publicly posted or obtained directly from the publisher, data collected by CRL staff and members, and examination of the digital collection when possible.Other sources are noted where cited.
All of the titles are from those listed in Joseph Sabin’s bibliography, Bibliotheca Americana, or Dictionary of Books Relating to America. Tricia Clayton, in a review in The Charleston Advisor, notes that Sabin’s effort to comprehensively list imprints about the Americas was conceived in 1866 but not completed until 1935, finally listing over 106,000 titles in 250,000 editions.1
Source of the digitized content
The first portion of the digital content came from titles already assembled in Gale’s multivolume microfiche product The Sabin Collection, consisting of material primarily from The Huntington Library and the Library of Congress. Titles were subsequently reproduced from originals at Yale University Library and the American Antiquarian Society, first in both digital format and microfiche, and more recently in digital format only. The total number of titles scanned from microfiche, according to the publisher, is 28,169. As of October, 2010 there is a total of 36,390 titles/43,991 volumes in the digital collection. The publisher has indicated that the final goal for the digital collection is around 55,000- titles. At one time it was hoped to include around 75,000 titles of the 106,000 listed by Sabin, but logistical arrangements have caused the goal to be revised.
Clayton searched to compare date range hits with EEBO, ECCP, and the Early American Imprints Series I and II (Evans and Shaw-Shoemaker), suggesting a small percentage of overlap. The publisher has confirmed estimates of maximum overlap based on analyzing publicly available data (title lists and spec sheets) from other collections:
Timetable for release
The collection was launched in December, 2005. Gale continues to add content at a rate of approximately 1 million pages per year, in two releases. Completion is expected in 2013.
A list of holding institutions posted by Gale as of March, 2010, indicated sixty U.S. institutions, including over thirty CRL members. As of October, 2010, thirty-five libraries reported holdings in WorldCat (OCLC #63205055).
The vendor sells MARC records for the titles.
Technical platform & interface
The database provides persistent urls which can be cited directly in course management tools.
Gale provides copies of page images and xml of the full text and metadata which can be used to load locally, but not the application/interface tools.
In her Charleston Advisor Review Clayton notes a number of strengths in the search and display interfaces for Sabin Americana: availability of word proximity and word order proximity searches; fuzzy search for normalizing spelling and typography variations; broad topical categories for browsing; indexed transcriptions of chapter headings; and persistent URLs for referencing documents, portions of documents, and predefined searches. Weaknesses cited include limits on display of browse results; no relevance sorting for search results; absence of fast forward and reverse navigation within documents; and awkward provisions for emailing documents.
Gale sells Sabin Americana as a one-time purchase with an annual hosting fee. Pricing varies based on the size and purchasing history of the institution.
Tricia Clayton, “Sabin Americana, 1500-1926”, Advisor Reviews, The Charleston Advisor April 2010. Accessed October 2010, http://charleston.publisher.ingentaconnect.com/content/charleston/chadv/2010/00000011/00000004/art00015?
Direct from Publisher
|Subjects covered||History, literature, culture, discovery/exploration, colonial settlements, law, gov & politics, indigenous cultures, slavery|
|Geographic coverage||North, Central, and South America; the Caribbean|
|Content types||Pamphlets, letters, essays, booklets, land tracts, congressional speeches, journals, memoirs, published legislative proceedings,|
|P||Source formats||Microfiche (c. 28,000 titles), hard copy (up to c. 27,000 titles planned)|
|P||Total titles||50,000-55,000 on completion (c.36,000 titles/ 44,000 vols. in 2010)|
|P||Total pages||9,477,000 as of 6/2010; 12.5-13 million final goal|
|P||Digital collection launch date||December, 2005|
|P||Completion date||Estimated completion: 2013|
|O||Major languages||English (also French, Spanish, German, and other European languages as well as some Native American)|
|Browser compatibility||Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari, Opera, Chrome (for details see http://support.gale.com/gale/article.html?article=1166)|
|O||Authentication options||IP address; Athens; Shibboleth; cookies; barcode or patron number; library managed passwords|
|Archiving solution – master files||Portico|
|Archiving solution – derivative files||Portico|
|P||Availability in web discovery tools||N|
|P||Open URL target||N|
|P||Federated searching, z39.50||Y|
|P||Local host option||Y (images and xml available for local access)|
|P||Full text displayed||N|
|Search full text||Y|
|Advanced search (fielded)||Y|
|O||Search within results||Y|
|O||Limit results by dates and/or document types||Y|
|O||Display highlighted search terms||Y|
|O||Display snippet -- search term in context||N|
|P||Print full document||Y (but limited to 50 page increments)|
|P||ILL||Y (for limited printed copies)|
|P||Restrictions on use||Copies may be loaned or incorporated in course management tools, for educational and personal use only (non-commercial)|
|Publisher / Distributor||Gale Cengage Learning|
|Address||Gale 27500 Drake Road Farmington Hills, MI 48331-3535|
|url ; contact email||http://mlr.com/DigitalCollections/products/Sabin/;http://gdc.gale.com/|
|Related product(s)||Making of the Modern World; 19th Century U.S. Newspapers; Slavery and Anti-Slavery: a Transnational Archive|
|O||Purchase option||Y (One-time purchase fee; price quotes range from $30,000 to $240,000)|
|O||Multiple year payments option||Y (Can spread cost over 2-3 years)|
|Hosting charges||Y (Annual hosting fee)|
|List of purchasers available||Y (http://www.informationaccess.com/DigitalCollections/holdings/SabinAmericanaCustomers.pdf)|
|P||Sample license available||Y (available upon request)|
|MARC records purchase fee||Y|
|O||Price tier basis||FTE|