President’s Report to the Membership 2012

I regret that this newsletter is now a month later than usual, but I wanted to be able to report to you from London about how the IHR is coping with its temporary location in the south block of the Senate House while the refurbishment proceeds just to the north. Last week I spent an afternoon tracking down information for my current book project, and I’m pleased to report that the library continues to work well. The British Library is, of course, indispensable, but the availability of basic printed sources, reference materials, periodicals and monographs on the open shelves at the IHR makes one’s work much more efficient for so many purposes. I attended a packed seminar of the Tudor-Stuart seminar last week, so that side of the operation appears to be thriving as well.

The plans for the “new” IHR that is scheduled to open in 2013 are exciting and can be seen on the IHR Relocation Blog. You will be pleased to know that the tearoom will be back in its customary space alongside new meeting and teaching rooms, more space for academic and research staff, and many improvements for the library.

If you have not yet had a look at The History SPOT for its podcasts of many of the seminars and lectures at the IHR, you have a treat awaiting you.

I am delighted to announce that, thanks to Professor Miles Taylor, the IHR’s director, and his staff, we are now able to offer a new benefit that will be helpful for many members of the AFIHR. It was a worrying development when the Royal Historical Society’s Bibliography of British and Irish History became a proprietary service under the aegis of Brepols Publishing not long ago. Many college and university libraries have been unable to afford institutional subscriptions to BBIH since then, and annual subscriptions for individuals are now pegged at $171.

Beginning January 1, 2013, however, AFIHR members can have annual subscriptions to BBIH for $55, a savings of approximately two-thirds. If you wish to take advantage of this opportunity, please note that subscriptions are for the calendar year that begins January 1 and that the IHR needs to provide Brepols a list of AFIHR members who have opted to buy the subscription by mid-November. If you know of anyone who might find this extraordinary resource useful, please pass along this newsletter (or direct them to our website to join the AFIHR.

Whether or not you wish to take advantage of reduced-cost subscription to the special content of British History Online and/or the BBIH, please join us or renew your membership in order to help support the increasingly varied and important work that the IHR does. In addition to enhancing the collections and improvement of the library, your tax-deductible contribution supports bursaries to help North American graduate students attend the annual History Lab Conference which is held at the IHR, the process of digitizing essential reference materials to extend the usefulness of British History Online, and much else.

Please renew your membership in the AFIHR so we can continue to support the work of the IHR from this side of the Atlantic. More information is available elsewhere on this website. A contribution of $45 or more annually to the American Friends of the IHR ($30 for graduate students) confers membership in the Institute and facilitates.

All officers and board members of the AFIHR serve without compensation. Administrative costs are minimal, consisting of mailing expenses, occasional technical services, and accounting fees. Therefore nearly every dollar contributed is forwarded to the Institute in order to help pay for some aspect of its work. Checks are to be sent to Professor Paul Hammer (above), so that he can keep our membership list up to date.

Thank you for your continued support.

Sincerely yours,

Sears McGee