Pillars of Light

Cathedral_artwork_4sidesA spectacular glass mosaic, featuring the Cathedral of Learning, now graces Falk Library’s entry way. This one of a kind piece was created by notable local artist Daviea Davis as part of her Pillars of Light Project.

Although dreamed about for some time, this project came to realization when Davis’s entry was accepted for the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens 2013 summer flower show themed “Glass in the Gardens.” Her vision was to create spinning, illuminated, glass pillars; each expressing a local nonprofit.

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User-Friendly Scanning in Falk Library

Do you need to scan a document or journal? Are you frustrated with slow equipment and cumbersome software? HSLS is pleased to introduce the solution to your scanning woes: the Scannx Book ScanCenter.


With a touch-screen interface and rapid scanning technology, Continue reading

HSLS Participation at the Medical Library Association’s Annual Conference

HSLS librarians were active participants in the Medical Library Association’s Annual Meeting held in Austin, Texas, from May 15-20, 2015.

Annual Janet Doe Lecture

Barbara Epstein, HSLS director, presented the annual Janet Doe Lecture. This annual award supports a lecture by a distinguished member of the profession who will offer a unique perspective on either the history or philosophy of medical librarianship. The Janet Doe Lecture is one of the highest honors the Medical Library Association offers. Her lecture was titled, “In Their Own Words: Oral Histories of Past MLA Presidents.” Continue reading

Treasures from the Rare Book Room: Woodburytype Prints in an Old Psychiatry Book

Early publishers of medical books were always eager to adopt technological novelties in photography to enhance the educational power of a text. Therefore, it is not surprising to find a book with the Woodburytype print in our collection.

Woodburytype is a print produced by a special photomechanical process, in which a mixture of pigments suspended in warm gelatin is poured onto a relief surface, and then transferred to paper by pressing. There is a three minute YouTube video explaining this technique. The resulting illustration is in slight relief (it looks like a photograph mounted on paper). It was developed by Walter B. Woodbury and was widely used in fine book illustrations during the last three decades of the 19th century. Illustrations produced with this method perfectly replicated the details of a photograph. The use of carbon black and stable inorganic pigments made images resistant to fading. The attempts to adopt this technique to rotary printing were not successful and Woodburytype printing was replaced by collotype and halftone processes in the 20th century.

Auguste Felix Voisin (1829-1898), the author of the “old psychiatry book” mentioned in the title of this article, studied medicine under the guidance of his father, a physician in Le Mans. Influenced by his physician uncle, Felix, he devoted himself to the study of mental diseases. He was a physician in Paris at Bicêtre, and later at Salpêtrière, where he practiced from 1867 until his death. His experiences and clinical cases from these hospitals were used in his book, Leçons cliniques sur les maladies mentales (1876). Amplifying its success, he revised the book in 1883 and published it under a slightly different title, Leçons cliniques sur les maladies mentales et sur les maladies nerveuses. The second edition, held at Falk Library, was enlarged to 776 pages by adding new chapters on madness and therapy, and new iconography. In addition to lithographic illustrations scattered throughout the text, the book includes color plates, and the three plates of Woodburytype prints showing patients suffering from delusions, addiction, and melancholy. This book can be viewed in the Rare Book Room by appointment.

Leçons cliniques sur les maladies mentales (1876) by Auguste Felix Voisin

~Gosia Fort

HSLS Staff News

The HSLS Staff News section includes recent HSLS presentations, publications, staff changes, staff promotions, degrees earned, etc.


Lydia Collins, consumer health coordinator, NN/LM Middle Atlantic Region, presented “I Read, I Heard, I Want to Know: Health Issues in the Headlines” at the Delaware/Maryland Library Association Annual Conference in Ocean City, MD on May 7, 2015.

Classes June 2015

HSLS offers classes on database searching, software applications such as Prezi, bibliographic management, molecular biology and genetics, and library orientations. For more information, visit the online course descriptions.

Classes are held on the first floor of Falk Library (200 Scaife Hall) in Classroom 1 and on the upper floor of the library in Classroom 2. All classes are open to faculty, staff, and students of the schools of the health sciences at the University of Pittsburgh, who will need a valid Pitt ID or e-mail account. They are also open to UPMC residents and fellows, who will need to show their UPMC IDs.

No registration is required, except where noted. Classes marked with an asterisk (*) qualify for American Medical Association Category 2 continuing education credit.

Class schedules are subject to change. Please consult the online class calendar for the most current information.


FlashClass is a “deal of the week” Groupon-like offer of timely and useful learning. Each week’s offer proposes one or two topics, and you’re invited to sign up to attend a one-hour class the following week. If at least three people sign up, we’ll hold the class. (We’ll notify you either way.)


Advanced PowerPoint for Presentations (Falk Library Classroom 2)

Thursday, June 11 10-11:30 a.m.

EndNote Basics (Falk Library Classroom 2)

Wednesday, June 10 10 a.m.-noon

Painless PubMed* (Falk Library Classroom 1)

Monday, June 1 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Tuesday, June 9 4:30-5:30 p.m.
Wednesday, June 17 8:30-9:30 a.m.
Thursday, June 25 Noon-1 p.m.

Prezi for Presentations (Falk Library Classroom 2)

Friday, June 19 1-3 p.m.


Genome Regulation Resources* (Falk Library Classroom 2)

Wednesday, June 10 1-3 p.m.


Customized classes can be developed for your department, course, or other group.