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Treasures from the London Room: The Oldest Book

The oldest book in the library is the following item:  "Mechanick Powers: or,  the Mistery of Nature and Art Unvail'd" by Ven [terus] Mandey and J. [ames] Moxon, published in London, England in 1696. On the title page it states that the book was printed for the authors and sold by Ven. Mandey next door to the Salmon in Bloomsbury Market and James Moxon at the Atlas in Warwick Lane and R. Clavel at the Peacock in Fleet Street.  The following handwritten notes are on the book - Receiv'd for this book - 9 s [hillings]; work of reference not to be taken out of the reading room; James Etty His Books, 1700; James Odell.  There is also a yellow London Mechanics' Institute Library book plate  - no. 217.  The book is also stamped, "Withdrawn from Circulation, November 14, 1906". At one point it was loaned by W.O. Carson, public librarian.  The book appeared in two catalogues printed by the London Mechanics' Institute, one in 1852 as no. 586 and one in 1881 as no. 217 which corresponds to the number on the bookplate.   O'dell is a very old family name in Westminster Township.  James Odell was the brother of William who assisted in building the first bridge on Wellington Streeet to cross the Thames River (Clarke's Bridge).    



Mechanic Powers Book