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Nancy H. Hall Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts

Sheridan Libraries & University Museums

Established in 2015 by Robert Hall

ROBERT “BOB” HALL was a 1955 graduate of the School of Engineering. He served as a trustee of the Peabody Conservatory, on the advisory council for the Krieger School of Arts & Sciences, and as a member of the Sheridan Libraries Advisory Board. Hall’s gift was made to honor the memory of his wife of nearly 60 years.

NANCY HARRISON HALL (1934–2015) was born in Baltimore. She attended Western High School and graduated from Towson State Teachers College with a BS in Education in 1955. She obtained a MS in Education from Rutgers University in 1959 and earned her MS in Speech Pathology and Audiology from Loyola College in 1979. Mrs. Hall taught in Baltimore; Summit, New Jersey; and Newton, Massachusetts and worked as a speech pathologist and audiologist in Baltimore City Public Schools.

A lifelong educator, she was a docent for more than 25 years at the Walters Art Museum, where she enjoyed introducing visitors to the Asian art collection. Mrs. Hall was also a docent at Johns Hopkins University’s Homewood Museum.

In addition to her docent activities, Hall was a Trustee at the Walters from 2001 until 2007. She also held leadership positions at The League of Women Voters of Baltimore City, The League of Women Voters of Maryland, First Unitarian Church of Baltimore, The Hamilton Street Club, and was a member of the advisory board of Johns Hopkins University’s Sheridan Libraries.

Along with her husband, Nancy Hall was an ardent advocate for the arts and humanities at Johns Hopkins and in Baltimore. In 2005, the Halls established the Nancy H. and Robert E. Hall Professorship in the Humanities at the Krieger School of Arts & Sciences.

Held by Earle Havens

HavensEarleEARLE HAVENS is an internationally recognized authority on the history of the book, in particular print and manuscript culture of the late medieval and Renaissance periods. His recent research and publications focus on several areas: surreptitious printing and book smuggling within the Elizabethan Catholic underground; the history of reading, scribal culture, and manuscript circulation in the post-Gutenberg era; and the history of literary forgery. Havens earned his PhD in History and Renaissance Studies at Yale University and has served as a curator of over a dozen rare book, manuscript, and museum exhibitions. In addition to his role at the Sheridan Libraries, Havens is Visiting Associate Professor in the Alexander Grass Humanities Institute at JHU, and regularly teaches seminars on the history of the book and European cultural history to undergraduates and graduate students at Johns Hopkins. Dr. Havens is also Principal Investigator of The Archaeology of Reading in Early Modern Europe, a four-year digital humanities initiative funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, which brings together an international team of scholars and technologists from JHU, University College London, and Princeton University. Together they explore the history of reading practices within a digital environment dedicated to extensive manuscript marginalia recorded in books owned by two Renaissance polymaths, Gabriel Harvey and John Dee.