Touring the Meritt Library: Open House

A virtual walk through the IAS squeeze collection and the project to digitize it

by Project Manager Aaron Hershkowitz

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, I gave many mini-tours at the beginning of each academic term. Uta Nitschke-Joseph would lead small groups of incoming scholars (and sometimes their families) into the Meritt Library, and I would show them the collection and explain about its history and scope, and about our new project to digitize the materials and make them broadly publicly available.

The last of those tours took place in January of 2020, and they have not yet resumed, although I very much hope that they do soon. However, even when they were taking place, those tours had a big downside: they catered to a small audience, and one that was already in the privileged position of staying at the Institute for Advanced Study.

As a result, over the fall of 2020 I developed a plan with María Tuya, head of Digital Scholarship at IAS, to hold a virtual, entirely public “Open House” that would allow people from all walks of life and all parts of the world to spend a few minutes in the Meritt Library and to learn a little bit about squeezes, epigraphy, and the Krateros Project.

The event was held on April 9, 2021, and consisted of two parts: a video tour of the Meritt Library, and a Zoom question and answer session. Both parts are now available on the IAS YouTube channel, and the full Open House with video and Q&A is embedded below.

In the coming days, we will also have a series of “Touring the Meritt Library” entries on Notes from Krateros, all of which have been adapted from earlier posts on the Krateros Instagram page. If you have questions about anything in these posts, do drop us a line at!

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