Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Pulp treasure: The Grain Ships

(by Heather Hernandez, Technical Services Librarian)

The Library is fortunate to have a significant holdings of maritime pulp fiction.  These materials, vastly popular when published, are now often scarce due to the materials used in their manufacture: inexpensive papers that are highly acidic, known as "pulp."

Our holdings have currently been enriched through a large number of pulp magazines dating from the late 19th through the 20th centuries, donated as part of the Krummes Collection of Steamship Fiction.  Although we are mourning the recent passing of Dan Krummes, we are proud to preserve and make available these materials that created a love of the sea in so many.

We are cataloging the stories in the pulp magazines individually to make them more accessible;  if you're not able to come in to read them in person, simply contact us to obtain copies.

While cataloging the contents of vol. 3, no. 2 (Nov. 20, 1922) of Sea Stories Magazine, I came across the poem, "The Grain Ships" by Captain Dingle.  It was too good not to digitize as part of our pilot program to digitize library materials--it is now available in multiple formats via the Internet Archive and NPS Focus, and I am delighted to present here this charming poem about San Francisco's grain ships:

Image of The Grain Ships


  1. Have you considered partnering with Google's library project to get them to digitize your collections?

  2. The Google project does not meet our needs--we are contributing our digitized library materials to the Internet Archive (as well as the NPS digital repository, NPS Focus), and the results of our pilot digitization project are these texts: http://archive.org/search.php?query=%22san%20francisco%20maritime%20national%20historical%20park%22%20AND%20mediatype%3Atexts

  3. Hiya Heather! I was browsing your blog and checked NPS Focus... but it says there are no records for SAFR. I tried browsing by park and by the search bar with "San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park", but no dice. Is there some trick I missed?

  4. Hi, Esther! I think it may have been a temporary hiccup--we have over 500 records in Focus. This morning, when I select "Browse Parks," and then choose "San Francisco Maritime..." from the list, I'm getting 550 records. Is it working for you today?