Speaking of Wine



Dante Bagnani

We’re debuting a new collection in the Heritage Collections this week — Speaking of Wine. The collection includes both transcripts and some original audio from oral history interviews of Sonoma County vintners and others connected with the history of wine making in the County. The transcripts I’ve included so far are nearly all part of the Wine Library Associates of Sonoma County Oral History Series. Those for which we own the original audio tape include download links (the audio will be available in streaming format in the near future after I upload it to Internet Archive). Check out interviews with the Sebastiani family, Dante Bagnani (Geyser Peak Winery),  Rodney Strong (Rodney Strong Vineyards) and more.

I’ve also loaded 75 new titles in the Biblioteca Vinaria Sonoma, ranging from French wine guides to British government proclamations from the time Oliver Cromwell.

Finally, both of these collections now have collection guides in the Archives and Archival Collections site. Look for them under the Recently uploaded digital content on the home page.



Wine Books in the Heritage Collections

Page from Edouard Robinet's Traite general des vins

Page from Edouard Robinet’s Traite general des vins

The first group of many historical wine books now have a home on the Sonoma Heritage Collection.  The Biblioteca Vinaria Sonoma draws from the Sonoma County Wine Library’s collection of historic books and documents, primarily from the 16th to early 20th century. The collection covers all aspects of viticulture and winemaking, ranging from proclamations of George III on wine regulations to letters describing the grape production in Sonoma Valley vineyards, and from temperance operas to nursery catalogs.

While the majority of titles are in English, the collection includes texts in French, German, Portuguese, Spanish and Latin.

The name of this collection echoes Andre Simon’s three great bibliographies of wine: Biblioteca VinariaBiblioteca Bacchia and Biblioteca Gastronomica.

The Scans

Everything available through this collection is in the public domain and nearly all were published before 1923. We sent most of the books currently available through the Biblioteca Vinaria Sonoma to Internet Archive for digitization, but copies of many our titles have been scanned by other institutions and in light of limited funding, we did not send our copies to Internet Archive (with the resulting loss of unique annotations or other features). Instead, we are linking to those scans in Google Books and Internet Archive whenever they are accessible. We are also scanning a small number of additional documents locally and will add them to the collection in the near future.

Ebook Downloads and Formats

All of the texts available in this collection may be viewed through this site, but many are also available in other formats through Internet Archive and Google Books, including PDF, EPUB, Kindle, Daisy, DjVu and full text. Click on the URI link in the Details section of each record to view options.