While most rare book collections are held by universities and can be viewed under glass, the McCune collection allows scholars and students a chance to handle the books and enjoy them as books were meant to be enjoyed. The McCune Collection understands how much it means to hold a book in your hands, turn through the pages, and enjoy the words that lie within the jacket. McCune patrons are encouraged to handle pieces of the collection and get the full enjoyment from what they have put together. Books in the collection include an original 15th Century French Illuminated Manuscript, twenty legal documents in French and English from the 17th and 18th centuries, books designed by Bruce Rogers and Mallette Dean, illustrations by Valenti Angelo, John Henry Nash, Mary Grabhorn, and Henry Evans, and a variety of fine prints, handmade papers, books with exquisite binding and amazing illustrations. Admission to the museum is free and the staff is all volunteers. Donations are accepted and are put toward the preservation of the collection. The McCune also offers a collection of lectures throughout the year on California history and the art of book printing, binding, illustrating, and more. The collection was begun by Donavan J. McCune, born in Ohio in 1902. Following his medical training at Johns Hopkins Medical School, he moved to California to practice medicine, but slowly built his collection of books.
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