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Boyce Thompson Institute's reference library goes on the auction block June 5

ITHACA, N.Y. -- A public auction will be held Sunday, June 5, at noon to sell the reference library of the Boyce Thompson Institute (BTI) for Plant Research.

Scholars and other interested parties can obtain an exhaustive collection of approximately 2,000 books printed between the 1800s and the late 1900s. Many of the titles are rare and deal with very specific plant research topics. Some books will be offered individually, and others will be grouped together for bulk sale.

Rare titles include the landmark "Nomenclator Zoologicus" and its supplement "Index Zoologicus," published in 1882 and 1902, which record "all generic names that have been employed by naturalists for recent and fossil animals from the earliest times to the close of the year 1879." "Insects and the Plant Surface," an extremely rare 1986 title, will also be among the books auctioned.

The auction will take place at the Central New York Book Auctions hall in Ithaca. Details, directions and a complete catalog are available at Central New York Book Auctions can be reached by phone at (607) 269-0101 and by e-mail at

About BTI: William Boyce Thompson founded the institute in 1924 on the premise that basic plant research leads to real benefits for people. BTI scientists conduct a wide range of research, such as working to improve crops, by increasing yield or nutritional content, or decreasing the need for harmful fertilizers and pesticides. Other research could lead to inexpensive plant-made vaccines or even shed light on the human immune system. Though it remains an independent, nonprofit institution, BTI is affiliated with Cornell University and has been located on the university's campus in Ithaca since 1978. The reference library has been developed over the past 80 years, since the institute was founded at its original location in Yonkers, N.Y.

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