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Shannon K. Supple

Curator of Rare Books


Shannon is the lead steward of the Mortimer Rare Book Collection, part of Smith College Special Collections. She teaches, provides research support, conducts outreach activities, and curates collections of rare and curious printed books, literary manuscripts, artists’ books, and graphic arts. Shannon works closely with students, faculty, donors, Libraries colleagues, booksellers, artists, and researchers of all kinds to enable access to and engagement with cultural and historical materials. She envisions Special Collections as a liberal arts laboratory—a place for critical inquiry, imagination, experimentation, and broadening our conceptions of what's possible.

Shannon is a swimmer and runner, and never fails to count the charismatic megafauna she encounters. She loves to explore the world as much as she loves material texts. As a sixth-generation Californian, she longs for blood oranges, great mountains, redwoods, and Joshua trees. Shannon believes that we have the power to create the world in which we want to live if we learn from the past and work together toward a better future.


Exhibitions Team, Teaching Team

Research Interests

Archival imaginaries, book history, the history of science, and their intersections

Professional Affiliations

Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS); Society for the History of Authorship, Reading, and Publishing (SHARP); Society of American Archivists (SAA); History of Science Society (HSS); Bibliographical Society of America (BSA)


M.L.I.S., University of California, Los Angeles
J.D., University of California, Hastings College of the Law
B.A., English and Art History, University of California, Los Angeles