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UCR Historian Honored by British Government


UCR Historian Honored by British Government

British history scholar Henry Snyder will receive the Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire medal on Oct. 16.

(October 7, 2010)

British Consul-General Dame Barbara Hay and Chancellor Timothy White enjoy tea as they discuss plans to honor Henry Snyder at Hay's home on Oct. 16./Photo by Kris LovekinEnlarge

British Consul-General Dame Barbara Hay and Chancellor Timothy White enjoy tea as they discuss plans to honor Henry Snyder at Hay's home on Oct. 16./Photo by Kris Lovekin

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – A representative of Queen Elizabeth II will present the Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire medal to Henry Snyder, UC Riverside professor of history emeritus, in Los Angeles on Oct. 16. The award, which is presented to few individuals outside the United Kingdom, was announced by the queen in December.

British Consul-General Dame Barbara Hay met with UC Riverside Chancellor Timothy White and other campus officials on Oct. 6 to discuss plans for the ceremony, which will be held at Hay’s home. During her visit the consul-general met with Stephen Cullenberg, dean of the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences; Tom Cogswell, professor of history; Georgia Elliott, former executive director of corporate and foundation relations; Melissa Conway, head of UCR Special Collections; and Patricia Hargis, UCR assistant librarian.

Snyder, a scholar of British history, was recognized for “service to English Studies worldwide” for his work over 32 years on the English Short-Title Catalogue. The catalog is a searchable database of every known publication in England and its dependencies from the birth of the printing press in 1473 to 1800. It is the largest bibliography of its kind ever attempted, Snyder said, and lists nearly 500,000 items, including books, handbills, fliers, pamphlets and warrants.

“This is the great early printed bibliography of any language group,” he said. “It was in many ways the pioneer.”

The catalog, whose American component is funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, is a joint effort of UCR’s Center for Bibliographical Studies and Research, the British Library and the American Antiquarian Society.

“It’s nice to get the recognition. I’ve put a lot of effort into the project,” said Snyder, who was nominated by the British Library.

The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire is an order of chivalry created in 1917 by George V. There are five degrees of award in civil and military divisions; Officer is fourth out of the five degrees and is not one of those for which knighthood is conferred. Snyder is one of 11 individuals honored in this category.

Fully retired since Dec. 31, Snyder said he will continue to offer some assistance to the Center for Bibliographical Studies and Research, which he previously served as director. He plans to display his OBE medal next to his NEH medal in a case in his TV room at home.

The University of California, Riverside (www.ucr.edu) is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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