15 Bringing American Collections into MEI
The project Material Evidence in Incunabula was introduced to the United States by Cristina Dondi in her Kristeller Lecture at Columbia University in New York in April 2009, and developed in Europe from 2009 onward. The growth of United States’ involvement in MEI is traced, from the first regular contributions by United States institutions in 2012 through the current status, with more than a dozen institutions contributing. There are some 70 US libraries holding 100 or more copies, and nearly 200 collections holding 20 or more copies. Involving many of these institutions in MEI would not only enhance the provenance database, but also stimulate activity in those institutions with a focus on the history of early printing in the 15th century and on the cultural heritage shared with Europe. Various possibilities for moving forward with MEI in the United States are discussed.