American Libraries

Articles from Vol. 35, No. 1, January

AASL Raises Public Awareness
For more than half a century the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) has served and supported school library media specialists in the United States and Canada by drawing attention to the key issues that surround the profession. With the...
ALA News; Research Maven Lynch Retires after 27 Years
Mary Jo Lynch began working at ALA Headquarters in Chicago during a time when there were no computers, Internet, toll-free number, or any of the other modern-day tools that make service to members easier. No stranger to the Association, Lynch was already...
An Amazing Bookstore: How the Friends of the Juneau Public Libraries Turned an Annual One-Day Book Sale into a Successful Year-Round Business
Eight o'clock Monday morning. The hardware store that anchors the shopping mall in Juneau, Alaska, is dark. The outside doors to the long, adjacent corridor are locked, and the corridor is quiet except at the far end, where a dozen volunteers are already...
Branch Director's Husband Feuds with Friends Group
In an escalating feud, the husband of the director of San Diego County (Calif.) Library's Solana Beach branch has demanded an investigation of the board of the branch's Friends group, whom he accuses of violating the organization's bylaws and compromising...
Connecticut Librarian Bars Jesus Art
The Meriden (Conn.) Public Library board December 15 reversed Director Marcia Trotta's controversial two-week-old decision to bar three paintings depicting scenes from the life of Jesus in an approved library exhibit of a local artist's work. Artist...
Currents: Professionals on the Move
Stephanie Ali has joined SOLINET, a nonprofit organization serving libraries in 10 southeastern states and the Caribbean, as Historically Black Colleges and Universities Library Alliance program administrator. * Daniel D. Barron has been chosen to...
Early Bird Conference Preview - ALA Annual Conference June 24 - June 30, 2004 - Orlando, Fl
The ALA Annual Conference is the world's largest and most comprehensive library conference and exhibition. Drawing over 26,000 librarians, educators, writers, publishers and special guests, the conference includes more than 2,000 meetings, discussion...
Eating Well in the Gaslamp; Culinary Delights Await ALA Attendees in San Diego
San Diego has been called America's Finest City. While most people believe this name refers to the city's beautiful weather, incredible natural splendor, or cutting-edge technology sector, it could just as well apply to dining out in this stunning...
Getting Started in Library Publication; Advice on Finding Your Place in Library Literature
So, you are convinced that you are ready to take that first step toward writing for publication. As a first-time author, though, you likely have a number of questions and reservations before you are comfortable jumping right into creating your initial...
Global Reach
DENMARK Copenhagen police in December rounded up hundreds of rare books stolen from the Danish Royal Library between the late 1960s and 1978. A 68-year-old woman and her son and daughter-in-law were taken into custody in connection with the theft....
Grassroots Report: A Warm, Central Place
My local public library has been in the news a great deal lately. Not the national news--it's our local newspaper that has become a forum for discussion of events at the Monroe County Public Library here in Blooming-ton, Indiana. In addition to announcements...
Harvard, Cornell Slash Journal Subscriptions
Officials at several major university libraries--including Harvard, Cornell, and the University of California at Los Angeles--announced cuts in subscriptions to large numbers of academic and technical journals in 2004 as a way to reconcile increasing...
Indiana Bill Second-Guesses Trustees' Budget Decisions
A property tax-relief bill sent to Indiana Gov. Joseph Kernan December 5 includes a provision giving local elected bodies the right to roll back the decision of a public-library board to raise a property-tax levy by 5% or more in a fiscal year. "I'm...
Internet Librarian: Books Are for Use
I recently heard that two old friends were getting makeovers--and not in the better-living-through-hair-paste/flat-front-pants/indirect-lighting way, either. Within days of each other, Amazon launched its "Search inside the Book" feature and OCLC announced...
Is Milwaukee's County System Doomed?
Municipal shortfalls are straining the reciprocal-borrowing funding formula for the Milwaukee County Federated Library System to the point that MCFLS President Michael D'Amato has predicted a crippling $650,000 shortfall by 2005. D'Amato, who is...
Judge Hears First Legal Challenge to Patriot Act
A U.S. district judge in Detroit heard arguments December 3 in the first legal challenge to the USA Patriot Act. The lawsuit, filed by the American Civil Liberties Union in July on behalf of the Muslim Community Association of Ann Arbor and five other...
Librarian's Library: Resources for Continuing Education
The Butler Did It Elementary and secondary school students can put their sleuthing skills to use while learning Internet basics from Sharron Cohen's The Mysteries of Internet Research. Designed for librarians and teachers working with students in...
Libraries Mattered Then-And They Still Do Now; the Public Library May Not Be the Refuge It Once Was, but That's Not a Bad Thing
For a chunk of last semester I was on a sabbatical. What a deal: No office hours, schedule, classes, faculty meetings, or administrivia. The economy is in the crapper, but I'm getting paid to sip coffee in my jammies with Matt Lauer. Sooner than...
Library Champions: American Library Association Would like to Thank Its 2003-2004 Library Champions
3M LIBRARY SYSTEMS For over 30 years, 3M has been partnering with libraries to help them successfully meet the changing needs of their customers. In addition to providing innovative security, RFID, self-service and PC management solutions, we strive...
Maybe We Should Shush
I recently attended the reopening of the Downtown branch of the Detroit Public Library (see p. 27), a building in which I once worked. During the ceremonies, Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick casually mentioned that he expected the staff to ensure that...
Obituaries
Ronald L. Buchan, 62, former librarian for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, died November 4. He began his library career in 1960 at Concordia College in Bronxville, New York, and from 1966 to 1974 he was a librarian at the University...
On My Mind: The FBI and America's Libraries
Libraries occupy a special place in American society. They contribute significantly to the First Amendment goal of an open marketplace for ideas by serving as a gateway to knowledge for all Americans, regardless of race, creed, affluence, or educational...
Patron Loses Privileges for Defacing Magazine
A 77-year-old patron who confiscated the front cover of the November 11 issue of the Advocate on display at the Williamsburg (Va.) Regional Library's Scotland Avenue branch lost his borrowing privileges for a month. John Callaghan objected to the...
President's Message: Libraries Matter Because People Believe in Them
Why Libraries Matter" is a theme that strikes at the heart of what we strive to relay to the public, to legislators, and to each other. It certainly touches on how we encourage people to join the profession and to motivate them to stay, and on how...
Quick Bibs: Editor's Choice
At this time of year, the Booklist editors are busy rehashing the previous 12 months and attempting to agree on our selections for the annual Editors' Choice list. That list, with the apostrophe in "Editors'" after the s, is always an intensely collaborative...
Referenda Roundup, 2003: Many Celebrations, Some Major Disappointments
Despite dreary fiscal times for state governments, voters in many districts came out November 4 in favor of tax measures to support their local libraries. Aided by numerous volunteers and Friends who got the message out through leaflets, websites,...
Regina PL to Close Three Branches, Art Gallery
Despite a last-minute appeal by the mayor and boisterous public protests, the Regina, Saskatchewan, Public Library board refused to rescind its November 26 decision to permanently eliminate three branches, close its central library's art gallery, curtail...
Respite along the Shore: Multnomah County Librarians Find Peaceful Sanctuary and Rejuvenation through an Indirect Gift from One of Their Own
Gifts to libraries, such as cash, collections, and other valuable assets, are often discussed in our professional literature. Although libraries are worthy recipients of these contributions, we seldom read stories of largesse that support the human...
Skillman Gift Resurrects Downtown Detroit Branch
Shuttered for the past five years, the Downtown branch of the Detroit Public Library reopened December 1, following an $8.5-million renovation. The facility has been renamed the Rose and Robert Skillman branch, after the founders of the Skillman Foundation,...
Technically Speaking: Profiles in Hi Tech
This month's column profiles three relatively unknown information technology vendors. Though very different from each other, all three companies came to the library market through their ability to develop real-world applications utilizing emerging...
Thank You, Barkman Library: Giving Credit Where It's Due for One Boy's Love of Learning
Last year, a lot of negative things happened to the Pueblo City-County (Colo.) Library District (AL, Dec., p. 22-23). As a result, it has a new board of trustees, and director Richard Lee, the library's most valuable asset, has left. But I'd like...
The Crawford Files: Starting a Bicycle Club: Weblogs Revisited
Many of you have gotten involved with weblogs since I discussed them two years ago in "'You Must Read This': Library Weblogs" (AL, Oct. 2001, p. 74-76). Quite a few of you read weblogs; some of you write them. More than a few, I'll guess, have started...
Thus Said: How the World Sees Us
"Think being a big sister means you have to spend all day stuck in a library? Think again." From a television public-service announcement Ad Council campaign titled "Gum" for Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. "The real heroes of the digital revolution...
UC/Berkeley Warns Users of Possible ID-Database Hacking
Officials at the University of California at Berkeley's Bancroft Library have revealed that a computer hacker gained access to the library server and may have retrieved personally identifiable information on up to 17,000 individuals who visited the...
Warm-Weather Attractions Await Conferees in San Diego; New APA Director, CIPA Follow-Up, and Faxon/rowecom/divine Bankruptcy Update Top Full Midwinter Meeting Agenda
More than 10,000 ALA members are expected to converge on San Diego January 9-14 for the Midwinter Meeting--an occasion to attend business sessions, to hear from various authors and guest speakers, and to participate in career-focused discussions. Hopefully,...
Why Libraries Matter: What's More American Than Mom and Apple Pie? You Guessed It
For me, the truest symbol of America's great democratic spirit is not to be found in the formal and imposing edifices of our republic--the White House, the Capitol building, or the monuments to Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and others. Rather, I...
Will's World: Willie Award Goes to Cold Extremes
It's odd that of all the many awards that are given out in our profession we don't honor our patrons. Without patrons there would be no libraries. While it's an obvious fact, it's one that our profession rarely considers. In that respect, I suppose...
Working Knowledge: Knowing How to Say "Thank You"
Q I serve as administrator for a medium-sized public library and find that recent budget cuts--which have meant an across-the-board cap on annual raises--are really beginning to affect staff morale. While I can't reward employees with salary increases,...