Print in Motion: The Expansion of Publishing and Reading in the United States, 1880-1940

By Carl F. Kaestle; Janice A. Radway | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 23
The Great Libraries

Phyllis Dain

.  .  .

Arguably, no great libraries existed in nineteenth-century United States. Rather, we can speak of a process, a movement toward greatness. Not until well into the next century could the largest American libraries compare with the immense European repositories that they emulated—the royal, ducal, ecclesiastical, and private collections and the university and national libraries derived from them. Such comprehensive libraries carry recognized cultural value as conservators of human history. They have acquired, preserved, and organized huge numbers of books, journals, and other forms of recorded knowledge, in a wide range of subjects and languages. In these institutions, quantity symbolized quality: usually containing only one copy of most titles and seldom discarding anything, the more items they had, the deeper and more varied the coverage.

In the United States, these “research” libraries have taken various institutional forms. They may be tax-supported public libraries, independent private nonprofit institutions, components of parent institutions such as universities, or national or state government establishments. As large, bureaucratized organizations bringing order to the world of recorded knowledge, their evolution corresponds to American corporate development and is related to the expansion of the book trade. Institutionally, however, they belong to the nonprofit sector, whether private or public or a combination of the two; their comprehensiveness distinguishes them from the large, specialized libraries established by historical societies, bar associations, academies of medicine, government agencies, and other entities.

In the modern, secular era, the great libraries of the Western world have had several key functions: to support scientific research, scholarship, and advanced study; to preserve society’s intellectual heritage; and to document human thought and activity. They served as crucial repositories of both old and new knowledge, the latter growing exponentially by the late nineteenth century. Research libraries in the nineteenth century more consciously began to gather and retain information of utilitarian value to government, industry, and the newly emerging professions.

In the United States, these roles for large libraries developed to a limited de-

-452-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Print in Motion: The Expansion of Publishing and Reading in the United States, 1880-1940
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 669

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.