Joyous Reopening for Burnt Out Georgetown (Washington DC) Library

The fire that destroyed the Georgetown library three years ago burned through most of the books in its circulating collection. They could be replaced. The unique Georgetown artifacts in the library's Peabody Collection could not.

Thankfully, all those items survived, though some will require repairs. And so, with the ribbon-cutting at a new $18 million structure at 9:30 a.m. Monday at 3260 R St. NW, the Georgetown library once again becomes whole.

"I have to keep reminding myself that everything could have gone up in flames, and we could have absolutely nothing," said Jerry McCoy, the special-collections librarian who oversees the Peabody Collection. Among his rescued treasures: A July 1776 edition of the Maryland Gazette, with the full text of the Declaration of Independence printed on the second page.

What caused the library fire remains "a matter for litigation," said Ginnie Cooper, chief D.C. librarian. She notes, however, that at the time, workers were using heat-generating tools to remove tar in the building's attic and in the vicinity where the fire began.

Story from the Washington Post.

Fix the Branches City Says to Providence Public Library

PROVIDENCE, R.I.—The city of Providence has filed a lawsuit against the Providence Public Library charging the nonprofit with not complying with the lease agreement and not making needed repairs.

The suit filed this week lists more than a dozen problems at the branches, including leaky roofs, poor drainage, electric problems and faulty ventilation.

Seven of the nine libraries are still owned by the Providence Public Library, the nonprofit that operated the entire city library system until July 2009, when the city transferred its $3.5 million library allocation to the Providence Community Library.

The PPL, which operates the downtown Central Library, agreed to lease its branch buildings to the city for $1 a year.

The legal action comes as PCL has been putting more pressure on PPL to resolve the dispute over the buildings.

Bedbugs @Your Library

Bedbugs are having a heckuva comeback. Nearly eradicated in the 1950s, new limitations on pesticides have made killing them much more difficult.

And now...they've been found at the library, triggering the massive cleanup of an entire library system. They were discovered in Urbana, Frederick County MD at one of the state's newest libraries.

"I think it's ridiculous. How can someone get bedbugs in the books?" said one man. A librarian who used to work in the hotel industry spotted the pests in two children's books left in the book drop Friday.

Right now, the contaminated books are in the back of a truck, baking in the sun in the parking lot. Once the inside of the truck reaches 120 degrees, the critters should die. But the sun and containment aren't the only remedies. All eight Frederick County libraries have been sprayed with pesticides, which concern some patrons.

Story here and here.

Vatican Library Reopens After Three Year Restoration Project

AP/ dateline VATICAN CITY — The Vatican on Monday announced it would re-open its library to scholars on September 20 after a massive restoration that kept it shut for three years.

The 16th century building underwent renovations worth 25 million euros (32 million dollars) and will re-open its doors to about 4,000 authorised researchers, Vatican librarian Raffaele Farina said at a press conference. [another source, ABC News claims renovations cost a bit under $11.5 milllion dollars...so which is it, 11.5 or 32 mill?]. The library is reported to hold 1.5 million books.

A new elevator connects the renovated reading rooms of the third floor -- where frescoes decorate the ceilings -- and the 800-square meter (8,600 square foot) underground concrete bunker where the manuscripts are kept. "It's nuke-proof," joked Sever Voicu, a curator of Greek manuscripts at the library.

The restoration of the building was decided in 2007 and includes the installation of a modern air-conditioning system to preserve older tomes, the consolidation of load-bearing walls and the installation of up-to-date security measures.

Nice Ref Desk!

Way cool ref desk in the Netherlands from Recycleart.org...via Val Hawkins.

Earthquake Damage to New Zealand Library

A recent earthquake damaged the Canterbury Library in Christchurch, New Zealand. See some of the photos of some of the damage at: http://www.canterbury.ac.nz/photos.shtml

Forwarded from: MAPS-L the Maps, Air Photo, GIS Forum - Map Librarianship [MAPS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU]

Daley Library at U. Illinois Chicago...We're Trying

A complaint by Mike Persley, who suggested that the campus's Daley Library 'clean up its act' (after a very frustrating experience trying to print materials for class and then being overwhelmed by broken fixtures, dirt, graffitied tables, a confusing layout, and art-starved walls) is addressed in a recent issue of the Chicago Flame by Mary M. Case, University Librarian.

She responds: As Mike’s story demonstrates, we are still working on having a consistent suite of software on all machines. We clearly need to dedicate more resources to meeting that goal, as well as to increasing the reliability of printers. We will do that.

Specifically in Daley, two Oases and the Daley Grind have helped to enliven the first floor. Later this year construction will begin on the now blocked off south end on our new IDEA Commons—a space intended for active learning and 24 hour access. -- Read More

Words and Drink: To Help Repair The Children's Section

Stonington CT - Shortly after this spring's flooding caused about $50,000 of damage to the Stonington Free Library's children's section, Peter Brown and his wife, Alexandra Stoddard, were talking to Dog Watch Cafe owner David Eck about how they could help.

Brown, a trial lawyer, decided that he would donate 1,000 copies of his new book, "Figure it Out," to the effort. On Sunday anyone who donated $25 to the library received a signed copy and a free drink at the Dog Watch.

The event was a hit as hundreds made donations to the library during a daylong event at the restaurant, which overlooks Stonington Harbor.

"This has just been a phenomenal success," said Stoddard, an author of books including "Living a Beautiful Life: 500 Ways to Add Elegance, Order, Beauty and Joy to Every Day of Your Life."

Creating A Unique Library in Colorado

That's RANCH library... not branch library...

The LA Times Jacket Copy blogs on a new type of library currently under construction in Colorado, the Rocky Mountain Land Library, where visitors can learn not only from books, but also from the landscape.

Jeff Lee and his wife Ann Martin, longtime staff members at the famed Tattered Cover Bookstore in Denver, are behind the Rocky Mountain Land Library project. They were inspired by St. Deiniol's Library in North Wales to create a space for scholarship, contemplation, reading and writing, all in connection with the land itself.

Students at the University of Colorado Denver are currently working at the Buffalo Peaks Ranch, where a 20,000 + volume natural history library will be focused on the land and communities of the Rocky Mountains.

Lodi Library Ready to Renovate

Her message is clear: No more mustard yellow carpet (she's got that right).

During the past four years, Library Services Director Nancy Martinez has hoped that the 31-year-old carpet in the Lodi Public Library would disintegrate while it was being cleaned.

After completing $1.8 million in renovations last August, staff is already looking toward finishing the rest of the library, which is mainly the adult area, and finally replacing all of the mustard carpet.

Councilmember Bob Johnson said there is quite the contrast between the new children's area and the adult section at the council's shirtsleeves meeting Tuesday.

"Some of those chairs could be donated to the Smithsonian," Johnson added.

More from the Lodi (CA) News.

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