Libraries: A Source Of Joy Worth Paying For

"I've always loved libraries."

My first library, the Phoebe Griffin Noyes in Old Lyme, had dark wood floors, dark walls and a library hush. A deep step led down to the children's room, and stepping down, I felt as if I were entering another world. I won't pretend I spent years checking out children's classics. I wasn't reading "Stuart Little" or "Wind in the Willows" or "The Secret Garden." I didn't even know about those books. Mostly I read my way through the Bobbsey Twins series, Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys and whatever else caught my interest. Not great literature, for sure. Nonetheless, leaving the library, I knew that soon I'd be home on my bed, curled under the quilt, maybe with a bag of strawberry Twizzlers, and lose myself in my book." (from The Hartford Courant - Op-ed)


Coin heist remains 40-year mystery

A neat Who dunnit Story from down in Georgia.
In 1963 a case holding 59 gold coins, one of every denomination and year stamped at Dahlonega's federal mint between 1838 and 1861, was stolen. Its contents were worth an estimated $40,000 then. The coins would carry a $500,000 price tag now.
Someone apparently had hidden in the library until it closed, then pried a gap between the reinforced glass and the metal frame holding it in place. The thief slipped out the slender display card full of shining coins and walked out, leaving the door unlocked.


Library by ocean is open in Tijuana, Mexico

SomeOne writes "Loyola Libary is only half completed and holds only 30,000 books, but it hopes to become the largest in Tijuana's history. The story is from the San Diego Union-Tribune."
From the article:

"We want to inspire a culture of reading," he said. "Anyplace there have been educational opportunities, there have been socioeconomic opportunities as well."


When LC and the Archives fought over our Charters

Rob Lopresti writes "Fascinating Story by Milton Gustafson in the Winter issue of Prologue (published by NARA) about the Charters of Freedom (Declaration of Independence and Constitution) coming to reside in the National Archives building.
Apparently the fight with the Library of Congress turned so bitter that FDR decided to wait until the Librarian retired before approving the move. My favorite fact is that in 1921: "Librarian of Congress Herbert Putnam went to the State Department, signed a receipt, placed the Declaration and Constitution on a pile of leather U.S. mail sacks and a cushion in a Model-T Ford truck, returned with them to the Library of Congress, and placed them in a safe in his office." "


Library's troubles images win prize

Annon writes "From The

A Collection of striking posters and stark images put together by Belfast's Linen Hall Library during three decades of conflict has been honoured with a major prize.

The 200-year-old city centre library received the prestigous Christopher Ewart Biggs award last night for its Troubled Images project.

The library was presented with the £5,000 prize for its effort in preserving the jewels of its famous political collection on CD-Rom.



Is this the library of the future?

"The word library is set to fade from our vocabulary - but not because we've fallen out of love with books. Today's libraries are being made over as "idea stores", complete with cafés, crèches and multi-media offerings."

"In an unlovely High Street in east London comes the query "can you tell me the way to the library?"

"You mean the Idea Store - turn right at the clock, can't miss it." And indeed you can't - instead of a Victorian-era pile or a squat 60s block, the new library in Bow brings colour and light to a corner of the capital still largely untouched by the forces of gentrification." (from The BBC)


Biblored, Colombia's Innovative Library Network

"This report describes Biblored, the library network in Bogotá, Colombia, that received the 2002 Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Access to Learning Award."

"Biblored is a network of 19 libraries that attract about 200,000 users per month and serve some of the poorest neighborhoods in Bogotá. The network's success in making information and information technology accessible to city residents, and in developing services and programs geared toward users' special needs and interests, earned it the award, which includes a one-million dollar grant to expand services." (from CLIR)Read the full text in English or Spanish (both in PDF, sorry Don)


Md. libraries to connect with patrons via the Internet

"Libraries across Maryland are scheduled to begin offering a service today that combines the 24-hour convenience of the Internet with the professional expertise of a reference librarian. Maryland AskUsNow! will be the second program of its kind in the nation."

"The program will be launched at 10 a.m. at the Towson Library."

"Although similar services are available in other states, "the uniqueness of the Maryland program is that it is 24 hours and virtually every public library in the state is involved. We're the second state ... that has managed to pull together a consortium of libraries that can provide information at the speed of light," said Bob Hughes, a spokesman for the Baltimore County Public Library." (from Sun Spot)


Library Club gives teens a low-key way to connect

Bob Cox shares This Story on the Library Club at at West Roxbury High School, in Boston.
Although the club's roughly 25 members attend to library responsibilities from reshelving books to watering plants and helping users with computer glitches, Sisco sees the club as a way for students to connect.

Several students who have recently immigrated to the United States say the club has helped them make friends. Others say the Library Club offers support for academic interests.

In other Boston Library news... Don Saklad points to This One that says it took only a resourceful lawyer and a trip to the Boston Public Library to clear the Rev. Ronald L. Bourgault of molestation charges.


Fire damages Egypt\'s new Alexandria library

Robert Teeter, and Rochelle Hartman noticed The Associated Press Says -- A fire broke out Sunday in the sleek, new Alexandria library, sending thick smoke swirling through the building that opened to international fanfare in October.

The fire, which lasted about 45 minutes, appears to have been caused by a short circuit in the fourth-floor administrative area of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina -- the waterfront site of what was the most renowned library of the ancient world.

There\'s pictures at Yahoo!, Another, and One More.



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