All Is True? Naye, Not if Thy Name Be Shakespeare

An article from the NYT on an exhibit at the Folger.

Shakespearean fraud can be good material for comedy, and "Fakes, Forgeries and Facsimiles," an exhibition that opens on Wednesday at the Folger Shakespeare Library here, shows it. A letter once said to be from Queen Elizabeth begins:

"Wee didde receive youre prettye Verses goode Masterre William through the hands of oure Lorde Chamberlayne ande wee doe complemente thee onne theyre greate excellence." Sent to "Globe bye Thames," it orders the playwright "withe thye beste Actorres" to "come toe usse bye Tuesdaye nexte" in "Hamptowne," where she is expecting to be visited by "the lorde Leicesterre."

There was just one catch, an exhibit label points out: Leicester died before the Globe was built.


The Prison Library

California has quite a few interesting libraries, mainly because they tend to reflect the communities they serve. Nowhere is this more true than in the state's prison libraries. This week I found myself visiting one of them down south in Chino. If the name doesn't mean anything to you, don't feel dumb; most people in southern California can't find Chino on a map, much less the two prisons located there.

The California Institution for Women sits in the middle of the last dairy reserve in that part of the world. On any day you realize that a mile from the parking lot; on a hot August afternoon you know it before you get off the freeway. Prisons are never put where the rich folk live, unless you happen to have a condo overlooking San Quentin. If you can see the women's prison at Chino you are either a cow or a horsefly, both of which are in abundance just beyond the wire fence surrounding the facility.


Tool libraries have it nailed

News From Rochester, NY, where interest in tool libraries is booming, according to city neighborhood associations that offer them. Tool libraries, many of which started through the help of city grants, work just like regular libraries — become a member and you’ve got access to all the tools. However, there is an annual fee (ranging from $15 to $25) and sometimes a small charge for checking out larger tools.

It’s a small price to pay, considering the cost of tools.


Store owner's generosity gives Smith Point a library

Anonymous Patron spotted A Happy Story for a change.
Elizabeth Palmer, owner of the landmark Van-Ta-Un store in Smith Point, TX, doubles as the librarian for the Chambers County fishing village located on the tip of a peninsula in Galveston Bay.

"The owner should be commended. She could use this space for other merchandise," said Joyce Meek, a retired school counselor and a frequent patron. "I think anything that encourages reading is good."


Library of Congress Seeks To Capture At-Risk Digital Materials and Build a Network of Partners

"The National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program at the Library of Congress (NDIIPP) has issued an announcement seeking applications for projects that will advance the nationwide program to collect and preserve digital materials. The Library of Congress is leading this cooperative effort at the request of the U.S. Congress, which passed legislation in 2000 asking the Library to work with a range of stakeholders to ensure that materials produced in digital formats today are available to future generations. Associate Librarian for Strategic Initiatives Laura E. Campbell is directing this initiative."

"As more and more information is produced only in digital form, it has become critical for the nation to develop an infrastructure for the collection and preservation of these materials before they are lost," said Ms. Campbell. "The Library of Congress looks forward to collaborating with many partners in this task, as we work together to preserve America’s digital heritage." (from LOC Pres Releases)


Aparteid Gone, Poverty Lingers

Gary Deane notes A Article on South Africa.
It says the market agenda deployed by the ANC has undermined the public service ethos, to the extent that even libraries have to watch their "bottom line". Cross subsidisation between services has been phased out so fines in public libraries are astronomical, as they try desperately to cover costs.


Long-lost literary treasure discovered

Charles Davis writes "Story from long-lost literary treasure has been discovered in the State Library at Launceston.
Tasmanian writer and historian Michael Connor has found a copy of English author Saki's first
novel, Mrs Elmsley, in the Heritage Collection.

Saki is the pen name of Hector Hugh Munro - a famous short story writer who died in World War
Mr Connor searched the world looking for the book and found copies in London and America but he
did not even suspect there might be one in Tasmania.

"Libraries these days, they're throwing a lot of things out and something like this, I mean it's just an ordinary old novel by a guy called Hector Munro," he said."


Water from leak soaks 8,000 works at Johns Hopkins

Charles Davis writes "A clogged pipe at the Johns Hopkins University's Peabody Library sent water seeping
through five floors of historic books, damaging as many as 8,000 volumes from the 17th to
19th centuries, officials said yesterday.
Workers from a New York restoration company rushed to the renowned library on Mount
Vernon Place yesterday to move the books into two 53-foot freezer trucks to be transported to
the company's facility near Rochester. There, they will be subjected to high-technology
freezing processes intended to dry them and undo as much of the water damage as possible.
Company and library officials said that some books, including those with elaborate illustrated
bindings or with hand-written text, could be difficult to restore. But the general manager of the
company, Document Reprocessors, predicted that most of the books would be returned in a
month in good condition.
Fullstory at"


Library of toys a huge success

The Brit writes "More News On the new mobile toy library in Dudley, England, that has proved such a success it has welcomed its 100th member after just three months.

Bosses say the library, the first of its kind in the borough, is struggling to meet demand so they hope to expand the service in future if extra funding can be found.

Workers threw a party to celebrate the library's 100th member joining, a two-year-old boy from the Tiny Tots group at Stourbridge Family Centre in School Street, this week.


Biggest library in Middle East to open in Iran

A Very Short Blurb says the National Library and
Archives and Islamic Encyclopedia, expected to be the biggest library in the Middle
East, is currently being constructed in Iran.
The library is being built on a 100,000-square-meter
piece of land and will, hopefully, be inaugurated on February 11,
2004. The library would contain millions of books that
will meet the needs of scholars and researchers both in and out of the



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