Category Archives: Materials

From Fine Art to Fishing Poles, the Most Surprising Things Libraries Are Lending Now

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From Atlas Obscura:

“When the writer Deborah Fallows toured smaller and midsize communities in the United States in 2016, she made sure to make the same stop in every city and town: the local public library. Libraries were never just plain old book-lenders, she learned, and they certainly aren’t now. Most provide residents with internet access, educational opportunities, and even refuge during times of meteorological or civic crisis. They use their archives to hold onto local history, and their programming and decor to reflect a vision of the future.

A town or city’s Main Street or Chamber of Commerce reveals its body politic, writes Fallows, but “the visit to the public library reveal[s] its heart and soul.” These days, many of these hearts and souls are full of unexpected stuff—including stuff that, if you want, you can take home with you for a few weeks. In the spirit of civic introspection, here are some of America’s most surprising current circulating collections, from art to umbrellas.”

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Freedom to Read Foundation Offers 2017 Banned Books Week Grants

Banned Books Week

Applications are open for the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) Banned Books Weeks Grants offered through the Judith F. Krug Memorial Fund.

Each year FTRF distributes grants to non-profit organizations to support activities that raise awareness of intellectual freedom and censorship issues during the annual Banned Books Weeks celebration (Sept. 24 – 30, 2017.) Staff at all types of libraries, schools, universities, and community organizations are encouraged to apply. Grants are awarded at two levels, $1,000 and $2,500.

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Check out this tool for manuscript recommendations

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American Philosophical Society announces the launch of PAL, an innovative recommendation tool for research libraries

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania—April 3, 2017—The American Philosophical Society is pleased to announce the launch of PAL (People Also Liked), a circulation data-driven recommendation tool designed specifically for archives and manuscript repositories.

Similar to the customer recommendation tools used by major online commerce sites, like Amazon and Netflix, PAL helps scholars discover relevant manuscript collections based on request history and user interests. Researchers at the APS use it to sift through the 13 million pages of manuscripts held at the APS Library, including the Papers of Benjamin Franklin, the Journals of Lewis and Clark, and the papers of seven Nobel Laureates.
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New Minnesota Public Library Trustee Handbook available!

The Minnesota State Library Services has distributed copies of the new Public Library Trustee handbook. Check it out, read through it, and be sure you are sharing it with your trustees. All library people work with some sort of board; and though this one is aimed at public libraries, you can still get some good insights from this booklet.

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