Wisconsin Library Heritage Center

The Wisconsin Library Heritage Center is a program of the Wisconsin Library Association Foundation promoting understanding and appreciation of the history of libraries and librarianship in Wisconsin.

Demcourier, Magazine for Librarians

Posted by Larry Nix
Larry Nix
Larry Nix has not set their biography yet
User is currently offline
on Tuesday, August 31, 2010 in Publications


In 2005 DEMCO, the well known library supply company headquartered in Madison, WI, celebrated its centennial.  As part of that celebration it published a book entitled Honoring A Century of Service - The Story of Librarians & DEMCO 1905-2005 by Raymond M. Olderman. Far from being a boring corporate history, the book does indeed tell the story of both librarians and DEMCO during this hundred year period. One of the stories in the book is about Norman Bassett who became owner of Demco Library Supplies in 1931 and the free magazine for librarians he created in 1932. The magazine's name Demcourier came from two librarians who won a contest to name the magazine and as a result received $10 each.  Initially the focus of the magazine, was on practical information for librarians but it evolved more and more into a literary magazine with each issue devoted to a single literary figure. I recently acquired the Autumn 1939 issue (cover shown above) and it is devoted to Louis Untermeyer.  In this issue, Bassett, who edited the magazine, apologetically tells readers that the magazine has become so popular that DEMCO is going to have to limit its distribution to those who purchase at least $10 in library supplies each year from the company and those who pay a subscription fee of 50 cents a year (returned if $10 is spent with the company).  Bassett was a model of the best in relationships between library vendors and the library community.  He became active in both the Wisconsin Library Association and the American Library Association.  In 1932 at the conference of the Wisconsin Library Association he arranged an auction of autographed copies of books to raise funds for scholarships for library school students. As a result a Scholarship Committee (which continues today) was established with Bassett as its chair. During World War II the cost of paper forced the suspension of the magazine in 1943 and its publication was never resumed.  This article was published simultaneously in The Library History Buff Blog.


No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment

Leave your comment

Guest Saturday, October 20, 2018


Popular Tags

Hall of Fame 2015 Lowell W. Wilson American Library Association Library War Service White House Conference on Library and Information Services Postcards caly film Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Portage Public Library Klaus Linderfelt UW-Milwaukee Libraries Hall of Fame 2013 Hall of Fame 2017 School of Library and Information Studies Campaign UW-Madison school of library and information studies cam Bob Bochfer Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Suring Area Public Library buil Tower Hill Wisconsin Wisconsin Library Heritage Center WHCLIS Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries James Huff Stout National Library Week Library Buildings Public libraries Charles Bunge Library Systems T. B. Scott Free Public Library Pewaukee Public Library Sandra Friedman Dolnick WLA 125 Hall of Fame 2012 21 Gerald A. Somers Library people Postcards School libraries DeForest Area Public Library Digital Collections Delia Ovitz Appleton Public Library William J. Wilson 22 John J. Jax Wisconsin Library Trustees and Friends Anniversaries 14 Increase A. Lapham Library e Milwaukee Public Library archives S. Janice Kee library education Clarence Brown Lester Cam Lucy E. Smith Morris Capitol Fire 1904 Wilbur Lyle Eberhart Special libraries Parcel post WWI Library War Service Gertrude Thurow Wisconsin State Normal School-Milwaukee Dianne McAfee Hopkins Pinback buttons National Bookmobile Day Rusk County Community Library state historical society Wisconsin Federation of Women's Clubs Hall of Fame 2016 hall of John Miller Chancellor Richard E. Krug Beaver Dam Public Library Wisconsin Library Association Ripon Public Library Irene W. Newman Inform Wisconsin Postcards Zona Gale Oshkosh Public Library Eager Free Public Library Library celebrations Hall of Fame 2012 caly film Robert Bocher Milwaukee Art Museum Madison Public Library presentations Hall of Fame 2012 Library People James Duane Doty Academic Librarians American Library Association Publications WLA 125 Brown Deer Public Library Ice Storm Hall of Fame 2015 Council on Library and Network Development Hall Hall of Fame 2015 Association of Library Trustees Advocates and Friends trav Woman's Congress 10 Hall of Fame 2008 J. D. Witter Bookmobiles Eratus Swift Wilcox Marketing-Publicity Middleton Public Library Hall of Fame 2015 Marjorie Sornson Malmberg Peter G. Hamon Wisconsin Free Library Commission books-by-mail Lutie Stearns Lutie Eugenia Stearns Elroy Public Library Wisconsin Free Library Commission CCBC Campaign campa Hall of Fame 2018 Governor's Conference on Library and Information Services Campaing for Wisconsin Libraries Hall of Fame 2010 ca Hall of Fame 2011 Buttons Sarah Janice Kee Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Library Artifacts library memorabilia Dorothea M. Krause Bernard Schwab McMillan Memorial Library Postcards Wisconsin Rapids Cooperative Children's Book Center membership libraries World War I Ruth Ann Montgomery Jane K. Billings Helen Adams Clinton Public Library Nolan I. Neds 23 anniversaries People Soughton Public Library campaign Meter mail slogans Exhibits Amer Frank Avery Hutchins Jerome P. Daniels Evansville Wisconsin Library Trustees Cornelia Marving Pierce Edward Asahel Birge Historical Register WAAL Larry T. Nix Anniversaries Events & Meetings Hartford Public Library Hall of Fame 2014 Beloit Public Library Wisconsin Association of Academic Librarians Ruby Roeder Brown County Library Academic Libraries Library people Hall of Fame 2015 Library Buidlings Campaign Carnegie libraries Hall of Fame 2009 Library History UW-Milwaukee School of Information Studies Wisconsin Library Bulletin Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library Hall fo Fame 2012 Wisconsin State Law Library Hall of Fame 2018 State Law Library campaign Orrilla Blackshear Wayne A. Wiegand Manitowoc Public Library WLA 125 Wisconsin Literary Travel Guide Events Gilbert H. Doane Public library systems library exhibit Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries 28 campaign Louise S. Robbins Wisconsin Historical Society traveling libraries Black River Falls Superior Carnegie Libraries 27 Milwaukee Public Library Black River Falls Public Library COLAND bed and breakfast Matthew S. Dudgeon I Love Libraries caly film library legislation Carl Spitzweg Brown Deer Public Library Centennial WLA 125 Events & Meetings Uncategorized 24 bookworm background 11 Public libraries 20 Katharine MacDonald Jones

Wisconsin Library Association Foundation Logo