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.

More on Lutie

Posted by Larry T. Nix
Larry T. Nix
Larry T. Nix has not set their biography yet
User is currently offline
on Friday, January 30, 2009 in Hall of Fame



In Part I of her autobiography My Seventy-five Years, Lutie Stearns provided the following description of her work promoting traveling libraries:


"From 1895 through October, 1914, I traveled thousands of miles in Wisconsin by stage, sleigh, buggy, wagon, passenger coach, and caboose, wearing out five fur coats in succession in my efforts to reach all parts of the state.  In taking traveling libraries to the rural districts of Dunn and Wood Counties during the winter I would secure a black bearskin to wear over my fur-lined muskrat coat, which was inadequate for the frequent below zero weather. I would get a three-seated sleigh, remove the last two seats, and fill the space with books which I would locate in farmers' homes, rural post offices, schools, and other available stations.  On reaching what was then Grand Rapids--now Wisconsin Rapids--late one evening after a forty-mile drive, a long day's drive in those times, my black bearskin attracted the attention of Mrs. Anna W. Evans, Librarian, who wrote the following poem concerning my appearance:


 There is a woman named Stearns;
Her living she easily earns,
By driving 'round,
When the snow's on the ground.
Though the dangers she never discerns.


She dons a coat of black hair;
A cap is next put on with care;
She looks like a man,
But to tell you ne'er can
If the product be woman, or bear.


Now if in her drives through the brush,
A Bruin should come out with a rush,
Would the woman hug the bear,
Or the bear hug the hair?
Or which would be lost in the crush?


Would the bear barely hug the bold jade?
Or the bearskin propelled by the maid
Hug the bear? or the hair
Of the bear would she tear
Or her own, as the price to be paid?"


The image of Lutie Stearns is from the Wisconsin Historical Society’s Historical Image Collection, Image ID: 29372.



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

Leave your comment

Guest Sunday, July 21, 2019


Popular Tags

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

Wisconsin Library Association Foundation Logo