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.

Oakley and Baker at Work

Posted by Larry T. Nix
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on Thursday, August 20, 2009 in Library artifacts
whs-id23281-oakley-baker-large-72.jpgThis image above shows Minnie Oakley and Florence Baker at work in the State Historical Society Library when it was located in Wisconsin's third Capitol. Baker is the one standing precariously on a shelf reaching for a book. Oakley served as Librarian of the Madison Public Library from 1884 to 1889 before going to work for the the State Historical Society Library. Oakley was one of the founders of the Wisconsin Library Association in 1891. She was one of two librarians from Wisconsin who joined the American Library Association in 1886 (only the second and third to do so) when ALA met in Milwaukee. Oakley became Cataloger and Assistant Librarian at the State Historical Society. She later became Cataloger for the Seattle Public Library (1909 or 1910) and Supervisor of Branches for the Los Angeles Public Libraries (1911). Baker became head of the Reading Room of the Historical Society Library. She later married James A. Hayes and moved to the West Coast where she became a noted clubwoman. Clio's Servant: The State Historical Society of Wisconsin 1846-1954 by Cliffford L. Lord and Carl Ubbelohde (State Historical Society of Wisconsin, 1967) is an excellent history of the society and the library. The image is part of the Historical Society's image collection (ID. 23281).

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