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.

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Dorothea M. Krause (1909-2003) 2015 Hall of Fame Inductee

Posted by Larry T. Nix
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Dorothea Marie Krause served as director of the Wausau Public Library from 1943 until 1965 and then as head of technical processes and acquisitions until her retirement in 1973.  The reason for the change?  "I wanted to be back with people and books," she explained to a Merrill Daily Herald reporter on the occasion of her retirement.  In 1960, more than a decade before the passage of public library system legislation, she was instrumental in setting up a prototype of the Wisconsin Valley Library Service.  Krause served as President of the Wisconsin Library Association (WLA) in 1949-1950 and was selected as the Librarian of the Year in 1957, the second honoree and first public librarian to receive the award.  In addition, the Wausau Public Library was selected as the 1965 WLA Library of the Year.  In her later years at the Wausau Public Library, she coordinated services to older adults and the visually impaired.  She actively participated in a wide variety of community activities and was among the founding members of the Marathon County Historical Society and the Inter Agency Council, a group that coordinated programs among community groups.   Prior to her move to Wausau, she worked at West Allis Public Library and was the director of the Blue Island (Illinois) Public Library. 

Krause retired to the Plymouth Village retirement community in Redlands, California in 1976 where she led an active life of civic service. She served as chair of both the Vespers Committee and Library Committee of Plymouth Village. Krause was a volunteer at the San Bernardino County Museum in Redlands, assisting docents with school classes. She received an award and her name appears in the Court of Honor Wall at the museum. She was also active in the Friends of the A.K. Smiley Public Library of Redlands, CA. Krause died July 17, 2003 at the age of 94.

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