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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Klas August Linderfelt (1847-1900)

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Klas LinderfeltKlas August Linderfelt was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Appleton on October 22, 2009. Linderfelt served as the Director of the Milwaukee Public Library from 1880 to 1892. The construction of the new public library and museum building in Milwaukee in 1897 was due largely to Linderfelt’s initial planning efforts. He was one of the founders of the Wisconsin Library Association (WLA) and was elected its first president in 1891. Linderfelt was an authority on library charging/circulation systems and he implemented an innovative charging system at the Milwaukee Public Library.  He was also an authority on library cataloging and was the author of Eclectic Card Catalog Rules which was published in 1890. Linderfelt was active in the American Library Association (ALA) and served as a councilor from 1883 to 1891. He played a major role in the local arrangements for the ALA Conference which took place in Milwaukee in 1886. In 1890 he was elected vice-president of ALA and in 1891 he was elected president.

In 1892 Linderfelt was arrested in Milwaukee for embezzlement. At his trial he was found guilty, but his sentence was suspended. Under the threat of additional charges, he fled to Europe where he spent the rest of his life. As a result of Linderfelt’s conviction for embezzlement, ALA expunged his election from their official records. Linderfelt resigned as President of the Wisconsin Library Association leaving the Association leaderless. As a result WLA held no annual conferences in either 1892 or 1893. Linderfelt was born in Sweden in 1847.  He received a doctorate from Upsala University in Sweden.  In 1870 he immigrated to Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  He died in 1900.  He is listed in the Dictionary of American Library Biography.

There is an informal group of the past presidents of the Wisconsin Library Association that holds a breakfast meeting on the Wednesday morning of the Association's annual conference. An urn with ashes (not human) was created to represent Klas in absentia. The newest past president takes custody of the urn after the meeting and keeps it until the next meeting.

 

Margaret Ellen Monroe (1914-2004)

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monroe2.jpgMargaret E. Monroe was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Appleton on October 22, 2009. Monroe served as Professor and Director of the Library School (now the School of Library and Information Studies) at the University of Wisconsin – Madison from 1963 until 1970. In 1970 she returned to full time teaching at the library school. She retired as Professor Emeritus in 1981. Monroe was a national leader in adult services in libraries and in 1985 the American Library Association (ALA) created the Margaret E. Monroe Library Adult Services Award to honor individuals who have made significant contributions to library adult services. While Monroe was Director of the UW Library School, it initiated the Ph. D degree and an Advanced Studies Certificate. Major outside funding was received by the Library School for research on library services to adults. She was active in the Wisconsin Library Association and served as chair of the Wisconsin Public Library Association and the Intellectual Freedom Committee. She served on the Council of ALA and was a president of the Adult Services Division of ALA. She served as president of the Association of American Library Schools and was chair of the Committee on Accreditation of ALA. In 1972 she received the Award for Distinguished Service to Education for Librarianship.
 
Monroe was born in New York City. She received a bachelor’s degree in English and a bachelor’s degree in librarianship from New York State College in Albany. She received a master’s degree in English and a doctorate from Columbia University. She served in various capacities at the New York Public Library for thirteen years. She was on the faculty of the Graduate School of Library Science at Rutgers University before coming to Madison, Wisconsin. She died in Madison on May 21, 2004.

Matthew Simpson Dudgeon (1871-1949)

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dudgeon.jpgMatthew S. Dudgeon was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Appleton on October 22, 2009. Dudgeon served as Secretary of the Wisconsin Free Library Commission (WFLC) from 1909 until 1920. He implemented an innovative books by mail program in 1914 under new parcel post regulations of the Post Office Department. Dudgeon played an active role in the Library War Service of the American Library Association in World War I. He took a leave of absence from the WFLC to serve as director of domestic camp libraries for the Library War Service. In 1920 he was appointed director of the Milwaukee Public Library, a position he held for 21 years. Dudgeon served as President of the Wisconsin Library Association in 1921-1922. Prior to his library career he was an attorney and was elected to the office of district attorney for Dane County in 1898 and re-elected in 1900. He was elected to the Wisconsin Assembly in 1902. Dudgeon was born on June 15, 1871 in Madison, Wisconsin. He is included in the Dictionary of American Library Biography and the Wisconsin Dictionary of History.

Sarah Janice Kee (1908 -1998)

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kee-72.jpgS. Janice Kee was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Appleton on October 22, 2009. Kee served as Secretary of the Wisconsin Free Library Commission 1956-1965. She provided the leadership for significant statewide planning during this period and for the implementation of the federal Library Services Act. This planning served as the foundation for Wisconsin’s public library systems. She received WLA's Special Service Award in 1965. Previously she was Executive Director of the Public Library Association of the American Library Association (1952-1956) and held a number of posts at the Missouri State Library including Acting State Librarian and Assistant State Librarian (1947-1950). She was an Army librarian during World War II. After her work in Wisconsin she taught at the Library School Kansas State Teachers College in Emporia and then became a Library Services Program Officer for the U.S. Dept. of Education in Dallas, Texas where she retired. She was included in the National Advocacy Honor Roll by the American Library Association in 2000 for her contribution as an advocate for library services in the 20th century.
 

Charles A. Bunge (1936 - )

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bunge.jpgCharles A. Bunge was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Appleton on October 22, 2009. Bunge is Professor Emeritus in the School of Library and Information Studies (SLIS) at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. He became part of the SLIS faculty in 1967 after receiving his Ph.D at the University of Illinois. He served as director of the library school from 1971 to 1981. He returned to full-time teaching in 1981 and continued teaching until his retirement in 1997. Bunge has contributed significantly to the improvement of reference service in libraries Wisconsin and the nation through teaching and writing. Bunge was active and played a leadership role in the Wisconsin Library Association (WLA). He served as Chair of WLA’s Library Development and Legislation Committee in 1969-70 which made a significant contribution to advancing library legislation which resulted in the creation of public library systems in 1971. Bunge served as president of WLA in 1972-73. He was selected as WLA Librarian of the Year in 1983. Bunge was also active in the American Library Association (ALA). He chaired the Committee on Accreditation from 1990 and 1992. He was nominated as a candidate for the presidency of ALA in 1990 and 1993. Bunge was awarded ALA’s Isadore Gilbert Mudge Award in 1983 for distinguished contributions to reference librarianship. Bunge served as president of the Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE) in 1980-1981. ALISE presented Bunge with its Professional Contributions to Library and Information Science Education award in 1982. He also received the UMI Excellence in Writing award in 1982. Bunge was born in Kimball, Nebraska on March 18, 1936. He received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri in 1959, a master’s degree in library science from the University of Illinois in 1960, and a Ph.D from the University of Illinois in 1967. He worked as a reference librarian at the Daniel Boone Regional Library System in Columbia, Missouri and at Ball State Teachers College Library in Indiana.
 

 

2009 Hall of Fame Inductees

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The Wisconsin Library Heritage Center Steering Committee has selected seven individuals to be inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame in 2009. The induction ceremony will take place at the Awards Banquet on October 22 at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Appleton. The seven inductees are Charles A. Bunge (1936- ), Matthew Simpson Dudgeon (1871-1949), Sarah Janice Kee (1908 -1998), Henry Eduard Legler (1861-1917), Klas August Linderfelt (1847-1900), Charles R. McCarthy (1873-1921), and Margaret Ellen Monroe (1914-2004).  Bunge will be the first living individual to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Brief biographical information about the 2009 inductees is located on the Hall of Fame page of this website. Lengthier biographies can be seen by clicking on the names of the inductees above. The first ten individuals were inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2008. The Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame is a project of the Wisconsin Library Heritage Center which is in turn a program of the Wisconsin Library Association Foundation.

Henry Eduard Legler 1861-1917

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legler-ideals-72.jpgHenry E. Legler was inducted into the Wisconsin Library of Fame on October 22, 2009. He served as Secretary of the Wisconsin Free Library Commission (WFLC) from 1904 to 1909. During his  tenure in that capacity he left an important legacy to the state's libraries. He established the Wisconsin Library Bulletin in 1905 which played a major role in conveying information and knowledge to the Wisconsin library community. Under his leadership the library school which later became the School of Library and Information Studies of the University of Wisconsin - Madison was founded as part of the WFLC. He continued the  public library development of his predecessor Frank A. Hutchins and the expansion of the traveling library system. While Secretary of the WFLC he also served without salary as the first secretary of the University of Wisconsin Extension Division. He became actively involved in the national library activities and was elected as the first chair of the League of Library Commissions in 1905. Building on booklists established by the WFLC, he founded the Booklist of the American Library Association (ALA) in 1904 and served as its editor until 1916. He was a member and chair of the ALA Publishing Board. He served as ALA President in 1912-13. After leaving Wisconsin in 1909 he became Director of the Chicago Public Library, a post he served in until his death in 1917. Legler was instrumental in the relocation of the headquarters of the American Library Association from Boston to Chicago in 1909.  Legler was born in Palermo, Sicily on February 22, 1861. His family immigrated to the United States where they settled in La Crosse, Wisconsin, in 1873. After completing his education in La Crosse, he worked as a newspaper reporter in both La Crosse and Milwaukee. He served for one term as a member of the Wisconsin Assembly in 1888-1890. He became Secretary of the Milwaukee Board of Education (superintendent of schools) in 1890. Legler wrote several books including Library Ideals which was edited by his son and published in 1918 after his death.

A report of Legler's resignation from the WLHC is included in the Wisconsin Library Bulletin issue of Sept.-Oct. 1909. A report of his death appears in the October 1917 issue of the Wisconsin Library Bulletin. Legler is included in the Dictionary of American Library Biography and the Wisconsin Dictionary of History.  He was also one of eighteen library leaders included in the publication Pioneering Leaders in Librarianship (ALA, 1953). He is also included in Wisconsin Authors and Their Works by Charles Rounds (1918).

 

Recent Comments Show all comments
  • Eric novotny says #
    great to see Legler inducted into the Wisconsin library of Fame - I've been looking at his contributions to the Chicago Public Lib...
  • Larry Nix says #
    Eric, thanks for your comments. I have corrected the date typo.

Charles R. McCarthy (1873-1921)

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mccarthy1-72.jpgCharles R. McCarthy was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Appleton on October 22, 2009. McCarthy was the first head of the Wisconsin Legislative Reference Library which began as the Documents Department of the Wisconsin Free Library Commission and eventually became the independent Legislative Reference Bureau. The Legislative Reference Library was the first of its kind in the nation and served as the model for the Congressional Reference Service of the Library of Congress. McCarthy was a leader in the Progressive Movement and wrote The Wisconsin Idea. McCarthy's leadership of the Legislative Reference Library was so well thought of by the State Legislature that a memorial plaque of  McCarthy was placed in the Assembly Chambers of the State Capitol. When McCarthy died in 1921 his body lay in state in the State Capitol where thousands of people passed his bier.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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