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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GERTRUDE THUROW (1906-1993), 2014 WI Library Hall of Fame Inductee

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Gertrude ThurowGertrude Thurow was inducted into the WI Library Hall of Fame on November 6, 2014 at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Wisconsin Dells. Thurow served as Director of the La Crosse Public Library (1953-1975) and was instrumental in establishing the predecessors of the Winding Rivers Library System (1965-1975). She served as President of the Wisconsin Library (1955-56). Thurow was honored as WLA Librarian of the Year in 1959, and received WLA’s Special Service Award in1975. At the La Crosse Public Library she helped to  establish an active Friends of the Library organization, and oversaw the construction of a new library building.
 
Thurow was born in La Crosse, WI in 1906 but moved frequently during her childhood. She received a Bachelors of Library Science degree from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. Before becoming a librarian she was a teacher. She worked as a reference librarian in Sheboygan before joining the La Crosse Public Library in November 1943. In June 1953 she became library director of the La Crosse Public Library. The new library building was dedicated on November 5, 1967. She retired on September 30, 1975.
Source: A Gift to La Crosse: A History of the La Crosse Public Library by Anita Taylor Doering and Bill Petersen (La Crosse Public Library, 1997). The photograph of Thurow is courtesy of the La Crosse Public Library.

Nolan I. Neds (1921-2006), 2014 WI Library Hall of Fame Inductee

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Nolan NedsNolan I. Neds was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame on November 6, 2014 at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Wisconsin Dells. Neds served as Supervisor of Neighborhood Libraries and Extension and as Deputy City Librarian of the Milwaukee Public Library (1965-1982).  He was a champion of library service to the underserved in Milwaukee County, the state, and the nation. He was active in the Wisconsin Library Association and served as President (1970-1971) during a critical period for state library legislation and funding. He implemented an innovative Community Librarian Program at the Milwaukee Public Library.
A native of Columbus, Ohio, Neds graduated from Ohio State University and received a Master’s degree in library science from Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. During World War II he served in the Army in India and Burma. He joined the Milwaukee Public Library in 1951. He served as a State Chairman of National Library Week. He received the Librarian of the Year award in 1971 from the Bookfellows, Friends of the Milwaukee Public Library. His WLA activities included service on the WLA Scholarship Committee and serving as Local Arrangements Chairperson for WLA Conferences. In an article in the Wisconsin Library Bulletin for Winter 1984 Neds reviewed the extensive outreach activities of the Milwaukee Public Library.

Wilbur Lyle Eberhart (1922-2010), 2014 WI Library Hall of Fame Inductee

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Lyle EberhartLyle Eberhart was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame on November 6, 2014 at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Wisconsin Dells. Eberhart was the first administrator of the Division for Library Services in the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction after the Wisconsin Free Library Commission was abolished. He served in this capacity from 1965 to 1981 which included the period when Wisconsin’s public library system legislation was passed and implemented.He was a founding member of the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA), and served as its President (1980-81). He served as President of the Midwest Regional Library Network (1966-67). He was an active contributor to the professional literature of librarianship.
 
Eberhart was born on May 30, 1922, in Topeka, Kansas. He earned a bachelor’s degree with a joint major in history and English from Washburn College (Topeka) in 1945, followed by graduate study in American history at the University of Wisconsin from 1945 to 1949. He received a master’s degree in library science at the University of Wisconsin in 1951. From 1951 to 1959, he was a librarian at the Detroit Public Library, and was a branch library chief there until 1962. In 1962 he became a public library consultant in the Wisconsin Free Library Commission, a post he held until 1965 when he became administrator of the newly created Division for Library Services, Wisconsin's state library agency.  

Gilbert H. Doane (1897-1980), 2014 Library Hall of Fame Inductee

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Gilbert H. DoaneGilbert H. Doane was inducted into the Wiscsonsin Library Hall of Fame on November 6, 2014 at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Wisconsin Desll. Doane served as Director of the University of Wisconsin – Madison General Library (1937-1943 & 1945-1956) and as Director of the UW-Madison Library School (1938-1941). He was head of the UW-Madison Archives program (1956-1962). He served in the U.S. Army’s World War II Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives (“Monuments Men”) Project (1943-1945).  He left the Army as a major in 1945. He retired as Professor Emeritus from the University of Wisconsin in 1962. 
Doane was born in Fairfield, Vermont, January 28, 1897. He graduated from Colgate University (1918) and received graduate degrees from the University of Arizona (1922) and the University of Michigan (1924). From 1918 until 1920, Doane worked at the U.S. Naval Training Station with the Genealogy Society. After completing his graduate studies, he worked at the University of Nebraska as a librarian and professor from 1925 until 1937 when he began his career at the University of Wisconsin. In 1943 Doane was granted leave from the University of Wisconsin when he was recruited for MFAA service during World War II.
Doane is the author of numerous books and articles focusing on book collecting and genealogy. He was an ordained priest in the Episcopal Church and served as historiographer of the Diocese of Milwaukee between 1937 and 1967.
The primary source for the biographical information above is the Monuments Men Foundation website. The photograph of Doane is courtesy of the University of Wisconsin Archives & Records Management.
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  • Duane Huntley says #
    "Searching For Your Ancestors" by Gilbert H. Doane was the first book on genealogy I bought. I read it about 35 years ago. I still...

Peter G. Hamon (1945- ), 2014 Library Hall of Fame Inductee

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Peter G. HamonPeter G. Hamon was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame on November 6, 2014, at the Wisconsin Library Association Conference in Wisconsin Dells. Hamon was a leader in promoting statewide library legislation, funding and library cooperation. He was Director of the South Central Library System (SCLS) from 1981 to 2005. Under his leadership, SCLS developed a systemwide library automation system, established a statewide library delivery service and expanded from four counties to seven. He was an active member of the Wisconsin Library Association and served as President in 1991 and as Legislative Advocate for several years. He was active on the Council for Wisconsin Libraries (now WiLS) and served as treasurer, secretary and president of that organization. He was active in the American Library Association, and served as chair of the Public Library Systems Section of the Public Library Association. Hamon served on several state level legislative task forces, including the Governor’s Blue Ribbon Task Force on Library Service to Jails in 1972, the Legislative Council Study on Library Services in 1997, and the DPI State Superintendent’s Legislative Task Force in 2001. Hamon was honored as Co-WLA/DEMCO Librarian of the Year in 2004. He and his wife, Ann, received the SCLS Foundation Cornership Award in 2009. 
 
Hamon was born in Macomb, Illinois, in 1945, but grew up in Scottsbluff, Nebraska. He started working in the Scottsbluff Public Library as a page in 1960, when he was 15. He later drove and staffed the Scottsbluff Public Library bookmobile. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin, in 1967.  While attending Lawrence University, he worked in the University library in technical services and also at the Appleton Public Library. He received a Master of Arts in Anthropology in 1970 and a Master of Arts in Library Science in 1971, both at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, Oklahoma. While attending graduate school, he worked in the Interloan Department of the Library. He served as Head of Extension Services for the Oshkosh Public Library System from 1971 to 1975. He joined the Wisconsin State Division for Library Services as a Public Library Consultant in January 1976, and became Director of the State Reference and Loan Library in the Division in November 1976. He served in that capacity until 1981 when he became director of the South Central Library System.  
 
Hamon has contributed widely to the professional literature of librarianship, including: Public Library Service to Jails: Guidelines for Action by Ann and Peter Hamon. Madison Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin—Extension, 1975, and Budgeting and the Political Process in Libraries: Simulation Games by Peter Hamon, Darlene Weingand and Al Zimmerman, Englewood, Colorado: Libraries Unlimited, 1992.

WI Library Hall of Fame Inductees for 2014

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The Steering Committee of the Wisconsin Library Heritage Center, a program of the Wisconsin Library Association Foundation, has selected five individuals to be inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame in 2014. They will join forty other individuals who have previously been inducted into the Hall of Fame. The 2014 inductions will take place at the WLA Annual Conference in Wisconsin Dells on November 6 at the Awards & Honors Reception .  The inductees are:

Gilbert Harry Doane (1897-1980) Doane served as Director of the University of Wisconsin – Madison General Library (1937-1943 & 1945-1956) and as Director of the UW-Madison Library School (1938-1941). He was head of the UW-Madison Archives program (1956-1962). He served in the U.S. Army’s World War II Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives (“Monuments Men”) Project (1943-1945).

Wilbur Lyle Eberhart (1922-2010) Eberhart was the first administrator of the Division for Library Services in the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction after the Wisconsin Free Library Commission was abolished. He served in this capacity from 1965 to 1981 which included the period when Wisconsin’s public library system legislation was passed and implemented.

Peter G. Hamon (1945- ) Hamon served as Director of the South Central Library System (1981-2005). He was active in promoting statewide library legislation and funding, and served as President (1991) and as Legislative Advocate for the Wisconsin Library Association. He was honored as WLA/DEMCO Librarian of the Year in 2004.

Nolan I. Neds (1921-2006) Neds served as Supervisor of Neighborhood Libraries and Extension and as Deputy City Librarian of the Milwaukee Public Library (1965-1982).  He was a champion of  library service to the underserved in Milwaukee County, the State, and the nation. He was active in the Wisconsin Library Association and served as President (1970-1971).

Gertrude Thurow (1906-1993) Thurow served as Director of the La Crosse Public Library (1953-1975) and was instrumental in establishing the predecessors of the Winding Rivers Library System (1965-1975). She served as President of the Wisconsin Library (1955-56). Thurow was honored as WLA Librarian of the Year in 1959, and received WLA’s Special Service Award in1975.
More information about the contributions of these individuals will be forthcoming on the Wisconsin Library Heritage Center Blog.

 

WI Library Hall of Fame Nominations Requested

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The Wisconsin Library Heritage Center Steering Committee is accepting nominations for individuals to be inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame in 2014. Nominations must be submitted by September 15, 2014. Procedures and a nomination form are located at http://www.libraryhistorybuff.com/wlhc-hall-of-fame.htm . Both the Wisconsin Library Heritage Center and the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame are programs of the Wisconsin Library Association Foundation. Induction into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame is granted to individuals who have made an exceptional contribution to the statewide improvement of library service in Wisconsin over a sustained period of time.  Individuals who have worked in and/or advocated for Wisconsin libraries will be considered.  Both living and deceased individuals will be considered. Final selection of inductees into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame will be made by the Wisconsin Library Heritage Center Steering Committee. To see previous Hall of Fame inductees go to http://heritage.wisconsinlibraries.org/hall-of-fame/hall-of-fame/hall-of-fame .   Nominations should be submitted to Larry T. Nix (Chair of the WLHC Steering Committee) as email attachments at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  by September 15, 2014.  For additional information please feel free to contact Nix.

WI Library Hall of Fame Nominations Requested

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The Wisconsin Library Heritage Center Steering Committee is accepting nominations for individuals to be inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame in 2014. Nominations must be submitted by September 15, 2014. Procedures and a nomination form are located at http://www.libraryhistorybuff.com/wlhc-hall-of-fame.htm . Both the Wisconsin Library Heritage Center and the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame are programs of the Wisconsin Library Association Foundation. Induction into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame is granted to individuals who have made an exceptional contribution to the statewide improvement of library service in Wisconsin over a sustained period of time.  Individuals who have worked in and/or advocated for Wisconsin libraries will be considered.  Both living and deceased individuals will be considered. Final selection of inductees into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame will be made by the Wisconsin Library Heritage Center Steering Committee. To see previous Hall of Fame inductees go to http://heritage.wisconsinlibraries.org/hall-of-fame/hall-of-fame/hall-of-fame .   Nominations should be submitted to Larry T. Nix (Chair of the WLHC Steering Committee) as email attachments at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  by September 15, 2014.  For additional information please feel free to contact Nix.

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