During the Library History Seminar XII, a national meeting of library historians, which was held in Madison, WI, in September. Wayne Wiegand was surprised after his keynote presentation when he was presented with his own library trading card. Wiegand is the F. William Summers Professor of Library and Information Studies at Florida State University, and is considered to be the dean of current library historians in the United States.
On February 16 the Wisconsin Library Association will hold its annual Library Legislative Day. For a little historical inspiration for this event, there is nothing as appropriate as the story of Margie Sornson Malmberg and the legislative battle for a bill to provide state aid for a bookmobile demonstration project during the 1949 Wisconsin legislative session.
This 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.
Library buttons are fun and they are an interesting collectible, but they can also be artifacts that link us to our past. In the image above are four buttons that each have a Wisconsin library story to tell. The crossed out AB 720 button was created to oppose a piece of library legislation that was supported by the majority of the Wisconsin library community and was passed into law.
In 1881 under the direction of Librarian Klas Linderfelt, the Milwaukee Public Library implemented a new charging system. Linderfelt made a presentation on library charging systems at the 1882 American Library Association conference in Cincinnati, Ohio. In that presentation he identified twenty questions that should be answered in evaluating a library charging system. The first four were: 1) Is a given book out?;
Two bookplates from libraries of Lawrence University are shown above. The first is for the Samuel Appleton Library which was a 1963 addition to the Carnegie Library which was razed to make way for the Seely G. Mudd Library which opened in 1976. Samuel Appleton was the person for who the City of Appleton is named for.
Parcel post, the delivery of packages through the mail, began in the United States on January 1, 1913. Libraries had long lobbied for a special rate for library materials sent through the mail, and in 1914 the postmaster general authorized the shipment of books at the parcel post rate. This decision opened up significant possibilities for library service to geographically remote poputlations.
The bookmobile shown in this image was the first motorized bookmobile in the United States. It was manufactured by the International Harvester Company which had manufacturing facilities in Wisconsin and was used by the Washinginton County Free Library in Hagerstown, Maryland (see previous entry on book wagons). This image is from the Wisconsin Historical Society’s International Harvester Company digital collection.