Literacy

The San Francisco Public Library Hosts Who We Are: Essays and Photographs of Students at San Quentin State Prison

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The independent, non-profit Prison University Project at San Quentin State Prison stands as the only on-site, degree-granting, higher education program in California’s prison system. With only three full-time staff members, the program relies heavily on approximately sixty volunteers to run its college preparatory and Associates degree programs for San Quentin inmates. Most of the instructors are either graduate students or faculty members from the University of California at Berkeley, San Francisco State University, Stanford University, and other local colleges and universities.

Thurmont Center for Agricultural History

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This past August saw the opening of the Thurmont Center for Agricultural History, located in the new Thurmont Regional Library of Frederick County Public Libraries. The purpose of the Thurmont Center is to collect materials that document the agricultural history of Frederick County and the surrounding region. The Center strives to provide researchers with the necessary tools to guide their agriculture related research, whether it pertains to family history, house or property research, the history of rural voluntary organizations, or a scholarly study of farming. The Center is a partnership between Frederick County Public Libraries’ Thurmont Regional Library and its Maryland Room, located in the C. Burr Artz Library. The Maryland Room oversees the accessioning, archival processing and long range curatorial care of the collection. The Thurmont staff handles book processing, access, and daily curatorship.

Spotlight: Seattle Public Library

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What makes a library inspiring to its users? The key component is the relationship it builds with the people it serves. Seattle Public Library is a showcase for this attribute. In 2008, just in time to face what has become a global financial crisis, the library completed the 10-year “Libraries for All” campaign, which resulted in the construction of several new branches and improvements to every other library building.

The Watkinson Library at Trinity College and Its Brilliant Ornithology Collection

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John J. Audubon’s extraordinary elephant folio, Birds of America, is prominently displayed in the Ostrom and Alice Talcott Enders Audubon meeting room of the Watkinson Library. A printer’s copy from the Gurdon Russell Natural History Collection, it is simply amazing, one of many rare and wonderful books held in the collections of the Watkinson Library, at Trinity College in Hartford.

Harriet Beecher Stowe Center Library at the Katharine Seymour Day House, Hartford, Connecticut

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When Harriet Beecher Stowe researched the experience of slavery while writing Uncle Tom’s Cabin, she wrote to Frederick Douglas and asked him to recount his personal memories of life as a slave. Her letter to Douglas and many other manuscripts of special interest to researchers in 19th century history are available for study in the Stowe Center Library.

The collection includes more than 12,000 books, 4,000 pamphlets, 180,000 manuscript items, and 12,000 photographs, prints, and other images. It focuses on 19th century women’s history, the Stowe and Beecher families, 19th century African-American history, and Victorian architecture and decorative arts.

Disney Animation Research Library

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"While studying in Ann Arbor I realized that I could work in the entertainment industry with my information skills, so I focused heavily on improving my skills in technology both in coursework and also in my work with real-world clients. The School of Information has a heavy client-based component to the curriculum. One of those potential employers was Disney Online, which is part of the Disney Interactive Media Group.  After graduation I was relocated to Los Angeles and spent about one year as the Digital Archivist for Disney Online.  I then transferred to the Animation Research Library where I remain today.

Scotland’s First Lending Library Publishes First Book

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The Library of Innerpeffray is Scotland’s first free public lending Library, founded by David 3rd Lord Madertie in 1680. Today, Innerpeffray is off the beaten track, but at the time it was very accessible on a direct route between from the market towns of Crieff and Auchterarder, serving all the farms and estates of Strathearn and Strathallan in central Scotland. 

Heart of America Foundation

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The Heart of America Foundation® (HOA), a national nonprofit headquartered in Washington, D.C., uniquely promotes volunteer service and literacy. The organization inspires acts of service and a love of reading by building community and providing children in need with the tools to read, succeed and make a difference. Committed to education and volunteerism, HOA engages volunteers through putting books into the hands of children who need them the most. Through the Books From The Heart® and READesign® programs, HOA revitalizes school libraries and reading spaces in under-resourced communities into vital and vibrant centers of learning that become the heart of a school. Since 1997, HOA has provided children living in poverty with over 2,300,000 library and take-home books. And, the organization has engaged volunteers in more than one million hours of service to communities nationwide.

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