“Public libraries that provided a quiet refuge from civil unrest in Ferguson, Mo., and Baltimore are about to receive a small bounty from Silicon Valley. Venture capitalist Marc Andreessen and his wife, philanthropist and educator Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen, have teamed up with Hewlett-Packard to donate nearly $170,000 worth of computers, printers and other equipment. The couple says they were moved by the “individual acts of heroism” of library staffers who kept the doors open to the public even as protests raged over police brutality and the deaths of young black men.” (via USA Today)
Princeton University is bequeathed $300 million rare book library, largest donation in school’s history
“A Princeton University alum has bequeathed to the school his collection of 2,500 rare books worth an estimated worth of $300 million – the largest single donation in the school’s history, officials said. William H. Scheide, a 1936 graduate, died in November. He was 100 years old. The Scheide Library, housed in the university’s Firestone Library and available to students since 1959, contains the 1455 Gutenberg Bible, the original printing of the Declaration of Independence, Shakespeare’s first, second, third and fourth folios and an 1856 autographed speech by Abraham Lincoln, among others, according to a university release.” (via NJ.com)
“The Wellcome Library has donated over 100,000 images on medical history, which have now been uploaded on Wikimedia Commons. The high resolution photographs and scans are used to illustrate a wide range of Wikipedia articles such as disease, art history, cartoons, sexuality and biographies. Wellcome Images provide free public access to their digital collection online, covering topics from medical and social history to current healthcare and biomedical science. Wellcome Images is part of the Wellcome Collection, with an extensive range of manuscripts, archives and films and more than 250,000 paintings, prints and drawings.” (via Wikimedia blog)
“She’s a Budapest-born American. He’s a Brooklyn-born Brit. Together they are helping to digitize some of the most important documents of American history. The New York Public Library will announce a $500,000 donation from the Polonsky Foundation, the family foundation of Georgette F. Bennett and Leonard S. Polonsky. Funding projects that help make historical documents accessible to more people comes from a “fervent belief in the democratization of knowledge,” said Dr. Bennett.” (via WSJ)
“As Sid Lapidus sees it, he has only a few options for his extensive collection of books and pamphlets centered around the theme of liberty in American history.He can sell the collection, which he amassed over more than 50 years, donate it or keep it in the family. But his children aren’t particularly interested, said Mr. Lapidus, who is 76 years old, and he has no interest in selling it off piecemeal. So his plan now is to “creatively give it away,” he said in an interview Wednesday.On the receiving side of that plan will be the New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. On Thursday, it will announce that Mr. Lapidus and his wife, Ruth, are giving the center $2.5 million—the largest donation in its history—along with a cache of rare historic books and other texts from his collection related to the topic of slavery.” (via WSJ)
“When Wikipedia decided to roll out an aggressive fundraising effort a few years ago, the free encyclopedia came with a remarkably effective battle plan. For the entirety of the campaign, co-founder Jimmy Wales stared visitors down from the top of every page, making you feel guilty every time you viewed an article without paying a dime. It worked. From 2011 to 2012, Wikipedia’s fundraising arm, the Wikimedia Foundation, pulled in $38.4 million. It was a major increase from the $5 million raised from 2007 to 2008, one that occurred even as editorial involvement with Wikipedia was on the decline.
But where does all this money go?” (via Mashable)
Scholastic Donates One Million Books to “Reach Out and Read” to Help Low-Income Families Build Home Libraries
“A recent study found that having books in the home and parents as reading role models have a positive impact on children’s reading frequency.* To encourage all families to read to and with their children and to help more low-income families build home libraries, Scholastic, the global children’s publishing, education and media company, announced today its donation of one million books to Reach Out and Read, the nonprofit organization that helps implement early-childhood literacy awareness during a child’s regular medical office visits. Scholastic is a long-time supporter of Reach Out and Read, and this donation will help the organization distribute more free books provided by pediatric professionals and hospitals to low-income families while educating them about the importance of reading aloud to foster children’s early literacy development.” (via Scholastic Media Room)
“David M. Rubenstein, co-founder and co-CEO of The Carlyle Group, announced his donation of an additional $5 million ($1 million per year for the next five years) to support the Library of Congress National Book Festival, bringing his total support since 2010 for the free public event held yearly since 2001 to $10.3 million. The announcement came as the 2013 festival opened for the second of its two days on the National Mall. Event organizers estimated attendance at this year’s event at more than 200,000. This year’s festival featured talks and book-signings by 112 authors, poets and illustrators.” (via Library of Congress)
“The Duke University Libraries Annual Fund has raised an all-time high this year, tapping into a larger donor pool. There were 1,887 donors to the annual fund in 2013 giving $744,890—an increase of 17 percent and 30 percent, respectively, from last year, according to the Duke University Libraries blog. Administrators attributed the campaign’s success to a number of factors, including smarter marketing and increased interest from parents and alumni. “There’s no single factor—it is kind of a multi-pronged thing,” said Deborah Jakubs, vice provost for library affairs and Rita DiGiallonardo Holloway University librarian.” (via The Chronicle)
“A Canada Revenue Agency audit of the Richmond Public Library has raised no concerns about the $1.2 million in tax receipts the institution issued to a donor in 2011 for a blockbuster in-kind donation of 47,000 Chinese-language books, the chief librarian reports.
Greg Buss included a copy of the CRA audit report in a memo to the library board, which highlighted reporting practices the library needs to tighten up, but made no mention of the receipts issued in relation to the big donation from Kwok Chu-Lee and his wife Grace. The Sun had earlier raised concerns about the value the Richmond Public Library placed on the books for purpose of issuing tax receipts because the appraisal the library relied on contained little detail about the methodology appraiser Bjarne Tokerud used. (via Vancouver Sun)