“When the front door of 804 South Street first opened in the segregated world of 1945, it offered black citizens access to a library. When that door opens this month, today’s generation will revisit that time and understand what it meant for Portsmouth’s black community. The Portsmouth Colored Community Library Museum, 10 years in the making, opens Dec. 22 with an exhibit titled “Forever Free: Portsmouth Stories of African-American Strivings and Successes.” The library-turned-museum could be one of those stories — as could the woman who headed up its creation.” (>via AP)
“It was April 2004.
Darryl Lucke was attending his first meeting as a member of the Regina Public Library (RPL) board, and the stakes could hardly have been higher. Since November 2003 — 10 years ago this week — debate and controversy had swirled over the board’s abrupt decision to close three branches of the library, along with the Dunlop Art Gallery and Prairie History Room. “I was the new guy and it was a four-four deadlock, and I was the swing vote that decided to keep everything open,” Lucke recalled. The rest, as they say, is history.” (via Leader Post)
“An estimated 1,500 students had signed a petition showing their support for the University of North Texas Libraries by Tuesday afternoon during an on-campus protest at the Library Mall. Jody Billeaudeaux, a senior with a focus on philosophy and anthropology, said he organized the protest after he read an article in the Nov. 16 issue of the Denton Record-Chronicle in which Provost Warren Burggren discussed the $1.7 million budget hit to the library.” (via Denton Record Chronicle)
“Two big storms and a major blackout have battered New York City since the Sept. 11 attacks. Climate change threatens higher tides and more extreme heat. Architects and engineers look for ways to respond. So here’s an out-of-the-box suggestion: Let’s build more branch libraries.” (via NYTimes.com)
“Designed for the Lisbon Architecture triennial, “One, Two, Many” is a library built to host a single patron at a time. Artist Marta Wengorovius, in collaboration with architect Aires Mateus, built the library to have a highly curated collection (20 people each contributed to the 60-volume collection). Time in the library can be reserved by the hour or day, though only one visitor at a time. The library is part monastery, part art-installation, and Wengorovius has plans to move the library to a different location each year and have new books selected for each specific location.” (via Book Riot)
“There is a lot of chatter about new forms and uses for libraries in and out of Library Land these days. The strange part about it is that it’s often framed in abstract, lofty terms: “reinvisioning,” “reimagining” and other appalling “re-” formations. But behind it is the terrifying, entirely non-abstract Lack Of Money, as government budgets for libraries have gotten tighter and tighter. England has had it especially bad, and there’s no improvement in sight…” (via MobyLives)
“Atingo, a new Swedish ebook lending platform, is not only remaking the relationship between publishers and libraries, it’s also providing a simple way for self-publishers to offer their ebooks to libraries for lending alongside traditional titles. The joint venture between Axiell, one of the library sector’s largest technology companies, and publishing platform Publit was recently launched at the Media Evolution conference in Malmö. Atingo allows publishers to set loan prices and manage availability on a book by book basis, and allows libraries to choose which books they wish to lend and how much they want to spend on them.” (via Forbes)
“Elizabeth Davis walks in undiscovered country these days.The Scranton resident is the first to hold the recently created job of digital services librarian at Scranton Public Library, giving her a chance – and the responsibility – to figure out what the job can and should be. “It’s a little terrifying, actually,” she said with a laugh. Miss Davis started the new position in June, moving from Lackawanna County Children’s Library, where she worked for several years and had been children’s outreach coordinator.” (via The Times-Tribune)
“Shelves and shelves of books sit mostly ignored, taking up space. Thousands of tomes now seem like relics instead of resources. They contribute more to the decor and ambiance of a college library than the use of it – afterthoughts for the Millennials who hunker down to study there. Rooted quite literally by name in books, academic libraries are now backing out of the hard-copy business. But unlike many traditional institutions facing revolutionary shake-ups, experts say libraries are relishing the information age and digital transformation. Instead of existing to house static collections of scholarly journals waiting to be pulled for review, academic libraries are finding more opportunities to push information out beyond their walls.” (via Indianapolis Star)
“Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff isn’t the man you’d imagine as the visionary for the nation’s first all-digital public library. The former San Antonio mayor doesn’t own an e-reader (“I refuse to read the e-book!” he says) and for years has collected first editions of modern novels (in print, mind you). Back in the 1990s, Wolff helped spearhead San Antonio’s 240,000 square-foot, six-story, $50 million central public library, a building the city is now struggling to figure out what to do with. Today, Wolff says he would’ve avoided building such a large facility. “Who would’ve thought 20 years ago we’d be where we are today?” he says.