Слике страница

carried through, followed by a violin solo by Miss Charlotte Capen. Mrs. Dixson then gave an address on "Departmental libraries," treating especially of the methods used in the University of Chicago. The program was interesting throughout, and the only disappointment to those present was that all of the club members could not have been present to enjoy it. The meeting was closed by a "personally conducted tour" among the depart mental libraries in the University buildings, under charge of Mr. Clarence A. Torrey, who is Mrs. Dixson's able lieutenant in the supervision of these libraries, and who explained in detail their workings and gave practical objectlessons that well illustrated Mrs. Dixson's previous description. E: L. BURCHARD, Secretary.

Library Economy and History.


Brookline (Mass.) P. L. An interesting exhibit of pictorial posters was opened in the Brookline Public Library on Feb. 12, and continued for two weeks. The exhibit, which was the first of its kind given by a library, attracted much attention and was excellently representative of the best work in modern "poster art." It comprised about 105 examples, principally advertisements of prominent magazines and new books, by Beardsley, Penfield, Cheret, Grasset, Bradley, Rhead and others; most of the examples were contributed by leading publishers.

Brooklyn, N. Y. Pratt Institute F. L. The original intention of devoting the handsome new building, now in construction, to the uses of a museum, fine arts building and library combined has been abandoned, and the building will be entirely given up to the library, which will thus be largely extended and much improved in administration. As already noted (L. J., 19: 389), work on the building was begun in October, 1894. It is now rapidly nearing completion, and by June 1 it is expected that it will be ready for public use. It is intimated that the erection of a third building, to be devoted to art uses is planned by the trustees.

Cambridge (Mass.) P. L. (Rpt.) Added 2724; total 46,770. Issued, home use 119.631 (fict. 45 %); ref. use, 5768 (this covers only books issued from the circulating department). Issued on teachers' cards 693; school delivery 5325. No. cardholders 7073.

room, modelled in a measure upon that of the Brookline Public Library. This was largely Miss Hayward's own plan and she was most active in its preparation. Speaking of the library in its improved form Miss Russell says:

The trustees devote most of their report to an earnest tribute to Miss A. L. Hayward, the late librarian. Since her death in October, 1894, the charge of the library has devolved upon Miss Etta L. Russell, who has carried on most successfully the work of administration. The new librarian, Mr. W. L. R. Gifford, had not assumed his duties at the time the report was concluded. During the year past the library has been remodelled and improved, allowing opportunity for future extension. One of the most important changes was the establishment of a children's

"No more precious legacy could have been left by our beloved librarian than this library, equipped as it is for broad and useful work. To those daily associated with her, the memory of her faithful, conscientious spirit, and her readiness in serving others, will ever be an incentive and inspiration. By her thoughtful consideration, her unvarying kindness and sympathy, her rare justice, she endeared herself to all, and won the deepest love and respect."

The trustees say: "It is to be regretted that the structure of the building does not permit us to go very much farther in the direction of freer access to the shelves- which is the modern tendency in libraries—the space for readers in the stack-room itself being so very limited. It has been suggested that the main works on American history-the department most consulted-should be brought together in the room not yet appropriated, over the children's room, and that all students of that department should have free access there. This will be virtually an enlargement of the reference library, implying few, if any, additional restrictions."

Among the problems confronting the library staff are the reshelving and renumbering the books under an improved classification, the need of new complete card catalog, and the desirability of a classification and arrangement of pamphlets and public documents.

Cleveland, O. Case L. The remodelled Case Library was opened with an informal reception on the afternoon and evening of Feb. 2. As altered, the library occupies three floors of the Case business block. The first floor is devoted to the circulating department, the second is given up to the reference department, and the third is reserved for periodicals; all the floors are finished in highly polished quartered oak. There are about 20 bookcases on each floor, containing the library's 35,000 v. The rooms are lighted by gas and electricity, and the fittings and furniture are of the newest and most approved description. The Case Library is an of Cleveland, established in 1846; it received the outgrowth of the Young Men's Literary Society building in which the library is located as a bequest from Leonard Case, which also gave it its Present name. In June, 1894, the library was closed for the alterations which have just been completed. The cost of the improvements exceeded $40,000, but the remodelling of the building means a new era to the library, for not only are its own possibilities extended, but the changes in the building will lead to increased rentals, thus swelling the library's income, and permitting a more liberal policy in the purchase of books. A start has been made towards the formation of a music library, which it is expected will develop into an important depart


Colorado State L., Denver. Added 1513; total

11,240; issued 105. Of the 11,240 books reported, but 8880 are on the shelves, the remainder being stored with the secretary of state.

those reported missing in previous years 26 were found in their places, having been silently returned during the year. Of books reported missing since 1883 there are still 598 unaccounted for; 396 having disappeared from the reserved books, and 202 from the stack. Of these 165 unaccounted-for volumes of the year just closed 121 have disappeared from the books of reference, reserved books, and other collections exposed to the handling of all frequenters of the library, the other 44 having disappeared from the shelves to which only the staff of the library, officers of the college, and a limited number of other persons have access. In the pub-stack, fewer cases than usual of disarrangement were discovered, owing to a supervision of the shelves during the winter, only 124 books being found on wrong shelves. This unsatisfactory condition has grown out of various causes: First, as regards the stack, it is open to the entire staff of instruction; to students who hold cards of admission; to the library staff; and to an occasional special investigator. Such an aggregate of careless people, to use no harsher term. Secof frequenters will have an inevitable percentage ondly, as regards the reserved and reference books, they are practically open to the handling of any one who chooses to touch them, and offer a field for depredation to any irresponsible person, who places the selfish enjoyment of a book or the pecuniary gain of its possession higher than honesty, or who finds no convenient opportunity for rectifying acts of aberration or action is the despicable disregard of the rights thoughtlessness. The worst feature of the transof fellow-students, who are thus deprived of the

use of such books."

Denver (Col.) City L. (Rpt.) Added 1251; total 26,063. Issued, home use 151,403; lib. use 19.309.

Detroit (Mich.) P. L. The library of the Detroit Medical Library Association has been presented to the Public Library by the members of the association. The only condition to the gift was the proviso that the collection be kept as a separate department of the library.

Glen Cove, L. I. The organization of a lic library for Glen Cove is progressing rapidly. A room has been furnished with adequate shelving and a number of books have been given as a nucleus. The library has also been designated as a depository for the publications of the Smithsonian Institution; it will also probably become a borrower of the New York State "travelling libraries."

Hartford, Ct. Watkinson L. An interesting "Napoleon exhibition" was opened at the library early in January. It comprised books, prints, and pictures illustrating the life and times of the emperor, and was surprisingly full and varied. Over 400 pictures were shown, arranged to illustrate 1, the Bonaparte family; 2, the French Revolution and Egyptian expedition; 3, the

Consulate and empire, the Hundred Days and St. Helena; 4, the architecture, manners, and customs of the times. There were 80 portraits of Napoleon, reproductions of many well-known historical pictures in which Napoleon figures, and many interesting prints, books, and relics illustrating the subject. The exhibition was most successful; the attendance was large and appreciative; and the display has been the means of introducing the library to many persons who would otherwise have remained unacquainted

with it.

Harvard Univ. L., Cambridge, Mass. (17th rpt.) Added 15,788 v.; total 437,747 v., 350,368 pm. Besides this total the books shelved in dept. libraries, and not included in the foregoing figures, amount to 11,631 v. Issued from Gore Hall 105,060.


"It is the observation of those in charge of the reference service, of which no statistics are kept, that it is constantly increasing year by year, and that the increase for last year was very great." During the year 1162 books were borrowed by students of Radcliffe College, and 249 admission cards" to the shelves were issued for purposes of special research. "Eighteen years ago only 57% of the college students used the library. In the last year, of the 1656 undergraduates, only 359 failed to borrow books, and of this last number 301 drew out reserve books. This reduces the number of students who made no recorded use of the library to 58 out of a total of 1656."

"The number of volumes which failed to be accounted for was 165, a large increase over last year, and equal to the loss in 1891, when a professional thief made depredations. Of'

During the year 9969 titles were cataloged by the catalog department, which was somewhat reduced by resignations from its staff. Among the additions to the library were a large part of the library of Francis Parkman, a collection on angling and fish culture given by Mr. John Bartlett, and other important accessions; most of these still await cataloging. The 89 maps belonging to the Parkman collection have been arranged in the map department, and a list of their subjects is given in the report. Financially the library is hampered and restricted by lack of funds, which not only reduces the accessions, but materially affects the convenience and use of the collection. Prof. Winsor says: "What I have repeatedly said about the insufficiency of Gore Hall, for the uses of the library, I can only repeat with renewed emphasis: 'I have exhausted the language of warning and anxiety, in representing the totally inadequate accommodations for books and readers which Gore Hall affords. Each 12 months brings us nearer to a chaotic condition. The library goes on with its natural accessions, and friends of learning give us the means to add more and more to our growth. We have as yet no assurance to give them that their gifts can be properly cared for, and the use of their books properly regulated for the general good.' During the year (in March and April) we found it necessary to box up 15,000 volumes and store them beyond reach, in order to make room for new accessions, believed to be

of larger present interest. In selecting these books to be put aside, the records of circulation were examined to lead us to the choice of those in least demand. The removal, however, was no sooner made than complaints began to come in of the deprivations which by this act were imposed on the frequenters of the library. This is a sufficient answer, if one be needed, to the un

reasoning demand, sometimes made of large libraries, that their shelves shall be thinned out by discarding useless books. Every librarian of large experience knows that there are no such books. A university library, which is the leading one in the country, needs, above all others, to answer every bibliographical inquiry by producing the book. Merit is but one test of the value of a book to a large library."

Helena (Mont.) P. L. Financial difficulties have seriously hampered the work of the library for the past six months. Lack of funds and of sufficient force has compelled the interruption of the cataloging and the resources of the library are not equal to the demands made upon it. In the Bulletin for January, 1895-the first issued since June of the previous year-the authorities say: "The overcrowded condition at the library is apparent to all. The bookshelves are entirely full. Some books have already been taken away to the store-room and more will have to be removed. Even the tops of the cases have to be utilized. The readingrooms become uncomfortably filled with readers and some have to go away for lack of accommodations. New chairs have been bought, but the reading-room space is not half large enough. The facilities for heating are not sufficient to keep the rooms comfortably warm in cold weather. The whole support of the library comes from a tax on the property of the city of one-half-mill on the dollar, yielding this year about $6500. This is less than former years on account of a reduction of the assessment from over $20,000,000 in 1891 to about $13,500,000 in 1894. The library is confronted each year with a reduction in revenue, while patronage and the work that patronage brings is continually increasing."


Indianapolis (Ind.) P. L. A bill taking the Public Library out of the hands of the school board and placing it under the control of a board of directors was passed by the legislature on Feb. 13. The bill provides for six directors, to be appointed by the circuit judge and the county clerk, who shall have control of all library property, heretofore vested in the board of school commissioners. All employees of the library are placed under a system of civil service rules, and except in the case of the librarian, assistant librarian and secretary, places will be given only on competitive examinations.

the Y. M. C. A. building, and cost $30,000. The library building is to cost $200,000.


Kansas State Agricultural College L., Manhattan. (9th biennial rpt.) Added 2459; total 18,488. During the past two years, the growth of the library has depended almost entirely upon the college itself. An insignificant appropriation of $250 was made for the year ending June 30, 1893. The same amount was This sum available for the preceding year. the reading-room. For the year ending June was barely enough to pay for the periodicals for 30, 1894, no state appropriation was made, nor books during the coming year. Early in 1893, will any fund be available for the purchase of the board of regents authorized the expenditure of $3000 from the current funds of the college for the purchase of books. With this fund, a considerable number of valuable books was bought; but the financial condition of the college did not warrant us in making the total expenditure. In all, purchases amounting to $2665.50 were made from the income fund during the two years. This was far from being sufficient to provide for the immediate wants of the various departments. The maximum amount allowed any department was $350." The librarian urges the necessity of an annual library appropriation of at least $5000.

He alludes also to the satisfactory results of the system of free access to the books, which has been practised in the college library from the beginning, and says: "Our losses during the past eight years from the abuse of the privilege of free access to the books, have been less than $15, all told. The policy of excluding the students from the books would have required the constant employment of an additional attendant upon the library, while the advantages of the free system are beyond comparison great."

A new and handsome library building has been erected with a book capacity of 70,000 v.; it contains, as yet, shelving for 20,000 v.

Kansas City (Mo.) P. L. At a meeting of the board of education early in February W. F. Hackney, the architect of the board, was appointed as architect of the new public library building and directed to draw up plans for the building. A site for the building has already been secured; it is in a central location, opposite |

Lenox (Mass.) L. The library management, has, since December, given a series of lectures and entertainments that have proved very popular. There are six evenings devoted to the course, which began December 1, and concludes on March 23, and the program comprises illustrated lectures on travel and science, readings by Prof. Locke Richardson, and a concert.

Mankato (Minn.) P. L. The Mankato Public Library was opened on Feb. 6. It contains about 2000 v., and is established and supported by a tax levy, under the provisions of the state law. The books were cataloged and classified by Mrs. M..W. Loomis, secretary of the Iowa Library Society; the librarian is Miss Minnie


Memphis, Tenn. Cossitt L. On Feb. 2, the Cossitt Library was made a circulating library, and books were for the first time issued to applicants for home use. The rules and form of application adopted differ little from those generally in use, save that a fine of five cents a day is imposed for holding a book beyond the

March, '95]

date of return, that no book will be reissued to
the same applicant or to a member of the ap-
plicant's household until two days after its re-
turn, and that the rules as to guarantors and
applications are rather minute in restrictions, etc.
Milwaukee (Wis.) P. L. (17th rpt.)
6322; total 75,162. Issued, home use 281,795
(fict. 42.1%; juv. 21.8 %); no record of reference
use is kept; reading-room attendance 92,162
(Sunday visitors 6467). No. cardholders 17,220.
Receipts $49,755.72; expenses $32,698.89.

The statistics show a very large increase over any previous year in the home use of books. The absolute gain over the preceding year is 122,182, being a relative gain of 77%. Miss West's report is so admirable and so full of interest that space alone forbids extended quotation. It should be carefully read by all librarians, who will find it full of suggestion and inspiration. A lucid summary is given of the delays and difficulties that have arisen to prevent the erection of the much-needed library building which was undertaken in 1893. Lawsuits, municipal quarrels and lack of public spirit among the city authorities have brought the matter to a standstill and prevented progress. The work with the schools, which has been systematically conducted by the library since 1888, proves year by year more valuable, and 15% of the circulation of books belongs to this department. During the year an author catalog of the library has been completed and placed in the circulating department, and three numbers of the quarterly index to additions have been issued. The bindery established by the library has proved most satisfactory and is "to the librarian one of the most satisfactory experiments ever tried."


inclusion in full of Miss West's paper on "Li-
brary building" and the report on
for the young," by Miss L. E. Stearns, both of
which were among the notable features of the
Lake Placid Conference of the A. L. A. in 1894.

New Hampshire F. P. L. Commission (2d rpt.). This report covers two years- 1893 and 1894 - and is a most gratifying record of progress in the direction of establishing town libraries. Of the 233 towns in the state 60 had town libraries in 1891. Since then 113 have been established, Sixty towns have no making a total of 173. town libraries, but in many of these there are subscription libraries, or libraries established through private generosity. The summary of the report shows that there are in the state 262 libraries, with a total of 576,961 volumes, ex14 free libraries other than town, 40 subscripclusive of reports and pamphlets. These include state and department, and the library of the tion, two circulating, 24 school, two college, six New Hampshire Historical Society. Carefully tabulated statistics present these figures, and the report shows painstaking and accuracy. Pp. 26-56 are devoted to short historical sketches of various libraries, with illustrations of the buildings, and the report contains some admirable" suggestions as to library methods" accompanied by illustrative forms, etc.

Referring to the increasing appreciation and usefulness of the library, Miss West says: "The real efficiency of this or any other library must always be dependent upon the ability and courtesy of those officials who come into closest relations with the public. No excellence of regulation by the trustees, no direction or inspiration by the librarian, can ever overcome incapacity, dulness and indifference on the part of the assistants. The view which regards their work as a mere mechanical routine is far aside from the truth. They have constant need of every resource that culture and courtesy can supply. Their hours of work are long, and busy days, which are almost incessant now, are exhausting in the extreme, not only to the body, but to mind and nerves as well. It is my firm conviction that the funds of the library can be used in no way more effective for its best interests than in the gradual increase of salaries paid for efficient service of this kind. The library needs to be able to tempt into its service and to retain by some other chain than their love for the work, able, original and kindly women. An increase of salaries based on experience merely, which has been the rule in the past, is not entirely satisfactory, as it has been granted to the ambitious and indifferent alike and has offered no reward for special effort." The report is made still more valuable by the organization will soon be in vigorous operation,

the city council New Orleans, La. On Jan. unanimously voted to establish a free public library in the vacated criminal court building, the nucleus of the library to be the Lyceum Library, heretofore housed in the city hall, and the Fisk Free Library, now in Tulane University. The Fisk Free Library, was established in 1845 by a bequest of books and real property from Abijah Fisk, and was for years in charge of the Mechanics' Institute. In 1882, after the dissolution of the Institute, the collection was placed in the custody of the University of Louisiana. Later, when the State University was incorporated with Tulane University, the library passed under the management of the latter institution, where it has since continued. The removal of Tulane University to its new building in a remote quarter of the city brought up the question of the transfer of the Fisk Library. It was generally thought that the library should be centrally located, and through the efforts of the mayor and others interested, steps were taken towards making it the nucleus of a general free public library. It was decided to remodel and alter the criminal court building, in the heart of the city, for library purposes, and to transfer there the Fisk Library and the Lyceum Library, to be conducted as a free public library. The remodThe Fisk Library has an income of $2000 elling of the building is estimated at about $20,000. yearly, which it is proposed to increase by city appropriation to about $12,000. The books of the two libraries number about 25,000 v., but The the collection will have to be thoroughly overhauled, weeded out and increased by new additions before it is ready for circulation. movement has the general support of the local press, and it seems probable that the work of



New York. Aguilar F. L. (6th rpt.) Added been reduced to five and a half cents, and at 5036; total 25,848. Issued 253,349 (fict. varies one of the libraries to four and a half cents, infrom .555% to .777 % at the three libraries); cluding all expenses. The salaries account has reading-room attendance 184,144; no. borrow-been slightly increased at the expense of the ers 4665. Receipts $14,257.58; expenses $12,- cataloging department. The librarian-in-chief reports: The economies practised this year present unique features-some, indeed, which I sincerely hope will not have to be resorted to during the coming year. The greatly increasing work last winter called for a large addition to the working force, but we had no money with which to hire help. The relief committees came to our assistance and sent us six girls and one man, whose wages they paid for a term of three to seven months of service. Some of these persons gave such satisfaction that they were retained and placed on our pay-roll when the committees closed their work. Still, they are not just the kind of assistants that we wish to employ in large number, and the wages paid are far too small. The first assistants in all cases should be such women as can be properly advanced to the highest place, and should receive an adequate salary.'

The year has been a gratifying one at each of the three libraries. The library committee say : "The proportion of circulation to the number of volumes in the library is shown in a report of the state library department. In this it appears that the proportionate circulation of the Aguilar Free Library is the largest of any library in the state, being about 10 to one.

"Aid is given to readers, as far as possible, by lists and by personal advice. During the past year juvenile lists have been issued at the East Broadway and Lexington avenue libraries. A new fiction list at the Lexington avenue library and a biography list for the East Broadway branch are almost ready to be issued. The card catalog of the East Broadway branch is complete, and should be printed as soon as a few more additions are made. Lists of biography, of books relating to lectures and special events, from time to time posted on our literary bulletins, are used with success in calling the attention of readers to the books on our shelves. Visits are constantly made to schools to maintain the co-operation of the school and the library. As far as possible, books are purchased that can supplement school-work."

An appeal is made for additional money port, permitting the securing of better quarters for the Lexington avenue branch, an increase of the library force, and extension of the work generally.

"In spite of the unusual heat of the summer and the many extra demands upon them, the librarians have continued to take the greatest interest in their work, have organized among themselves classes of instruction in English history and literature and in the German language and literature, in hours when not employed, and have voluntarily joined a cataloging sup-class under the charge of the librarian-in-chief and the cataloger, from which results of great value to the library are sure to follow."

New York F. C. L. Total 76,860. Issued 636,043 (fict. averaging from 27% at Bond street branch to 56% at Ottendorfer branch); readingroom attendance 180,778; Sunday circulation 41,641; no. borrowers 57.645. Receipts $34,586.98; expenses $34,139.06.

There has been an increase of 105,006 volumes over the circulation of the previous year. The increase in the expenses of the year has been but $1561.17, of which $1217.53 was spent in books, leaving an increased cost of $243.74 in administration for the increased circulation of 105,006 v." At each of the six libraries the record is the same increased use, extended


lack of funds. The increase in use was largest opportunities, and development hampered by at the time of the greatest financial depression, and has lessened materially during the last two months. The use of the reading-room has been about the same, although certain restrictions have been made in its use - "excluding in a great measure the tramps - by which the rooms have been rendered much more useful to students, the character of the attendance much

improved, the reading more satisfactory, and the books of reference more frequently and intelligently consulted. To those having no quiet homes the reading-rooms have been places of rest and comfort in many a trying hour."

The chairman of the library committee says: "The average cost per volume issued has

An earnest appeal is made for more adequate financial support for the library. The trustees say that they "feel sure that if the work of the library were only sufficiently well known, the income from contributions alone would go far towards furnishing an adequate support for the existing libraries. In other cities the expense of supporting a free circulating library is a public charge, and yet, with the slight assistance given by public funds for this purpose in New York, the circulation of books from the six branches of the New York Free Circulating Library is exceeded only by the libraries of Boston and Chicago."

[blocks in formation]
« ПретходнаНастави »