June 3, 2014 |
John Van Horne did not inaugurate the move into the computer age at the Library Company of Philadelphia. When he arrived in 1985, the venerable research archive already had a Wang word processor. Van Horne quickly acquired a fax machine that used thermal paper and cost thousands of dollars. Those antediluvian days obviously are long gone. Today the Library Company - the nation's oldest library and research institution, founded by Benjamin Franklin in 1731 - is swimming in digital waters.
May 30, 2014 |
THE Free Library of Philadelphia, always a source of food for thought, will start cooking for real Monday with the opening of the Culinary Literacy Center at the Parkway Central Library. The demonstration kitchen - with three ovens, a walk-in refrigerator, 16 burners and seating for 36 guests - will offer activities to educate people of all ages, not just in nutrition but in general literacy, mathematics and even chemistry. "People learn in different ways," explained Sandy Horrocks, the library's vice president of external affairs.
May 9, 2014 |
As though going through a Rolodex, Roz Chast cycles through some of the reasons she had such a complicated, difficult relationship with her parents. "They both grew up poor. They were born in 1912, so they graduated college into the Depression. Their experiences were . . . just awful," said the New Yorker cartoonist, who delves into that troubled relationship in her graphic memoir, Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant? , published Tuesday by Bloomsbury. Chast, 59, whose work is acclaimed for its wry humor and off-kilter style, will discuss the book at the Free Library of Philadelphia's Central Library at 7:30 p.m. Monday.
May 9, 2014 |
UPPER DARBY The dirt road that leads to an empty library in Sinon, Tanzania, is a lot different than the streets that lead to Stonehurst Hills Elementary School in Upper Darby. The library in Sinon requires a guard post, and the street is lined with tropical trees and an occasional closet-size storefront that serves as a grocery. The streets near Stonehurst Hills feature small front yards with children's toys scattered about and American flags waving in the breeze. In March, the students at Stonehurst Hills, 90 percent of whom qualify for a special lunch program, hoped to raise $260 for that library on the other side of the world.
April 29, 2014
I totally agree with your editorial, "No Mere Words," that libraries are important and that every school child in Philadelphia should have and utilize a library card. As the proud holder of four Vacation Reading Club certificates from the Free Library of Philadelphia (1956-1959), as the daughter of a decade-long head of the Falls of Schuylkill branch, as a retired English teacher who walked entire classes across the parking lot from Rush Middle School to the Katharine Drexel branch, as a retired English department head at A. Philip Randolph Technical High School who regularly invited the local branch librarian to freshman orientation to sign up students for cards, and as now a board member of the Friends of the Free Library, I would, under normal conditions, applaud the motive and action of awarding member cards to every student in the city.
April 18, 2014 |
David C. Munn, director of the Cherry Hill Public Library from 1980 to 1989, spent many hours watching his son go around in circles. From the time he was seven to 12, son Ward said, "I spent a lot of time in competitive speed roller skating," at rinks in Cherry Hill and Evesham. "He would drive me all over the region, bringing me to speed roller skating events," so many that after a while, "he became a timer for the events. " On Saturday, April 12, Mr. Munn, 72, of Gloucester City, a career public librarian and author of local histories, died of cancer at his home.
March 25, 2014 |
WILLINGBORO The Willingboro Public Library has a new logo to complete its transformation as a community center for information. Alleanna Harris, 20, submitted the winning entry in the contest to replace the outdated logo. The contest began Jan. 13 and ended Feb. 17. "It's very exciting," said Harris, a junior at the University of the Arts. "This is my first major win. It makes me feel great" Two runners-up were named: Michael L. Clay, 28, a graphic designe; and Christian Freeman, both of Willingboro.
March 22, 2014 |
It was a day in 1980 when the kid walked into the Cape May Bird Observatory. He'd left Cornell and wanted a job as the person who leads the Cape May Point hawk count during the fall migration. While he was at it, the kid asked if the center's director, legendary birder Pete Dunne, wanted to see his field sketches. As Dunne recalls, they filled five loose-leaf binders. And even then, they were "just magnificent. " The kid was David Allen Sibley. By now, Sibley's depictions of birds are known to pretty much every birder in the nation because they fill his field guides.
March 12, 2014 |
A plan by the University of Pennsylvania to cut back on two of its branch libraries - one for engineering and the other for math, physics, and astronomy - has yielded an outcry from students and professors who say the books are critical to their studies and research. Both libraries are housed within the same campus buildings as their departments, and are heavily used by undergraduates and graduate students alike. Mathematics students, in particular, said many of the books and materials they need are not available electronically, and they must browse the library to find what they need.
March 11, 2014 |
She got married in a hall that was once a library reading room, surrounded by rows of books. Which was no surprise. Jamie Soukup Reid loved and lived in books. The characters wandered across the page and up into her consciousness: Leopold Bloom traversing Dublin in Ulysses , Katniss Everdeen fighting dictatorship in The Hunger Games , Esperanza Cordero overcoming poverty in The House on Mango Street . And when Reid died, suddenly and young, her friends claimed selections from her shelves as mourning tokens, believing that in the space where Jamie's hand had crossed a page, they might for a moment meet again.