November 23, 2014 |
Three previously unknown Oscar Wilde items have surfaced in the Free Library of Philadelphia's rare-book collection and are being greeted by scholars and aficionados as perhaps one of the most important Wilde discoveries in decades. The emergence of a typescript of the play Salome hand-corrected by Wilde, a 142-page personal notebook in which he drafted poems and doodled line drawings, and an unpublished four-page manuscript from his famous poem The Ballad of Reading Gaol have put the Free Library at the center of a happy storm of attention.
November 12, 2014 |
When it comes to local politics, one knee-jerk reaction often begets another. Commissioners in Springfield Township, Montgomery County, learned that the hard way after they barred the tax collector and a state representative from holding office hours in the library. The move came after a workshop meeting in October without a board vote, and it was unclear at Monday night's workshop meeting whether there had been a consensus to take any action. As the debate grew heated, two commissioners said simultaneously: "There was no agreement" and "We all agreed.
October 30, 2014 |
The new commercial kitchen at the Free Library of Philadelphia is, by far, the most beautiful, tricked-out kitchen in which I've ever cooked. We made lovely meals in the simple convent kitchen at St. Martin de Porres in North Philadelphia when the after-school cooking program began in 2012, and then in the public school cafeteria kitchens the following fall and spring. As the program grew over the last two years, with volunteers cooking in schools in Philadelphia and Camden, some classes made feasts with just an electric frying pan. The point is, you don't need a high-end kitchen and fancy equipment to cook a nice dinner.
October 27, 2014 |
Howard Lutnick lost his mother to cancer when he was a high school junior. And one week into his freshman year at Haverford College, his father died - the result of a tragic medical mistake. That's when he got the phone call from Robert B. Stevens, then president of Haverford: "Howard, your four years here are free. " Since then, Lutnick has been returning the kindness of the college that became a family when he most needed one. Now 53 and chairman of Cantor Fitzgerald L.P. - a New York City financial firm that lost 658 employees in the World Trade Center attacks - Lutnick has become the college's largest donor, a distinction deepened on Saturday with the announcement of his $25 million gift.
October 25, 2014 |
Irene Nelson Monti, 99, of Voorhees, who retired in 1976 as director of the Haddon Heights Public Library, died Saturday, Oct. 18, at the Samaritan Inpatient Hospice Center at the Virtua Memorial medical center in Mount Holly. "They rebuilt the library during the time she worked there, and so she was very instrumental in the rebuilding or renovation," granddaughter Irene Richardson said. "She used to take me there" as a child, Richardson said. At home, "I was always surrounded by books when I was growing up. " It was more than a job for Mrs. Monti.
October 22, 2014 |
What's the value of a high school education? Recent U.S. Census data says it's worth at least $10,386 - the difference between the average income of high school graduates and the income earned by dropouts. Seeking to help county residents earn high school diplomas - and potentially more money - the Camden County Library System has enlisted in a New Jersey State Library-aided program that offers a second chance to dropouts. The Career Online High School (COHS) program, which has brought a slew of new laptops to the county library system, can accommodate up to 35 county library card holders who are at least 19 years and have completed their freshman year of high school before dropping out. First to enroll in the program was Nancy Torres, 29, of Camden.
October 8, 2014 |
The Latin phrase engraved in decorative medallions on the new Moorestown Library was supposed to inspire. The building's planners thought its translation was: "We confirm all things twice. " Apparently, they didn't . . . confirm all things twice, that is. The Latin words - Nos Secundus Coniecto Omnia - actually mean "we second-guess all," which is what some critics have been doing lately. Not to worry, though. Moorestown Mayor Chris Chiacchio said two medallions with the incorrect phrase would be replaced with an appropriate motto yet to be determined.
October 6, 2014 |
The author events series at the Free Library of Philadelphia can boast impressive numbers - more than 130 events a year, nearly half a million podcasts downloaded, and more than 30,000 book-lovers in attendance. Andy Kahan, 51, director of the series, reflects on the series and its future. Q: What have been the highlights of the series? A: My highlights might not be your highlights (or anyone else's), but some that come to mind include having Richard Clarke the day after he testified to the 9/11 Commission; the couple of events we had with the ever-passionate and intense Jeanette Winterson; any time we host Toni Morrison, David Mitchell, or A.S. Byatt; Rachel Maddow's appearance a couple of years ago; and Hillary Clinton's recent book signing.
September 20, 2014 |
Does God exist? What was Nixon really like? And perhaps most important: Will the Eagles make it to the Super Bowl? You can ask Sam Harris, Henry Kissinger, and Ray Didinger those questions, or anything else on your mind. Authors Harris ( Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion ); Kissinger ( World Order ), and Didinger ( The New Eagles Encyclopedia ) may not give you the definitive answers, but they will give you highly informed opinions. They are just three on the impressive roster of more than 50 writers coming to Philadelphia over the next few months for the Free Library's annual author series.