News from the Field

David Free

Michigan expands digitization agreement

The University of Michigan (UM) has expanded its agreement with Google to create digital copies of millions of UM library books and journals. The amended agreement, which strengthens library preservation efforts and increases the public’s access to books, is possible because of Google’s pending settlement with a broad class of authors and publishers.

“Through this amendment we are establishing a solid foundation for future library work and providing the greatest public good for library users,” said Paul N. Courant, UM librarian and dean of libraries.

The agreement opens up the UM library’s collections of 8 million works to readers and students throughout the United States with free previews, the ability to buy access to the university’s collections online, and through subscriptions at other institutions. Through provisions in Google’s pending settlement with authors and publishers and the amended UM agreement, Google will provide a free public access terminal, allowing every public and collegiate library in the country that chooses—from those in small towns to those at large universities—equal access to the UM materials. The agreement also calls for Google to contribute millions of dollars to establish up to two new scholarly research centers.

Open Access Directory celebrates first year

The Open Access Directory (OAD) recently celebrated its first year online. Hosted by Simmons College, OAD is a wiki where community contributors create and maintain simple, factual lists about open access to science and scholarship. Designed by Robin Peek of Simmons College and Peter Suber of Earlham College, and operated entirely by an international corps of volunteers, OAD has grown from six to 40 lists and has served more than 250,000 unique users. OAD content includes a timeline of the open access movement, a bibliography of open access, and a list of open access-related conferences and workshops.

OAD will serve as a central component in the program for the upcoming Open Access Week (October 19–23, 2009), which will feature educational resources that local hosts can use to customize events to suit local audiences and time zones. OAD is online at Complete details on the 2009 Open Access Week are at

Scholarly Communication 101 materials now online

ACRL is extending the reach of the “Scholarly Communication 101: Starting with the Basics” workshop by adding related materials to its popular Scholarly Communication Toolkit. The materials—including short videos, presentations templates, and handouts—were developed for the half-day workshop offered at the ACRL 14th National Conference in Seattle and traveling to five locations around the country this summer. Now librarians can make use of these tools to enhance their own knowledge or adapt them to offer related workshops on their own campuses. The ACRL Scholarly Communication Committee, as part of its efforts to keep the toolkit current, encourages librarians to contribute tools and case studies on their local scholarly communication campaigns. Simply post a comment describing your tool and provide a link in the appropriate tab. The Scholarly Communication Toolkit is available online at

Enhanced Koha bibliographic content

LibLime and Syndetics Solutions are partnering to provide enriched bibliographic content to users of the Koha open source integrated library system (ILS). Syndetic Solutions contracted with LibLime to integrate Syndetics-enhanced bibliographic content with the Koha ILS. Additionally, LibLime has signed an exclusive contract for enhanced content through Syndetics, whereby LibLime will promote and help distribute Syndetic Solutions’ enhanced bibliographic information to LibLime customers. Syndetics content now supported by LibLime includes Table of Contents, Fiction/Biography Profile, Fiction Search (Find Similar Titles), Author Notes, Jacket Covers, Summary/Annotation, and reviews from a variety of sources, including Choice. LibLime is online at and Syndetic Solutions at

2009 RBMS Leab Exhibition Award winners

The ACRL Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) has selected five winners and one honorable mention for the 2009 Katharine Kyes Leab and Daniel J. Leab “American Book Prices Current” Exhibition Awards. The awards, funded by an endowment established by Katharine Kyes Leab and Daniel J. Leab, editors of “American Book Prices Current,” recognize outstanding exhibition catalogs issued by American or Canadian institutions in conjunction with library exhibitions as well as electronic exhibition catalogs of outstanding merit issued within the digital/Web environment. Certificates will be presented to each winner during the ALA Annual Conference in Chicago at the RBMS Information Exchange at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 12.

The Division One (expensive) winner is “China on Paper: European and Chinese Works from the Late Sixteenth to the Early Nineteenth Century,” submitted by the Getty Research Institute.

“This year’s Division One winner is a prime and very substantial specimen of the scholarly catalog,” said Richard Noble, chair of the RBMS Exhibition Awards committee and rare books cataloger at Brown University. “While providing a record of the exhibition itself, it ranges far beyond the specifics of the exhibition, especially in the accompanying scholarly essays. ”

The Division One honorable mention winner is “The Proper Decoration of Book Covers: The Life and Work of Alice C. Morse,” submitted by The Grolier Club.

“This catalog constitutes a significant contribution to the scholarly literature of its field and documents an instance of book collecting, by Mindell Dubansky, as a form of research,” noted Noble.

The Division Two (moderately expensive) winner is the Stanford University Libraries’ Department of Special Collections, for their piece entitled “Experiments in Navigation: The Art of Charles Hobson.”

“The wealth of material available in Charles Hobson’s archive, recently donated to Stanford University, has been turned to every sort of advantage,” said Noble. “One proceeds through the book with growing admiration for the skilful coordination of typography, text, captions and the disposition of the various sorts of illustrations. All elements are deployed in the service of a narrative logic, to produce a record of the origin, planning and techniques of each work.”

The Division Three (inexpensive) winner is “Scottie Fitzgerald: The Stewardship of Literary Memory,” submitted by the Rare Books and Special Collections department at the Thomas Cooper Library, University of South Carolina.

“In this category of the Leab Awards, we know that production values may reflect necessary economies,” Noble noted. “In this case, the design works perfectly well and is secondary to the curation of the exhibition and the compiling of the catalog. The catalogue, profusely illustrated and issued with a CD of a Fitzgerald-Bruccoli interview, is an element of this critical/historical process.”

The Division Four (brochures) winner is The Book Club of California’s brochure entitled “The Book Art of Edward Gorey.”

“One of the pleasures of reviewing the brochures is the chance to handle a number of such neat little contraptions as this one,” said Noble. “It is all the more appropriate in this case, for, as the brochure notes, Edward Gorey ‘made forays into the flexibility of eclectic book format’—that is to say, Gorey himself delighted in bookish contraptions. The scale is just right in its reminiscence of Gorey’s miniature books.”

The Division Five (electronic exhibition) winner is the Modern Books and Manuscripts unit at the Harvard University Houghton Library for “Public Poet, Private Man: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow at 200,” available online at

“The exhibition, which draws on Longfellow holdings of Houghton Library with highlights from the collections of the Longfellow National Historic Site in Cambridge, Mass., is a pleasure to navigate,” said Noble. “Its ‘rooms’ are clearly defined. The objects in them can be quickly glimpsed and examined more minutely in excellent digital rendition. Each item is precisely identified, and there are links to Houghton’s online catalog descriptions, as well as a general link to the finding aid for the collection.”

Expeditions and Discoveries at Harvard

The Harvard University Libraries’ Open Collections Program has launched “Expeditions and Discoveries: Sponsored Exploration and Scientific Discovery in the Modern Age.” The collection contains thousands of maps, photographs, and published materials, along with field notes, letters, and unique manuscript materials on sponsored exploration and related scientific discoveries between 1626 and 1953. “Expeditions and Discoveries” includes digitized copies of more than 250,000 pages from 700 books and serials, as well as 50,000 pages from Harvard’s manuscript collections, more than 1,200 photographs, 200 maps, 21 atlases, and numerous drawings and prints.

“Expeditions and Discoveries” features nine major expeditions as they are reflected in the holdings of Harvard’s libraries, museums, and archives. The collection also offers digital access to published materials in the public domain that document worldwide exploration and discovery in general. Users can search or browse materials by discipline or region, explore holdings related to 22 notable individuals, and discover information on 22 additional expeditions from the Arctic to the Antarctic, from Latin America to Africa and Australia, and more. The new collection is freely available at

Golden anniversary for NUCMC

The National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections (NUCMC), a cooperative cataloging program of the Library of Congress and eligible archival and manuscript repositories located throughout the United States and its territories, celebrated its 50th anniversary in May 2009. In its first half-century, the NUCMC program has worked with almost 1,500 repositories and produced more than 114,000 catalog records to describe archival and manuscript collections held by those repositories. The program provides and promotes bibliographic access to the nation’s vital historical resources.

New ACRL publications

Two new titles, The Kaleidoscopic Concern by Kaetrena D. Davis-Kendrick and Influencing Without Authority by Melanie Hawks are now available from ACRL.

The Kaleidoscopic Concern, an annotated bibliography on racial and ethnic diversity in librarianship, focuses on new areas of study such as gender issues and white privilege with regard to racial minority and ethnic librarians. Covering issues, concerns, goals, and strategies surrounding the recruitment, retention and advancement of librarians of color, the work annotates more than 80 years of the profession’s earliest training initiatives and current best practices. The bibliography traces the evolution of the specific idea of affirmative action to the more nebulous concept of diversity in libraries.

The second entry in the ACRL Active Guides series, Influencing Without Authority, provides guidance to those seeking to gain support for their ideas, developing collaborative relationships, and becoming recognized leaders regardless of their positions or titles. Working effectively in the library profession means finding ways to reach and lead those who are not required to listen or follow.

The ability to influence others is a required workplace skill, and yet it is one in which very few people receive education. Influencing Without Authority is designed to help individuals develop the skills they need to influence peers, library administrators, college and university faculty, students, and external stakeholders. ACRL Active Guides is an occasional series devoted to providing practical guidance on workplace issues.

The Kaleidoscopic Concern is available on the ACRL Web site as a free downloadable digital publication at Influencing Without Authority is available for purchase from the ALA Online Store ( and by telephone order at (866) 746–7252 in the United States or (770) 442–8633 for international customers.

Cooperating repositories provide information about their collections to NUCMC catalogers, who produce standardized cataloging to describe those collections. The cooperative effort has resulted in more effective security of collections, wider use of a repository’s collections, fuller access by researchers, and new donations of related materials.

The catalog includes not only the MARC-standard cataloging produced by NUCMC since the mid-1980s, but also cataloging produced by libraries, archives, historical societies, museums, and other holders of archival and manuscript collections around the world.

NUCMC may be searched freely via a gateway at

RIPM Online Archive of Music Periodicals

RIPM Online Archive of Music Periodicals (FullTEXT), a collection of primary source material for the study of music and musical life from approximately 1800 to 1950, is now available from EBSCO. The database contains an extensive collection of music periodicals dating from the Early Romantic to the Modern period, from Beethoven to Bartók, and from Schubert to Stravinsky. RIPM Online Archive is a full-text version of journals indexed in RIPM Retrospective Index to Music Periodicals.

The RIPM Online Archive’s first installment contains 50 rarely available music periodicals, with new titles every six months. Containing complete runs of journals at times pieced together from different collections, the RIPM Online Archive’s current content and a selection of forthcoming titles are available at

William & Mary grows private support

The College of William & Mary’s Earl Gregg Swem Library has surpassed $5 million in private support. With the receipt of more than $2.2 million in cash, $221,000 in gifts-in-kind (including books and collections), pledges and realized estate provisions totaling $2.7 million, the library has secured more than $5.2 million to date.

Recent gifts include $1.4 million from the late Dorothy Vollertsen, for the library’s general purposes and a $1.5 million pledge from the estate of the late Clarisse Garrison, a resident of California who graduated from the college in 1948, for needs in Special Collections.

Library certification programs in Kentucky

Northern Kentucky University (NKU) and Bluegrass Community and Technical College (BCTC) are collaborating to extend undergraduate academic programs in library studies. Based upon BCTC’s successful certification program for public library staff, library faculty at NKU have designed a parallel certification for staff in academic libraries. Course work is offered through BCTC’s Library Information Technology program, and the staff of NKU’s Steely Library may undertake a 21-credit program, which results in a redesign of job responsibilities and a commiserate salary increase upon completion. The Web-based program is open to library staff members at other institutions to consider career development through enrollment in these courses, as well. For more information about the certification program, contact Threasa Wesley atE-mail: .

John Carter Brown Library research fellowships

The John Carter Brown Library at Brown University will award approximately 30 short- and long-term graduate research fellowships for the period June 1, 2010–June 30, 2011. Short-term fellowships are available for two-to-four months, with a monthly stipend of $2,000. Long-term fellowships—underwritten by the National Endowment for the Humanities, InterAmericas, Donald R. Saunders, and R. David Parsons—last five-to-ten months with a monthly stipend of $4,000. Applicants for short-term fellowships must pass their preliminary or general examinations and be at the dissertation writing stage, and long-term fellowship applicants must complete their Ph.D. before January 2010.

Research proposals must be suited to the holdings of the library, focusing on the history of the Western hemisphere during the colonial period. All fellows must relocate and be in continuous residence at the library for the entire fellowship term.

For additional information and application forms, visit

Copyright © American Library Association, 2009

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