News from the Field

David Free

MSU to host Grant Presidential Library

Mississippi State University (MSU) soon will officially serve as host to a presidential library—one of only five universities in the nation to share such a distinction. In late May, Ulysses S. Grant Association President Frank J. Williams announced the decision of the organization’s Board of Directors to designate the Ulysses S. Grant Collection at MSU’s Mitchell Memorial Library as the Ulysses S. Grant Presidential Library.

The Grant Presidential Collection consists of some 15,000 linear feet of correspondence, research notes, artifacts, photographs, scrapbooks, and memorabilia and includes information on Grant’s childhood from his birth in 1822, his later military career, Civil War triumphs, tenure as commanding general after the war, presidency, and his post-White House years until his death in 1885. There are also 4,000 published monographs on various aspects of Grant’s life and times.

The Grant Collection joined those of former U.S Sen. John C. Stennis and U.S. Rep. Sonny Montgomery, along with a number of other more contemporary political figures, in the library’s Congressional and Political Research Center. For more information about the Ulysses S. Grant Collection, visit

Oxford University Press launches roaming support for mobile journals users

Oxford University Press (OUP) recently announced that users of its mobile-optimized journals service can now authorize their mobile devices for offsite access to institutional subscriptions.

While connected to the institution’s network, by choosing “Authorize this Device” on any journal’s mobile homepage, institutional users can connect their mobile device to their institution’s Oxford Journals subscription, thereby granting access to protected content even after stepping out of the institution’s network. Each mobile device must be authorized individually; the level of access granted will be exactly the same as the institution’s subscription; and, once activated, the voucher will provide access to journal content for six months.

The new service builds on the 2011 launch of mobile-optimized across OUP’s journal Web sites, which can be accessed from any smartphone. For more information, visit the FAQ page at

Queen Victoria’s journals now online

The Bodleian Libraries working in partnership with The Royal Archives and ProQuest, have made the personal journals of Queen Victoria available for the public. The journals, which span Victoria’s lifetime and consist of 141 volumes numbering more than 43,000 pages, have never been published in their entirety and previously were only accessible by appointment at the Royal Archives at Windsor Castle. In addition to autograph diaries begun by the youthful Princess Victoria, there are edited versions from her later years, redacted and transcribed by the Queen’s daughter, Princess Beatrice.

Queen Victoria was a prolific writer and recorded her thoughts and experiences almost daily, starting with her first entry as a young girl of 13 and continuing until just weeks before her death in 1901. Her journals provide a fascinating insight into her life as Queen. ProQuest launched a library version of the journals in late June 2012.

LYRASIS members elect new Board of Trustees members

LYRASIS members elected four new Board of Trustees who will each serve a three-year term. The new Board members started their terms at the beginning of the LYRASIS fiscal year on July 1, 2012. Ann Watson, dean of the library at Shepherd University, was elected to the academic library position. Cynthia Henderson, executive director of the Louis Stokes Health Sciences Library at Howard University, and Kathlin Ray, dean of libraries, University of Nevada-Reno, were elected to the two at-large positions. Sandra Treadway, librarian of Virginia, was elected to the group member position. Additionally, John Arnold, president of Linkage Systems, was selected by the nominating committee and appointed by the Board of Trustees, to serve a second three-year term as non-member trustee.

EBSCO launches Associated Press Images Collection

EBSCO will make millions of images from the Associated Press (AP) available to library customers. EBSCO has been named the sole library distributor of AP Images, the commercial photo unit of AP and one of the world’s largest collections of historical and contemporary imagery, including more than 12 million photographs dating back more than 100 years.

AP Images Collection is a primary source database with millions of images from 1826 to present and more than 3,500 additional photographs are added daily. The collection also includes 36,400 audio sound bytes dating from the 1920s and more than 2,900 multimedia files. The multimedia represent a compilation of integrated video, graphics, and photos that bring the latest news and educational topics to life. In addition, AP Images Collection provides 2.7 million AP news stories from 1997 to present, and a professionally produced collection of more than 340,000 maps, graphs, charts, logos, flags, and illustrations. The archive is currently available at apimages. com but will eventually migrated to EBSCOhost.

UNT Portal to Texas History

Users of the University of North Texas (UNT) Libraries’ Portal to Texas History are now able to browse pages of historical Texas newspapers online, thanks to the National Digital Newspaper Program, “Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers.” UNT Libraries became a partner in the program in 2007, when it received the first of several National Endowment for the Humanities grants to digitize the newspapers and place them online. The hundreds of thousands of pages date from the 1820s through the 2000s, offering glimpses of daily life in Texas communities from those decades. More information is available at

HKBU Library wins ALA innovative international library projects award

Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) Library recently received the 2012 ALA Presidential Citations for Innovative International Library Projects Award for its Chinese Medicine Digital Project. This year, the HKBU Library is one of four libraries in the world, and also the sole university library, to have been chosen by the selection panel for the award.

The Medicinal Plants Images Database ( consists of more than 1,000 medicinal plants presented in the form of images with detailed descriptions in both Chinese and English. The Chinese Medicine Specimen Database ( was established to promote awareness of the variety, authenticity, and effective use of Chinese medicine. Both databases are bilingual (in Chinese and English) and can be accessed free of cost by anyone anywhere in the world.

ACRL seeks EDUCASE Learning Initiative liaison

The ACRL Information Literacy Coordinating Committee is currently seeking applications to serve a three-year term (August 2012 to June 2015) as the ACRL liaison to the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI). The liaison is responsible for outreach, education, and communication between ACRL and ELI. The goal of the liaison relationship is twofold: 1) to demonstrate the value of libraries and librarians for advancing the mission of ELI and 2) to model effective partnerships between librarians and other teaching and learning professionals within the ELI community.

The ACRL liaison to ELI is expected to communicate opportunities for ELI participation to relevant ACRL audiences and to assist ELI staff in identifying content experts and innovative programs within the ACRL community for possible inclusion in ELI publications and event opportunities. Additional opportunities for participation aligned with the liaison’s interests and areas of expertise may be identified in conversation with ELI leadership.

Complete details and application information is available on the ACRL Insider blog at

New ACRL reports address value of academic libraries, scenarios for the future of the book

In early June, ACRL released a new white paper, “Connect, Collaborate, and Communicate: A Report from the Value of Academic Libraries Summits,” which reports on two invitational summits supported by a National Leadership Collaborative Planning Grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

As part of ACRL’s Value of Academic Libraries Initiative, a multiyear project designed to assist academic librarians in demonstrating library value, ACRL joined with three partners—the Association for Institutional Research, Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, and the Council of Independent Colleges—to sponsor two national summits held November 29–December 1, 2011. The summits convened senior librarians, chief academic administrators, and institutional researchers from 22 postsecondary institutions for discussions about library impact.

Fifteen representatives from higher education organizations, associations, and accreditation bodies also participated in the summit discussions and presentations and facilitated small group work.

The report—coauthored by Karen Brown, associate professor at Dominican University, and ACRL Senior Strategist for Special Initiatives Kara Malenfant—summarizes broad themes about the dynamic nature of higher education assessment that emerged from the summits. From these themes, the report presents five recommendations for the library profession.

“ACRL’s ‘Plan for Excellence’ identifies the value of academic libraries as a top priority for the association, and results just in from the 2012 membership survey show that demonstrating library relevance is the top issue of concern for our members,” added Joyce L. Ogburn, ACRL president and university librarian and director of the University of Utah Marriott Library. “ACRL has already taken steps to continue this crucial work by submitting a grant proposal to design, implement, and evaluate a team-based professional development program to strengthen the competencies of librarians in campus leadership and data-informed advocacy.”

The white paper is freely available on the ACRL Value of Academic Libraries Web site at

ACRL additionally released a research report, “Futures Thinking for Academic Librarians: Scenarios for the Future of the Book,” to help librarians reexamine their assumptions, which may be grounded in the current e-book zeitgeist. Authored by David J. Staley, director of the Harvey Goldberg Center for Excellence in Teaching in the History Department of Ohio State University, the report is a companion to the 2010 report Staley coauthored for ACRL, “Futures Thinking for Academic Librarians: Higher Education in 2025.”

This new report presents four scenarios, based in part on feedback from academic library directors. It includes scenarios that intentionally favor the continued existence of the printed book as a viable technology, so that academic and research librarians may expand their thinking about the future to include a richer set of environmental conditions.

The full report is freely available in the publications section of the ACRL Web site at

New publications from ACRL and Choice

ACRL announces the publication of The Changing Academic Library, Second Edition: Operations, Cultures, and Environments by John M. Budd. The Changing Academic Library, Second Edition is number 65 in the ACRL Publications in Librarianship series.

The Changing Academic Library, Second Edition is a revised, enhanced, and updated edition of Budd’s 2005 book The Changing Academic Library. This book has been completely updated and revised to reflect the dynamic states of higher education and academic libraries.

Budd presents a critical examination of major issues facing colleges and universities and the unique challenges that their libraries must come to grips with. Current practice is reviewed, but it is examined in the broader context of educational needs, scholarly communication, politics and economics, technology, and the nature of complex organizations. The book may be used as a text in library and information science courses, as well as an introduction for new professionals and academic administrators.

The Changing Academic Library, Second Edition is available for purchase in print, as an e-book, and as a print/e-book bundle through the ALA Online Store; in print and for Kindle through; and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252 in the United States or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.

Also available from Choice is Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles 2007–2011, edited by Choice Humanities Editor Rebecca Ann Bartlett. Honoring the best in scholarly publishing, Choice’s annual “Outstanding Academic Titles” list is widely recognized in the academic community for its sweeping coverage of the most significant scholarly titles published each year. Now available is a comprehensive print collection of reviews representing excellence in a five-year period.

Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles 2007–2011 presents reviews of 3,650 print and electronic works in a wide variety of categories that Choice has deemed indispensable for every library. It is the perfect tool to help libraries remain current and to assist in their making informed choices for acquisition.

Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles 2007–2011 is available for purchase in print through the ALA Online Store and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252 in the United States or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.

Tech Bits . . .

Brought to you by the ACRL ULS Technology in University Libraries Committee

It’s so easy to take pictures and screenshots with your mobile device, but it’s not so easy to point out a specific detail on these images—until now! Skitch is a free mobile app that lets you quickly annotate and share your pictures. Available for iPad, Android, or Mac devices, Skitch lets you draw, insert shapes and arrows, or add notes on your photos. It also has built-in features that enable you to capture an image while surfing the Web or using a Google map. Once marked up, you can share your images in a variety of ways, including sending a copy to an Evernote account, which is another great app for staying organized.

—Michelle Armstrong, Albertsons Library, Boise State University

. . . SKITCH

Copyright 2012© American Library Association

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