Thursday, March 28, 2013

Easter Break Hours

Today, Hewes Library will begin it's Easter Break hours schedule.  Our hours are:
  • Thursday, March 28: 7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
  • Friday - Sunday, March 29 - 31: Closed
  • Monday, April 1: 8:00 a.m. - midnight
Full early morning / regular hours will resume on Tuesday, April 2.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Program Tonight! Movie: Koran by Heart

The previously scheduled presentation of the Islamic Art Spots video with producer Dr. D. Fairchild Ruggles has been postponed to a later date-TBD. 

The Muslim Journeys Grant committee has decided to show Koran by Heart one of the films received in our Bookshelf Grant.  Free admission.  The public is welcome!!
Wednesday, March 27, 2013, 7:00pm
Location: Hewes Library, Barnes Electronic Classroom (HL03), Monmouth College
A charming documentary film that follows a global contest reading of the Quran by young Muslim children that takes place in Cairo, Egypt annually during Ramadan. A coming of age story about Muslim kids in modern times.  Director: Greg Barker.  The program is coordinated by the Monmouth College Muslim Journeys programming committee.

The Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys is a project of the National Endowment for the Humanities, conducted in cooperation with the American Library Association, the Ali Vural Ak Center for Global Islamic Studies at George Mason University, Oxford University Press, and Twin Cities Public Television. Support was provided by a grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York. Additional support for the arts and media components was provided by the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art.

Monday, March 25, 2013

On Display: Muslim Journeys

On display this month in the East Lobby Display Cases is a collection of materials from the Muslim Journeys grant Hewes Library received.  The Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys is a project of the National Endowment for the Humanities, conducted in cooperation with the American Library Association, the Ali Vural Ak Center for Global Islamic Studies at George Mason University, Oxford University Press, and Twin Cities Public Television. Support was provided by a grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York. Additional support for the arts and media components was provided by the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Treasures of the Collection: Official War Records - Part I

Treasures of the Collection: Official War Records- PART I

 In 1864, about a year before the end of the Civil War, the United States government began to collect records with a view to publishing an official record of the war when it was over.  After the war’s conclusion in 1865, the collection of Confederate records began.  Compilation and publication of the records began shortly thereafter.

There were some delays in making the material available to the American people, but in 1877 Lieutenant-Colonel Robert Scott took over the task and developed the basic organizational plan that was eventually used for publishing the 130 volume set which is officially titled The War of the Rebellion: a compilation of the official records of the Union and Confederate armies but is known to most people researching the Civil War as the Official Records of the Civil War (or OR for short).  The set was published between 1880 and 1901.

It was originally published in 4 series as follows:
Set 1 Military Operations
Set 2 Prisoners
Set 3 Union Authorities
Set 4 Confederate Authorities

This large set is a unique compilation of material and has been consulted by nearly everyone who has written a history of the Civil War.   It can be found at W45.5:10 in the basement government documents section.

After the initial publication, indexes for each volume were added along with an Atlas of maps relating to the war’s battlegrounds.  The Atlases were published between the years 1891-95 and contain drawings of the various battle locations.  These are found at W 45.7 in the oversize are of government documents. 

There is also another set for the navy, the Official records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion. This is found in under the number N16.6 in Hewes government documents section.

Monmouth College became a repository for federal documents in 1860 and thus received each of the volumes contained in our collection shortly after originally published.  The OR can be very hard to use and Hewes reference section contains a guide to using the OR .  However, it can be most easily searched in its electronic version. But there is something unique about being able to look at records that are over 100 years old.  So if you want to look at the documents as originally published go to call number W45.5:10 in the government documents section and take down a volume.  Most of them have been rebound, but the contents are original. 

The Civil War is not the only American conflict that was memorialized after the fact by a set of official government publications. The next article will discuss some of the other official war publications found in Hewes Library.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

New ScotsRead Titles

New ScotsRead titles have recently arrived, including:
  • The Striker: An Issac Bell Adventure by Clive Cussler and Justin Scott
  • The Demonologist by Andrew Pyper
  • The Romanov Cross: A Novel by Robert Masello
  • The Chance by Karen Kingsbury
  • Child of Vengeance by David Kirk
  • Breaking Point by C. J. Box

Monday, March 18, 2013

Return to Regular Hours

Today, Hewes Library resumes regular hours.  We hope everyone enjoyed their spring break!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Irish-American Heritage Month: Stats from the Census

The US Census Bureau compiled a list of statistics in honor of Irish-American Heritage Month and St. Patrick's Day.  From their press release:
"Originally a religious holiday to honor St. Patrick, who introduced Christianity to Ireland in the fifth century, St. Patrick's Day has evolved into a celebration for all things Irish. The world's first St. Patrick's Day parade occurred on March 17, 1762, in New York City, featuring Irish soldiers serving in the English military. This parade became an annual event, with President Truman attending in 1948. Congress proclaimed March as Irish-American Heritage Month in 1995, and the president issues a proclamation commemorating the occasion each year."
A few interesting statistics:

34.5 million
Number of U.S. residents who claimed Irish ancestry in 2011. This number was more than seven times the population of Ireland itself (4.68 million). Irish was the nation's second most frequently reported ancestry, trailing only German.
Source: 2011 American Community Survey

Number of places in the United States named Shamrock, the floral emblem of Ireland. Mount Gay-Shamrock, W.Va., and Shamrock, Texas, were the most populous, with 1,585 and 1,929 residents, respectively. Shamrock Lakes, Ind., had 228 residents and Shamrock, Okla., 101. Three Shamrock Townships in Minnesota, Nebraska and Missouri had populations of 1,273, 301 and 40, respectively.
Source: 2010 Demographic Profile

In the month of St. Patrick's Day, the value of U.S. imports of beer made from malt increased, going from $288,073,597 in February 2012 to $374,076,005 in March 2012; in April of that same year the value of beer imports went back down to $334,769,134.
Source: U.S. Census Bureau: Foreign Trade Division USA Trade ® Online U.S. Import and Export Merchandise trade

$2.8 billion and $28.6 million
Value of beef and cabbage imported to the U.S. in 2011. Corned beef and cabbage is a traditional St. Patrick's Day dish.
Source: Foreign Trade Division

Monday, March 11, 2013

Database of the Month: Women and Social Movements

Women and Social Movements in the United States

March is women’s history month and the database of the month is composed of resources that document women’s participation in various movements for social change throughout American history.  A large proportion of the database contains current historical scholarship on the intersection between women’s movements and movements for social change published in the online journal “Women and social movements”.  This database also contains some primary source material for more detailed research into topics relating to women’s involvement in social issues. 

In addition to giving access to journal contents there is also some primary source material found in this database.  A documents archive contains numerous documents on the activism of women such as Cornelia Bryce Pinchot and Elizabeth Glendower Evans, early 20th century activists for the improvement of the working conditions of women.  The documents archive also contains an interpretation written by a current scholar describing the contents and significance of each collection of material.

There is also a documents library, containing many primary source documents. However, if you are looking for documents don’t use the browse documents, it is too tedious.  If you are looking for information on a specific topic like the Meeting of Seneca Falls use the “browse bibliography” function and deselect all topics found at the top except “Women’s Rights Conventions” (1848-1866)  This will get you to the relevant collection faster.

There are also various histories of women’s organizations such as the Women’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) and the League of Women Voters.  These can be accessed by clicking on the “movements” tab found near the top of the page and either browsing or selecting the “search movements” tab and entering in the title of the movement in which you are interested.  Each listing gives a helpful count of the number of primary source documents found on the organization in the database.

A very useful tool is the chronology.  It is a timeline giving the year, the event and links to primary documents related to that event which can be found in the database.  It also contains a number of graphs that can be limited by topic.

The database not only contains information on the usual topics associated with women’s history such as suffrage, labor and child rearing, it also contains some information on other historical movements like the anti-suffrage movement.  This movement was against granting voting rights to women.  (And, no, it was no just men that belonged to the movement)  But there is not much information on the recent involvement of women in current organizations or movements such as the various pro-life groups. 

WHEN SHOULD I USE THIS DATABASE: This database can be complex to use, and would not be the best choice if you are just beginning your research as it requires a number of clicks and searches to find the desired information.  If you have decided upon a topic and looking for detailed information to fill in gaps in your research, this can be a very helpful database.  If you are having trouble finding things, consult one of the reference librarians for assistance.

Access to library databases is limited to the current students, staff, and faculty of Monmouth College.

Friday, March 8, 2013

New Items at Hewes Library

New items are added to the Hewes Library Collection on a continual basis. Recent titles have included:

  • Minaret by Lelia Aboulela
  • Shakespeare: Staging the World by Jonathan Bates & Dora Thornton
  • Introduction to Forensic Geoscience by Elisa Bergslien
  • 1356: A Novel by Bernard Cornwll
  • Napoleon: Life, Legacy and Image by Alan Forrest
  • Wordsworth's Revisitings by Stephen Gill
  • Fall of the House of Dixie by Bruce Levine
  • Inventing Wine by Paul Lukacs
  • New Geography of Jobs by Enrico Moretti
  • Daddy Love by Joyce Carol Oates

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Spring Break Hours Start Friday

Hewes Library starts it's Spring Break hours on Friday.  Through March 18, our schedule will be:
  • Friday, March 8: 7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
  • Saturday - Sunday, March 9 - 10: Closed
  • Monday - Friday, March 11 - 15: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, March 16: Closed
  • Sunday, March 17: 6:00 p.m. - midnight
  • Monday, March 18: 7:30 a.m. - midnight
Normal hours resume on Monday, March 18.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Treasures of the Collection: Calls, Sounds and Merchandise of the Peking Street Peddler

Treasures of the Collection: Calls, Sounds and Merchandise of the Peking Street Peddler

A most unusual book found in the Monmouth College Special Collections is the book “Calls, sounds and merchandise of the Peking street peddler.” This is an amazing little book in its form, contents and author’s history.  Published in 1936 as part of an M.A. thesis, the book is bound in decorated fabric and paper and contains both colored drawings and tipped-in photographs.   The author begins the book with a discussion of the Chinese language and attempts to depict the sounds made by Chinese street vendors in words, since at the time the book was written incorporating videos and sound on CD’s or DVD’s was not possible. 

The book discusses the different types of street vendors found in Peking (Beijing) and describes not only the distinctive calls and sounds used by the vendors but also what type of items they sell, with full page illustrations of the vendor and the instrument he used to announce his presence in an area.  The Chinese characters used to describe the type of ware sold by each are incorporated into the text.  (See the top of the description of the toy peddler for an example).  In addition, there are photos of actual vendors and their wares found in the book.  The book is a wonderful snapshot in time of a culture and way of life long past, as street vendors of the type described in the book are not found in modern Beijing.  

The author of this work, Samuel Victor Constant also had an interesting life and was neither an artist, anthropologist, nor cultural traveller, but was a career Army Officer.  Born in New York in 1894, he attended Colombia University and then joined the military in 1917 probably when the United States entered World War I.  His frequent passport applications show that he travelled most often to the Far East, going to China and Japan in 1920 and to China in 1923.  He seems to have returned to the U.S. around 1936. He continued to serve through World War II and retired as a colonel.  He died at the age of 95 in 1989 and is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

In addition to pursuing his M.A. while in China, he also wrote a dictionary of Chinese military terms in 1927.  This was probably with the real reason he went to China.  He served as part of America’s engagement with the young Chinese Republic which was established in 1920.  His time in China coincides with one of the prequels to World War II, the Japanese takeover of Manchuria in 1932.   His departure in 1936 probably had to do with the growing tensions in the Far East as war broke out between China and Japan in 1937.

This version of the book is only held by 26 other libraries in the world and Monmouth College is the smallest academic library to have a copy of the first edition.  So, if you want to hold part of an intriguing history in your hands, ask a librarian to obtain the book for you from Special Collections.

Friday, March 1, 2013

New ScotsRead Titles

The following titles arrived and were added to the ScotsRead Collection on the main floor:
  • The Power Trip by Jackie Collins
  • Firebrand by Gilliam Philip
  • Fuse by Julianna Baggott
  • Crossbones Yard by Kate Rhodes
  • The Storyteller: A Novel by Jodi Picoult
Check one out for some light reading!