librarianship in wartime

The Society of Archivists in the UK has posted a few entries from the diary of Saad Eskander, Director of the Iraqi National Library and Archives. You can get the diary as a Word document from the Society’s website. I’ve also created an online version using pasta.

You can read more history on the Library and Archives during the course of the war from The Memory Hole and the Christian Science Monitor. NPR also has a story from a few years ago about rebuilding the library, which, at this point, may need to be done all over again.

[diary link via SRRT list]

november round-up

November was a busy month, both for me and for the library. Here are a few highlights:

  • Many good things happened on Election Day this year, but for me the best one of all was that the cap tax passed. That means that Cody (our main branch) will get a much-needed new library, Powell (where another branch is located) will get a new pool, and Meeteetse will get a newly refurbished pool. As a librarian, a library patron, and a swimmer, I am thrilled about all of the above.
  • I put together a little website for the cap tax back in August, and it went live sometime in September. Because a) I like to do things cheaply and b) the cap tax committee was initially interested in having a blog (though that ended up not happening), I set up the site using A look at the statistics for the site (the address of which was run regularly in the Cody Enterprise and was on all the propaganda publicity for the campaign) is a good way of getting a sense of what it’s like to live in a culture that is not as saturated by the internet as many places. The site had 2588 total views, with 234 views on its best day ever, and it had one incoming link. Park County has a total population of 26,664. I know that in many places, it’s crucial to do outreach on the internet and to find library users, or potential users, where they are. I’m glad we put the site up, but there was far more discussion of the cap tax on the op-ed pages of our local newspapers than there was online.
    Right after Election Day, I went on a short vacation to Moab, Utah and environs. There are pictures on Flickr, which I may someday arrange into a set, but don’t hold your breath.
  • Meeteetse’s six-man football team made it to the playoffs, although sadly not farther. Everyone in town had signs up wishing them good luck, including the library.
  • My friend Mitchell pointed out this intriguing reference-like service.