Bookend: Stranger than Fiction

May 2, 2022

In early 2020, University of Southern California (USC) Libraries acquired Sullivan’s personal archive of 1,200 photographs and 50 meticulously annotated case files: murders, assaults, stick-ups, forgeries, grifts, kidnappings, and other criminal acts spanning from the 1930s through the 1960s. “Given the rest of our holdings—which focus on the social and cultural history of Los Angeles … Continue reading Bookend: Stranger than Fiction


Yoga in the library

Bookend: Go with the Flow

March 1, 2022

“Students have a very rigorous and intense school day based on perceptions of what they should be doing and on the expectations of teachers and their parents,” Schaub says. “Adults recognize more readily how we are pulled and stretched in different ways in our time and expectations, but students don’t always recognize that.” In October … Continue reading Bookend: Go with the Flow


From left: Molly Watson, youth services librarian at Cynthiana-Harrison County (Ky.) Public Library; Hank the Horse; and Hank's owner Tammi Regan of Equinox Stables.

Bookend: Back in the Saddle

January 3, 2022

Hank, a Tennessee Walker–breed rescue horse, moseyed on into his hometown library in September 2021 for an equine-themed storytime that included a scavenger hunt, coloring contest, and prizes. While there, Hank received his first library card, in observance of Library Card Sign-Up Month. “This [event] really brought us a lot of faces that we don’t … Continue reading Bookend: Back in the Saddle


T-Kay Sangwand, digital collection development librarian at UCLA Library and host of radio show The Archive of Feelings.

Bookend: The Right Track

November 1, 2021

Sangwand’s monthly show on nonprofit internet station dublab features curated sets that often highlight albums from countries she has visited; she started her record collection while studying in Brazil in 2007. One of her favorite sets kicks off with “A Dream of Los Angeles with Clear Blue Skies” by the Life Force Trio—a quintessential local … Continue reading Bookend: The Right Track


Sheva Moore at Mary W. Jackson NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C.Photo: Aubrey Gemignani/NASA

Bookend: Over the Moon

September 1, 2021

A video librarian and researcher at Mary W. Jackson NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., Moore provides materials from the onsite video, photo, and audio collection to production companies, TV networks, advertisers, and private citizens with an interest in space and NASA. She also helps produce NASA’s social media content, segments for NASA TV, and science … Continue reading Bookend: Over the Moon


Tenzin Kalsang, children's librarian at Brooklyn (N.Y.) Public Library's Williamsburg branch, performs Tibetan storytimes for users around the world. Photo by Todd Boebel.

Bookend: Beyond Words

July 8, 2021

But her program garnered tens of thousands of viewers, from patrons in her neighborhood to students attending a Tibetan school in Australia to monks living in Nepal. “I did not expect it would go that viral,” says Kalsang. “I’m a really camera-shy person.” Once or twice a month, Kalsang reads three picture books (past titles … Continue reading Bookend: Beyond Words


Ellen Keith, director of the Chicago History Museum Library, displays items related to the Great Chicago Fire. Photo by Rebecca Lomax/American Libraries

Bookend: Archiving the Aftermath

June 1, 2021

“It’s just amazing how much the aftermath was documented,” says Ellen Keith, director of the museum library. The library’s holdings include period maps and stereographs (an early form of three-dimensional photographs popular in the 19th century) depicting the burned areas of the city, transcripts of the 1871 fire department hearings, a 1997 mayoral resolution exonerating … Continue reading Bookend: Archiving the Aftermath


Monique Sugimoto, librarian and archivist for Palos Verdes Library District's Local History Center, points out over the coast. Photo: Erik Jay

Bookend: History Rolls On

May 3, 2021

Monique Sugimoto, an avid bicycle commuter—and archivist and librarian for Palos Verdes Library District’s (PVLD) Local History Center—enjoys pairing her expertise in the region’s past with her rides to work. “I’d give myself these little tours and thought it would be cool if we did an introduction to the peninsula.” Thus, Pedal PV—a series of … Continue reading Bookend: History Rolls On


Laura Braunstein, digital humanities librarian at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, completes a crossword on her tablet. (Photo: Eli Burakian/Dartmouth College)

Bookend: Clues You Can Use

March 1, 2021

Braunstein, digital humanities librarian at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, and co-lead of Digital by Dartmouth Library, wants to help both crossword puzzles and libraries shed their reputations for stuffy elitism and exclusion. Braunstein started doing crosswords as a child with her grandfather, who emigrated from Moldova; the games were his way of learning … Continue reading Bookend: Clues You Can Use


Lori Nyce, librarian at the National Toy Train Library in Ronks, Pennsylvania. Photo: Eric Forberger

Bookend: All Aboard

January 4, 2021

“Our focus is anything toy trains and model railroading,” says librarian Lori Nyce (pictured). “We get calls sometimes wanting us to look up information on real locomotives—we tend to have to refer them.” Nyce and Library Assistant Tyler Keck stay on track answering reference questions (mostly from TCA members, authors, and hobbyists hoping to identify … Continue reading Bookend: All Aboard



Top: Puppeteer Morgan Matens (left) and Children's Librarian Greg Hall pose with puppets from Nashville Public Library's in-house troupe, Wishing Chair Productions. Below: Scenes from their viral Facebook video "Curbside Baby." Photo: Samantha Saldana/Nashville Public Library (Matens and Hall)

Bookend: The World on a String

September 1, 2020

Wishing Chair Productions draws on the legacy of the prolific puppeteer Tom Tichenor, who worked in the library in the 1930s. After his death in 1992, NPL established a program in his honor that grew from small, single-performer storytimes to full-blown productions staffed by a team of 10 professional puppeteers. With marionettes, juggling, magic tricks, … Continue reading Bookend: The World on a String