Headshot of actor, playwright, and author Harvey Fierstein

Newsmaker: Harvey Fierstein

January 3, 2022

He spoke with American Libraries about his librarian mother, what he’s learned from playwriting, and his recent $2.5 million gift to the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts campus at Lincoln Center, which will fund a new laboratory space. How did your mother become a school librarian? My mother had a great love … Continue reading Newsmaker: Harvey Fierstein


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


The Sphere, a sculpture by Fritz Koenig, survived the collapse of the Twin Towers partially intact. The unrestored sculpture now sits in New York City's Liberty Park near the National September 11 Memorial Museum. (Photo: Michael Rieger/FEMA)

What Was Lost

September 1, 2021

Kathleen D. Roe, chief of archival services at New York State Archives in Albany at the time and now retired, says her team was prepared to deal with wet or dusty records or damaged collections. “We pretty quickly found out that either collections were pretty much okay because they were in a safe building that … Continue reading What Was Lost


An ad used by Multnomah County (Ore.) Library to promote its Library Music Project.

Stream On

September 1, 2021

“Portland and Multnomah County really treasure their music and libraries, so it was a natural fit,” says Shawn Cunningham, director of communications and strategic initiatives at MCL, about the Library Music Project, which offers more than 250 locally produced albums to stream or download. The service also provided MCL with a gateway into the local … Continue reading Stream On



Food and Family Tradition

June 26, 2021

Moderated by Karen Murgolo, editorial director of the Lifestyle and Culinary imprint at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and editor of Trisha’s Kitchen, Yearwood’s talk was brief but rich in details about her family’s influence on her cooking and her new book. When asked how food keeps family traditions alive, Yearwood said that the dinner table was where … Continue reading Food and Family Tradition


Judy Tyrus and Paul Novosel

Choreographing a Movement

June 25, 2021

Tyrus started volunteering in DTH’s marketing department in the late 90s after retiring from dancing. There she found scrapbooks, programs, photos, and other archival gems. She was eventually hired to sort it all out, and brought in Novosel—a pianist for company classes—to help her organize scores. “I always dreamed of using the archives to tell … Continue reading Choreographing a Movement




Newsmaker: Ziggy Marley

January 4, 2021

Marley spoke to American Libraries ahead of his appearance at the American Library Association’s 2021 Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits Virtual about his creative process during a lockdown, oral traditions, and voting for the first time. Your latest album was written and recorded during the pandemic. What was that like, and did you intend to create … Continue reading Newsmaker: Ziggy Marley


University of Kentucky in Lexington is attempting to remove a 1934 mural by artist Ann Rice O’Hanlon (detail shown here). Photo: Mark Cornelison

Drawing the Line

November 2, 2020

Roughly eight decades later, some of the images depicted in those murals are now recognized as racist. Deciding whether to remove, alter, or retain these murals can be challenging; not all stakeholders agree on a course of action. At University of Oregon’s (UO) Knight Library in Eugene, four stairwell murals commissioned under the WPA have … Continue reading Drawing the Line


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