Library in the News: September 2016 Edition

In case you missed it, the Library of Congress has a new Librarian of Congress, who made headlines throughout the month of September.

In addition to being named Fox News Sunday Power Play of the Week, Carla Hayden spoke with several outlets, including USA Today, The Washington Post, The Guardian, NBC, NPR, CBS, The New Yorker and C-Span.

“Being the first female and the first African American means that the legacy of the 14 Librarians of Congress will include diversity–and also a female in a female-dominated profession,” Hayden told Sarah Begley of Time Magazine.

“To be the head of an institution that’s associated with knowledge and reading and scholarship when slaves were forbidden to learn how to read on punishment of losing limbs, that’s kind of something,’’ she said during her interview with The New York Times.

“It’s a librarian’s dream,” she told Jeffrey Brown of PBS NewsHour regarding taking on the position. “And in the field, it’s seen as a job that really epitomizes what libraries can mean and symbolize. So, this library can really help libraries throughout the country show the worth of a library and a community.”

Covering Hayden’s swearing-in on Sept. 14 was Library Journal.

“The prevailing sentiment of the day was one of confidence in Hayden’s leadership and great hopes for LC’s future,” wrote Lisa Peet.

Speaking of firsts, the Library’s 16th annual National Book Festival featured a few of them, including being streamed live on Facebook. Highlights of the all-day event popped up in several news outlets.

“To walk around a major book festival and see the celebration of authors was to see that we continue to embrace the physical book over the intangible experience of a Kindle or iPad,” wrote Heather Hunter for Popzette.

“Given all the depressing statistics about children’s reading habits and screen-time addictions, the Walter E. Washington Convention Center on Saturday served as a loud-and-proud rebuttal. The place was jam-packed with children and teenagers at the annual National Book Festival, sponsored by the Library of Congress,” wrote Ian Shapira for The Washington Post.

Publishers Weekly  and The Georgetowner highlighted the festival in photos.

As part of the lead-up to the festival, the Library also announced the winners of the Library of Congress Literacy Awards.

“As Frederick Douglass said, ‘Once you learn to read, you will be forever free,’” Hayden said in announcing the awards. “You will be free to explore, dream and make your own history. It is wonderful to recognize these organizations that are doing so much to fulfill that promise for countless lives, from remote aboriginal communities in Australia to as close as our own back yard of Washington, D.C.” The Washington Post covered the program honoring the recipients.

In other news, the Library has completed a three-year project, financed by Carnegie Corporation of New York, to digitize holdings of the Library of Congress relating to the culture and history of Afghanistan, for use by that nation’s cultural and educational institutions.

“The next generation of Afghans will have a whole lot more than that at their fingertips, thanks in part to a major initiative from the U.S. Library of Congress,” wrote Teresa Welsh for McClatchy. “Much of the material in the Library of Congress’ archive can’t be found in Afghanistan itself and some unique documents can’t be found anywhere else in the world.

New Online: Today in History, Hispanic Heritage & Folklife Collections

(The following is a guest post by William Kellum, manager in the Library’s Web Services Division.)  Website Updates Today in History is an online presentation of historic events illustrated by items from the Library’s digital collections. First established in 1997, the site was migrated this month from the American Memory site to a new home […]

Here Comes Hayden: New Librarian Gets Busy Start in First Week

To say that Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden is all smiles, excitement and curiosity is an understatement. On her first official day in office last Thursday, her inquisitiveness and thirst for all things was almost palpable. Hayden began her day with a meeting on the National Book Festival. “This is so exciting,” she said, a […]

First Word: The 14th Librarian of Congress

(The following is a feature in the September/October 2016 issue of the Library of Congress Magazine, LCM.) Carla Hayden discusses her decision to become a librarian and her plans as the new Librarian of Congress. You are about to be sworn in as the 14th Librarian of Congress. How does that feel? It’s such an honor […]

World War I: Conscription Laws

(The following is a guest post by Margaret Wood, a legal reference librarian at the Law Library of Congress.) Six weeks after the declaration of war against Germany on April 6, 1917, ch. 1, 40 Stat.1, Congress passed the Selective Service Act. Initially, President Woodrow Wilson and Congress had hoped the needed 1 million men […]

Carla Hayden Swearing-In To Be Broadcast on YouTube

Carla D. Hayden will be sworn in as the 14th Librarian of Congress in a historic ceremony in the Thomas Jefferson Building Wednesday, Sept. 14 at noon. The ceremony will be broadcast live, beginning at 11 a.m., on the Library of Congress YouTube channel. The YouTube broadcast will be captioned. The ceremony marks two milestones: Hayden will […]

Curator’s Picks: Signature Sounds

(The following is from the July/August 2016 issue of the Library of Congress Magazine, LCM. You can read the issue in its entirety here.) Matt Barton in the Library’s Motion Picture and Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division discusses some of the nation’s most iconic radio broadcasts. DATE OF INFAMY SPEECH President Franklin D. Roosevelt addressed a Joint […]

Library in the News: July 2016 Edition

In July, the Library of Congress was widely in the news with the U.S. Senate’s vote to confirm Carla Hayden as the 14th Librarian of Congress. She will be both the first woman and first African American to serve in the position. “Hayden will be the first Librarian of Congress appointed during the internet age […]

A Hamilton Mixtape, Library of Congress Style

Nominated for a record-setting 16 Tony Awards, “Hamilton” the musical swept the ceremony winning 11, including Best Musical, Best Book, Best Original Score and a handful of best actor/actresses. The show is based on the Ron Chernow biography on founding father Alexander Hamilton, which Lin-Manuel Miranda, who wrote the musical, had picked up on a whim […]

Library in the News: May 2016 Edition

The month of May saw the Library of Congress in a variety of headlines. In April, the Library announced that, the online legislative information system, will officially retire July 5, completing the multi-year transition to David Gewirtz for ZDNet Government wrote, “You have to wonder what Thomas Jefferson would have made of the […]