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.

Pic of the Week: Oath of Librarianship

On Wednesday, Carla Hayden was sworn-in as the 14th Librarian of Congress. Her appointment marks a couple of milestones for the institution: she is the first woman and the first African-American to serve in the role. U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John G. Roberts administered the oath of office to Hayden, who used President Abraham Lincoln’s […]

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 […]

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 […]

New Online: Presidents, Newspapers and Mobile Apps

(The following is a guest post by William Kellum, manager in the Library’s Web Services Division.)  National Book Festival The Library’s 16th Annual National Book Festival takes place on Saturday, Sept. 24, at the Washington Convention Center in Washington D.C., and we’ve updated our Mobile App and website with all the details. The app, available […]

Headlines from America’s Earliest Days

Want to read how an 18th-century newspaper covered the inauguration of George Washington? How about learning what issues divided Congress in the early 1800s? Going back into early American history is now possible due to new digital content that has been added to Chronicling America, the open access database of historic U.S. newspapers that is […]

World War I: When Wurst Came to Worst

(The following post is by Jennifer Gavin, senior public affairs specialist at the Library of Congress.) In the United States, a century ago, there were more than 8 million citizens of German origin or with German ancestry – the largest single group among those of foreign birth or ancestry, but still less than 10 percent […]

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 […]

New Online: More Presidents & Newspapers

(The following is a guest post by William Kellum, manager in the Library’s Web Services Division.)  July was a relatively quiet month for the Library’s websites, highlighted by the long-planned retirement of THOMAS, covered in this excellent blog post from the Law Library’s In Custodia Legis blog. New in Manuscripts The William Henry Harrison Papers have recently […]

The NEH “Chronicling America” Challenge: Using Big Data to Ask Big Questions

The following cross-post was written by Leah Weinryb Grohsgal of the National Endowment for the Humanities and originally appeared on The Signal: Digital Preservation blog. Historic newspapers offer rich histories of American life, with glimpses into politics, sports, shopping, music, food, health, science, movies and everything in between. The National Digital Newspaper Program, a joint effort […]