Tag Archives: displays

The March on Washington

march-on-washingtonAugust 28, 1963 was a warm summer day. Hot, but not too humid.  It was the day that the civil rights organizers brought the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom to Washington, DC. People came by chartered bus, chartered trains and carpools. City officials expected maybe 100,000 participants but the final total was around a quarter of a million. The plan originally called for a focus on economic demands but the focus shifted.  The U.S. Congress was considering a bill for comprehensive civil rights barring segregation that JFK had put before Congress on June 11. The organizers wanted to press for equal rights and the end of discrimination in housing, jobs and schools.  The March was nonviolent and peaceful involving about a quarter of a million people (DC officials had expected about 100,000). It showed the interracial character of the movement. It helped transform the struggle from a southern to a national movement.

MLK speech DCBut what remains in our memory is the stirring speech by Martin Luther King, Jr. Standing in front of the Lincoln Memorial, honoring  the man who had promulgated the Emancipation Proclamation 100 years earlier, King urged action in what has become known as  the “I Have a Dream” speech. The speech has been called one of the greatest in American history. It was witnessed not only by the crowds in DC but also by television audience nationwide.

march on washington mallIn his New York Times column James Reston (August 29, 1963) asserted that while the placards read “now”, these were merely the opening demands of the movement. It was King who moved the crowd with his repeated  cry of “I have a dream.” And “each time the dream was a promise of out of our ancient articles of faith: phrases from the Constitution, lines from the great anthem of the nation, guarantees from the Bill of Rights, all ending with a vision that they might one day all come true. ”

If this intrigues you, check out the display on our first floor remembering Martin Luther King Jr. and the struggle for Civil Rights.

- posted by Brenda, Reference Services

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Celebrating Agatha Christie

agatha christieThroughout the month of March, the Readers’ Services Department will be celebrating the Queen of Crime, classic mystery author, Agatha Christie (1890-1976). The following events will be held in her honor:

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ON THE CASE: CHRISTIE MYSTERIES

david houstonwith David Houston. Friday, March 8, 2013

2 PM

Three actors perform David Houston’s radio play, with music accompaniment and sound effects, from classic short stories by the all-time mistress of suspense and surprise – including a fully staged scene drawn from numerous Agatha Christie sources.

EVENING BOOK DISCUSSION

then-there-were-nonTuesday, March 12, 2013 7:30 PM

Discussion of Agatha Christie’s classic mystery And Then There Were None with Sonia Grgas, Readers’ Services Librarian.

BOOK TO FILM

AND THEN THERE WERE NONE MOVIEFriday, March 15, 2013 2 PM

Showing of the 1945 version of the film And Then There Were None starring Barry Fitzgerald, Walter Huston & Louis Hayward. A short discussion will follow the film.

No registration required. Free.

 Dedicated collections honoring Agatha Christie will be on display throughout the building.

- posted by Jackie, Readers’ Services

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New Display: New York City

new-york-skyline-pictureNew York certainly has had a few difficult weeks with Super Storm Sandy and her aftermath. Things in many areas still are not back to normal. But we know New York will come back!

The third floor reference area has a book display celebrating New York and its resilience.

The city has a lot to offer. There is so much to see and do from the amusements amusing the millionof Coney Island as discussed in John Kasson’s Amusing the Million : Coney Island at the Turn of the Century  to  Calvin Tomkins’ Merchants and Masterpieces: The Story of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. There are gardens for strolling, maybe walk the relatively new High Line (Annik Farge’s On the High Line) or the magnificent Central Park ( Sara Cedar Highway Under the HudsonMiller’s  Central Park, an American Masterpiece ). Consider the city’s engineering wonders as described  in Robert Jackson’s Highway Under the Hudson: A History of the Holland Tunnel and Judith St. George’s The Brooklyn Bridge : They Said It Couldn’t Be Built.  Ken Bloom’s Broadway: An Encyclopedic Guide to the History, People and Places of Times Square pays tribute to the glittering lights and talent of the area.
If shopping and dining appeal to you, New York is the place to be! From the  h044438_cover.inddigh style along Fifth Avenue by Theodore James to  Sharyne Wolfe’s contemporary guide, The Fashionista’s Shopping Guide to the Galaxy of Discount New  York Fashion, there are fashion finds for everyone. With so many restaurants you really need a guide such as Mike Colameco’s Food Lover’s Guide to NYC : An Insider’s Guide to New York City’s Gastronomic Delights.

Enlightening the WorldThe city has always been a beacon of hope as seen in Barbara Benton’s
Ellis Island : a Pictorial History and  Sabina Khan Yasmin’s Enlightening the World :  The Creation of the Statue of Liberty.

But we all know it is the people who really make New York what it is. Diaries of Old Manhattan  edited by Louis Auchincloss and You Must Remember This by Jeff Kisseloff for a fond, nostalgic appreciation of The City.

.As the song says “I want to be a part of it, New York, New York!”

- posted by Brenda, Reference Services

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Women’s History Month

You’ve probably heard of Abigail Adams, Joan of Arc, and Clara Barton but what about Margaret Bayard Smith, Beatrice of Sicily and Varina Howell Davis?*

There is a book display on the library’s third floor celebrating Women’s History Month. Not all of the books deal with women who are well known. Some were powerful and influential in their communities but others were not.  Many of them never made the history books. Marjorie and Ben Lightman’s Biographical Dictionary of Ancient Greek and Roman Women takes you back to ancient history. Look at the wonderful pictures of pioneer women in Women of the West by Cathy Luchetti. Another collection of stories about the lives and role of American women is Donna Lucey’s I Dwell in Possibility: Women Build a Nation 1600-1920 and Gail CollinsAmerica’s Women looks at the ordinary lives of ordinary women who immigrated here as early settlers, fought for suffrage,  participated in the civil rights movement and joined  the feminist revolution .  If you like American history and politics read Cokie Roberts’ Founding Mothers and Bonnie Angelo’s First Mothers.   Joan Druett’s Hen Frigate introduces women who sailed with their sea captain husbands. Elizabeth Leonard’s All the Daring of the Soldier profiles some of the brave women who were spies or who disguised themselves as men so they could fight in the Civil War. Some American women made their mark overseas; for example, the three Jerome sisters married into British aristocracy (Elisabeth Kehoe’s The Titled Americans).

*Do you want some information about the women mentioned in the first paragraph? Margaret Bayard Smith (left) was a well known hostess and writer in the early days of Washington DC; she commented on Presidents from Jefferson to Madison to Jackson (Catherine Allgor’s Parlor Politics). Beatrice of Sicily (center) and her sisters were all Queen Consorts in the 13th century– Marguerite in France, Eleanor of England and Sanchia of the Romans. I read about their lives and accomplishments in Nancy Goldstone’s Four Queens (on my Kindle!). The life of Varina Howell Davis (right), the granddaughter of the revolutionary war governor of New Jersey and the wife of the president of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis, is detailed in Carol Berkin’s Civil War Wives.

- posted by Brenda, Reference Services

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(some of the) Best Books of 2011

It’s that time of year…no, I don’t mean the holiday season.  It’s the time of year for the “Best Books of the Year” lists.  There’s  Amazon, Publisher’s Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, among others, already weighing in with what their editors believe are the most important and enjoyable books published during 2011.

Here is a sampling of some of books that are already being considered as the most noteworthy of 2011:

The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Obreht (fiction)

Struggling to understand why her beloved grandfather left his family to die alone in a field hospital far from home, a young doctor in a war-torn Balkan country takes over her grandfather’s search for a mythical ageless vagabond while referring to a worn copy of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book.

The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach (fiction)

A baseball star at a small college near Lake Michigan launches a routine throw that goes disastrously off course and inadvertently changes the lives of five people, including the college president, a gay teammate and the president’s daughter.

1Q84 by Haruki Murakami (fiction)

The year is 1984 and the city is Tokyo.  A young woman named Aomame follows a taxi driver’s enigmatic suggestion and begins to notice puzzling discrepancies in the world around her. She has entered, she realizes, a parallel existence, which she calls 1Q84 —“Q is for ‘question mark.’ A world that bears a question.” Meanwhile, an aspiring writer named Tengo takes on a suspect ghostwriting project. He becomes so wrapped up with the work and its unusual author that, soon, his previously placid life begins to come unraveled.

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson (non-fiction)

Based on more than 40 interviews with Steve Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than 100 family members, friends, adversaries, competitors and colleagues–the author offers a fascinating look at the co-founder and leading creative force behind the Apple computer company.

Blood, Bones and Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef by Gabrielle Hamilton (non-fiction)

The chef of New York’s East Village Prune restaurant presents an account of her search for meaning and purpose in the central rural New Jersey home of her youth, marked by a first chicken kill, an international backpacking tour, and the opening of a first restaurant.

Don’t forget to look for the “Best Books of 2011″ display located on the main floor when visiting the library during December.

- posted by Sonia, Readers’ Services

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Earthquakes! Hurricanes! Oh My…

To visit Mineral, VA you would never think of it as an “epicenter”.  A quiet little place, the population in 2000 totaled only 424.  If you decide to take a scenic route to get to Richmond, you can pass through lovely Lake Anna State Park and then travel along Rte.  522 which brings you through farming country (goats and Angus cows) and vineyards. You pass through Mineral and would never guess that it would be in the news!  A sweet little town.  But on August 23, 2011 it made the headlines as the epicenter of an 5.8 earthquake that was felt as far away as Syosset (and even more distant than that)! Here is something you might not have seen:  the reaction of the animals at the National Zoo in DC.

Some of the hurricane’s thunder (pardon the meterological pun) is now being stolen by something named Irene: a hurricane that is lashing out along the coasts of North Carolina and Virginia and headed to Long Island.  Be prepared is the word now. Prepare an emergency kit and check out the shelters in Nassau County.   If all this news has sparked your interest in natural disasters, visit the display of books on the library’s third floor: “Wild and Weird Weather”.

- posted by Brenda, Reference Services

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March is Women’s History Month

You might have heard:  March is Women’s History Month. This year the theme is “Our History is Our Strength.”  The origin of this celebration was modest. It began in 1978 in California with the week of March 8 which was International Women’s Day. As interest and support grew, March was designated as National Women’s History Month in 1987 and has been each year since.  The Syosset Public Library currently has a display of books on the third floor. Here are some  other sources of interesting tidbits on the subject.

If you want to pursue the study of women’s contributions, the National Parks Service offers Places Where Women Made History in New York and Massachusetts. Some places mentioned include Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory where genetic scientist and Nobel laureate Barbara McClintock did research, the Barbizon Hotel where career-oriented young women lived when they flocked to NYC in the 1920s, and the Henry Street Settlement founded by Lillian Ward to address the needs of immigrants on the Lower East Side.

The Library of Congress sponsors the Veterans History Project collecting audio and video memories of veterans. You can see and hear from women veterans who served  from Korea through the Afghanistan. Another selection of stories includes women who were involved in World War II through the Persian Gulf wars.

If you want to see even more, check out a sample of online sources of exhibits and collections showing women’s contributions to arts,   literature,  politics and history.

- posted by Brenda, Reference Services

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