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Gearing Up For Its Opening in 2013, Bush Wants to Display Saddam's Gun @ His Library

From the NY Times: When the library for George W. Bush opens in 2013 on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, visitors will most likely get to see one of the former President's most treasured items: Saddam Hussein’s pistol.

The gun, a 9 millimeter Glock 18C, was found in the spider hole where the Iraqi leader was captured in December 2003 by Delta Force soldiers, four of whom later presented the pistol to Mr. Bush. Among the thousands of gifts Mr. Bush received as president, the gun became a favorite, a reminder of the pinnacle moment of the Iraq war, according to friends and long-time associates.

Douglas Brinkley, an author and history professor at Rice University, said the pistol opened a psychological window into Mr. Bush’s view of his presidency.

“It represents this Texas notion of the white hats taking out the black hats and keeping the trophy,” Mr. Brinkley said. “It’s a True West magazine kind of pulp western mentality. For President Bush, this pistol represents his greatest moment of triumph, like the F.B.I. keeping Dillinger’s gun. He wants people generations from now to see the gun and say, ‘He got the bad guy.’ ”

Canadian National archives reviews purchases of paper materials in digital age

Library and Archives Canada has put a moratorium on buying paper documents and books for its collection.
Doug Rimmer, assistant deputy minister of programs and services at Library and Archives Canada, told CBC News this week the moratorium is temporary and only applies to items it buys. It will still acquire documents other ways, including gifts and donations, websites and government records.

Hoover’s role in creation of NARA

Tim Walch, director of the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library-Museum, delivered the following remarks June 17 to Hoover Park staff at a picnic to mark the 75th anniversary of the creation of the National Archives and Records Administration.

More Nixon Tapes Available to Public

Glutton for punishment (true crime writer? historian)? Now you can listen to as many Nixon tapes as you want!

UPI reports: The Richard Nixon Presidential Library has opened up access to 154 hours of White House tapes and other documents the U.S. government once classified.

In a statement, the library in Yorba Linda, Calif., said some of the materials made available to the public Tuesday include conversations about the Vietnam War, Nixon's second inauguration, the Supreme Court's landmark abortion decision, Roe v. Wade, and the first Watergate trial. The recordings from January and February 1973 consist of approximately 994 conversations, the library said.

The new Nixon tapes and documents will be available on the Internet and at the Richard Nixon libraries in California and Maryland.

Mormon Church Dedicates New Library

Genealogy is a major tenet of the faith for members of the LDS Church, and now a new library has been dedicated at its headquarters in Salt Lake City. It's a library, many believe, that's a realization of God's words to church founder Joseph Smith: "There shall be a record kept among you ... for the good of the church ... and the rising generations."

It houses 600,000 photos, 270,000 books, pamphlets, magazines and newspapers, and 240,000 collections of original, unpublished records, journals, diaries, correspondence and minutes that detail Mormons' experiences. More on the dedication of the library by LDS President Thomas S. Monson from the Salt Lake Tribune.

Hawaii: A Lincoln Document, and a Mystery

From the AP: A document with Abraham Lincoln’s signature and dated Sept. 22, 1862, has been found in the Hawaii State Archives, but no one seems to know how it got there. A project of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Illinois has confirmed its authenticity. It orders the secretary of state to affix the seal of the United States to his “proclamation of this date.” The Emancipation Proclamation was issued on that date. The document appears to have been at the archives since at least 1935. In the 1860s, Hawaii was an independent kingdom.

Anyone care to suggest how the document arrived at the Hawaii State Archives?

"Skulduggery" at the British Library Incident in 2005 involved 35 items

A follow up on This One from a few years ago... "Skulduggery" at the British Library Incident in 2005 involved 35 items:

It's now June 2009 and more information is available than when Dalya Alberge first reported that the manuscript of the Tyldesley Diary had been extensively damaged whilst in the custody of the British Library. Dalya's reports can be found in The Times of 14 May 2007 and 29 December 2007. I shall be publishing full details of what is now known as time allows, but in the meantime here is a summary.

Library and Archives Canada restricts access for music encyclopedia workers

Researchers working for the Encyclopedia of Music in Canada (EMC) have had their open access to Library and Archives Canada in Ottawa revoked due to security concerns.

Those working for EMC have had an office in the library's building in downtown Ottawa since the encyclopedia project began 30 years ago.

EMC editor in chief James Marsh told the newspaper that his staff are not a security risk: "I told [the archives] … I'll gladly submit my people to the RCMP."

Marsh says things were going well until archives head, historian Ian Wilson, was replaced three weeks ago by Daniel Caron, a civil servant.

More from the CBC and the Globe and Mai.

Spanish Flu Stories

Enough already about swine flu...but if you're interested in some historical perspective on the effects of the 1918 flu, check out the following websites; Dover NH Public Library, Wisconsin Historical Society, and Stanford University.

This article from the Indiana Post-Tribune has some local history of the flu, including an archival photo of public librarians in Gary wearing masks.

The Wasilla Public Library Before Sarah Palin

Thanks to Gov. Sarah Palin, most of us have heard a bit of recent history about the Wasilla, AK Public Library.

But twenty years before the kerfuffle over banning books, librarian Edith Olson wrote a book about the library called The Library and I. A History of the first twenty-five years of the Wasilla Public Library.

Olson was the librarian at the Wasilla Public Library from 1938-1958. When she arrived there was no library building and the library consisted of two bookcases in the hall of the school house. The library held 350 books, when she left, 20 years later, there were 9,000 more.

Here's some info about the book from booksellers Wessel & Lieberman, and you may also read the first two chapters on scribd.

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