Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Library News- Jan. 2000

January 19, 2000
For December 1999 Library News,
For an update on December 1999's "Coming attractions",  here.

New in January: 

New log-in and save options on library computers. Printing from computers is increasing at a dramatic rate in the library. This is not surprising given the many computer resources we offer, but it is an expense we need to manage more closely in order to have more funds to spend on intellectual resources as opposed to on paper and ink cartridges. Thus, we are instituting new procedures which will continue to accommodate printing citations and short references while you are doing a search, and additionally make it possible for you to save larger files to your own computer directory or disk.

This change will make it possible for you to save whatever material you wish, including selected portions of web pages, lengthy legal documents and financial records on Lexis-Nexis, and also full-text articles. You will then be able to open these pages on a computer elsewhere and work with the material more extensively at your leisure. The library will be selling blank formatted disks for 50 cents each to support this process.

You will still be able to print documents up to five pages in the library, such as citations from ILLINET and periodical databases. 

In our continuing efforts to be responsive to students' expressed library service needs, we have expanded the hours of research librarian availability on our busiest Sundays. Specifically, on Sundays from February 27 through April 16 (excluding Spring break Sundays) a librarian will be on duty between 2 pm and 10 pm. On other Sundays, a librarian will be available between 5:30 and 9:30 pm, as before. We will be closely monitoring the success of this service expansion. 

The premiere issue of libuser, a paper-based occasional library newsletter primarily aimed at students, will be ready for campus distribution in early February. Our intent with that occasional publication is to spotlight what is new or changing in Staley Library, its services and its staff, as well as to showcase over time what is ongoing.  Our goal is to increase everyone's familiarity with the library, and with how we can provide assistance in using the library for academic research and study. libuser will overlap some with my monthly electronic newsletter, but will neither be the same nor replace it.

The Library is presenting two exhibits beginning this month. (see following)

A selection of WPA works is already in place on the wall above the public computers on our main floor. 

During the Depression in the 1930’s, the U.S. Works Progress Administration (WPA) through its Federal Art Project funded the work of a great many artists. When the Second World War broke out, support for this project disappeared, and millions of artworks from the project were redistributed to individuals and institutions. In the early 1940’s, Millikin University received over 200 of these works.

“The collection consists of black-and-white as well as color works, primarily in the form of silkscreens, wood or linoleum cuts, and lithographs. Illinois artists produced most of the collection, which is not surprising considering that the Illinois project was third in size only to New York and California. … Many of the chosen pieces depict typical depression scenes, and all the pieces are representative of the style of the thirties.” (From a mid-1980’s exhibit paper.)

These works are on loan from the Millikin University College of Fine Arts.

A history of libraries at Millikin University will be in the entrance display cases in early February. This exhibit will depict Millikin's three libraries, the original one in Shilling Hall, the Orville B. Gorin Library (which was housed where the Birks Museum now is located), and the present Staley Library. 

The display will feature then-and-now pictures, both of the spaces and of some of the furniture. We also have the first accessions book to show you (where each book the library bought is listed) AND the very first books from that list. (These two volumes of Charles Darwin's Variation of Animals and Plants Under Domestication  are still in the library stacks and available for circulation.) 

The materials from this display will also be turned into a Web page of 100 years of Millikin University library history.

Jason Butterick from the Development Office is squirreling together the artifacts for this exhibit from all over campus, and together we will be setting up the exhibit.  I myself will have the fun of composing the Web page.

From time to time, the library gratefully receives gifts of books from faculty, administrators, students, and even people from the Decatur community. Our most recent contribution from a community member is a collection of almost 200 dictionaries and lexicons from amateur historian Jack Aldrich  While the majority of the works in the collection were printed in the 1800’s to the present, the collection also includes several titles from the 1700’s and a couple from the 1600’s. The earliest  original (as opposed to facsimile) title dates from 1652, and is a Greek to Latin lexicon by Johann Scapula. These earlier works are not generally available in Illinois libraries, and especially not as part of a unified collection. 

 Mr. Aldrich’s collection is being housed on the second floor of Staley Library, in appropriately historic bookcases from the Gorin Library. Except for the very earliest and the rarest of the works, the books will be available for general circulation; and all will be catalogued into the state-wide electronic Illinet Online catalog.

Feb.2, 2000 note: On Jan. 21 and Feb. 1, I was interviewed very briefly about Mr. Aldrich's gift on WAND TV news (ABC local, Marcus Rogers reporter). 

Update on December 1999's "Coming attractions": 

An additional photocopier: It is here, located on the main floor, next to the two e-mail work stations. Price per copy: five cents.

Access through the library's Web page to full text periodicals collections: scheduled to be available Jan. 28, 2000. On December 8, 1999, the announcement was made that the state-supported IDAL ( Illinois Digital Academic Library) project will use EBSCO Publishing, Inc. "to provide access to over 1,700 full text digital journals for more than 780,000 students, faculty and staff affiliated with 150 Illinois institutions of higher education."  This offering will include Academic Search Elite, Business Source Elite, Health Source Plus, and Newspaper Source. Information about these periodicals databases can be found on the EBSCO web site.

Access through the library's Web page to some of the periodicals to which we already subscribe: there may not be any need to implement this, given IDAL (above). We will re-evaluate the need for this project once we have all the information about the IDAL implementation.

All current issues of periodicals in paper shelved in one location: done. We have integrated the music titles with the rest of the current periodicals issues, in one single alphabetic sequence. The freed-up shelving in the music room will be used for the growing collection of musical CD's.

Information in the online catalog about books and other materials on order but not yet received: implementation continues. This will be an outgrowth of the implementation of the online ordering and check-in system which we will begin using during the Spring 2000 semester. (To begin with, only the telnet version of the catalog will carry this information.)

Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Millikin University - Decatur, IL