Thursday, June 30, 2011

State Advisory Council Seeks Public Input on 2020 Vision for Library Services

New York State’s Regents Advisory Council for Libraries (RAC) is asking New Yorkers to tell them what library services they will need in their local communities by 2020. Libraries and library systems are being asked to engage their customers and the general public by August 5 in discussing and answering the question “What’s Your Vision for New York’s Libraries in 2020?” Input and ideas will help inform the development of state policies and a new statewide plan for library services. All comments, suggestions, insights, ideas and recommendations are welcome.

Jeffrey W. Cannell, Deputy Commissioner for Cultural Education, New York State Education Department, encourages libraries and library systems of all types to actively engage their respective communities in this second and critical phase of information gathering about future library service needs for all New Yorkers.

A downloadable 2020 Vision “widget” for placement of a brief survey on local websites is available HERE.

“I am asking that all types of libraries and library systems reach out into their communities and actively engage New Yorkers from all walks of life in this unique opportunity to discuss improving library services as we move toward 2020,” said Cannell. “It’s important that library users and non-users alike identify what services they will want from their neighborhood, school, college or special library in the future.”

The New York State Board of Regents has asked RAC to take a visionary look at the future of library services and to develop a set of innovative policy recommendations to improve library services to the people of New York State. Comments from the some 95 individuals and library and education organizations that responded in Phase One of the information gathering process are now posted on the RAC website. RAC encourages members of the library and education communities that were unable to participate during Phase One to send their thoughts on the ten questions posted on the RAC webpage by August 5.

For more information about the Regents Advisory Council on Libraries and to see a timetable for the development of the new statewide plan, please visit the State Library’s website.

Any questions about the RAC 2020 Vision Process and this second call for input may be sent to John Hammond, Chair, RAC 2020 Vision Planning Taskforce at or to Bridget Quinn-Carey, Chair, Regents Advisory Council on Libraries at

Underground Railroad Archeology Camp

Last year URHPCR collaborated with the Albany County Historical Association (Ten Broeck Mansion) and Hartgen Archeological Associates on a Summer Archeology Camp for 5th and 6th graders. About fifteen youth participated. The students were assisted in identifying research goals, learning to use the tools and methods of archeology, conducting some limited digging for artifacts, analysing their finds, creating a display and drafting a report. The display was shown at the Art Center on Swan Street which is operated by the Albany Barn Arts organization and the Albany Housing Authority. A report on last year's effort is shown here.

This year Summer Archeology Camp will be held again during the week of July
11-15 for students in 6th - 10th grades. In addition, a number of students from Albany High School will be participating. As with last year, URHPCR is looking for an adult volunteer to represent the organization during the program. The ideal volunteer will be present each day to assist the Hartgen archeologists in their work with the campers. This is a great opportunity to work closely with one of the initiatives of URHPCR's work, and a great way to spend a week in the summer.

Dates: July 11-15
Place: Stephen and Harriet Myers Residence - 194 Livingston Avenue, Albany and Ten Broeck Mansion - 9 Ten Broeck Place, Albany
Time: 8am - 3pm

Please call at 432-4432 or email to discuss your interest.

Paul Stewart


Mayor and City Council Stand Up for Libraries

JAMAICA, NY, June 29, 2011 - Queens Library CEO Thomas W. Galante announced today that $23 million of the proposed $25 million New York City budget cut has been restored. This is the largest funding restoration at budget adoption in history. It will ensure a minimum five-day-a-week service schedule in every community by averting a massive layoff of library staff. The proposed budget threatened nearly
500 jobs and would have closed more than a dozen libraries altogether
and reduced services to two or three days a week in most communities.

"Mayor Bloomberg, Speaker Quinn and the City Council demonstrated their tremendous commitment to quality library service. They kept public libraries a top priority during a most difficult budget. Every layoff has been averted so library doors can remain open to enrich the lives of New Yorkers," said Thomas W. Galante. "Without the support of these library champions, including City Council Member Domenic M. Recchia, Jr., Chairman of the Finance Committee; Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, Chairman of the Cultural Affairs & Libraries Committee; Queens Delegation Leader Leroy Comrie; Council Member Vincent Gentile, Chairman of the Select Committee on Libraries; and the entire City Council, this would not have been possible."

Activism and advocacy by the public let City Hall know how much quality public library services are valued by the community. In mid-June, hundreds of thousands of signatures on petitions and postcards protesting budget cuts were delivered to City Hall. Some 95,000 came from Queens.

Galante said, "We are turning our attention toward the opening of the new Children's Library Discovery Center, launching new and improved online services, piloting an e-reader project, installing easy-to-use self-service circulation technology, continuing the largest library renovation and expansion program in our 100+ year history, and providing all the programs and services that people rely on every day."

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

CDTA major route restructuring: public meetings

From CDTA:

The Capital District Transportation Authority is undertaking a major route restructuring of its services in Albany County. The purpose is to establish a new routing network that better aligns services to demand because where people live, work, shop and travel has changed dramatically over the years. The planning for the new route system will be based on ridership data, future developments, and most importantly, input from riders and residents.

Meeting Calendar:

Thursday, July 7 4:00pm - 8:00pm
Arbor Hill / West Hill Branch - Albany Public Library
148 Henry Johnson Boulevard

Monday, July 11 5:00pm - 9:00pm
Albany Housing Authority Headquarters
200 South Pearl Street

Wednesday, July 13 4:00pm - 8:00pm
Main Branch - Albany Public Library
161 Washington Avenue

Thursday, July 14 4:00pm - 8:00pm
Pine Hills Branch - Albany Public Library
517 Western Avenue

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Commission on Human Rights

City of Albany, Common Council

Commission on Human Rights

The Albany Common Council is seeking applications from qualified residents of the City of Albany for the following position:

Title of Position: Member, Commission on Human Rights.
Term of Appointment: Three years for a term ending 8/21/14.
Appointees are eligible for reappointment at the end of their term to an additional term of three years. No member shall serve for a period which exceeds two consecutive terms or six years.
Qualifications of Members: Members shall reside in the City of Albany and possess a reputation for fairness, integrity and responsibility and have demonstrated an active interest in public affairs and service. The Mayor and the Common Council shall reflect community diversity in their appointments, including, but not limited to, income level, race, religion, ethnicity, age, gender and sexual orientation. Officers and employees of the City of Albany are not eligible for appointment.

Position Responsibilities/Duties: The Commission on Human Rights is a nine member body jointly appointed by the Mayor (5 members) and the Common Council (4 members). It meets no less than six times per year and has the following func-tions, powers and duties:
-- To foster mutual respect and understanding among all persons and racial, religious and nationality groups in the community;
-- To make such studies in any field of human relationship in the community as in the judgment of the Commission will aid in effectuating its general purposes;
-- To inquire into incidents of tension and conflict among or between various racial, religious and na-tionality groups, and to take such action as may be designed to alleviate such tensions and conflict;
-- To conduct and recommend such educational programs as, in the judgment of the Commission, will increase goodwill among inhabitants of the community and open new opportunities into all phases of community life for all inhabitants;
-- To report complaints to the New York State Division of Human Rights alleging unlawful discrimi-natory practices under article 15 of the NYS Executive Law;
-- To receive, accept and expend public grants for the purposes of effectuating the purposes of the Commission;
-- To make recommendations as necessary and appropriate to the Mayor and the Common Council to effectuate the goals and purposes of the Commission.
The Commission also has the following general obligations:
-- To receive and resolve complaints of alleged discrimination filed in accordance with Albany’s Omnibus Human Rights Law, the Commission may seek the active assistance of the State Division of Human Rights in the resolution of such complaints, but shall not abdicate its responsibility for reso-lution of complaints filed with the Commission;
-- To hold conferences, and other public meetings in the interest of the constructive resolution of ra-cial, religious and nationality group tensions and the prejudice and discrimination occasioned thereby;
-- To issue such publications and reports of investigations as in its judgment will tend to effectuate the purposes of the Commission;
-- To enlist the cooperation and participation of the various racial, religious and nationality groups, community organizations, industry and labor organizations, media or mass communication, frater-nal and benevolent associations and other groups in an educational campaign devoted to fostering among the diverse groups of the community mutual esteem, justice and equity and opening new opportunities into all phases of community life for all individuals; and
-- To encourage and stimulate City of Albany agencies and departments to take such action as will fulfill the purposes of the Commission.
Statutory Authority:
The Commission on Human Rights is established in accordance with Part 36 of Chapter 42 of the Code of the City of Albany (sections 42-361 through 42-367), as added by Local Law A of 2005.

Application Requirement:
Applicants are requested to submit a letter of interest describing qualifications and a current resume to:
Cashawna Parker, Senior Legislative Aide
Albany Common Council – Room 202, City Hall, Albany, NY 12207
Tel: 434-5087 / Fax: 434-5081 / e-mail:

Applicants will be interviewed by a selected committee of the Common Council prior to appointment.

Deadline for Applications: Close of Business, Tuesday, July 5, 2011.

Policy Statement
The Common Council is committed to assuring that its appointments to city boards, authorities or commissions is represen-tative of the diversity of Albany’s population. Consistent with the City of Albany Human Rights Law, it is the policy of the Common Council to prohibit discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, age, disability, marital or domestic partner status in all aspects of its personnel policies, programs, practices and operations.

Pest Management Board

City of Albany, Common Council
Pest Management Board

The Albany Common Council is seeking applications from qualified community members for the following positions:
Title of Position: Member, Pest Management Board.
Term of Appointment: Members serve at the pleasure of the Common Council.
Qualifications of Members: The Pest Management Board is composed of seven members as follows: the Commissioner of the Department of General Services or his or her designee; the Commissioner of the Department of Recreation or his or her designee; the Director of the Office of Sustainability or his or her designee; and four community members appointed by the Common Council.
Members appointed by the Common Council shall have qualifications as specified below:
- One member shall be a health care practitioner.
- One member shall be actively involved in a local environmental organization.
- One member shall have a background in organic pest management.
- One member shall have a background in landscaping or property management.

Position Responsibilities/Duties:

The Pest Management Board meets at least 4 times per year and whenever a special meeting is called by the Mayor to address an emergency.
The Pest Management Board reviews and makes recommendations to the City departments regarding pest management, monitors efforts of the City to reduce pesticide use, has the authority to research and report on programs used successfully by other municipalities or private industry, and is authorized to grant temporary waivers under the law to allow the use of pesticides on city-owned property.

The Pest Management Board, in consultation with organizations with expertise in pesticides and alternatives to pesticides, shall assist City departments in reducing and, where feasible, eliminating pesticide use And submit reports thereon to the Common Council.

Statutory Authority:

The Pest Management Board is established in accordance with Chapter 259 of the Code of the City of Albany (as amended on June 6, 2011 by Ordinance 34.51.11).

Application Requirement:
Applicants are requested to submit a letter of interest describing qualifications and a current resume to:
Cashawna Parker, Senior Legislative Aide
Albany Common Council – Room 202, City Hall, Albany, NY 12207
Tel: 434-5087 / Fax: 434-5081 / e-mail:

Applicants will be interviewed by a selected committee of the Common Council prior to appointment.

Deadline for Applications: Close of Business, Tuesday, July 5, 2011.

Policy Statement
The Common Council is committed to assuring that its appointments to city boards, authorities or commissions is representative of the diversity of Albany’s population. Consistent with the City of Albay Human Rights Law, it is the policy of the Common Council to prohibit discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender,
age, disability, marital or domestic partner status in all aspects of its personnel policies, programs, practices and operations.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Call for Proposals: “The UGR Turned On Its Head? Old Themes, New Directions?”

The Eleventh Annual Underground Railroad Public History Conference
Organized by Underground Railroad History Project of the Capital Region, Inc.
April 13 - 15, 2012 at Russell Sage College, Troy, New York

New research on the Underground Railroad, slavery, abolition and the 19th
century period has the potential to turn what we know about the Underground
Railroad on its head. Old assumptions such as "There is little documentation of the Underground Railroad", "The UGRR was a string of safe houses to Canada" and numerous other ideas are challenged by new research and Interpretations.
New discoveries and interpretations will be the basis for 2012 UGR Public
History Conference. We invite proposals that address reinterpretations, new
research, teaching using new research and show how that research can be used in delivering new celebrations of the story historically and contemporarily, as well as proposals other proposals related to the Underground Railroad in the past and its relationship with us today.

Possible questions to be considered:
• What documented detail can be gathered regarding UGRR activists and
freedom seekers in specific counties and communities?
• What was the role of David Walker, Benjamin Lundy and others before
Garrison in creating the radical abolitionist movement?
• How did the War of 1812 lay a framework for later escapes by the
• How does the story of the newsly re-discovered slave rebellion of 1811 in Louisiana relate to the Northeast or other parts of the country?
• What are the increasingly detailed accounts of UGRR figures such as
Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, David Riggles, Harriet Jacobs and how can
they be interpreted for better understadning of this history?
• How can we preserve the voices of the past and relate them to us today?

Proposals on related questions, not directly on this theme, are also

Proposals may be for a 60-minute panel session, workshop, cultural/artistic
activity, media production, poster, or other exhibit that addresses these
questions and this theme. When possible, activities should encourage audience interaction. Proposals should include: title, content description, type of presentation, names and contact information of presenters, target audience, and technology needs.

Proposals should be submitted by September 30, 2011
Via postal mail to URHPCR, PO Box 10851, Albany NY 12201 or via email to

For more information, visit or call 518-432-4432

“The gold standard of Underground Railroad conferences...bringing together an extraordinary spectrum of attendees, ranging from noted scholars and authors to large numbers of interested laymen, in spirited and informative workshops which both bring history alive and open new avenues of research.”
-- Fergus M. Bordewich, author, Bound for Canaan

Underground Railroad History Project of the Capital Region, Inc. researches, preserves, and retells New York's regional history of the
Underground Railroad, highlighting the role of African-American freedom
seekers and local abolitionists

URHPCR is a 501(c) 3 organization

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Myers Residence (Underground Railroad house) work party

Saturday, July 2
9am - 1pm
194 Livingston Avenue
Albany, NY 12210

Refreshments will be provided

Contribute to the preservation and beautification of the grounds of this historic gem!

Help prepare the URHPCR properties for the Independence Day Oration program scheduled for Monday, July 4


Questions? Concerns? Call 518-432-4432

While gardening tools will be available, please feel free to bring your own gardening tools if you like. Bring family and friends. Come for all or part of the time. More hands make light work.

See you Saturday, July 2!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Have you seen the new Albany History Room at the Main Library?

Explore the Albany History Room - Monday 6/27
7:00 p.m. tour, 8:00 p.m. reception

Join us for a special presentation from Albany City Historian Tony Opalka and Assemblyman Jack McEneny on Monday, June 27 at 7:00 p.m. on the second floor of the Albany Public Library at 161 Washington Avenue.

Learn about the Pruyn Collection’s outstanding catalogue of books, city directories, newspaper clippings, photographs, and documents and find out what makes this collection so valuable to researchers, genealogists, and historians.

After the presentation, stroll down to the University Club for complimentary snacks and additional conversation until 9:00 p.m.

The Albany History Room is open Mondays from 5 to 8 p.m., Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Fridays from 2 to 5 p.m. The City Historian is available to help researchers on Mondays from 6 to 8 p.m. Special appointments to use the room can also be made by calling Local History Librarian Ellen Gamache at 518-427-4327.

This event presented by the University Club Foundation and is free and open to the public. Space is limited (there are 17 chairs in the Albany History Room!) so please call the Club at 518-463-1151 to let them know you'll be there.

Friday, June 24, 2011

What Big Media Can Learn From the New York Public

From the Atlantic, June 2011:

"Despite looming budget cuts, the library is flourishing and putting out
some of the most innovative online projects in the country"

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Statewide Internet Library Levels Table Revised

The New York State Library wishes to thank all members of the library community who provided comments on the proposed revisions to the Statewide Internet Library Levels (formerly NOVELny-Ready Levels). The NOVELny Steering Committee was supportive of these revisions, especially Michael Santangelo, who worked directly with staff at the State Library.

Here is the revised table, which takes into account comments that were received.

An Open Letter to the Library Community from the Regents Advisory Council on Libraries

As you may know, the New York State Board of Regents has challenged the Regents Advisory Council on Libraries (RAC) to develop and recommend to the Board a 2020 vision for library services and an innovative plan for ensuring the greatest access to information for all New Yorkers. Jeffrey W. Cannell, Deputy Commissioner for Cultural Education, New York State Education Department announced earlier this Spring that RAC was inviting broad input from stakeholder groups to inform the development of a new statewide plan for library services. This phase of the process requested feedback to a set of ‘Critical Questions” by April 21, 2011.

[The RAC] received 95 responses to the “10 Critical Questions” request. Of those responses, 36 were from groups representing a broad segment of affinity-based associations within the New York Library community. All areas of librarianship and library service are represented as were a variety of geographic locations and service populations.

Both the group and individual responses to the Critical Questions are listed HERE.

Responses are listed with permission from the responding organization or individual.The responses were thoughtful, insightful and creative and have ensured this project is off to a strong start. Your thoughts and ideas are the key to success as we work towards a new vision for library service in New York State. The process is by no means complete, and you will have additional opportunities to participate in this project in the coming months.

Monday, June 20, 2011

ICANN to Unleash Torrent of Top-Level Domain Names

By Rob Spiegel
E-Commerce Times

Precisely how the new rules regarding domain names will change the Internet is still unclear, but there's little doubt that they will have a significant impact. With an unlimited number of possible names, companies may discover exciting new approaches to marketing and branding. On the other hand, consumers may face a sea of confusion, and cyberthieves may romp on a whole new playground.

You may soon be able to get a designer Internet address -- e.g., you.yourname -- for a mere US$185,000.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) board of directors has approved a plan to implement some of the biggest changes ever to the Internet's Domain Name System. The board approved a plan to allow an increase in the number of Internet address endings, also known as generic top-level domains (gTLDs), from the current 22, which include the standard ".com," ".net" and ".org."

Internet address names will be able to end in almost any word in any language, drastically changing the way people find information online.
ICANN has opened the Internet's naming system to unleash the global human imagination, said president and CEO Rod Beckstrom.

The decision came after years of discussion and deliberation among representatives of the online community, business groups and governments. Efforts were made to address concerns of involved parties and ensure security, stability and resiliency.

ICANN is beginning a global communications program to tell the world about this change in domain names and raise awareness about the possibilities regarding gTLDs.

Applications for new gTLDs will be accepted beginning on Jan. 12. The cost will be $185,000 to acquire a new suffix, and applicants will need to provide a legitimate claim to the name they are buying, which will discourage cybersquatting, a common practice during the early dot-com days.

Albany2030​- Draft Plan almost here

The Albany 2030 Plan folks report:

The draft plan is being wrapped up now, and it will be ready for your review in early July. We are extremely happy with how the plan has turned out so far and are looking forward to hearing your impressions. We have a ton of outreach planned for the upcoming months and we will be keeping you regularly updated on what’s in store so you will have as many opportunities as possible to give us your feedback on Albany 2030.

The first events are going to be happening next week. These will be Climate Action Conversations to get your thoughts on Climate Action and Adaptation, which will be vital parts of Albany 2030. We will be having three public conversations at the following times and locations:

Tuesday, June 28, 2011, 6-8pm @ Albany Public Library – Delaware Branch
Wednesday, June 29, 2011, 6-8pm @ Albany Public Library – Main Branch
Thursday, June 30, 2011, 10am-12pm @ the College of Saint Rose

Keep an eye out for upcoming emails from us in the weeks to come. We look forward to seeing you all throughout the summer!

As always, find more information online at , Facebook, or follow us on Twitter @Albany2030. You can also email us or call at 518.434.2532.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Sunscreen, sunburn, cancer

As ABC News reported, most sunscreens that protect against UVB rays that prevent sunburn do little to nothing against UVA rays that could lead to skin cancer. The link provides a lists the best buys for products that protect against both types of rays.

IRS Automatic Revocation of Tax-Exempt Status

The IRS has published the first Automatic Revocation of Exemption List. It indicates approximately 275,000 nonprofits whose tax-exempt status has been revoked because they failed to file a Form 990, 990-N, 990-EZ, or 990-PF for three consecutive years; the list is available for downloading in both Excel and PDF form. Here's the PDF of the New York State list.

As GuideStar notes, if an organization appears on the list, it must now must file a federal income tax return and pay federal income taxes. If it previously could accept tax-deductible contributions, it no longer can do so. "If your organization is not on the list, technically you don't have to do anything. This a good time, however, to reach out to your donors, funders, and other constituents and assure them that you are in good standing with the IRS. You may also wish to suggest that your supporters consult the list to ensure that the other nonprofits they give to are still exempt."

I'm pleased to note that the Friends of the Albany Public Library is NOT on the list. So you may continue to make your tax-deductable contributions to the organization.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Bookshelves on Steroids

Calling them book shelves doesn't even begin to give these interiors justice.

Promoting Summer Reading at New York Libraries: A Local Approach

On June 1st, 2011, Karen Balsen, “Summer Reading at New York Libraries” coordinator, presented the webinar, “Promoting Summer Reading at New York Libraries: A Local Approach,”* to train public librarians in marketing strategies for promoting their local summer reading program. The webinar was offered in response to requests received after Ms. Balsen’s marketing workshop was presented at NYLA Youth Services Section 2011 Spring Conference.

The presentation is available in Power Point format on the New York State Library’s Summer Reading site. The presentation focuses on the basics of marketing a library “product” – namely a summer reading program, from goal setting and planning to communication and evaluation. Also included are a host of easily available online tools and resources for promoting summer reading library programs.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Citizens for Public Transporta​tion meeting at APL

Citizens for Public Transportation will meet this Wednesday, June 15, at 7:00 PM, in the Albany Public Library, Washington Avenue. Ross Farrell of CDTA will be on hand to respond to questions and concerns about recent changes in bus routes, etc.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

11 Ways to Move on a Budget

"Whether you are planning an out-of-state move, or even moving across town, the costs associated with moving your possessions from one location to another can be a significant burden, especially given today’s economy. If you are planning on moving during the busy summer season, the following tips from Two Men and a Truck will help you save both time and money."

Courtesy of David Phaff.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Dump the Pump. Save Money. Ride Transit.

From CDTA:

With the return of high gas prices, CDTA will join with other public transportation systems nationwide to participate in the sixth annual National Dump the Pump Day on Thursday, June 16. The slogan of this year's National Dump the Pump Day is Dump the Pump. Save Money. Ride Transit.

According to the latest APTA Transit Savings Report, individuals in a two-person household can save an average of more than $10,000 annually by downsizing to one car.

Take the Dump the Pump pledge at by Wednesday, June 15th and receive a free CDTA day pass in the mail to use anytime and anywhere you would like and qualify to win up to $100.00 worth of free non-expiration CDTA passes of your choice. The Dump the Pump winner will be announced on the website during the week of June 20th.

One winner, one registration per person only.

The Washington Park Spirit

The Washington Park Spirit, Albany's Alternative Newspaper of the 1970s
Date: Thursday, June 23, 2011
Time: 12:15pm - 1:15pm
Location: 7th floor Librarian's Room, NYSL, Cultural Education Center
Presenters: Peter Slocum and Kathy Schofield Zdeb

Long before the internet, the blogs and the social media, Albany had an alternative source for news and arts information, in the early 1970's. The Washington Park Spirit combined a progressive political bent, investigative reporting, coverage of the emerging cultural scene and a little bit of community organizing to win a loyal following among city dwellers and state workers. Two veterans of that experience will recall those days of exciting journalism on the streets of Albany. Sponsored by the Friends of the New York State Library. Registration for this popular program is strongly encouraged.
All programs are free and open to the public. TO REGISTER online go HERE or e-mail or call 518-474-2274. Please let them know if any reasonable accommodation is required (Americans with Disabilities Act) at least three business days prior to the program date. The New York State Library/Reference Services, Cultural Education Center, Albany, NY 12230 (518-474-5355)

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

List of songs about looking words up in dictionari​es

From the blog of Ken Jennings. Yeah, THAT Ken Jennings.

Civil War Records at the New York State Library and New York State Archives

Date: Saturday, June 18, 2011
Time: 10:00am - 11:30am
Location: 7th floor Librarian's Room, NYSL, Cultural Education Center
Presenters: Christine Beauregard and Keith Swaney

Christine Beauregard, Senior Librarian at the New York State Library, will provide an overview of materials in the State Library's collections that can be used to research the Civil War, including regimental units, individual soldiers, diaries, correspondence, broadsides, etc. Keith Swaney, Archives & Records Management Specialist at the New York State Archives, will discuss materials in the State Archives' collections that can be used to research the Civil War such as the Civil War Soldier database, abstracts of muster rolls, etc. Registration is required.

All programs are free and open to the public. TO REGISTER online go HERE or e-mail or call 518-474-2274. Please let them know if any reasonable accommodation is required (Americans with Disabilities Act) at least three business days prior to the program date. The New York State Library/Reference Services, Cultural Education Center, Albany, NY 12230 (518-474-5355)

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Word of the day

ultracrepidate - to criticize beyond the sphere of one's knowledge

Free Books From the National Academies Press

The National Academies — National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine, and National Research Council—are committed to distributing their reports to as wide an audience as possible. Since 1994 we have offered “Read for Free” options for almost all of their titles. In addition, they have been offering free downloads of most of their titles to everyone and of all titles to readers in the developing world.

Effective June 2nd, PDFs of reports that are currently for sale on the National Academies Press (NAP) Website and PDFs associated with future reports will be offered free of charge to all Web visitors.

For more than 140 years, the NAS, NAE, IOM, and NRC have been advising the nation on issues of science, technology, and medicine. Like no other collection of organizations, the Academies enlist the nation’s foremost scientists, engineers, health professionals, and other experts to address the scientific and technical aspects of society’s most pressing problems.

Project Wombat

Project Wombat is a discussion list for difficult reference questions, continuing in the tradition of the now-defunct Stumpers list. Anyone may join, or submit a question.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Center for Law and Justice’s 26th Anniversary Celebration

Thursday, June 16, 2011, 5-8:30 pm
at The Book Club
First Floor of the Coliseum
153 South Pearl Street, Albany

There will be a free reception with jazz, refreshments, book signings and a silent auction of prison artwork to benefit the Jeffrey Wood Reentry Center.

Dr. Frankie Bailey and Dr. Alice Green will be available to sign their books, Wicked Albany and the newly published Wicked Danville. The authors continue to be intrigued by the similarities of the two cities, one the capital of New York, the other the “last capital of the Confederacy.”

Dr. Frankie Bailey is a crime historian and a criminal justice professor at the University at Albany.

Dr. Alice Green has a doctorate in criminal justice and is founder and executive director of the Center for Law & Justice.

Donations are greatly appreciated and tax deductible. Also any amount exceeding $20 for items purchased at the silent auction are tax deductible. Please make all checks payable to the Center for Law & Justice.

For additional information, call (518) 427-8361

Sponsored by

The Book Club and The Center for Law & Justice

Friday, June 03, 2011

Contact your U.S. Senators - ask them to sign on to library funding letter for LSTA funds

Please call both of your U.S. Senators at (202) 224-3121 and ask them to sign onto this letter [PDF] by COB Wednesday, June 8. Also ask library supporters to contact your senators as well.
Senators Jack Reed and Olympia Snowe are leading an effort to increase support for FY2012 federal funding for the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) and Improving Literacy Through School Libraries. Tell your senators’ staffers to contact Elyse Wasch in Reed’s office or Matthew Hussey in Snowe’s office. We need other senators to sign the Reed-Snowe letter as soon as possible. Please call immediately.
It may help if you describe at least one valuable service that your library provides the community or a success story about a library patron. Examples include access to computers and data services to aid job searchers, support for small businesses with marketing data and other resources as well as teaching digital literacy to people of all ages including K-12 students.

Thursday, June 02, 2011


From Paul Rapp in Metroland:

"This year there’s a new bill, the “"Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act", or the PROTECT-IP Act...

"...the rhetoric is all about how this scary bad internet thingee is stealing good American jobs and needs to be 'reined in'. Jobs! America! The bill is a slight improvement over COICA, but is largely the same highway to internet fascism, all in the name of saving those terrific record and movie companies that supply us with such an endless stream of uplifting and inexpensive entertainment products!"