State Library News
For the People, the Government and the Libraries of New York State
See the Emancipation Proclamation
"We must free the slaves or ourselves be subdued..."
Abraham Lincoln, to a member of his Cabinet, Summer, 1862
Lincoln's Cabinet agreed with his position on slavery but like modern-day spin-masters, advised him to wait for a propitious moment to issue the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation. That moment came September 22, 1862, when the limited victory of the Battle of Antietam added impact to the message. On January 1, 1863, Lincoln issued the final Emancipation Proclamation which freed slaves in Confederate states. Although its legal force was indefinite, it "redefined the nature of the war and was of great symbolic significance," according to William E. Gienapp, History Professor, Harvard University.
The Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, one of the State Library's greatest treasures, will be exhibited Friday and Saturday, May 15-16, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., in the State Museum, first floor of the Cultural Education Center. The State Library purchased the four-page document from the U.S. Sanitary Commission in 1865. Abolitionist Gerrit Smith had donated the Proclamation to the Commission after winning it at a fundraising lottery held by the Albany Army Relief Bazaar.
Don't miss this rare opportunity to see the real thing. It is the only surviving version in Lincoln's own handwriting with annotations by Secretary of State William H. Seward.
|Janet M. Welch was appointed State Librarian on April 29, 1997. She was previously Director of the Rochester (NY) Regional Library Council.|
State Librarian Shares Vision of the Future
by Janet Martin Welch
Anniversaries are a good time to take stock of the current situation and to look toward the future. As I approach my first anniversary as New York State Librarian, I'd like to tell New York State Library News readers what I hope to accomplish.
The mission of the New York State Librarian is to put New York's libraries to greater use. We're working to increase services and to make libraries easier to use.
Here at the State Library, we're adding to our strong retrospective research collections while also making information available to offsite users over the Internet. Our online catalog is accessible 24 hours a day, and we are working toward making full texts of New York State documents available electronically.
Across the State, libraries are flourishing. They are becoming libraries that thrive in a mixed digital and print environment, creating a one-step seamless gateway to information resources.
Of course, we need resources to be able to maintain the excellence of our libraries. We're glad to see that Governor Pataki's budget for Fiscal 1998/99 included an additional $233,000 of acquisitions money for the State Library, an 11 percent increase. And we're also seeking $200,000 to replace lost Federal funds for the New York State Talking Book and Braille Library.
Statewide, the 1998 executive budget proposal provides full funding for State aid to libraries for the first time since the law was passed in 1990. That's an increase of nearly $6 million dollars for a total of $88.5 million. And we're trying to get an $11.4 million Electronic Doorway Library law enacted which would help libraries use technology even more effectively.
And, looking beyond the immediate future, the Regents have authorized a Commission on Library Services to develop and recommend to the Regents a vision for library services to the people of New York and a plan for ensuring equity of access to information by all New Yorkers.
I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues at the State Library and throughout New York on these exciting improvements in library services for the people, the government, and the libraries of the State.
State Library Hours
Monday through Friday
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For more information, call (518) 474-5355 or e-mail
Legislators: Know What's New
Survey some of our newest acquisitions at a display of book jackets near the Library Access Point in the Legislative Office Building (Room 105). For more information about these books and the thousands of other materials in our collections, call (518) 474-5355.
A smiling Liz Lane, Director of the State Library, presides over
a colorful two-page spread about our Library in the recently
released annual report of The Online Computer Library Center, Inc.
(OCLC). The State Library is one of only eight highlighted in the
report. We were selected from 25,000 participating institutions
located in 60 countries. OCLC, a nonprofit, computer library
service and research organization, is dedicated to furthering
access to the world's information and to reducing information
costs. Its WorldCat is the largest and most comprehensive database
of bibliographic information anywhere.
Send comments and questions about the State Library and its newsletter to Mary Redmond, New York State Library, Cultural Education Center, Albany, NY 12230.
Fundraisers: Sharpen Your Skills
Design a fundraising plan for your agency with guidance from experts at a workshop May 4-8 at the Cultural Education Center in Albany. You can explore the full range of fundraising techniques and review direct mail, special events, membership programs, annual fund drives, capital campaigns, and major gift solicitations in terms of what works best for your agency. Limited to 25 participants, the workshop combines analysis, discussion and small- group exercises.
This workshop is hosted by the New York State Library and sponsored by the Grantsmanship Center. Cost is $525.
For further information, contact Linda Braun, (518) 474-2274.Visit the State Library's Web Site
Search Excelsior, our online catalog of holdings, and access national and regional databases. Click in and:
If you don't have Web access from your computer, dial into our catalog at (518) 474-9851 or telnet <nysl.nysed.gov>. For more information. . .
You can also access our Web Site from many public libraries.
|Sherlock Holmes on a skateboard, one of the graphics offered by the Statewide Summer Reading Program, can be easily reproduced by local libraries.|
Solve it @ the Library
This year's Statewide Summer Reading Program features a kit of exciting items built around the theme Solve it @ the Library. Containing a manual, clip art, bookmarks and other materials, the kit helps local public libraries organize their summer reading programs for children.
The Statewide Summer Reading Program, a joint project of the State Library and public library systems, is supported by Federal funds. Gaylord, Inc. is generously funding printing of the manual and distribution of the kits to the 23 library systems for delivery to local libraries.
Win a Grant
If you're interested in research about New York State, apply for a State Library Research Residency. In addition to last year's offer of direct access to the State Library's many services, this year's awards include a stipend for each winner. Financial assistance has been made possible by the Anna K. Cunningham and Mary E. Cunningham Trust Fund.
Application forms will be available in late spring. For further information call James Corsaro, (518) 474-6282.
Be a Friend
Join the Friends of the New York State Library. In addition to the deep satisfactions of preserving your heritage and sustaining a world renowned public research library, you can obtain special discounts at local book stores.
The Common Lilac from, William
Curtis's Botanical Magazine, 1792.">|
|The Common Lilac, from William Curtis's Botanical Magazine, 1792.|
Naturally, it's at the New York State Library
Like lilacs? Fascinated by fruit trees? Or perhaps you are interested in plants for their medicinal properties. If you want to know more about it, come to the New York State Library. "We have an outstanding collection of hundreds of rare and important botanical books filled with colorful illustrations," says Jim Corsaro, Head of Manuscripts and Special Collections.
"Our holdings go all the way back to Johannes De Laet's 1633 work about New Netherland. De Laet was the first person to describe the botanical wonders of New York State."
"Altogether, the collection spans continents and centuries of significant botanical study. We have, for example, the nineteenth century, 8-volume Les Liliacees by French botanist P.J. Redoute. It's probably the greatest work about lilacs every printed. Our holdings also include volumes by early nineteenth century English botanists such as James Sowerby and Sydenham Edwards.
"You can consult C.S. Rafinesque's Medical Flora or Manual of Medical Botany of the United States, published in 1828, among many other volumes about the medicinal properties of plants. And for those who are interested in the plant life closer to home, there are the fruit books, such as Grapes of New York, or Pears of New York, a series published by U.P. Hedrick in the early twentieth century," says Corsaro.
Abounding in the rare and the resplendent, this collection is a source of satisfaction to botanists in search of scientific data and a wellspring of pleasure to any individual who just loves to look at beautiful books.
Do You Know
The State Library blazed a trail in 1896 when it created the Talking Book and Braille Library. One of the first libraries in the nation to serve individuals who are blind or have other handicapping conditions, we now circulate books and tapes to 38,000 people in 55 upstate New York counties.
Have a Voice in the Future
How do you envision the State Library in the coming years? Help us plan for the next century by answering these questions:
Please send your answers and any other ideas to Mary Redmond, (518) 474-5946.
New York State Library News is produced by The Friends of the New
York State Library and the New York State Library to inform New
Yorkers about collections and services of their State Library.
Editor: Miriam S. Soffer
This newsletter is not published at State expense.
New York State Library News
New York State Library
N.Y.S. Education Department
Albany, NY 12230
Knowledge is Power.
Find it at the New York State Library.
It's one of the nation's few public research libraries.