Tuesday, September 1, 2015

New Laptop Vending Machine

We've added a second laptop vending machine on the top floor of the library. This vending machine works the same way as the machine on the main floor and has 12 laptops available for checkout, in addition to the 24 available for checkout on the main floor.

As a reminder, to use the machine:
  1. Swipe your Texan Card.
  2. Enter your NTNET password.
  3. Agree to the terms.
  4. Take the laptop that pops out of the machine.
  5. Return the laptop to the machine from which you checked it out within 4 hours.

Please make sure to return your laptop from the machine you checked it out from. The machine will warn you that the laptop doesn't go in that machine, but if you miss the message and leave it in the wrong machine, you will incur late fees.

We hope you will enjoy the added laptops!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Trudy Carlson Celebrates 45 Years of Service at the Dick Smith Library

Trudy Carlson - picture by Tracy Holtman

No one has ever worked at the Dick Smith Library longer than Trudy Carlson! Her career has spanned four and a half decades - 45 years - serving the students, faculty, and staff at our Tarleton - Stephenville campus always with a smile and a gracious manner!

Trudy Carlson began working as a librarian in 1970.  Tarleton State University and the library were much smaller then, but Trudy was a large part of the Reference Department with special emphasis on Education.  Trudy laid the foundation for the current Children's Literature collection. A special collection of books focusing on education is called, "Trudy's books". This is because Trudy purchased the books with her own money to create a collection to be used by Education students to enhance their classrooms and their teaching styles. This collection also has a large variety other items such as posters, pamphlets, and visual aids.   For most of the last 45 years Trudy has worked as a member of the Educator Preparation Council which is made up of people from the Curriculum and Instruction department as well as as a people from a variety of departments who focus on the process of preparing future teachers.

Trudy has also held the position of Head of User Services, which in non-librarian language, means that she was in charge of library employees who help patrons at the Reference Desk, who fulfill Interlibrary Loan Requests, who check in and out materials in the Circulation Department, and who give instruction in classrooms.  Trudy is currently the Associate Director of the Dick Smith Library.

One of our librarians, Tracy Holtman, recalls that on her very first day of work, Oct. 1, 1998, Holtman was honored to sit at the table with Trudy as she received the award of the Tarleton State University Employee of the Year!  What an honor to Trudy for her service to the university!

Trudy has always been active in volunteering with the Alpha Gamma Delta sorority.  She has been their campus adviser and an active alumni.  Trudy has also volunteered for Delta Kappa Gamma which is an organization focusing on Education majors.

Trudy is an animal lover, especially of dogs.  Prissy is her current fur-baby. She collects angels and wears a guardian angel pin on a daily basis.  Trudy is an avid reader and has stated that she is very excited to finally have time to read!  It is no surprise that Trudy is an active volunteer at her church, sitting on the church board and serving where she sees a need.

Trudy Carlson is a person known at Tarleton.  Every university president since Dr. Trogdon has known Trudy, including our current President, Dr. Dottavio.  Her presence as a library representative is large at Tarleton, even though Trudy is quiet-spoken.  Trudy is also known around Stephenville as a librarian lady.  It has happened more than once that while Trudy has been out having lunch around town, a student will walk up and mention the library or ask a question about the library. Trudy is ready to give them an answer with a smile.

Retirement will give Trudy more flexibility with her time.  She will still volunteer at her church.  You may see her in the library too, from time to time, when she's not busy catching up on her reading.

Thanks for all of your years of work and for the smiles, Trudy Carlson!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

At Our Libraries, You're WORTH IT!

After tours of the Dick Smith Library on August 18 and 19, we asked the incoming Class of 2019 and their group leaders to show off their best dance moves. Transition Week 2015 was a lot of hard work for everyone on campus, but you students are WORTH IT!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Welcome back!

Excitement is in the air here in the library. We have a lot of new things to share with everyone as the semester starts.   The library acquired several new research resources this summer, updated the furnishings and technology on the lower level, and even add some causal/fun read item with OverDrive.   We hope everyone will come see all the changes in the library!  Welcome back!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Welcome Freshman!

Today and yesterday, the Library has been participating Transition Week's Academic Success labs with a presentation about and tour of the library.

We love seeing all the new faces! Check out our Flickr page for more photos and to see if you can find yourself.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

New Artwork in the Stairwells!

It's been a little noisy in the library this week.  That's because soundproofing materials are being installed in the stairwell.  Even better though, the soundproofing panels double as the backdrop for art work designed by Fine Arts Assistant Professor Chris Ireland's Introduction to Digital Media class this past spring.  The stairwells will be blocked off the rest of the week, but come by some time next week and check it out!  Here are two of the panels from the corner of the stairwell leading up from the lower level:

The panels represent different academic majors at Tarleton.  Can you guess what these are?

Hint: These two are both from the College of Science and Technology.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

New Music Databases

The library added 10 new music databases this week! These databases contain streaming music files, videos, scores, discographies, and musician biographies, as well as more traditional reference materials. They cover a variety of genres from throughout time and around the world, from medieval motets and early american folk music to jazz and hip-hop. There are also databases specifically devoted to dance and opera. Basically, no matter your musical tastes or academic interest, you can find something in these new databases.

One of the most interesting new databases to me is Smithsonian Global Sound for Libraries. This database contains streaming music from the Smithsonian's Folkways Recordings, which collects diverse, traditional musical forms from around the world. It also contains music from archives in Africa and Asia.

Music students and faculty will probably find a lot to use in the Classical Scores Library. This database contains over 45,000 scores. They include everything from individual instrumental parts to full orchestral arrangements. They are presented in an easy-to read format and can be printed.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

A Book Drop by Any Other Name May Be The Book Return

                  Many book drops are nondescript slots in the circulation desks or outside walls.
No information available.
Other book returns are metal, weather-proof boxes similar to mail boxes in which patrons my drive by or walk up and deposit books.

Free image
Other book returns are more creative.  The book return at the Sitka, AK Public Library falls into this category. It's an over-sized stack of "books," made out of metal, about five-feet tall, with the obligatory slot for depositing the books. It's one of the most fun book drop returns I've ever seen!

Sitka, AK Public Library Book Drop; Photo by Lisa Wan; All rights reserved.
Book returns may not sound like the forum for funny stories, but the library comic, Unshelved, by Ambaum and Barnes ran a 3-strip series featuring the book drop.  It seems that patrons were curious to know where the books went after they were dropped through the outside book drop slot and other interesting conversations through the book drop with the librarian.  See the May 4, 5, 6, 2015 Unshelved for these humorous strips. (For copyright purposes, I have not included any of the strips.)

The Dick Smith Library has a couple of ways to return books in Stephenville.  Books can be deposited in the slot in the circulation desk or in a box located on the outside of the building.

When a student in Fort Worth receives books requested through ILLiad (Interlibrary loan), the books will arrive via the courier and may be picked up on the 5th floor of the Hickman Building in Suite 500.  Returning the books doesn't involve a book drop of any sort, rather the books should be put back in the envelop or box in which they were received and taken back to the Suite 500.  Be sure to give plenty of time for the courier get the books back to Stephenville before the due date!

Keep a look out for the more interesting book returns, but no matter what - 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

An 1890 Missing Person: Using Chronicling America to Learn More

The Dick Smith Library serves as a Regional Historical Resources Depository for original and microfilmed records for a number of Texas counties, including Coleman.  Two years ago, another library transferred to us a fascinating Coleman County Sheriff's ledger from 1887 to 1892 that contained notices about stolen and stray animals, and wanted and missing persons.  I posted about one such missing person then.  Here's another one that caught my eye:

John Fordham's mother apparently hired a Wichita, Kansas, detective agency to look for him when John left home just before turning 15.  Since John had "a fancy for horses" and "may be found around cattle ranches," it makes sense that the detective agency might have sent this notice to sheriffs in Texas counties.

This missing person notice had a good clue about the missing boy - John Fordham was or would be age 15 on May 9, 1890, meaning he was born on May 9, 1875.  I conducted a search in FindAGrave.com for a John Fordham born in 1875, and found a record with a matching date of birth for a burial in a Wichita, Kansas, cemetery for a John Chafin Fordham.  That young man died on June 2, 1896, at just 21 years of age, which made me wonder - what happened between the 1890 missing person notice, and his death just six years later?

A search in the Library of Congress Chronicling America website for "John Fordham" between 1875 and 1896 brought up some results from June 1896 issues of the Wichita Daily Eagle.  The first article was from June 3:
from The Wichita Daily Eagle, June 3, 1896, Page 5, via Chronicling America

John's mangled body had been found near the train tracks in White City, Kansas, which is about 100 miles northeast of Wichita.  He'd been traveling with another young man named T. T. Kell (who does not appear in any later articles) to the Dakotas, and they'd decided to hop the train rather than buy tickets (even though John certainly had the money).  Speculation in the article was that John fell asleep and fell out of the train and was run over.

More detail appeared in a article in the next day's Daily Eagle:
from The Wichita Daily Eagle, June 4, 1896, Page 5, via Chronicling America

John's body had letters addressed to a J. C. Fordham of 522 S. Lawrence Avenue in Wichita, a note for $350 from a Helen Fordham (his mother), and a March 12, 1896, deposit slip for a bank in Wichita, all of which helped identify him.  His father, Charles Fordham, claimed the body.

But just what happened in 1890?  Young John apparently had some wanderlust - the letters found on his body indicated he owned mines in the Cripple Creek, Colorado area, and he was on his way to Dakota when he died.  He appeared to have a mind of his own, even at a young age, and was rather successful financially, based on his clothing, the contents of his pockets, and the references in the articles.  Obviously, he came back home to Wichita sometime between the early 1890 "missing" poster and his death in 1896.  So far I haven't been able to determine what he was doing all those years in between.  Maybe as more newspapers are digitized, I'll find out.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Summer heat

So far the summer has been really nice, but 100 degree days are just around the corner!  Here are some
safety tips to survive the summer heat.
  • Stay in a cool place indoors or under a shady tree. 
  • Wear light, loose-fitting clothing, such as cotton, so sweat can evaporate
  • Drink lots of liquids - cool or cold water, drink sport drinks, such as Gatorade, etc. Keep your body hydrated by drinking 8oz of cool water every 15 -20 minutes.
  • Do not stay in or leave anyone in a closed, parked car during hot weather.
  • Perform the most stressful job in the cooler part of the day if possible . 
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat with vents. 
  • Use an umbrella for shade. 
  • If you feel hot, try to cool off. Open a window. Use a fan. Go to an air-conditioned place. 
The library is filled with comfortable seating, books, computers, and even TV's.  Come visit and stay cool!

Monday, July 13, 2015

Today is Embrace Your Geekness Day

When I think geek, I think of computers and technology.  If you are one of those types of geeks here are 5 library tech tools to help you celebrate Embrace Your Geekness Day:
  •  Overdrive - eBook titles can be downloaded to an e-reader, tablet or other device or read in the browser.
  • Mobile Apps - download mobile apps for various databases or download the library app to keep up with your library account and search the catalog.
  • Laptop Vending Machine - if you need to borrow a laptop to study while you are building your own from scratch, you can check one out for 4 hours at a time from our laptop vending machine.
  • Collaboration Tables - come hook all your laptops up and work on group projects at one of our collaboration tables.
  • Social Media - keep up with everything that is going on in the library by following us on social media. 

Friday, July 10, 2015

SPORTDiscus and Philosophers Index

The library has two new databases this month: SPORTDiscus with Full Text and Philosophers Index with Full Text. These two databases support growing programs here at Tarleton in the Humanities and in Sports Medicine/ Kinesiology.

Philosophers Index contains full text for many leading philosophy journals from around the world and in over 30 languages. It covers every area of philosophy, including aesthetics, logic, metaphysics, philosophy of science and more.

The resources available in SPORTDiscus with Full Text thoroughly cover sports and sports medicine topics, as well as topics like occupational safety, health education, physical therapy and nutrition. It includes not only journals, but conference proceedings, book chapters and eBooks as well.