Thursday, October 30, 2014

Halloween in the Library's Catalog

With Halloween in just a few days, I thought it would be interesting to see what I would find if I just searched "Halloween" in the library's catalog.  The result is 72 hits with various items such as cookbooks, videos, films, histories of hoaxes and other historical accounts of gruesome happenings, as well as children's books and math exercises using literature.  One particular hit is that of a musical offering: Sabla Tolo II by Hossam Ramz which includes a piece called, "Halloween".

This item is streaming sound file through which patrons may simply open up the record and listen to a song by clicking on the name of the piece. 

The song, "Halloween", is nothing like we would imagine a song entitled "Halloween" to sound like - no screeching cats, claps of thunder, or howling ghosts.
Give it try; click here to listen.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Have you tried Interlibrary Loan?

Interlibrary Loan is a service that we offer to current students, faculty, and staff at Tarleton. If there is a book article, video, or even music score that we don’t have, we can request it from other libraries across the nation. There are hundreds of libraries that will share their collections with us. You can search the World Cat database to see which libraries may own the item for which you are searching.

Useful Links:

Best practices for inputting a request:
  1.  Look in World Cat for the Accession number (also known as the OCLC number).
  2. Provide the ISBN/ISSN.
  3. If you are requesting an article include the journal title, article title, volume number, issue number, and page numbers (most of this information can be found in Discovery, even if we don't own the article).
  4. The more information you can give the better.

Things you need to know:
  1. We can’t always get the item that you are wanting. Newer items or obscure items are very difficult to obtain.
  2. On occasion there is a lending fee. This means that they will lend it, but only if you are willing to pay a fee. The majority of libraries will lend for free though.
  3. If you wait to the last minute, you may not get the book or article that you need when you need it. Don’t wait until the last minute to make a request. Many things we can get pretty quickly, but if you are writing a research paper, and you need one more resource and your paper is due in 3 days, it’s probably not going to get here in time.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

What does the library mean to you?

This year the library is going to participate in the Texas Library Association (TxLA) Snapshot Day.  It allows libraries and library users to showcase library activities.  It is a "snapshot" of a day in the life of our library.

On October 30 & 31, help showcase the new Library Learning Commons and show the importance of the library by telling us why you come to the library and giving us feedback.  Have your picture taken, too!

Find out about the annual event held by TxLA:

To view pictures from past Library Snapshot Days visit the TxLA Flickr page -

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Heritage Quest Census Maps

It's still Family History Month, so here's a little tip I learned about the library's Heritage Quest Online database in a recent online webinar:

After logging in, choose Census and Browse.  After you choose a census year and state, a link will appear that says "View State Map."

When you click on the link, it opens a new window with a map of that state.  Current counties are outlined in white; counties for the census year are outlined in black.

Texas in 1860

In 1850 (pictured at left), Erath county (of which Stephenville is the county seat) didn't exist.  It - and part or all of many of today's surrounding counties - were part of a then-huge Milam county.

By 1860 (pictured below), some boundaries had changed.  Erath County's boundaries are close to what they are now.  Adjacent Hood and Somerville counties were part of Johnson County in 1860.  The maps also note information such as the fact that all census records for Tarrant County (Fort Worth) were lost for 1860.
Texas in 1860
Texas in 1870

For the 1870 census (pictured below), Erath County has the shape it has today.  However, apparently there are no records for adjacent Palo Pinto County - indications are that it was not enumerated separately, and perhaps was not enumerated at all.

These handy maps can help the researcher figure out where to look for ancestors.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Library Learning Commons Website

As most of you know, the Library Learning Commons (LLC) is now complete. You can enjoy a nice cup of coffee, get tech help, and even setup tutoring sessions, to name a few amenities. The new space is comfortable and inviting. If you haven't had the opportunity to check it out, you are missing out on some of the most state of the art technologies on campus. There are collaboration stations, KIC scanners, and charging stations. In the near future, you can expect to find a laptop vending machine. The easiest way to access any information about the LLC is to use our LLC website.

Need assistance? Call 254-968-9249 or email

Follow Tarleton Libraries

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Tarleton Lib Mobile App

Tarleton Libraries has a new app for iPhones and iPads! You can find it in the App Store by searching for "Tarleton Lib" or use the QR code below to download the app:

From the app you can search the library catalog, make book lists and even read e-books and online journals. You can also see what books you have checked out and manage your holds. 

Want directions to the library? Need to call or e-mail us? You can do that from the app! You can find out more about library events and new library equipment under Library Events, and read this very blog under Library Blog. 

Screenshots from iTunes.

Have fun with the app and, as always, if you have questions, ask a librarian!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Today: Film Festival by the Dick Smith Library

Stop by the Multipurpose Room (Rm 154) today on the main level to participate in the Dick Smith Library's Film Festival in honor of Civil Rights Day.  The festival will run from 9am until 4:30pm.  See below for the lineup of today's videos.  To view the videos in our playlist at Films on Demand, click here

Martin Luther King, Jr.: Look Here
One of the first in-depth televised interviews given by Martin Luther King, Jr., this program was first broadcast on October 27, 1957, on the NBC News show Look Here. Filmed only a year after he had reached national prominence during the Montgomery bus boycott, the 27-year-old King offers host Martin Agronsky invaluable insights into his goals, his philosophy and his unshakable dedication to equality and civil rights. (29 minutes)

Hollywood Roundtable: Civil Rights, 1963
In this historical motion picture film from the U.S. Information Agency, Marlon Brando, Charlton Heston, Sidney Poitier, Joseph Mankiewicz, James Baldwin, and David Shoenbrun discuss the Civil Rights March on Washington, August 28, 1963. From the National Archives and Records Administration. (31 minutes)

Let Freedom Ring
The Civil Rights movement becomes the most effective social movement in U.S. history. During this era, Martin Luther King, Jr. marches on Washington, and Little Rock's high school is integrated. John F. Kennedy is inaugurated as president of the United States. Part of the series Freedom: A History of US. Distributed by PBS Distribution. (26 minutes)

Marching to Freedom Land
The 1960s bring new progress in the quest for freedom, but this is also an explosive decade that threatens to tear apart the fabric of society. President Kennedy is assassinated, and Lyndon B. Johnson pursues the war in Vietnam. Martin Luther King, Jr. is assassinated, leaving behind an impressive and growing legacy of non-violent civil rights resistance. Part of the series Freedom: A History of US. Distributed by PBS Distribution. (26 minutes)

Civil Rights Anniversary, 1965
“This Civil Rights Act is a challenge to all of us,” says President Johnson, “to go to work in our communities and our states, in our homes and in our hearts, to eliminate the last vestiges of injustice in our beloved country.” This documentary, filmed in 1965, looks back on the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and asks, “What has and has not been done during this year that held such great promise?” From the National Archives and Records Administration. (28 minutes)

Soundtrack for a Revolution: Freedom Songs From the Civil Rights Era
On picket lines, in organizational meetings, even in police wagons and jail cells, songs of protest and inspiration helped drive the civil rights movement. Showcasing many of those songs, this stirring documentary explores the history of the era through archival footage, interviews with key civil rights activists, and performances by contemporary artists assembled specifically for the
film. Congressman John Lewis (D-GA), former Atlanta mayor Andrew Young, former NAACP chairman Julian Bond, freedom rider Hank Thomas, civil rights organizer Jim Lawson, former King aide Dorothy Cotton, and music legend Harry Belafonte are among those interviewed. On-camera performers include John Legend, Joss Stone, Wyclef Jean, and The Roots. Featured songs: “Wade in the Water,” “This May Be the Last Time,” “Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn ’Round,” “We Shall Not Be Moved,” and more. (82 minutes)

The Civil Rights Movement
A part of the series America in the 20th Century. Anyone who thinks the civil rights movement began and ended with Martin Luther King Jr. will discover a new, eye-opening view of history in this program. It reveals a long-running struggle for racial equality starting with Civil War– and Reconstruction-era events, moving through the blight of Jim Crow and the formation of the NAACP and other groups, and depicting the drama of King’s movement in varied, evolving phases. The work of Malcolm X, the rise of the Black Power movement, and the future of America’s ongoing equality battles are also examined. Correlates to standards from the National Council for the Social Studies. (84 minutes)

Save Our History: Voices of Civil Rights
Representing the largest archive of oral histories of the civil rights movement, this program offers a fascinating look at one of the defining social movements in American history—told through the personal stories of men, women, and children who lived through the turbulent period. To compile these hundreds of personal narratives, a group of journalists, photographers, and videographers embarked on a 70-day bus trip around the country. The trove of material they collected, from family photographs to emotional on-camera testimony, forms far more than a textbook history lesson. It emerges as a narrative document that defines and humanizes the movement’s trajectory while providing insight into the Brown v. Board of Education case, the saga of Martin Luther King Jr., and much more. Distributed by Television Networks. (50 minutes)

Where Do We Go from Here? A Dialogue On Race
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." This illuminating program, filmed during a guided tour of civil rights landmarks, blends potent archival footage and photos with group discussion to sensitively explore race relations in the U.S. Visits to Selma, Montgomery, Birmingham, Memphis, Atlanta, Orangeburg, and other locations, combined with eyewitness accounts of key events by survivors of those years, steer the group's dialogue. Together, these concerned individuals-white as well as black-grapple with the issues of anger, identity, prejudice, discrimination, education, and reconciliation. (58 minutes)

 *Film descriptions taken from Films on Demand.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Learn to Speak the Language of Your Database!

Have you ever tried to convey a message to someone who does not speak the same language as you?  How well did that go?  Did you have to use body language?

Using a database or a database search tool (such as Discovery or Proquest) requires that you communicate with it in a language that it understands otherwise you might not get the results you are looking for, especially since you can’t resort to body language to make the database understand! can you learn to speak the language of your 

database search tool? 

 First, don't use the database or database search tool like you use Google! You can’t use sentences or questions and get usable results. Here's a sample research question: What's the differences between IFRS and FASB? (These are different styles of accounting practices, for you non-accounting majors.) 

     Let’s see what happens if we treat the database search tool as if it were Google and simply enter this question:
     This came up with NO RESULTS at all!  Let's figure out a better way to search using a database or a database search tool!!  

                     So....let's speak the language of our database search tool!

     Begin by writing out your research question, then looking closely to determine the key concepts. Looking for the nouns might help you find those key concepts.

Look at example 1: 
We want to know the main differences between IFRS and FASB.   
Look for the key concepts which are: 1) IFRS, 2) FASB, and 3) differences.

Try entering a single key concept into separate boxes in our database search tool, Discovery.

This search gives us 135 results! Look through the list to find the items that meet your needs. In order to come up with additional items, try coming up with different words that mean close to the same thing.

             So...let's try other ways we speak to the database search tool! 

Example 2: 
Finding the differences might involve comparing IFRS and FASB. 
 Our new research question becomes: I want to compare IFRS and FASB. 
What are the key concepts here? 1) IFRS, 2) FASB, and 3) comparison.

Think about the key concept "comparison" with the root word "compare".  If we do a root word search, results such as "compare", "comparison", "comparability", etc. will show up.  To execute this search we can add an asterisk at the end of the root word, which would look like this: compar*.
Let's try entering our key concepts into our database search tool, Discovery.
This search strategy results in 157 hits.  Looking through these results may give you additional items to use in your research.

Now you have begun to learn to speak the language of a 

database search tool!

 For more information about creating searches, go to the library home page and find "Research Help", then go to "Research Strategies".  Look down the page to locate the hyperlink: Create Effective Searches.  Clicking on this hyperlink here will open up a short power point lesson on other search strategies.

Good luck learning to speak the language of 

databases and database search tools!

Friday, October 10, 2014

DSL Open House

Stop by the library Saturday, October 11
from 2-4 PM
for the
Library Learning Commons Open House

Get a tour of the library.  Stop by the Study Grounds CafĂ© for a quick snack.
You can also visit the Tech Spot and the
Writing & Tutoring Office
in the Library Learning Commons.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Search the Grassburr Yearbooks

Do you know how to search the Grassburr Yearbook archives online? Through the Portal to Texas History, Tarleton has made over 40 years of Grassburrs available and searchable online.

Currently, the yearbooks from 1970-2012 are available, and more years are added frequently. Once you are on the Portal website, you can browse through the yearbooks, or search inside them to find yourself and your friends. Have fun walking down memory lane this Homecoming!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

October is Family History Month!

October is Family History Month, and we have a number of databases and other resources here at Tarleton that can help you research your own family history.  Check out our Genealogy Research Guide for suggestions as well as a link to a web page with other helpful resources.

Pape & Guokas Family Tree as of August 2014 / Amanda Pape / CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

FamilySearch, a FREE website with a millions of records, has a number of suggestions for ways to celebrate this month, including beginning to record your own memories for your descendants.

ProQuest, a company that provides both HeritageQuest Online and Texas Digital Sanborn Maps, is offering free webinars for anyone this month who would like to learn more about using these databases.  Check out the schedule here.

If you need help using any of these databases or other resources, see our Coordinator for Archives and Special Services (and amateur genealogist) Amanda Pape, on the lower level of the Dick Smith Library, call her at 254-968-9251, or (best) e-mail her at

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Homecoming 2014 "Deep in the Heart of Tarleton"

This year's Homecoming will be October 5-11. Looking for some Homecoming Activities to check out? Look over the schedule and you'll find something to enjoy each day/night of the week. Want to see events from previous Homecomings? Check out the online Grassburr and J-TAC through the Tarleton Libraries database list.