Connecticut State Library with state seal
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State Librarian's Report

November 26, 2006 


This report is prepared bi-monthly in conjunction with the regular meetings of the Connecticut State Library Board.  Items to be routinely covered include the following:  the significant activities of the State Librarian and the staff, significant administrative decisions affecting the operation of the Library, status reports regarding in-progress activities, information regarding external events having an impact on the Library, media coverage of the Library, and information of general interest to the members of the Board.

The following report by the State Librarian, which will be included in the minutes of the

November 27, 2006 meeting of the Board, covers the period of September 25, 2006 through November 26, 2006


Attached to this report.


Vacancies (State Funded)

Secretary 1 (Fiscal)  recruitment pending

Vacancies (Federal Funds)



Data Processing Tech Analyst 2 – (Automation)

Secretary 1 (Public Records)  Vacant Administrative Assistant position was reclassed to Secretary 1 and filled by Public Records Library Aide incumbent.





Accomplishments/Division News

Law Reading Room.  The Law Reading Room renovation has been completed, and the Reading Room reopened on Nov. 15th. New carpeting, new furnishings, refurbishment of the original fixtures, addition of electrical outlets to the reader tables to accommodate laptops and a revised layout simultaneously restores the original appearance and provides for 21st century use. 

 1934 Aerial Survey Online.  In 1934 Connecticut became the first state to complete a statewide aerial survey. Taken before the Hurricane of 1938 radically changed the topography of the state, but after the statewide paving project "Get Connecticut Out of the Mud" enabled the popular new-fangled automobiles to climb the state's hills and cruise its valleys, the 8,731 original photographic prints have long been one of the most heavily used collections at the State Library.

 The online version of the 1934 aerial survey,, was publicly announced at the Connecticut Geographic Information Systems day, Nov. 15th. A poster about the Aerial project was on display in the LOB concourse. Announcement flyers are in your packets.

The individual survey photos allow users to select which town they want to 'zoom' to and explore a time when most homes had a small orchard and there were still more horses than automobiles and a whole lot fewer trees! The original photographic prints have been digitized as JPEG2000 files, providing detailed zoom and pan functions. The Historic Documents Preservation fund supported this project.

E-Journal Holdings in Google Scholar.  CSL’s electronic journal holdings are now available in Google Scholar. The preference can be set from home, or other location by going to, clicking on Scholar Preferences, and typing CONNECTICUT STATE LIBRARY in the ‘Library Links’ section and saving preferences.

Headphones.  Due to the growing number of electronic resources with a sound component, we are now providing users with disposable headphones for use with our public PCs.

Electronic Resources.  At the same cost for four print subscriptions, we now have Booklist Online available at all CSL facilities for staff and public use, and are providing remote access to any holder of a CSL Library card.

Additional information on remote access to, and printing of, Reference USA was added to our information ‘About’ page to assist remote users.

Remote access to LegalTrac is now available to any holder of a CSL Library card.

Acoustic Recording Booth.  LBPH has re-acquired a recording booth that had been on loan to the East Hartford chapter of the Connecticut Volunteer Services for the Blind and Handicapped, Inc. (CVSBH). Once assembly is completed, the booth will be used by LBPH staff to record messages for patrons, and edit or update existing tapes.

Intellectual Property Update:

A new publication, The Ricker Collection of Vital Records of Early Connecticut, compiled by Jacqueline Ricker initially raised concern about intellectual property and copyright infringement at both the Library and the Connecticut Society of Genealogists (CSG).  Information taken from Barbour, Church Records, and Hale Collections that had appeared with our permission in the CSG Nutmegger publication is the basis of this Ricker publication. After review we determined that it is probably legitimate as it has the added values of being consolidated into one alphabetical arrangement and being presented as searchable PDF files. We are still concerned that CSL is not credited as the source of the information, and are requesting that credit be added to all promotional material and packaging.  The publication does not provide the volume numbers and pages of the original source records, so for a thorough search our indexes still need to be consulted.

The IP Committee is also dealing with copyright issues having to do with the Aerial photos. Research about copyright and distribution rights for the various statewide Aerial surveys is underway.  The Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection now owns 1965, 1970, and 1975 surveys. The National Archives has the 1951-1952 surveys to which we have rights.

Web Update:

The 2006 “hot list” of Connecticut’s most popular public acts, compiled by the State Library’s Legislative Bill Room is available at


Federal Documents Librarian Nancy Peluso gave CSL presentations to the Department of Economic and Community Development employees on October 10. As a result of the meeting, participants subsequently visited the library, including the DECD Executive Director.

On October 11th, Ms. Peluso gave a presentation about Federal Web sites to Library Connection member librarians.

History & Genealogy Office Assistant Kevin Johnson gave William Webb presentations in Bridgeport on September 19 and at the Nathan Hale School in Coventry on October 11.  Mr. Johnson gave a Jordan Freeman presentation at the Ledyard Historical Society on October 13.

History & Genealogy Reference Librarian Mel Smith represented the Library at a local History Fair at the Mashantucket Pequot Research Center on October 7.

History & Genealogy Reference Librarian Carolyn Picciano represented the Library at the CT Society of Genealogists Annual Seminar on October 24.

Fourteen volunteers from St. Paul Travelers worked on a variety of projects for LBPH on the United Way Day of Caring XV on September 8.

Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (LBPH) staff sponsored a booth at the Connecticut Disability Advocacy Collaborative Convention 2006 on September 26. They also staffed a booth at the NEAT Marketplace on October 12.

LBPH Director Carol Taylor gave a presentation at the Danbury Lions Club on October 23, and gave a presentation to Board of Education Services for the Blind (BESB) Low Vision Support Group at Eisenhower Senior Center, in Bridgeport on September 6.

LBPH Library Technical Assistant Paula McLean and LBPH Volunteer Tom Grossi gave a LBPH presentation to Milford Senior Center Low Vision Support Group on September 11.



WebJunction Connecticut, Library Development’s training and information portal, exhibited at the New England Library Association Annual Conference on October 22-24 in Burlington, Vermont, with representatives of WebJunction Partner states Vermont and New Hampshire.  Team Leads from each state, including Connecticut’s Tom Newman, distributed literature and spoke with conference attendees regarding ways that library staff can take advantage of WebJunction's online courses, discussion groups, and library technology resources.

iCONN was exhibited at the annual conferences of the Connecticut Educators Computer Association on October 23 and at the Connecticut Educational Media Association (CEMA) on November 6.   Stephen Cauffman, ILL Coordinator, Lorraine Huddy, Database Coordinator, and Gail Hurley, Cataloging Coordinator, presented an update on iCONN to the CEMA Conference.

Linda Williams, Children’s Consultant, and Mary Engels, Director of the Middletown Library Service Center, along with Kat Lyons from the Connecticut Center for the Book represented Connecticut at the National Book Festival on the National Mall in Washington, DC, September 30, 2006.  They distributed information about literary resources and literature based programs from Connecticut at the Pavilion of the States.  Over 100,000 people attended the book festival which featured over 70 authors speaking throughout the day.  The festival is sponsored by the Library of Congress and First Lady Laura Bush.  If you would like to see photos of Connecticut’s participation in the festival they are at:

Friends Handbook

The Friends of Connecticut Libraries has distributed their newly published Handbook for Connecticut Library Friends to all Friends groups in the state.  Libraries that are considering forming new Friends groups have also asked for copies to help them get started. 

Continuing Education

Kris Abery, Continuing Education Coordinator, coordinated twelve workshops in September and twenty in October for a total attendance of 445.  Workshops included Blogs and RSS Feeds, Redesigning Newsletters, Time Management, and Preservation Planning.

Stephen Cauffman, Statewide ILL Coordinator, and Mary Engels arranged a meeting of Welcome – a discussion group for libraries serving multilingual communities on October 19, 2006 at the Farmington Library.  Staff from six libraries throughout the state shared details of programs they offer to people in their communities for whom English is a second language.  State Library staff then discussed possible future grant opportunities for libraries serving this population. 

Mary Engels, Chair of the Connecticut Library Association’s American’s for Disability Act Committee helped organize this year’s Joint Children’s Roundtables meeting on September 18 on Services to Children with Special Needs.  Over 50 childrens’ librarians attended.  Linda Williams, Susan Cormier and Doug Lord, LSTA Program Assistant, also provided the attendees with information on State Library services and programs for childrens’ services staff. 

Imaging Connecticut’s Past, an Introduction to Developing Digital Projects for Connecticut Libraries and Cultural Heritage Institutions was presented by the State Library on November 14 at the Legislative Office Building.  Senator Mary Ann Handley gave the opening remarks at the conference and Dr. Robert Martin, former Director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services delivered the keynote address. The program was coordinated by Sharon Brettschneider and Kendall Wiggin in cooperation with representatives of Mystic Seaport, the Connecticut Historical Society Museum and the University of Connecticut Dodd Center.

In preparation for some major changes in procedures, Library Development will be conducting five sessions of Ccar School.  This short workshop will introduce libraries to the new labeling and packaging procedures for Connecticar. 


Douglas Lord, LSTA Program Assistant, and Stephen Cauffman conduct short survey’s of Connecticut librarians on timely topics.  The results are published monthly in Connecticut Libraries.  The latest two results examined librarians reading and online habits and appeared in the November and December issues. 

Tom Newman, Assistant Director of the Middletown Library Service Center, continued his series of articles featuring the Treasures in Connecticut Libraries with an article on the Historical Room of the East Granby Public Library in the December issue of Connecticut Libraries.  A copy of the article is included in your packet.

Other Comings and Goings

Kendall Wiggin, State Librarian, and Mary Louise Jensen, Building Consultant, attended the South Norwalk Branch Library’s dedication on September 16.  Mary Louise Jensen, Building Consultant, spoke at Essex Library Association’s dedication on November 5.   She also presented a Libratects workshop at the new Southbury Public Library.

Sharon Brettschneider gave a presentation on the future of libraries to the Norfolk Library Board on November 18.  On October 19 she made a presentation to the Board of the Hagaman Memorial Library in East Haven on strategic planning.  Sharon and Stephen Cauffman gave brief presentations at the Trendspotting Conference at Quinnipiac University sponsored by the Connecticut Library Consortium.

Mary Louise Jensen, Building Consultant and Board member of the Americans with Disabilities Act Coalition of CT (ADACC), presented Terryville Public Library with the municipal leadership award for their Saturday morning program for children with special needs at ADACC’s annual meeting on October 26.



The October issue of the iCONN Times is now available in pdf format at and has been included in your packet.

 Geo-Location Authentication Service

The service that now allows many residents to access iCONN from outside the library without a library card was implemented on September 21.  This service pioneered the incorporation of Quova’s IP-based geo-location technology into iCONN’s authentication system, and we also secured agreement from all five database vendors to use this form of authentication for remote access to iCONN.

 NPR Ads

iCONN has contracted with Connecticut Public Broadcasting to run 15-second iCONN ads on WNPR during priority drive time (M-F, 6am – 9am/3pm – 6pm) starting  November 11.  A total of 208 ads will run over a 13-week period.  It is estimated that these ads will reach 3,365,773 listeners (adults 18+).  We have received many favorable comments on the ads.

Connecticut Science Center

Bill Sullivan presented a proposal to Ted Sergi, President of the Connecticut Science Center, to (1) explore the educational potential of “telepresence” technology that would use ultra-high-speed optical networks and high-resolution video walls to provide 2-way video/audio links between the Science Center and selected K-12 schools in Hartford, and possibly also to selected R & D labs; and (2) explore the potential of the Science Center’s 200-seat cinema as a testbed for super high-definition digital cinema that would serve both the Science Center’s needs as well as the state’s recent efforts to attract film industry into Connecticut.  Also attending the meeting were Rob Keating, Office of Workforce Competitiveness; Karen Kaplan, CET Executive Director; and Ed Klonoski, Chair of the CET eLearning & Content Advisory Council.  The proposal was favorably received by Ted Sergi.

Visiting Officials from Shandong Province, China

For the third consecutive year, Bill Sullivan gave an introduction to iCONN to two visiting officials from Shandong Province in China on October 19.  Alison Wang from Naugatuck Valley Community College Library kindly provided interpretation services.


Conferences and Workshops

On October 3rd, Eunice DiBella, LeAnn Power and Kathy Makover attended the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities Convention and Exposition in Cromwell, CT. Grant staff set up a booth of pamphlets and material from the Connecticut State Library and the Historic Document Preservation Program. The booth was a part of the municipal showcase “Celebrating and Capturing Milestones.”   Eunice DiBella gave a short presentation regarding the Historic Documents Preservation Grant Program.         

Professional Meetings

On October 11th, grant staff attended a Historic Document Preservation Advisory Committee meeting at the Van Block facility. At this meeting, changes to the grant contracts for the competitive, targeted and disaster recovery grants for the FY2008 grant year were discussed.

October 17th - LeAnn Power and Kathy Makover  attended the Association of Records Managers and Administrator’s (ARMA) Connecticut Chapter’s monthly meeting. The topic was “New Federal Rules of Civil Procedure – Impact on Records Management and E-Discovery”.  The meeting was held at the Courtyard by Marriott in Cromwell.

October 21t-26,  Eunice DiBella and  LeAnn Power  attended the annual ARMA International Conference in San Antonio, TX. The topic of the conference was “Showcasing the Business and Technology of Managing Records and Information”.

October 23, Kathy Makover attended a workshop entitled "Preservation Planning: Balancing what should be done and what can be done," presented by Aimee Primeaux of the Northeast Document Conservation Center.  The workshop was sponsored by the Connecticut State Library, Division of Library Development, and offered to both town clerks and librarians.  Seventeen town clerks attended the workshop, composing about half of the class.

On November 3rd Kathy Makover attended the Northeast Document Conservation Center's Advisory Committee meeting as an invited guest.  Ms. Makover spoke to the committee about the Historic Documents Preservation Program.  She was given a tour of the conservation laboratory and the new digital imaging services section

November 14, the public records and archives staff attended a conference sponsored by the Connecticut State Library entitled “Imaging Connecticut’s Past: Introduction to Developing Digital Projects in Connecticut Libraries and Cultural Heritage Institutions.” The Conference was held at the Legislative Office Building.


Lizette Pelletier attended Advanced Excel on September, 27, Kathy Makover and Cheryl Bruno attended, Creating Documents in Microsoft Word, and Microsoft Word Mail Merge October 24th. These classes were offered by the Division of Library Development and were held at the Middletown Library Service Center.

Site Visits

On September 26, Kathy Makover made a site visit to Norwich in response to the town clerk's request for assistance regarding records storage space issues.  The visit included inspection of the three clerk's vaults.  The town received a report of the findings and recommendations to address the space issues.

On October 17, Kathy visited Prospect to review the Historic Documents Preservation Program with the town clerk, as the town had not applied for grants the past three years.  The visit included an inspection of the clerk's vault.  Kathy discussed the types of projects that could be beneficial for the town and reviewed the funding available through the grant program.  A written report presented the inspection findings and grant project recommendations.

Retention Schedules

November 15th Eunice DiBella and Lizette Pelletier  met with staff from the Department of Consumer Protection to review their current retention schedules in place and to discuss necessary revisions and updates.

General Schedule S5 for Student Records at State Colleges and Universities has been revised.  In addition, a number of departmental schedules are being updated for the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities and the Department of Public Safety.  A small departmental schedule was completed for the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee at the UConn Health Center. 

State Archives

Professional Meetings

November 4, Mark Jones, Bruce Stark and Paul Baran attended a meeting of the Association for the Study of Connecticut History held at Manchester Community College.  The theme of the meeting was “Insiders and Outsiders:  Ethnicity, Immigration, and Status in Connecticut.”  Bruce Stark served as co-chair of the Program Committee and delivered a paper entitled, “Connecticut Runaways, Deserters, Escapee, and Other Tales of Flight.”  Mark Jones made a presentation about the Connecticut State Americanization Department, 1917-1921.  Paul Baran staffed the registration table.

Bruce Stark attended the fall meeting of the New England Archivists at the University of New Hampshire, Durham from October 20-21.  He also attended an annual meeting of the Connecticut Council for the Social Studies at Central Connecticut State University on October 27th.

Mark Jones and Paul Baran attended two meetings of the Digital Collections Committee on October 16 and November 8. Paul Baran also attended two meeting of the Automation Committee on September 27 and November 22.  Mark Jones attended a meeting of the Privacy Committee on October 10

New Accessions

On October 12, the Department of Correction delivered 1,100 boxes of case files of the old Department of Child Welfare, ca. 1920’s to 1970’s, to the State Archives storage area at 75 Van Block Ave.  The Department of Children and Families, which held custody of the files, contracted with Data Con in the Correction Department to rebox the records and create an automated surname index.  Along with records of the Meriden School for Boys and Long Lane, the child welfare records will help historians document the treatment and care of children by state government in Connecticut during the twentieth century.

The State Archives received 10 boxes of files compiled by the former chair of the State Republican Committee, Frederick K. Biebel, while he was a member of the U. S. Commission on the Bicentennial of the Constitution, 1987-89, from the Marvin K. Peterson Library at the University of New Haven.

Crawford Westbrook donated a collection of genealogical and biographical records relating to the Leete, Mitchell, and Sheafe families compiled by him.

Gilbert A. Kane of Cabool, Missouri, donated 181 letters written by Civil War soldier and ancestor John O. Kane dating from 1862-63.  Kane enlisted in the 23rd Connecticut Volunteer Infantry Regiment and served in Company “H.”  The regiment served at camps near or around New Orleans.  He was 51 upon enlisting, and his letters provide details other than the war.  For instance, he writes about the oppression of slaves and the laziness and inhumanity of their owners.

The Department of Environmental Protection transferred files, speeches and calendars of Deputy Commissioner David K. Leff from 2000 to 2006.

Processing Jobs Completed

Paul Baran, Government Records Archivist, processed an additional seven cubic feet of Governor Lowell P. Weicker’s records.  He also completed reprocessing Picture Group 460, Colt Patent Fire Arms Manufacturing Company.  This will further preserve the collection and make it easier to use.  Paul also served on a subcommittee of the Digital Collections Committee, responsible for planning a digital collection about the Colt Company.

Virginia Banerjee, a volunteer working under the supervision of the Assistant State Archivist, completed processing, arranging, and describing the papers of the Frisbie/Frisbee Family Association dating from 1704-2002.  The records include genealogical materials collected primarily by Nora Frisbie, the genealogist of the Association along with records of the organization.  The collection is 57 cubic feet and fills 115 containers.  Banergee distributed copies of the finding aid to members of the Association.