STATE LIBRARIAN'S REPORT
January 30, 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
The following report by the State Librarian, which will be included in the
minutes of the January 30, 2006 meeting of the Board, covers the period of
November 29, 2005, through January 22, 2006.
Attached to this report.
Vacancies (State Funded)
Vacancies (Federal Funds)
- Librarian 1 Full Time (Administration) Recruitment in process
- Museum Curator 1 Full Time (Museum) Recruitment in process
POSITIONS FILLED SINCE LAST REPORT
- Library Specialist Full Time (CT Digital Library) Recruitment in process
- Librarian 1 Full Time (Durational) (Conservation)
Library Aide Part Time 30 hours (Conservation) Recruitment in process
OFFICE OF THE STATE LIBRARIAN
Hartford Courant Digitization Project
The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving has awarded the State Library a
$50,000 grant to support the Historical Hartford Courant digitization
project. The grant from the Hartford Foundation represents a major milestone
in the Library’s fundraising efforts for this important project. Letters
were also mailed to the superintendents of all the state’s school districts
seeking support for the project. Responses have been so in coming.
Chief Court Administrator
Chief Justice William J. Sullivan has appointed the Honorable William J.
Lavery, chief judge of the Appellate Court, to succeed Judge Pellegrino as
Chief Court Administrator. Judge Pellegrino will take senior judge status,
effective Feb. 1, 2006. Judge Pellegrino will reach the mandatory retirement
age of 70 in June 2006. Prior to reaching age 70, judges may elect senior
judge status. Judge Pellegrino will hear Appellate Court cases as a senior
judge, as he also is a judge of the Appellate Court.
Judge Lavery, 67, was appointed a Superior Court judge in 1981. He served as
presiding judge in the Danbury Judicial District and chief administrative
judge in Waterbury prior to his appointment to the Appellate Court in 1989.
In March 2000, retired Chief Justice McDonald appointed Judge Lavery as
chief judge of the Appellate Court. A native of Bridgeport, Judge Lavery
graduated from Fairfield Prep in 1955 and, then in 1959 from Fairfield
University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics and philosophy. Judge
Lavery received his law degree from Fordham Law School in 1964. He was in
private practice in Connecticut for 17 years. He currently is the president
of C.H. Booth Library of Newtown.
The new mailroom and cafeteria are now open. The former mailroom and State
Library storage room were renovated into new office space for the Judiciary.
One half of the old cafeteria was converted into a new mailroom and the
remaining section of the cafeteria was renovated. Judicial purchased new
storage cabinets for State Library use and lined them along the corridor
leading to the new mailroom.
New granite signs are being installed in front of the State Library/Supreme
Court building. Replacing the sign at the corner of Capitol and Lafayette
Street that said “State Library Supreme Court” will be a sign saying “State
Library, Archives, Museum”. A sign (matching in style) will be placed at the
corner of Capitol and Oak Street that says “Supreme Court”. The signs will
have engraved lettering that is painted black.
On Friday, December 2, five bomb threats to several state agencies triggered
the closing of all courthouses in the state. Since the State Library is
located in a courthouse, it was evacuated and all employees sent home for
the day. While we have procedures in place and have practiced for a bomb
threat, this was handled as a “closing” which led to a lot of confusion.
Rich Kingston and I are members of the Security Committee for the building.
Library Staff have raised a lot of questions that I will bring to the
Committee. Hopefully this situation will not be repeated in the future.
iCONN users can now search portions of the Historical Hartford Courant. The
Hartford Foundation for Public Giving awarded the State Library a $50,000
grant to support the Historical Hartford Courant digitization project. With
this grant, fundraising efforts for the project moved close enough to the
goal that the State Library was able to reach an agreement with ProQuest to
proceed with the project. The State Library is just $57,000 shy of its
$375,000 goal. Letters have been mailed to the superintendents all the
state’s school districts seeking support for the project. Responses have
been slow in coming.
The Historical Hartford Courant database will include full-page coverage
from issue 1, volume 1 of the newspaper starting in 1764 with coverage to
December 31, 1922. This searchable digital archive of more than 280,000
pages of important historical content will offer article-level search
results, article zoning and edited metadata, including headlines, bylines
and first paragraphs. All academic libraries, all public libraries and
branches, historical society libraries, and all schools will have statewide
access, as well as any Connecticut government department. There will be
remote access for anyone with a public library card.
The following service awardees were inadvertently left out of the last
Archives and Public Records:
10 YEARS, LeAnn Johnson, Public Records Government Program Specialist
20 YEARS, Charles (Doug) Yaeger, Storekeeper, State Records Center
INFORMATION SERVICES DIVISION
An IS Division meeting was held on December 8 in the Attorneys’ Conference
Room. Recognition certificates were awarded to Division members in a variety
of categories. The primary discussion topic was “Who are the primary patrons
of this Library?” Answers and information on this topic will help inform
strategic and marketing plans.
Law/Legislative Reference Unit Office Assistant Ruth Shapleigh-Brown
received a “Distinguished Advocates Award” on November 16th from the
Commission on Culture and Tourism for her work to preserve history through
preserving records and artwork of Connecticut’s old burial grounds.
A Public Trust at Risk: The Heritage Health Index Report on the State of
America’s Collections has been published. The report documents the condition
and preservation needs of the nation’s collections, including some of its
most priceless treasures. The Index is a project of Heritage Preservation, a
non-profit organization, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.
Museum Director Dean Nelson, Archivist Mark Jones and Information Services
Director Lynne Newell participated in the survey by answering questions
about the Library, the Museum and the Archives. A summary informational
flyer is in your packets and is available at the reference Units. A copy of
the report will be cataloged for the collection. Full data from the survey
is available online at www.heritagehealthindex.org
As part of our activity on the NDIIPP (National Digital Information
Infrastructure and Preservation Program; Library of Congress) grant,
Government Information staff are testing new project software (Web Archives
Workbench Properties Tool) to select items for the Digital Archive and
identify domains to harvest from state agencies. Staff will be identifying
20+ major agencies and creating Properties records for them, using the CSL
thesaurus of Legislative terms.
With the funds for new titles, four new subscription e-resources were added
to the CSL Subscription Databases list, including:
- American State Papers, 1789-1838,
- Early American Newspapers, Series I 1690-1876,
- Public Documents Masterfile, and
- U.S. Congressional Serial Set, 1817-1980.
The first of the Connecticut Television Network (CTN) DVDs have been
cataloged and will be available in the Newspaper Room. Patrons can view them
on a public access PC or borrow them through circulation.
The Division of Information Services hosted a CT GODORT (Government
Documents Round Table) meeting at Van Block on November 9. A
Journal-Inquirer reporter gave a presentation on how he uses state documents
in his work.
Government Information Services convened a meeting of State Depository
Documents Librarians on November 9 at Van Block. Government Information
Services Unit Head Julie Schwartz gave a presentation on the Connecticut
Digital Archive, and the group discussed possible changes in the Connecticut
Document Depository system as state agencies shift to electronic publishing.
In the first four months of Fiscal 2006, 20,269 reference questions were
answered, either in person, by phone, or by email. Over 23,000 patrons
visited the Library to use its collections and services.
DIVISION OF LIBRARY DEVELOPMENT
All of Connecticut's principal public libraries successfully locked in their
data for the State Library Annual Statistical Report by the statutory
deadline of November 15th. This is the fourth year that they have been able
to submit their data through an online form through the vendor Bibliostat
Collect. This data is used to calculate the State Aid to principal public
libraries, compile the State Library's Statistical Profile, and to
participate in the annual U.S. Dept of Education's Public Library Survey
data collection. In addition to the 164 principal libraries, 18
non-principal libraries submitted data.
Joanne Turschman, State Library Data Coordinator attended a three day annual
conference in Washington D.C. for State Data Coordinators to learn the new
web based submission procedure of Connecticut's public library data to the
U.S. Dept of Education in 2006. Ms. Turschman received the 2004 Keppler
Award for timely and accurate submission of data.
Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA)
The State Program Report for the FY 2004 LSTA funds was completed in
December. The report details the use of funds in Connecticut over a two-year
period. The narrative portion, over 100 pages in length, was completed by
Willimantic Library Service Center Moves!!
The Willimantic Library Service Center has moved to its new location: 1320
Main Street, Suite 25, part of the Tyler Square Plaza in Willimantic. They
were closed starting January 3rd and reopened in their new location on
January 17th. Their phone and fax numbers will stay the same.
New Continuing Education Calendar
A new version of the Connecticut Library Continuing Education Calendar is
available at http://220.127.116.11/cslib/evanced/eventcalendar.asp. All
library CE opportunities from the State Library, the Connecticut Library
Consortium, the Connecticut Library Association and Capitol Community
College are listed here. The new calendar allows online registration.
Friends of Connecticut Libraries
The Friends of Connecticut Libraries has chosen the consulting firm of RPA,
Inc. of Williamsport, PA to research and write a handbook for Connecticut
library Friends groups. The handbook will contain essential information and
best practices for library Friends groups. The State Library is providing
LSTA funds to support this work. Anne Farrow, from the Features Department
of the Hartford Courant and author of Complicity will serve as Champion of
Friends of Libraries Month in April 2006. The Governor declares each April
as Friends of Libraries Month and the Friends of Connecticut Libraries
promotes its activities during the month distributing information on Friends
to all Connecticut libraries.
Jane Emerson, the Electronic Resources Coordinator at iCONN is retiring in
January. Please give her your best wishes and thanks for all her
contributions to making iCONN a success. In honor of her many years of
superb service and contributions to the Digital Library program, Ms. Emerson
received a special resolution from the Advisory Board at its December 7
meeting. Joining our staff starting December 30th is Lorraine (Lorri) Huddy,
former Electronic Resources Coordinator at Trinity College.
New health resources were added to the academic and public resource menus
and their associated classic menus. For public libraries, we added:
MedlinePlus (also included in federated searching); 2-1-1 Community
Resources Directory; Connecticut Consumer Health Information; and
Connecticut Physician Profiles. For college libraries, we added PubMed (also
included in federated searching).
Results of the iCONN public awareness survey that was performed by the UCONN
Center for Survey Research & Analysis were presented by UCONN at the
December Connecticut Digital Library Advisory Board (CDLAB) meeting. The
complete report is available at
http://www.iconn.org/iConnMarketingSurveyReport.aspx. The study showed that
iCONN and reQuest users are highly satisfied with iCONN and reQuest. It also
confirmed that the vast majority of Connecticut residents are not aware of
these services. Considerable room for growth was reflected in the high level
of interest among survey-takers who were not previously aware of the
service. The study further concluded that significant benefit will accrue to
the state if we can increase public familiarity with iCONN to the point of
critical mass – when word-of-mouth can have a “substantial impact.”
Currently, approximately 5% of the public is either somewhat or very
familiar with iCONN. To achieve a critical mass, this percentage needs to
increase to 30% – 35%). Our initial goal is to increase this percentage to
10% by the end of 2006, and to measure results with a follow-up survey at
the end of 2006.
A promotional package on iCONN is being mailed to approximately 280
associations in Connecticut that produce newsletters. The package includes
an insert about iCONN for the newsletter.
A link to the new iCONN brochure for educators is now on the Connecticut
Education Association's (CEA) website at www.cea.org - in "What's New" and
"Education Resources/Online & Interactive Resources". We have also submitted
an article about iCONN for publication in the next CEA and American
Federation of Teachers (AFT)-CT's member newsletters, which are mailed to
the homes of 35,000 CEA members and 26,000 AFT members. We believe these two
newsletters are an excellent way to increase awareness of iCONN among K-12
teachers in Connecticut.
The Connecticut Digital Library Advisory Board voted to elected four new
members pending approval of the State Library Board: Nicholas Eshelman,
University of Connecticut Storrs, academic librarian; Irene Iwan, Hartford
Public Library, public librarian; Carolyn Marcato, Fairfield Warde High
School, school librarian; and Anne-Marie Kaminsky, Lawrence & Memorial
Hospital, Business Community User. Alana Meloni completed her term on the
Board as a parent of K-12 Student. At its December 7 meeting, Alfred Hopkins
received a well-deserved proclamation from the Governor for his many years
of service as the first Chair of the Advisory Board. The Advisory Board will
elect a new Chair and Vice Chair and its next meeting on February 1.
PUBLIC RECORDS ADMINISTRATION AND ARCHIVES
In December 2005, the State Library awarded 46 historic document
preservation grants for Cycle 2 for a total of $354,861. For FY 2006 (Cycle
1 and 2 combined) the State Library awarded 153 grants for a total
On December 1, Eunice DiBella and Kathryn Makover conducted an on site visit
to the Hartford Town Clerk’s office to inspect new construction in the vault
and report on violations and recommendations.
The Application and Guidelines for the Historic Documents Preservation Grant
Program were distributed to Connecticut Towns and Municipalities January 1,
2006. The competitive grants will augment the targeted grant program that
has been in place since the legislation establishing the Historic Documents
Preservation Account was passed in 2000.
State Archives Accessions Impeachment Committee Records
On Friday, January 6, the State Archives received 315 boxes of records of
the Select Committee of Inquiry to Recommend Whether Sufficient Grounds
Exist for the House of Representatives to Impeach Governor John G. Rowland.
A large part of the accession consists of copies of documents subpoenaed by
the committee from state agencies. Also included are summonses, subpoenas,
transcripts and video tapes of all depositions conducted by the committee,
videos of committee hearings, all administrative records, including rules
adopted by the Committee, agendas and minutes of all committee hearings,
exhibits prepared by the committee, copies of materials received by the
committee with appropriate redactions pursuant to State and Federal laws and
regulations, and copies of all complaints, answers, briefs, motions and
documents received by or filed by the committee in connections with any
lawsuit to which the committee was a party.