A New Name and Other Changes

You may have noticed that one of the many changes going on to the library is the addition of a new name. Made official by the dedication ceremony over the weekend, the library at USF will now be known as the LaVerne & Dorothy Brown Library.

It was named to honor extraordinary leadership and outstanding support given to the University of St. Francis and the community. LaVerne “Bitz” and Dorothy “Dottie” Brown have provided leadership to improve the quality of life for citizens through education, health care and community development.

Mr. Brown served as a member of the university’s Board of Trustees from 1974 to 2011, one of the longest serving members. The USF Board of Trustees approved the library naming last spring.

Other changes made to the library recently include the newly renovated entryway; landscaping improvements, complete with the addition of outdoor seating; the renovation of the Curriculum Lab into the Special Education Assistance Technologies (SEAT) Lab; a renovated elevator and the upgrading of the student computer workstations in the library’s computer lab.

For photos of the exterior changes, head over to the Brown Library’s Archives blog.


New Guide: Primary Sources

How great is the new primary sources guide available through USF Library? So great that we’re releasing it to you before it’s completely finished!

Currently available section include U.S. history primary sources by date (from about 1600-present) and by region, sources by type and sources by person. The sources by type and by person are still very much works in progress and will be continually added to as the content is organized. Additional pages for international resources will also be coming shortly.

If you have a favorite primary resource you’d like to see covered, or if you have a research topic and are wondering about the existence of a primary resource collection on that topic, please contact Lisa.


Friday Finds: The Deadly Virus, Influenza Epidemic of 1918

From NARA collection: The Deadly Virus

‘Tis the season to be reminded repeatedly to go out and get a flu shot. And in honor of this, I’ve decided to put the flu in focus, specifically the epidemic of 1918, and make this week’s Friday Find the digital collection: The Deadly Virus, from the National Archives and Records Administration.

The first of two flu pandemics involving H1N1 (the other occurred recently, in 2009), the 1918 flu sickened and killed an estimated 50 million people in a single year. For some perspective, World War I, in its entirety saw a loss of life totaling an estimated 16 million. It often struck without warning, and came on in two waves. In the first wave which came about in the spring of 1918, sufferers experienced a three day fever, and seemed to improve afterwards. The second wave, in the fall of 1918, was much worse. Victims died quickly after becoming ill, some in as little time as a few hours.


Friday Finds: Google Public Data Explorer

Ever wonder what the history of the minimum wage in Europe was? Or what the energy consumption, production or expenditures by state have been in the past?

For all you data hounds, there is Google Public Data Explorer, a minimalist website that lists public data topics which you can select and limit to view a graphical representation of the data. Data available is largely from the U.S., although data from Australia and Europe, as well as some worldwide statistics, are available. Topics covered range from health, to economics to education and cover nearly everything in between.

What makes this an even greater resource, is that in addition to graphically representing the data, Google Public Data Explorer links back to where the data was retrieved from, allowing data seekers to review and cite the appropriate source of the data.

Interested in finding more data and statistics? Head on over to USF Library’s Locating Data & Statistics LibGuide for additional places to find data and statistics.

Accessing the Wireless on Campus

The wireless network was recently upgraded to ensure better security and access to USF resources. For an overview on how to set up the wireless on your device, please see the USF Library Wireless Access page, or visit the USF DoIT website.

If you have questions or need additional assistance accessing the campus wireless network, please contact the USF IT department at 815.740.3432 or stop by the IT offices in room MG07 in Marian Hall.

Quick Links: Wireless instructions by device

iPhone | Android | Windows XP | Vista | Windows 7 | Mac OS10

Friday Finds: Public Information Films

This week’s find is from the British National Archives. Recently they have made available their public information films, which stateside we think of as public service announcements, from 1945- 2006.

While the PSAs we’re familiar with tend to be somewhat campy, the tactic the Brits use is more along the lines of being scared straight and ranged from how to properly cross the street (using the confusing mnemonic SPLINK) to the dangers of playing near or in unfamiliar water.

There are hundreds of short videos available through the National Archives.  Swing on over if you’re interested to see how the British government encouraged its citizens to live during the mid- to late-twentieth century.


Friday Finds: The Living Room Candidate

Despite the presidential election being over a year away, publicity for the presidential campaigns are heating up. Regardless of your politics, the campaigns of presidential candidates are always interesting. Take a trip into the past to see how previous candidates campaigned with The Living Room Candidate, a website that maintains an archive of presidential candidates’ television commercials.

Want to know what the commercials were like the last time Illinois went red in an election? (It was 1988, by the way.) Interested in all the commercials that have to do with taxes? Did you know that Obama’s wasn’t the first candidate to campaign largely on the platform of change? (It was Eisenhower, but the reasons for calling for change were surprisingly similar to Obama’s.)

So make a little time for this blast from the past and get to know how the country’s previous presidential candidates campaigned.

The Living Room Candidate– from the Museum of the Moving Image