October 15, 2019

At 30, UMW’s Simpson Library is an Open Book

Throughout its 30-year history, the University of Mary Washington’s Simpson Library has kept up with changing times and evolving technology. Its current collection claims online journals, a greater collection of electronic books than those in print and modern entities like the ThinkLab and Digital Archiving Lab. Photo by Norm Shafer.

Throughout its 30-year history, the University of Mary Washington’s Simpson Library has kept up with changing times and evolving technology. Its current collection claims online journals, a greater collection of electronic books than those in print and modern entities like the ThinkLab and Digital Archiving Lab. Photo by Norm Shafer.

James Pape doesn’t think of Simpson Library as being the big brick building with all the books across from the Hurley Convergence Center.

“The library is the entire campus,” said Pape, Simpson’s access services and outreach librarian. “Students are still using the library when they’re reading books or other materials in their residence halls or apartments, or even when they’re using our databases to conduct research.”

A storehouse of sources, it has served since 1989 as the University’s knowledge center, supporting teaching, learning, research and service happenings on and off campus. In celebration of its 30th anniversary, Simpson Library will hold a reception today, Oct. 2, from 3 to 5 p.m., for the campus community.

“On the outside, it may look much as it did when it opened 30 years ago, but inside we are evolving into a 21st-century library,” said University Librarian Rosemary Arneson, who pointed to online journals, a greater collection of electronic books than those in print and modern entities like the ThinkLab and Digital Archiving Lab. “At our heart, however, we continue to be committed to providing excellent service to the UMW community.” Read more. 

UMW ‘Keeps the Light On’ Banned Books Week

Born in Russia, UMW sophomore Katia Savelyeva has called America home for most of her life. But the English major sometimes wonders what it would be like had she stayed in St. Petersburg. “I hope I’d still do things that don’t require as much bravery here in the United States,” said Savelyeva, who read aloud […]

UMW ‘Keeps the Light On’ Banned Books Week

UMW sophomore Katia Savelyeva reads a chapter from emily m. danforth’s ‘The Miseducation of Cameron Post’ at UMW’s Banned Books Week Read Out on Wednesday. Photo by Matthew Binamira Sanders.

UMW sophomore Katia Savelyeva reads a chapter from emily m. danforth’s ‘The Miseducation of Cameron Post’ at UMW’s Banned Books Week Read Out on Wednesday. Photo by Matthew Binamira Sanders.

Born in Russia, UMW sophomore Katia Savelyeva has called America home for most of her life. But the English major sometimes wonders what it would be like had she stayed in St. Petersburg.

“I hope I’d still do things that don’t require as much bravery here in the United States,” said Savelyeva, who read aloud on Campus Walk Wednesday from a young adult book that was banned in an American school district, as part of Mary Washington’s annual Read Out event.

Held every September, this national awareness campaign by the American Library Association (ALA) and other organizations puts a spotlight on attempts to censor, challenge and ban books in libraries and schools. A collection of events and displays across campus this week highlights the need to “keep the light on” and celebrate the freedom to express all ideas. Read more. 

Durrant Organizes VIVA Collections Forum

Group photograph of all the presenters at the 2019 VIVA Collections Forum.

Group photograph of all the presenters at the 2019 VIVA Collections Forum.

Summer Durrant, Collection Services Librarian, chaired the planning committee for the VIVA Collections Forum, held at the VCCS System Office in Richmond on June 7, 2019.

The Collections Forum is an annual event sponsored by the Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA), Virginia’s academic library consortium. This year’s theme, “Building Diverse Collections,” featured a keynote presentation by Courtney L. Young, University Librarian at Colgate University, and lightning talks from librarians across the state on initiatives to intentionally select diverse and inclusive materials for their library collections.

Other session topics included promoting Open Educational Resources (OER) and an overview of the new Virginia Faculty Textbook Portal. Durrant also co-moderated a session on “Accessible Print and Electronic Collections,” where attendees discussed ways libraries can make their physical and online resources more accessible to users.

Around 100 academic librarians in Virginia attended the event.

Bales’ Chicago Cubs Book Reviewed in The Free Lance-Star

UMW Reference and Humanities Librarian Jack Bales has written a new book, "Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team." It's due out this spring. Photo by Karen Pearlman.

Reference and Humanities Librarian Jack Bales has written a new book, “Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team.” Photo by Karen Pearlman.

Reference and Humanities Librarian Jack Bales’ new book “Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team” was recently reviewed in The Free Lance-Star. The review states, “It is truly a perfect book to start a baseball season with. Not reading it before the season started certainly does not make it a less perfect book, but what a book to whet the appetite of any baseball fan and a must-read for fans of the Chicago Cubs.” Read more. 

Bales Discusses The Chicago Cubs Origins on Sports Podcast

UMW Reference and Humanities Librarian Jack Bales has written a new book, "Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team." It's due out this spring. Photo by Karen Pearlman.

UMW Reference and Humanities Librarian Jack Bales has written a new book, “Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team.” Photo by Karen Pearlman.

Reference and humanities librarian and baseball historian Jack Bales (Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team) was interviewed by the Good Seats Still Available podcast to delve into the surprisingly rich history of Major League Baseball’s long-time North Side Chicago franchise well prior to 1903, when they formally adopted their now-signature nickname.

http://goodseatsstillavailable.com/listen/2019/6/15/episode-117-the-chicago-cubs-origin-story-with-jack-bales

Bales' new book covers the Cubs' formative years.

Bales’ new book covers the Cubs’ formative years.

Two New Baseball-themed Exhibits in Simpson Library

UMW Reference and Humanities Librarian Jack Bales has written a new book, "Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team." Photo by Karen Pearlman.

UMW Reference and Humanities Librarian Jack Bales has written a new book, “Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team.” Photo by Karen Pearlman.

The next time you’re walking along Campus Walk, stop by Simpson Library and enjoy the two new exhibits on the first floor, arranged by Reference Librarian Jack Bales and Convergence Gallery Supervisor/Serials Assistant Tammy Hefner.

One of them features photographs and baseball history from Bales’ new book, Before They Were the Cubs: The Early Years of Chicago’s First Professional Baseball Team (McFarland, 2019).

The other exhibit focuses on the strange story of jilted lover Violet Popovich, who in June 1932 made headlines after she shot her Chicago Cub boyfriend, Billy Jurges. Violet’s wound was superficial, and she was booked on a charge of attempted murder. Billy recovered, and in a few weeks he was back on the baseball field. Although he refused to sign a complaint, Violet signed a singing contract with a local burlesque theater, billing herself as Violet Valli, “The Girl Who Shot for Love.” Preceding her on stage were the theater’s “Bare Cub Girls.”

Violet Valli adThe photographs and detailed narrative are based on Bales’ research and his award-winning article, “The Show Girl and the Shortstop: The Strange Saga of Violet Popovich and Her Shooting of Cub Billy Jurges” (Baseball Research Journal, fall 2016). “It’s an incredible story,” Bales said in a recent interview. “We’re talking attempted murder, stolen love letters, blackmail, a burlesque show, sex, and, of course, baseball. What else is there?”

Kemp Co-publishes Article on Maintaining and Preserving UMW Blogs

Angie Kemp, Digital Resources Librarian

Angie Kemp, Digital Resources Librarian

Angie Kemp, Digital Resources Librarian, recently had her co-authored article published in The Journal of Interactive Technology and Pedagogy. The article, written in collaboration with former DTLT colleagues Lee Skallerup-Bessette and Kris Shaffer, discusses the challenges of maintaining and preserving a large WordPress multisite installation and offers a potential path forward. “What Do You Do with 11,000 Blogs? Preserving, Archiving, and Maintaining UMW Blogs—A Case Study” can be accessed online here: https://jitp.commons.gc.cuny.edu/what-do-you-do-with-11000-blogs-preserving-archiving-and-maintaining-umw-blogs-a-case-study/

Book Donation is Music to UMW’s Ears

A definitive book of Russian music has been donated to the University of Mary Washington. The work “The Beauty of Belaieff,” which includes over 100 full color plates of first editions of Russian music and individual biographies, is now available in Simpson Library. UMW Piano Instructor Andrew Kraus holding “The Beauty of Belaieff.” “It will be a wonderful resource for our students and faculty to use when researching Russian music history and its composers,” said Special Collections Librarian Carolyn Parsons. “The volume is not only an excellent work on the history of Belaieff’s Russian music publishing house, but it is also a beautiful book with 144 color reproductions showcasing the works of many Russian composers of the late 19th and early 20th century.” The book donation is the product of a friendship between UMW Piano Instructor Andrew Kraus and Gillian Davis, the widow of the book’s author Richard Beattie Davis, who was an avid collector of first and early editions of Western and Russian music, including the works of Adolph Von Henselt. The friendship developed after Davis discovered that Kraus is one of a few pianists in the world who play Adolph Von Henselt’s music. Henselt, a German who worked in Russia in the 1800s, is known as a founder of the Russian school of pianism. “I’m thrilled to get [this book] for UMW and to have it in the library,” said Kraus. “Not every library will have it, and it could be used as a spring board for other artistic events.” Kraus plans to play a concert in the spring, “Henselt in Context” to commemorate the donation. Click here to view the embedded video.

Maker Mondays

ThinkLab

ThinkLab

Beginning Monday, September 8, the ThinkLab in Simpson Library will be open from 5 to 9 p.m. for an Open Hack night.  Faculty, staff, and students are encouraged to stop by to explore 3-D design and printing, tinker with e-textiles, or use any of the tools available in the lab.  Bring your projects and your curiosity.  Share what you know and learn from each other.