My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

An Ancestor, FB friend Pam, and the Cincinnati Library, 1874

On June 5th, I wrote facebook and blogger friend, Pam Seavey Schaffner (blogger of Digging Down East, who currently lives in Cincinnati to see if she could help me out. Earlier that day, I discovered on a google search, a historical marker is in front of the Cincinnati Library, and it mentioned my 2nd great-grandfather! I wondered if Pam would be able to take a photo of the marker. The next day, she did as well as other photos, which are below. Thanks Pam.
Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County
Among the first in America, Cincinnati's public library dates from March 14, 1853. A public reading room opened in 1856, but funding remained a problem until 1867, when local school board president Rufus King II secured legislation for a renamed Cincinnati Public Library. In 1869, King lured leading librarian William Frederick Poole to organize Cincinnati as a national model for the growing public library movement. Poole designed 19th century America's most advanced library at 629 Vine Street, which fully opened in 1874. Becoming a countywide system in 1898, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County was a pioneer in the 20th century with special services for the blind and for children, bookmobile services, and circulation of audiovisual materials. (continued on other side)
Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County
The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County's new Main Library that opened in 1955 at the corner of Eighth and Vine was post-war America's first major central public library. It was dedicated as a memorial to the servicemen and women from Hamilton County killed while in the Armed Forces. Its boldly modern "International Style" exterior was the work of local architect Woodie Garber, and its consumer-oriented "department store of knowledge" layout was the creation of Librarian Carl Vitz. The 1955 "New Main" garnered national attention and architectural praise for its sidewalk "store" entrance, generous use of glass, bright colors, rooftop terraces, and serpentine brick garden wall. Additions in 1982 and 1997 quadrupled the size of the Main Library. 
 Books in park, located in front of the Library.

Above photos taken by Pam Seavey Schaffner

In addition, I ordered the book, "Free and Public: One Hundred and Fifty Years at the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, 1853-2003" by John Fleichman. Thanks Pam for suggesting this.

Speaking of books, my above ancestor wrote, "The Construction of Library Buildings" now a Google book, for free.
Regarding the book cover picture, Mr. Poole wrote, "3. I object, in the third place, to the shelving of books in galleries under any circumstances, and especially in this instance, where the alcoves are piled one upon another  six stories high. I may group my objections under three heads:
(a) Because galleries are a wasteful expenditure of the physical strength of attendants in climbing stairs and of the time of readers in waiting for their books." Thank goodness people listened to him." And, on Page 23, "Mr. Poole's plan of a fire proof library is highly original, and deserving of serious consideration by those who have occasion to erect new library buildings.
Update: In June 2014, my above mentioned Pam sent me an online article about the Library, called, "Seriously though, how did the most Beautiful Library in America get Demolished" by MessyNessy, June 17, 2014.