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.

Friday, January 29, 2010

52 Weeks To Better Genealogy - Challenge #4 Inter-Library Loan

My local library is shown at the left and you can read about it in  Challenge #1. In Challenge #4 our assignment is to, "Learn about your local public library’s inter-library loan (ILL) policy. Pick a genealogy-related book that you want to read that is not in your library’s collection. Ask the librarian how to request the book from another library. Find the different library systems from which you can request books through your own library, as this can dramatically increase the number of genealogy books to which you have access. If you have a genealogy blog, write about your experience with requesting items through your library’s ILL service."

I don't want to be fired because I didn't follow Amy's instructions exactly.  However, there just isn't time or the need for me to get a genealogy book, just for the sake of this challenge.  It is mid-winter which means snow, ice and cold in Massachusetts.  In addition, I have been told processing inter-library loans (ILL) is a very expensive process to deal with; a lot of wrapping, packing and mailing is involved.  Fortunately, they haven't begun to charge patrons, but it may be a reality some day, I heard $5 per request.

Our library belongs to the Merrimack Valley Library Consortium. along with quite a few other libraries (my guess is 30 towns).  That means, if I want a book that isn't in my library but is in one of the other libraries, I can get it rather quickly if it isn't checked out, otherwise, I am on a waiting list.  First, before I even think about ordering a book through ILL, I always check to see what libraries have it.  Sometimes, you may determine it might not even be available to your library or it just isn't worth the time and effort, if the book is across the country.

In June of 2009, I did a guest blog for Cheryl Palmer Cutting Back on Spending, in which I discuss inter-library loans and Worldcat.

At my library, the inter-library loan requests are processed differently. The order request is sent to another library, where all the requests from the entire consortium are processed. In the past, I have ordered and received two books using this method. One book had to be used at the library under our librarian's eyes. The other I was able to check out.

The books I got were:
1. The Van den Berghs in America by Stockman, R. Grunwell and B. Grunwell, (Lynchburg, VA: Pub. Robert L. Grunwell, 1994) from the Jones Library, Lynchburg, VA and,
2.  Molson, The Birth of a Business Empire by Hunter, Douglas, (Canada: Penguin Books, 2001) it came from Univ. of Maine.