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Bat Puvis hilar
NOTE. The editors are glad to be able
the Board of Trustees and from the Li-
I have learned with interest
that it is proposed to publish a
little monthly entitled "Library
Life," which is to circulate among
the members of the Library staff,
and serve as a means of communi-
Ever since my association with
the Library in 1917 I have felt the
need of a staff bulletin as a factor
service. Until the present, how-
ever, neither the times nor circum-
stances have conspired to make
possible a publication which will
bring to the notice of all the
employees of the Library matters
of common and current interest
within and without the system.
Such a paper, issued at regular
periods, should do much to in-
chosen profession and to broaden
our knowledge of the institution
Under careful guidance the publi-
SWAMPSCOTT CONFERENCE OF THE AMERICAN LIBRARY ASSOCIATION
During the last week in June the American Library Association, for the second time since the year 1900, held its annual conference in Massachusetts. The meeting place was ideal and justified the expectations of those who selected it. The New Ocean House at Swampscott, fronting directly on the ocean, is near neighbor to the sandy curve of Fisherman's Beach, dotted off shore by the boats of the fishing fleet, and more distant neighbor to the long sweep of Lynn Beach and the bold rocks of Nahant. By night the twinkling lights of Egg Rock and the Graves add the gleams of romance, which, to inland dwellers,
always radiate from a lighthouse.
On arrival at Swampscott, the visitors were met by members of a hospitality committee, and on registration each one was presented with an envelope containing guides, maps, and descriptive leaflets, as well as current publications of libraries in greater Boston.
This Library may be allowed a feel
Those of us who traveled from town found the broad piazzas pleasant places for talk and rest, while the guests within the house were cordial in their expression of satisfaction with the hotel management.
General sessions were held in the huge concrete garage, through which at times the breezes swept and at other times the mosquitoes. Section meetings occupied the different parlors of the hotel.
A record attendance marked the conference. Advance registration was large, and the number of those actually present even larger, 1900 in all.
ing of institutional pride in remembering that Mr. Belden was chairman of the local committee on arrangements, and that the machinery for handling this great gathering, the largest library convention ever held, was perfected under his direction.
That it bore one test of all good machinery, not obtruding itself, but remaining in the background, proved the efficiency of the organization.
Various sub-committees gave un
Mulcahey sparingly of time and energy to insure the smooth execution of countless details concerned with the transportation, housing, comfort and entertainment of so many strangers.
It almost goes without saying that there have never before been so many of the staff of the Boston Public Library at an A. L. A. convention. The advance list contains the names of 139 who planned to be at Swampscott for one or more meetings. We were represented on the programme, too. Dr. Mann, the President of the Board, spoke on the "Function of the Library Trustee," at a meeting of the Trustees' Section, Mr. Belden read a paper on "Co-operation between Public and
Special Libraries," and Miss Agnes Doyle discussed the "Necessity for a Coöperative Index of Coats of Arms."
Formal reports of papers and discussions will appear in the published proceedings of the conference, where we can all read them. Much practical value lay also in the informal talk between people interested in the same things, in the exchange of ideas, and in the contact with library workers. from many different places. After one has attended several conferences the widening circle of acquaintances becomes a source of added pleasure.
To balance the business side of a convention some recreation in the form of excursions is needed, and this year we were offered a tempting array of opportunities to visit points of historic interest in good library company. Mr. Chase had this matter in hand and exhibited to a high degree the qualities of a skilled guide. Indeed, he was so successful in carrying out schedules and marshalling his parties on the Lexington-Concord and Plymouth trips that a post-conference visitor gasped in amazement on finding him at the Reference Desk in Bates Hall. "I thought he was a professional travel-director," she confessed.
No event of the whole week aroused more enthusiasm than the reception in our own Library, given jointly by the State Library Commissioners and the Trustees of the Library; it was an occasion to which we may look back in the complete satisfaction that it could not have been more perfect. After weeks of unclouded sunshine it was easy to be apprehensive of a possible change which would have wrecked everything, but Massachusetts was on her best behavior and the evening was exactly right.
We who saw our courtyard that Thursday evening will never forget the impression made by the beauty of its dignified decoration, the ropes of laurel simply looped between the great pillars, the soft light of the lanterns which hung beneath the colonnade. The visiting librarians to the number. of 1200 thronged the court, seated on the cherished grass, on the balconies
and in the arcade. As daylight faded into moonlight more than one person alluded to a scene from the Arabian Nights.
A programme of rich literary and musical interest was provided. The Governor, the Mayor, and Dr. Mann all spoke in welcoming vein, and these were followed by the poets, Robert Frost and Josephine Preston Peabody (Marks), and Joseph Lincoln, the story-teller of Cape Cod. Excellent music was provided by the Footlight Orchestra, conducted by Mr. Charles Fonteyn Manney, and the Harvard Alumni Chorus, under the direction of Mr. Malcolm Lang, gave delight by their singing. The printed programme distributed to those in attendance is an example of the work of our Printing Department and contains also a photogravure of the colonnade from a photograph by a member of the staff.
The enjoyment of our guests was expressed in expressed in terms of unqualified praise both then and thereafter. One lady voiced her feelings in verse which you may some day see in print. Repeatedly we heard it said that never had the A. L. A. been tendered a reception to compare with this. Perhaps the warmest measure of approval was given by a librarian from the Middle West, who declared, "I think there ought not to be another Convention for two years, for no matter where it is held, no other city in the country can equal what Boston has done for us." A. M. J.
THE DANTE EXHIBITION.
It was fitting that during the greater part of the past year the exhibition room of the Central Library should have been devoted to the Pilgrim Tercentenary. Even the most ardent devotee of modernity must willingly admit the propriety of such an exhibition in the capital of Massachusetts and in the library which houses the Prince Collection.
To the public of to-day the municipal library no longer represents a storehouse of bibliographic rarities. and antique erudition, it has become