A New Way to Create Finding Aids

July 22nd, 2016

Yesterday, WNYLRC hosted a workshop on “Creating Finding Aids with Empire ADC.” This is part of the Empire Archival Discovery Cooperative (EADC) project that we are cooperating on with the other library councils around the state. It allows our members to easily create DACS-compliant finding aids, and have them hosted on a statewide portal. The project uses an online tool called the EADitor that allows you to create your finding aids by filling in the appropriate fields.

The EADitor in action.

Laura Streett from Vassar College, along with Jennifer Palmentiero from the Southeastern New York Library Resources Council, gave an informative presentation and gave everyone a chance to practice creating finding aids for hypothetical archival collections.

Even if you didn’t attend yesterday’s workshop, you can still get involved. The EADC website is already live, so you can take a look at the finding aids that are already there.

Contact WNYLRC’s Digital Services Coordinator Jaclyn McKewan if you would like to use the site to create your own finding aids. She will work with you to arrange training on the tool and getting an account set up.

For more background on the project, watch the recording of a webinar held in May.

Western NY Resources for World War I

July 13th, 2016

For the past few years, many websites, publications and cultural institutions have been observing the 100th anniversary of the events of World War I. Some of the most notable include the First World War Centenary by the IWM (Imperial War Museums), and the United States World War One Centenary Commission.

But local resources are also available, which educators and librarians can use to highlight New York’s involvement in these events.

Let’s start with New York Heritage, the repository of digital collections. With an advanced search, we can find items that have been categorized within the LCSH of “World War 1914 – 1918.” Start by entering that term in the search box at the top of the page, and then click the option for an advanced search. Now we’re going to restrict this to an exact phrase search within the Subject field:


This takes us to a page with over 300 results. Many of these are from the “Camp Upton Postcards” collection from the Longwood Public Library, which documents the daily lives of the soldiers and civilians serving on Camp Upton, New York.



Onto New York State Historic Newspapers, the repository of digitized newspapers. Clicking on the Search page, I can limit my results to the dates of the war.

nyshnwwi b


If you are just looking for daily life during those times, that may be all you want to search for. But to find articles that specifically mention the war, do a phrase search for “great war.” Since it wasn’t known as World War I until later, you want to search for the name that was in use at that time.

You can further refine the search by selecting counties. Hold down the CTRL button as you select Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, and Orleans – this will get you results from WNYLRC’s region. We now have over 200 results.

For example, we have the Cattaraugus Republican from May 24, 1917, which features an advertisement encouraging people to buy war bonds from the Salamanca Trust Company. You can even export the page as a PNG or PDF file for easy viewing or printing.


If you want to move beyond local resources, there’s even more available. A page of World War I Education Resources has been created by the United States World War One Centennial Commission, the National WWI Museum and Memorial, along with multiple partner organizations. Here you’ll find links to a number of educational materials, which you can filter by grade level and subtopic.

Is your library doing anything to acknowledge World War I? Let us know so we can include you in a future blog article!

NYS Libraries Booth at the 2016 NYS Fair

July 8th, 2016

Plans are underway for the 2016 New York State Fair Libraries Booth. This will be our third consecutive year of showing fair goers from around the state just how amazing libraries are!

Thursday, August 25 through Monday, September 5
Science and Industry Building

The booth is staffed for 12 hours each of the 12 days of the Fair. Volunteers are needed to “work” a two-hour shift.

Interested in joining us this year? SIGN UP HERE. Limit two time slots per person. You will receive an admission ticket for the day (travel and parking on your own), a bright purple tee shirt and the satisfaction of advocating for your library.

Can’t squeeze a volunteer shift into your schedule? Please consider a DONATION to help offset the cost of the booth, admission tickets for volunteers, tee shirts and prize giveaways. Thank you for your support.

New York State Fair Website

(reposted from the CLRC blog)

Libraries and Librarians As Characters

June 28th, 2016

If living your profession is not quite fulfilling enough and you just have to have justification that libraries and librarians can hold star quality outside of your circle of colleagues, then perhaps you’d be interested in a blog by Robert Richart which posts an entry daily from a bibliography he has published, Promise the Infinite, of libraries and librarians in English language novels from the 18th to the 21st century. Who would believe there would be enough material for a blog based on this criteria?  Well, here’s the proof.  All genres from romance to science fiction are represented.  Now, just make sure your library orders some of these titles.

Library of Congress Tries to Retire “illegal alien”

June 22nd, 2016

There’s a little-known war going on and its prime combatant is the venerable Library of Congress.  It was not a war by design or intent but it became one when the LOC decided to investigate removing the term “illegal aliens” from its subject headings as it has removed other outdated, useless and offensive terms in the past.  It suggested the use of “noncitizens” to take the place of illegal aliens.  The term illegal aliens was not intended to have any social weight but, instead, was descriptive of the literature in use in the early 1990s.  The LOC has made changes before but this time the institution finds itself embroiled in a political mash-up.  Read.  Even state governments took up the mantle and have refrained from using the terminology.  It seems the Library of Congress was a trendsetter—-until–the House got in on the act and voted to “order” the Library of Congress to retain the term “illegal alien” because it is the “legal” term and because the government can cut funding for the library, compliance is required.  Needless to say, this argument followed party lines and though the vote fell on the side of retaining the term, the tide will likely change in the future.  Read.