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Weekly Shhhout-Out

Roaming librarians file dispatches from the world of information.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Several months ago I discovered Ranger Surplus, a store located in Rockville, "saving you money on surplus, survival and outdoor gear," its webpage brags. The selection of army/navy supplies are varied and interesting, reflecting past and present armed services gear...and it got me thinking of military science and history.

A weird Stream-of-Consciousness, huh?

Among MCPL's plethora of reading material, here are some titles to select from Said Subject:

* "Battle" by Richard Holmes. Call Number: J 355. This is part of the Eyewitness Series (if you're not familiar with these, you SHOULD be -- they're great!). Discover the weapons, equipment, and tactics used in conflicts throughout the ages. Great illustrations!

* "Ripples of Battle: How Wars of the Past Still Determine How We Fight, How We Live and How We Think" by Victor Davis Hanson. 355.02 HAN. The title says it all. :-)

* "The Roman Army: The Legendary Soldiers Who Created an Empire" by Dyan Blacklock. J 355 BLA. An illustrated history of the Roman Army, including information about its composition, organization, training, methods, weapons, and campaigns

* "Shades of Blue and Gray: An Introductory Military History of the Civil War" by Herman Hattaway. 973.73 HAT.

If you're interested in online resources, check MCPL's "History and Current Events" section under "Research a Topic." Databases are available focusing on American history, world history, African-American studies and opposing viewpoints on controversial social issues.

Despite the adage that "history teaches us nothing," an ocassional review of The Past may help guide us in (or guide us away from) certain actions in the future.

Happy reading -- happy learning!

POSTED: 1:03:00 PM |

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Demonstrators Who Came to Stay

Wall Street collageThe recent Occupy Wall Street movement has brought scores of demonstrators into New York City and other cities throughout the country. The United States has a long tradition of protest marches, demonstrations and parades.  Who can forget the BostProtestors in front of the White House.on Tea Party? Most demonstrations are staged in a finite period; organizers chose an afternoon or evening for the rally. When the rally is over, the crowd disperses and the participants go home.  However, since at least the late 1800's when Coxey's Army arrived in Washington, some protestor's have come to stay. Economic issues are often the main the focus of these protests. 

Cover to THe Bonus ArmyCoxey's Army came to Washington, DC from all over the country to ask for financial relief for the thousands suffering during the Panic of 1893. In 1932, the Bonus Marchers or Bonus Army moved into Washington creating shanty towns or Hoovervilles to shelter their protesters.  This group was seeking financial relief from the government, too.  The Bonus Marchers were World War I Veterans.  These veterans wanted the bonuses they had been promised. If you want to know more about the Bonus Marchers, you can listen to a National Public Radio Soundprint broadcast, or read the book, The Bonus Army: an American Epic by Eric Dickson. The tradition continued, when in 1968, The Reverend Ralph Abernathy led the Poor People's March on Washington.  Many of the marchers lived for a time in Resurrection City. You can read original articles written at the time of any of these demonstrations by accessing the Historical Newspapers DatabCover Image, 33 Revolutions Per Minutease.

Chants and music were a large part of these marches, too. According to the Hoover Archives, the Bonus Marchers chanted,

Mellon pulled the whistle.

Hoover Rang the Bell.

Wall Street gave the Signal 

 And the Country went to Hell.

The protest song tradition is described in 33 Revolutions Per Minute: a History of Protest Songs, from Billie Holiday to Green Day by Dorian Lynskey . A good companion for this book is the The Smithsonian Global Sound for Libraries. The resource has a genre called, " Protest and Struggle." There are albums and tracks to download or play.

Montgomery County Public Libraries offers many historical fiction titles set in these time Cover image: Potato: A Tale from the Great Depressionperiods. Some titles include, for adults  the John Steinbeck classic, the Grapes of Wrath and The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver. Titles for school age children include Christopher Paul Curtis's award winning novel, Bud, Not Buddy or Rebecca, a Maryland Farm Girl by Diane Leatherman. Karen Hesse's Newbery Award winning free verse novel, Out of the Dust is a children's title adult and older children may wish to share. The picture book, Potato: a Tale from the Great Depression by Kate Lied, provides a way to explain economic depressions to younger children. To find other titles, search using the terms "fiction and depressions."

I Barbara M.

CATEGORIES: Barbara M. , History , Music
POSTED: 11:02:00 AM |

Monday, October 03, 2011

Dollars & Sense @ Your Library

Lately it’s been all about the money, especially down in the Nation’s Pocketbook err… Capital. Do we spend, spend, spend or do we cut, cut, cut? For many individuals, the answer seems to be save, save, save. But, what do you do with the money you’re saving? Put it in a bank? Invest it in stocks or mutual funds? Just stuff it under the mattress? MCPL can help you answer these and other financial questions with an array of online and offline resources.
The Money Class     by Suze OrmanThe 10 Commandments of Money     by Liz Pulliam Weston                   America, Welcome to the Poorhouse     by Jane White
For online money saving tips, check out our LibGuide at http://montgomerycountymd.libguides.com/investing.  There, you'll find an array of resources from Value Line to Financial Literacy Now to the Motley Fool.  For information on the continuing financial crisis, visit http://montgomerycountymd.libguides.com/financialcrisis.

Meanwhile, Uncle Sam and his state-level counterparts are already getting ready to collect the money that will be spent (or not) in the next fiscal year. We were just reminded last week to get in our orders to the IRS so that we’ll have plenty of tax forms available for the masses come January. Don’t expect to find State of Maryland tax forms at the library though. Maryland is phasing out paper forms starting with this upcoming tax year. Paper forms will be made available by request only (while supplies last). To request yours, you’ll need to send an e-mail to taxforms@comp.state.md.us or to call 1-800-MD-TAXES between 8:00am and 5:00pm Monday – Friday to have them sent to you. I’d still try out the electronic forms though because after this tax year, paper tax forms will no longer be available at all.

Here's to more profitable times ahead!
 Chris Chris B.
CATEGORIES: Chris B. , Economics , Money , Taxes
POSTED: 1:19:00 PM |
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