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Today in History: Obama Publishes Dreams from My Father 

Did you know that Barack Obama, son of a black African father, and white American mother -- and 44th president of the United States -- originally published Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance on July 18, 1995? A memoir that became a number one bestseller when it was reissued in 2004, …

Posted 6 days ago by

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Today in History: Burr Slays Hamilton in Duel 

Hamilton is all the rage, and if you are lucky enough to get tickets then let us know! While some win lottery tickets, others are fortunate to get them another way -- through a business or personal connection, or outright purchase at hundreds of dollars per seat. With music, lyrics, and book authored by Lin-Manual Miranda, this …

Posted 13 days ago by

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Today in History: The Salvation Army Is Founded 

Especially during the Winter holidays you'll notice the Salvation Army around town. A ringing bell on the corner of Lexington and 42nd street heralds donors -- festive windows, snowflakes falling with the scurry of shoppers, as workers shuffle their feet, braving the cold for hours on end. It's all about giving, and what better time of year? …

Posted 19 days ago by

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Today in History: Blondin Crosses Niagara 

When we think of high wire artists, Philippe Petit comes vividly to mind, for he gained fame when he walked between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center on August 7, 1974. But did you know that Petit re-enacted in 1986 the amazing crossing of the Niagara River by Charles Blondin? On June 30, 1859, …

Posted 24 days ago by

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Story within a Story 

It is a gloomy wet night, and a crash of thunder propels me into the Starrett-Lehigh Building, a full-block, landmark freight terminal, warehouse, and office building which houses on its third floor the Centre for Social Innovation. Plastered to my shins are my khakis, which feel like onionskin in a dank New York City subway. A stranger …

Posted 28 days ago by

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Today in History: Summer Solstice 

The sun hangs at meridian in a cloudless lake of sky And there is shimmering stillness everywhere; The hushed secrecy of leaves beneath this summer noon, The shining silence of white steeples in blue air. Nothing moves except a monster butterfly that floats Above the clumps of white and purple phlox, And one small humming-bird …

Posted a month ago by

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News Display: Harriet Beecher Stowe Is Born 

Did you know that Harriet Beecher Stowe was born on June 14, 1811 in Litchfield, Connecticut to the Reverend Lyman Beecher and Roxanna Foote Beecher? One of many children, Stowe became a student and then a teacher at Hartford Female Seminary which was founded by her sister Catherine. Harriet began writing stories for a Cincinnati …

Posted a month ago by

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Today in History: World Environment Day 

With the recent U.S. federal government decision to pull out of the global climate change agreement, we look to historical concerns and current initiatives in our schools, communities, and cities, here and abroad. What constitutes a good quality of life, and why do certain factors in the environment affect the quality of life? How will environmental issues …

Posted a month ago by

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Today in History: Big Ben Rings Out! 

If you are walking around Westminster, London at high noon, you will still be in for the sound; you can't help but stop and listen to the loud, symbolic chimes of one of the greatest clock bells in the world -- Big Ben made all the more remarkable in the digital age, where we have come to expect accuracy and …

Posted a month ago by

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Library Services, Spring 2017: Library Instruction as Immersive Experience 

In Spring 2014 I had the good fortune to attend a performance of Shakespeare's Macbeth, with Sir Kenneth Branagh in the title role, at the Park Avenue Armory in New York; the official trailer may give you some sense of what the production was about: Another short video, in which Oz Woloshyn interviews Rebecca Robertson, President and Executive Producer of …

Posted 2 months ago by

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On Breaking the 4th Wall: Education Program, Spring 2017 

The fourth wall in theater or film is the one that separates the actors or characters from us. Actors in modern realistic theater ignore the audience, focusing their attention solely on the dramatic world. Disengaged from the audience, they are, for all intensive purposes, “alone” in a public setting -- but perhaps for the conceptual …

Posted 2 months ago by

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Today in History: Great Emigration Departs for Oregon 

Do you recall when you were first introduced to the Oregon Trail as a unit of study? Maybe you were in fourth grade and tasked with creating a diorama or model wagon? Or had to assume the character of a pioneer, write a letter, or visit the historic site? The Oregon Trail has long been an …

Posted 2 months ago by

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Today in History: Brown versus Board of Education 

Did you know that the Negro Education Club was alive and well at Teachers College in the 1920s? Mable Carney, Teachers College alumna and Head of the Department of Rural Education, 1917-1941, advocated for race relations? Or that Marion Thompson Wright, TC student, was the first Black historian to receive a doctorate at Columbia -- in 1941? An institution …

Posted 2 months ago by

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Today in History: Dust Storm! Great Plains to Eastern Seaboard 

Drylongso's eyes lit up. He nodded, eagerly. "Earth's not made to heave up so, but to lie down, The ground stands up to teach folks not to plow the grasslands." "Seems so, said Lindy's dad. "There was a dust storm once, started in New Mexico and traveled as far as Washington, D.C. Folks had overused …

Posted 2 months ago by

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Book Talk: Stitching Truth 

Author and journalist Jeff Kelly Lowenstein travelled to Santiago, Chile as a Fulbright Scholar in 2013, and so lived in Chile during the 40th Anniversary of the country’s 1973 military coup. His book The Chilean Chronicles: Moments and Memory Forty Years After the Pinochet Coup contains his observations of this important moment in Chilean history. …

Posted 2 months ago by

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Take Another Look! The Art of the Poster 

Whether they are produced in print or electronically, posters are an effective way to advertise and promote. Graphics and text combine to catch the eye and inform prospective attendees about upcoming events and offerings of the Gottesman Libraries' Education Program. But, did you ever wonder where the images come from? While many are found "labeled …

Posted 2 months ago by

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Today in History: May Day 

….Round them and above, Glitter, with dark recesses interposed, Casement, and cottage-roof, and stems of trees Half-veiled in vapoury cloud, the silver steam Of dews fast melting on their leafy boughs By the strong sunbeams smitten. Like a mast Of gold, the Maypole shines; as if the rays Of morning, aided by exhaling dew, With …

Posted 2 months ago by

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Celebrating Voices: International Poetry 

In researching our institution's connection to poetry, I am interested to learn that Professor Allan Abbott (1886-1956) sought to inspire reform in the teaching of English by encouraging teachers to tailor their selection of literature to student interests. Interestingly, he co-authored with M.R. Tribue, of the University of North Carolina, A Measure of Ability to Judge Poetry: …

Posted 2 months ago by

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Today in History: Library of Congress Is Established 

If you happen to stroll along First Street in our nation's capitol, you will stop dead in your tracks to admire the Thomas Jefferson Building, a grand example of the Beaux Arts; marble, granite, gold, bronze, and mahogany are among the fine materials used in a lead design by 19th century Washington architects, John L. Smithmeyer …

Posted 3 months ago by

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Today in History: Great San Francisco Earthquake 

Caused by a slip on the San Andreas Fault, the great San Francisco Earthquake occurred around 5:15 am on April 18, 1906, with a magnitude of close to 8 on the Richter scale. The earthquake, which lasted less than one minute, devastated the city of San Francisco, with wide spread building collapses and fires -- …

Posted 3 months ago by

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