Explore the Large Print Collection of the Indiana State Library

The Indiana State Library has over 16,000 large print titles as a part of the Talking Book and Braille Library collection; these books can be borrowed both by individual residents of Indiana and libraries in Indiana. Our collection consists of classic titles, current bestsellers, young adult novels, books that are being made into movies, as well as books in many more genres.

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‘Building it the right way from the ground up’: An interview with Gvido Burgis

The Indiana State Library Foundation is excited to announce its new Executive Director Gvido Burgis. Gvido is no stranger to the world of philanthropy and has a number of successes with nonprofits and government organizations. His enthusiasm for Gvido_2_prefered_webphilanthropy is contagious along with his warm smile and engaging personality. I had the opportunity to interview Gvido about his vision for the Indiana State Library. The following is an excerpt from our conversation.

RB: Tell me a bit about your background and how you advanced in the world of philanthropy?

GB: I guess I would have to step back into another galaxy far, far away in another lifetime. [Chuckling] Actually, I worked for state government for a number of years. I worked under Lieutenant Governor John Mutz in the 1980s. After the election in 1988 I believe, a lot of people who worked in the republican administrations were out looking for jobs. Somebody approached me about doing philanthropy because it’s a real people business. I started on the road of fundraising working for a consulting firm doing feasibility studies and capital campaigns for several years. There was a lot of travel involved with that over two and a half years. I traveled all over the country.

I returned to Indianapolis and worked as the Director of Development for the Humane Society for a number of years. I worked as an executive for this national organization for economic education for clergy. After that I came to Visiting Nurse Service as the Vice President of Development and worked there for nearly 18 years. We built this tiny foundation they had with total assets of maybe three million and through a series of campaigns and events; we built it to an organization of around 18 million. Continue reading

The Advance-Rumely Company of LaPorte, Indiana

In the early 20th century, Indiana was home to the Advance-Rumely company, which produced farming and agricultural machinery that was used all over the country. The company was officially formed in 1915, but traces its origins back to 1848 when Meinrad Rumely came to America. His business venture became known as the M. Rumely Company in 1887, and produced incredibly popular agricultural products such as the Rumely Oil Pull, which was a gasoline powered tractor.
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Searching for Death Notices or Obituaries in Indiana Newspapers

Searching newspapers for death notices or obituaries in Indiana newspapers can sometimes be challenging. In many cases, Indiana newspapers did not contain death information on the average citizen until well after the turn of the 20th Century.  Conversely, other titles contained birth, death and marriage announcements in the 1850’s or before. For example, the Indianapolis Locomotive, a humor and local gossip-based newspaper published death notices such as this one found in the August 25, 1849 edition:

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Information at Your Fingertips: Exploring ISL’s Online Resources

So many roadblocks can put a screeching halt to a genealogist’s quest to find his or her lineage. The disheartening fact that the records do not exist can often be a turning point. While such matters can put a damper on your research efforts, exploring resources in unfamiliar territory is often a source of hope. Vastly different records can be found in the numerous databases that exist and can be very helpful in providing clues to put the genealogy puzzle pieces in place. The Indiana State Library provides access to numerous databases that serve as rich resources and sometimes provide much needed information. Continue reading

‘Happy Birthday, Indiana’ Bicentennial Manuscript Collection: An Introduction

Between June 10th and June 29th, 1816, the first Indiana Constitutional Convention met at the territorial capital, Corydon, and created the Constitution for admission to the Union. Friday, December 11, 2015, marked the 199th anniversary of the day President James Madison signed the act admitting Indiana as the 19th state.

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Constitutional Elm, Corydon, Indiana, circa 1921-1925; Delegates to the 1816 constitutional convention worked under the shade of this tree.

The official countdown to Indiana’s 200th birthday began when over 120 fourth grade students participated in several Statehood Day activities at the library, including the creation of birthday cards. To learn more about the day, please visit our previous blog post.

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Statehood Day, December 11, 2015;Students participate in creating birthday cards for Indiana’s birthday

The bicentennial manuscript collection project was drafted in April 2014 and endorsed by the Bicentennial Commission in late 2014. Beginning in January 2016, fourth grade students from around the state will be asked to decorate special, acid-free birthday cards supplied by the library while briefly explaining “Why do you love Indiana?” andIBCLegacyProject_web “What does being a Hoosier mean to you?” The completed collection will include around 10,000 cards from each county and will be preserved for many generations with other notable collections, including William Henry Harrision, Abraham Lincoln and Helen Keller correspondence as well as the Treaty of St. Mary’s.

The first 500 cards received by June 1, 2016 will be on display in the Indiana State Library Exhibition Hall during the summer of 2016. If your class or student would like to participate, please contact a regional planner from the map or Bethany Fiechter, Rare Books and Manuscripts Division Supervisor at bfiechter@library.IN.gov.

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This blog post was written by Bethany Fiechter, Rare Books and Manuscripts Supervisor. For more information, contact the Rare Books and Manuscripts Division at (317) 232-3671 or “Ask-A-Librarian” at http://www.in.gov/library/ask.htm

 

This Week in Indiana History: Unigov

January 1, 1970

On this week in Indiana history, Unigov went into effect. It consolidated the city of Indianapolis with Marion County, and dramatically increased the size of the city. This let the city keep up with recent population growth and trends.

Due to Unigov, Indianapolis became the 12th most populated city in Amer-ica overnight. However, it wasn’t without opposition. The re-organization and the expansion of the city into the outer suburbs would dramatically in-crease the voting population, and change the political environment of the city.

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This information packet included important information about Unigov for Indianapolis citizens. You can read it, and many more items like it, at the Indiana State Library.

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New Grant Opportunity from the Indiana State Library Foundation

The Indiana State Library Foundation in collaboration with the Indiana State Library’s Talking Book & Braille Library is seeking applicants for a new grant supporting talking book patrons with the purchase of assistive technology devices. The grants will provide monetary reimbursements in amounts ranging from $50 to $1,000 towards the purchase of an assistive technology device of the grant recipient’s choosing. These devices remove many barriers to education and employment for visually impaired individuals and may include: video magnifiers, optical character recognition systems, speech systems, etc.Assistive_Tech_Picture_web Continue reading

An interview with Hope Greathouse

Southwest Regional Coordinator Amber Painter recently interviewed Hope Greathouse from the Madison Correctional Facility in Madison, Indiana. Madison Correctional edited2Facility is one of the many correctional facilities in Indiana that possesses a library. Hope is the library supervisor at the facility who has been serving inmates in the adult correctional facility for several years.

AP: Are you from the Area?
HG: I am originally from Pendleton, Indiana

AP: What inspired you to work in libraries?
HG: I have a degree in education. Since I have started working in the adult correctional facility as the administrative assistant, I don’t really get a chance to use my degree and to pursue my passion. The library allows me to keep in touch with my educator side.

AP: What is your favorite book?
HG: My favorite book is “I Know This Much is True” by Wally Lamb.

AP: If you could have dinner with any three famous people in recorded history, who would they be and why?
HG: I would love to have dinner with Abraham Lincoln. He was President during such a trying time in our nation’s history. I would love to have dinner with Robin Williams because he was so funny and played so many great roles. I would love to have dinner with Oprah as I think she is a great philanthropist and she also has great taste in books.

AP: What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?
HG: When I am not at work I love reading, camping, and vacationing with family.

This blog post was written by Amber Painter, Southwest Regional Coordinator. For more information, contact the Professional Development Office at (317) 232-3697 or email statewideservices@library.in.gov.  

Interview with Jefferson County Public Library Director Mark Mellang

Southwest Regional Coordinator Amber Painter recently had the opportunity to Mellang - Library Photointerview Jefferson County Public Library Director Mark Mellang. The following is an excerpt from their conversation.

AP: Are you from the Area?

MM: I’m not from Jefferson County, but I grew up in Southeastern Indiana, specifically Rising Sun. After graduating from IUPUI and applying for library jobs throughout the Midwest, the best offer I received was from the Aurora Public Library, which is the town just north of Rising Sun. After getting married and starting a family, I had deep roots in the area. The chance to become a director and remain in Southeast Indiana was a dream come true. Continue reading