Friday, June 12, 2015

Finding it first : the almost lost John R. Steelman dissertation

Back in 2008 I received a grant from the University of Montevallo to research John R. Steelman.  From 1928 - 1934, Dr. Steelman taught at Alabama College for Women, now known as the University of Montevallo.  I was curious about why he came to Montevallo to teach sociology and how did he go from professor to become the first modern day Chief of Staff to President Truman?

One of the first steps in my research was to attempt to locate a copy of his dissertation. The  University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's library appeared to be the only library with a record for his dissertation.  When I requested the dissertation through interlibrary loan, I received a message from Chapel Hill that  only one copy was in existence and they did not want to lend the copy. Instead, the library volunteered to digitize the entire dissertation and make it available on the Internet Archive site.

My interlibrary loan request for Dr. Steelman's dissertation written in 1928, 'A Study of Mob Action in the South' prompted the library to digitize the sole remaining print copy in existence.  What an exciting moment for a librarian!

You can read about my request in the blog entry by Harry McKown called 'Hobo to Presidential Advisor.'

As of today, 2098 researchers have viewed Dr. Steelman's dissertation on the Internet Archive.

The University of Montevallo offers a new course, Digital History.  The students in the course create digital projects using primary sources from the University of Montevallo's Annie Crawford Milner Archives.  One of the digital projects  'The Remarkable Rise of John R. Steelman'  provides details from primary source material in our archives, about Dr. Steelman's career in education, politics and his role in race relations in Alabama.  

I hope you will enjoy viewing the students work.

Kathleen Lowe
Director of Carmichael Library

Monday, June 01, 2015

New book from Pat R. Scales, UM graduate is out!

Pat R. Scales' new book  Books Under Fire: a Hit List of Banned and Challenged Children's Books, is one of three Top-Selling books published by the America Library Association.
 (American Libraries, June 2015).

Pat is a graduate of the University of Montevallo. Some of her other books include Teaching Banned Books: Twelve Guides for Young Readers and Protecting Intellectual Freedom in Your School Library.

Her newest book is receiving excellent reviews.  Michael Cart of Booklist writes

" Books under Fire contains a veritable arsenal of information to employ when the book challenger comes knocking at the library’s door. The heart of the book is a copiously annotated list of 34 often challenged children’s books or series. "  Booklist, March 15, 2105.

Librarians can face challenges and requests to ban reading material in the library. Pat gives advise and clear direction on how to handle threats to freedom of speech and choice. Her new book is an invaluable tool for teachers, librarians and school administrators.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Summer I Library Hours

Today marks the end of our May Term hours. We will reopen Tuesday, May 26th, from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. On Wednesday, we will begin the Summer I and Summer II schedule listed below. The only exceptions to this schedule are June 29th (8 a.m. - 5 p.m.) and July 3rd (closed). Operating hours for the entire year can be found on Carmichael Library's website (

Summer I and II 2015 Hours (May 27 - July 31)
Sunday2:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Monday7:30 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Tuesday7:30 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday7:30 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Thursday7:30 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Friday7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Finals Week Library Hours

Carmichael Library has announced extended hours during the upcoming finals week. They are:

• Saturday, April 25, from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.
• Sunday, April 26, from  2:00 p.m. until 2 a.m.
• Monday, April 27, from 7:30 a.m. until 2 a.m.
• Tuesday, April 28, from 7:30 a.m. until 2 a.m.
• Wednesday, April 29, from 7:30 a.m. until 2 a.m.
• Thursday, April 30, from 7:30 a.m. until 11 p.m.
• Friday, May 1, from 7:30 a.m. until 5 p.m.

The ever-popular Cereal Night will take place on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday nights starting at around 8 p.m. What’s your favorite, and will the milk and cereal ever come out even? (This will NOT be on the final!)

Monday, April 13, 2015

National Library Week

Please join Carmichael Library in celebrating National Library Week, April 12 - 18, 2015. National Library Week is a time to pause and celebrate the contributions of our nation's libraries and library workers and to promote library use. 

For me, the public library is like a home away from home.  I grew up spending hours in the local public library in rural Pennsylvania.  My mother returned to college when I was in third grade.  I spent hours in her college library while she was in class.  It is no wonder that I now work in a library!  Even after spending a long week working in the Carmichael Library, almost every weekend, I go to the Hoover Public Library.  I am in awe of all the good things a public library can add to the community. 

I hope you will watch this YouTube video and see and listen to how libraries can bring hope and happiness to a campus and community. 

I welcome you to share your story about how libraries have impacted your life. 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Spring Break Hours

Spring Break  by Scout
openclipart (Creative Commons)
Carmichael Library will close at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, March 27 for Spring Break. We will reopen at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, April 5.

Remember, you may still access library resources 24/7 online at

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

The 13th Annual Montevallo Literary Festival (Friday, March 20, 2015)

Just in time for Women's History Month, the Montevallo Literary Festival is proud to feature four amazing women--Nickole Brown, Jessica Jacobs, Amy Lemmon, and Catherine Wing. These four poets will read from their respective works at this year's festival, now in its 13th year.

The Montevallo Literary Festival is scheduled for Friday, March 20 from noon until 6:00 p.m. at the Carmichael Library. The event is free to the public. For more information, visit the Montevallo Literary Festival's website. You can also Like MLF on Facebook or follow MLF on Twitter

About the Poets

Nickole Brown grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, and Deerfield Beach, Florida. Her books include Fanny Says, a collection of poems forthcoming from BOA Editions in 2015; her debut, Sister, a novel-in-poems published by Red Hen Press in 2007; and an anthology, Air Fare, that she co-edited with Judith Taylor. She graduated from The Vermont College of Fine Arts, studied literature at Oxford University as an English Speaking Union Scholar, and was the editorial assistant for the late Hunter S. Thompson. She has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Kentucky Foundation for Women, and the Kentucky Arts Council. She worked at the independent, literary press, Sarabande Books, for ten years, and she was the National Publicity Consultant for Arktoi Books and the Palm Beach Poetry Festival. She has taught creative writing at the University of Louisville, Bellarmine University, and at the low-residency MFA Program in Creative Writing at Murray State. Currently, she is the Editor for the Marie Alexander Series in Prose Poetry at White Pine Press and is on faculty every summer at the Sewanee Young Writers’ Conference. She is an Assistant Professor at University of Arkansas at Little Rock and lives with her wife, poet Jessica Jacobs. (from the author's website)

Jessica Jacobs grew up in Central Florida and has since lived in San Francisco and New York, with stints in Greece, Indiana, and Arkansas along the way. Her work has appeared in Beloit Poetry Journal, Cave Wall, Iron Horse, The Missouri Review, Poet Lore, and Rattle, among other journals and anthologies. She holds a B.A. from Smith College and an M.F.A. from Purdue University. An avid long-distance runner, Jessica has worked as a rock climbing instructor, bartender, textbook Acquisitions Editor, Editor-in-Chief of Sycamore Review, and now as a 2014-15 Visiting Assistant Professor of English at Hendrix College. She lives in Little Rock, AR with her wife, the poet Nickole Brown. Pelvis With Distance is her debut collection. (from the author's website)

Amy Lemmon is the author of two poetry collections: Fine Motor (Sow’s Ear Poetry Review Press, 2008) and Saint Nobody (Red Hen Press, 2009). Her work has appeared in Rolling Stone, New Letters, Prairie Schooner, Verse, Court Green, The Journal, Barrow Street, and many other magazines and anthologies. She is co-author, with Denise Duhamel, of the poetry chapbooks ABBA: The Poems (Coconut Books, 2010) and Enjoy Hot or Iced: Poems in Conversation and a Conversation (Slapering Hol Press, 2011). Amy holds a PhD in English/Creative Writing from the University of Cincinnati. She is Professor of English at the Fashion Institute of Technology and lives with her two children in Astoria, Queens. (from the author's blog Saint Nobody)

Poet Catherine Wing was born in Louisville, Kentucky, and attended Brown University before earning her MFA from the University of Washington. Her collections of poetry include Enter Invisible (2005), nominated for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and Gin & Bleach (2012). Her poetry has appeared in such journals as Poetry, The Nation, and The Chicago Review and has been featured in a number of anthologies, including Best American Poetry (2010). Wing has received fellowships and residencies from Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony, and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference and teaches poetry at Kent State. (from Poetry Foundation)

Monday, February 23, 2015

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, February 22-28

UM Counseling Services is taking this week to remind the campus about and to encourage awareness of eating disorders. Formed in 2001 out of the merger of several like-minded organizations, the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting individuals and families affected by eating disorders. The goal of NEDA's National Eating Disorders Awareness Week is to educate the public "on the seriousness of eating disorders and to improve... understanding of their causes, triggers and treatments."

Carmichael Library is assisting the Counseling Office's effort by hosting a book display and online bookshelf of materials about these important issues. The display is located on our ground floor and includes materials promoting the theme of this year's Awareness Week, "I Had No Idea..."

Look for staff from our Counseling Services to be out on campus this week, talking with students about their services and handing out literature. Counselors will also be here in Carmichael Hall on Thursday, Febraury 26 from 2:30-4:30 p.m. to greet students.

Please take time to look through Carmichael's collection of books on these important issues. If you don't get the chance to stop by during this special Awareness Week, you can always view our digital bookshelf: Resources on Eating Disorders online.

As always, if you or a friend is struggling with an eating disorder, or another issue that is affecting your well being, please do not hesitate to reach out to Counseling Services by calling (205) 665-6245.

BACHE Visiting Writers' Series: Brian Turner TOMORROW Tuesday Feb. 24

Dear UM students, staff, and faculty:

Please join us for a reading by award-winning poet Brian Turner, our final author in the 2014-15 BACHE Visiting Writers’ Series. Brian will read from his work and hold an audience Q&A starting at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 24 in the J.A. Brown Room at Carmichael Library. After the reading, Brian will sign books, which will be available for sale on site from Eclipse Coffee and Books. We also will have a reception, catered by Eclipse and generously sponsored by the College of Arts and Sciences. This event is FREE and open to the public.

About Brian Turner
Brian Turner is a soldier-poet who is the author of two poetry collections, Phantom Noise (2010) and Here, Bullet (2005) which won the 2005 Beatrice Hawley Award, the New York Times “Editor's Choice” selection, the 2006 Pen Center USA "Best in the West" award, and the 2007 Poets Prize, among others. He also has a memoir, My Life as a Foreign Country (2014) that retraces his war experience. Turner served seven years in the US Army, to include one year as an infantry team leader in Iraq with the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. Prior to that, he was deployed to Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1999-2000 with the 10th Mountain Division. Turner's poetry has been published in Poetry Daily, The Georgia Review, and other journals, and in the Voices in Wartime Anthology published in conjunction with the feature-length documentary film of the same name. Turner was also featured in Operation Homecoming, a unique documentary that explores the firsthand accounts of American servicemen and women through their own words. He earned an MFA from the University of Oregon and has lived abroad in South Korea. In 2009, Turner was selected as one of fifty United States Artists Fellows.

You can read samples of his poetry and essays on his web page or at the Poetry Foundation.

About the BACHE Visiting Writers’ Series
The Visiting Writers’ Series is one of the cornerstones of BACHE, a partnership among the five four-year colleges and universities in the greater Birmingham area. Each academic year, the BACHE VWS invites three esteemed authors to each of the five campuses as an opportunity for students, faculty, staff, and the community to engage with poets and prose writers of national acclaim.

Check out the web page and Facebook page for more information.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

The World Reacts to the Attacks on Charlie Hebdo

Paris protesters hold up pens in solidarity with slain cartoonists and journalists

The world was shocked this past week as the offices of Paris-based satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo were attacked. The paper had a history of publishing controversial images of religious figures. Although the newspaper had endured many threats in years past, as well as a previous terrorist attack in 2011, this week's violence claimed the lives of 12 people, including the paper's editor-in-chief. 

Journalism remains a dangerous occupation in many parts of the world. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, 91 journalists and media workers lost their lives in 2014. The group also counts over 220 journalists detained worldwide last year. While war-torn countries such as Syria and Iraq have been the deadliest for journalists in recent years, China and Iran lead the world in jailing news workers.

Librarians stand with journalists and other information professionals who work every day to keep information free and open to the public. The American Library Association condemned the recent attacks in a press release stating: "Libraries and the press are the bedrock of democratic societies.  Free expression is essential for librarians and journalists to do their jobs.  Free speech is integral to the ethical values and best practices for both professions.  Such attacks are counter to the values of access to information with diversity of views—and to the values of civic engagement, which encourages people to read and discuss these views without fear."

Photo by Gwenael Piaser. Creative Commons license.