Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Flash back to 2007. The Florida Gators defeated
I’m not picking on
The Final Four tips off in Houston on April 2. Hopefully, Florida and Kentucky will be in attendance. Between games, come check out the library's collection on college basketball and March Madness. The Basketball Subject Guide includes links to help keep you up-to-date on college basketball. Enjoy the rest of the tournament.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
We had a great visit from Good Day Alabama this morning. Check out the video of Jeh Jeh Pruitt interviewing Ben Petersen and Mary Beth Newbill of our Southern History department.
So...will you be the 1000th person to "like" Birmingham Public Library’s facebook page?
Your time is running out. We are at 994… 995… make that 996 at this time. Don't miss your chance click here now.
You might also be interested in “like”ing your local BPL branch’s facebook page:
- East Lake Library
- Five Points West Regional Library
- Inglenook Library
- North Avondale Library
- Springville Road Regional Library
- Woodlawn Library
Or "like"ing one of our central departments:
- Government Documents & Microforms
- Southern History Department
Or our friends group:
Friends of the Birmingham Public Library
|Ms. Casandra Scot open the program with a "silly sounds" exercise.|
|Ms. Cas places photos on the floor for teens to consider.|
|Teens walk around pictures to see which person they would like to be.|
|A demur lady or a hired assassin? Hmmm. Both?|
Max Herzel, Holocaust survivor and member of the Birmingham Holocaust Education Committee and the Alabama Holocaust Commission, will discuss how he and his family escaped the German invasion of their home city of Antwerp, Belgium and sought refuge in France. Soon after their arrival, the Herzels, along with other Jews, were rounded up and faced harrowing experiences for five years. Wednesday, March 30, noon.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
The best place to start your Irish genealogy search is with the U.S. Census records. These records are available from 1790 to 1930 (1940 becomes available in 2012). Beginning with the 1850 Census, the place of birth of each household member member was included. Even better for genealogists, beginning in 1880, respondents were also asked to name the place of birth of their parents. U.S. Census records can be searched on three databases that the library subscribes to (Ancestry, FamilySearch, and HeritageQuest), and also are available on microfilm for the Southeastern United States in Microforms Room of the Government Documents department.
Ship passenger lists are another rich source of information for the names of Irish immigrants who made the voyage to the United States from the 18th to the early 20th centuries. These lists usually include the passenger's name, country of origin, and occupation. At the Birmingham Public Library, you will find an excellent collection of passenger lists, and indexes to passenger lists, available on computer databases, microfilm, and in books.
Naturalization records can also be a treasure trove of genealogical data for anyone looking for an Irish ancestor. Place and date of birth, date of arrival to the U.S., names of spouses and children, and residence at the time of naturalization are among the facts that can be found in these types of records.
Less obvious as sources of Irish genealogical information, but potentially as enlightening, are military service records and pension applications. The library's Microforms Room houses an extensive collection of microfilm containing such records for soliders who served in the American Revolution, the War of 1812, the Civil War, and World War I. How might these records help me in my search for my Irish ancestors, you ask? Well, for example, Company I of the 8th Alabama Infantry was a Confederate unit that was known as the Emerald Guard because 104 of the 109 men who served in it were of Irish descent. Who knows, maybe your great-great-great grandfather was a member of the Emerald Guard?
To get a better idea of what the Birmingham Public Library has that might help you discover the Irish branches and limbs of your family tree, visit us in Government Documents or the Southern History department or call 205-226-3625.
Come see our books on Irish genealogy!
|Ms. Wanda shares a laugh with Mr. Ray as she demonstrates how to make a paper hat.|
|Ms. Wanda shows a close up of her hat.|
|Mr. Travis and Ms. Cas act out their version of "I Love My New Toy" by Mo Willems. |
|Ms. Eve performs "Pete the Cat" by Eric Litwin. |
Sherry Blanton, Guardian of Remembrance for the Birmingham Holocaust Education Committee, will discuss the congregation of Temple Beth-El in Anniston. Founded in 1888, sixteen of its members were Holocaust survivors. The program will chronicle their lives. Wednesday, March 23, noon.
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Spring Fling 2011 kicks off March 16 in Linn Park. The festivities include free movies and music, 3-on-3 basketball tournaments, gaming centers, and more. 95.7 Jamz will broadcast live from the festival.
Fliers are available at all Birmingham Public Library locations. The fliers include coupons for two free children admissions (with the purchase of one adult admission) to the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, McWane Science Center, Vulcan Park and Museum, and the Birmingham Zoo.
Where? Linn Park
When? March 16-19
Time? 6:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
Monday, March 14, 2011
I have recently discovered that the Where's Waldo? books are not just for juveniles. In our household searching for Waldo has brought my husband and me closer together. Long after my son has lost interest in finding that famous world traveler and left to play LEGO Star Wars, my husband and I will still be searching, our eyes burning from lack of blinking, wearing our glasses on top of our heads to get a closer look at the busy pages, working as a team, striving for our personal best, trying to one-up the other.
Where's Waldo? is a series of books illustrated by Martin Handford where the reader is supposed to locate a tall, colorfully-dressed, bespectacled man hidden amid a crowded landscape. Could be the beach. Could be a museum. Or it could be the Castle of the Nasty Nasties. Sometimes he is found at a glance, other times you must hunt until you are mad, as Werner Herzog eerily warns.
Some fun facts about Where's Waldo:
- Where's Waldo? began as Where's Wally? in the UK in 1987, and took two years to draw.
- Waldo traveled alone for the first two books, and the additional characters Odlaw, Woof, Wenda, Wizard Whitebeard, and the Waldo Watchers joined him in later books.
- Odlaw, Waldo's bumble-bee outfitted arch-nemesis, is Waldo spelled backwards.
- Each Waldo scene takes eight weeks to draw.
- Handford's favorite picture is "A Tremendous Song and Dance" from Where's Wally? In Hollywood.
- Each scene in Where's Waldo? The Wonder Book contains 3,000-4,000 figures.
- The 10th anniversary edition of Where's Waldo? relocated Waldo in each scene.
- Where's Waldo? ranks #87 on ALA's 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books list (1990-1999) because of a topless woman in a beach scene. She was covered up for the 1997 special release edition.
The Official Home of Where's Waldo?
Sunday, March 13, 2011
Nine Birmingham Holocaust survivors share their stories of despair, endurance, and survival in Nazi Germany, and their arrival in the United States. The stories are powerful and compelling, but the fact that these are narrated by the survivors themselves makes them a testament to the events of the time. This documentary makes use of original photographs and footage taken during the years of the Holocaust, creating a powerful historical record. Sunday, March 20, 3:00 p.m. at the Central Library's Arrington Auditorium.
Friday, March 11, 2011
Birmingham Public Library and the UAB School of Education Curriculum and Instruction Department present Rhythms of the Heart: The Illustrations of Ashley Bryan. Rhythms of the Heart will exhibit works on loan from the National Center for Illustrated Children’s Literature. This exhibit is made possible in part by a grant from the Alabama State Council on the Arts and National Endowment for the Arts. The collection will be on display from April 11 through May 20 at Central Library’s 4th Floor Gallery. Central Library will host a reception honoring Ashley Bryan on Thursday, April 28, 2011, at 6:30 p.m. For information on additional programs check the BPL calendar or call 226-3742.
In a career spanning over 48 years, celebrated children’s author and illustrator Ashley Bryan has amassed many accomplishments. Bryan wrote his first book at age 5—an alphabet primer for his kindergarten class; he was one of the few African American students to be awarded a scholarship to the Cooper Union Art School; he taught art at Queen’s College and was professor emeritus at Dartmouth College. Not published until he was 40 years old, Bryan was the first African American to publish a children’s book as both author and illustrator.
Ashley Bryan’s first work as a professional children’s book illustrator began in the late 1960s, and were retellings of folk tales from India and France. When he came across some African folk tales for young people whose English text he considered stiff, he retold them using translations by anthropologists and missionaries who spent time in Africa. Educators and library professionals give Bryan’s work high marks for the sensitivity and exuberance brought to each story. He has won nine Coretta Scott King Awards and a Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal for lasting contribution to children’s literature. When asked about his indefatigable energy and his life as teacher, writer, and artist, he replied: “I don’t really understand what one means by years. I approach everything as if I’ve just begun. I’m always discovering a new world and always have the urge to keep developing. Each time I finish something, I can’t wait to start again and do something even better.”
Rhythms of the Heart: The Illustrations of Ashley Bryan
Central Library, 2100 Park Place
4th Floor Gallery during regular business hours
April 11–May 20, 2011
Free and open to the public
Be ready for twists, turns, betrayal, murder, and conspiracies as Watson is thrown into a world he never knew existed! You are sure to enjoy this fast read.
To watch the book trailer visit
Thursday, March 10, 2011
WORD UP! is a poetry slam for high school students (grades 9-12) who are enrolled in schools or who are home schooled in Jefferson County. The slam is sponsored by the Birmingham Public Library. Students write and perform an original work of poetry inspired by a theme selected by the WORD UP! planning committee. This year's theme is the poem “Daybreak in Alabama” by Langston Hughes. Each participating high school holds its own contest.The winners from each school compete in the WORD UP! contest at the Birmingham Public Library. The contestants are judged on content and performance by a panel of three judges. The prize for first place is $150, second place is $100, and third place is $75. Word up, y’all!
WORD UP! Poetry Slam
Central Library, 2100 Park Place
Sunday, April 3 at 3:00 p.m.
(From left to right: Eleanor Roosevelt, Condoleeza Rice, and Amelia Earhart)
Who are these women? Why do they matter? Find out this March in the Social Sciences department as we celebrate Women's History Month. This year's theme is "Our History is Our Strength". To celebrate, the Social Sciences department has put together a display of books, DVDs, and audiobooks of famous women and milestones in women's history. Stop by the Social Sciences department today or call us for more information at 205-226-3640.
Cool websites to visit:
Check out President Obama's Presidential Proclamation of Women's History Month.
Visit the Library of Congress' Women's History Month website.
Take Biography's Women's History quiz.
Wednesday, March 09, 2011
March is National Nutrition Month* and is sponsored by the American Diabetic Association. This year's theme is "Eat Right With Color". Ruth Frechman offers great advice by suggesting a rainbow week of colors and examples to guide in her blog post, Celebrate National Nutrition Month.
- Monday- Eat something orange (carrots)
- Tuesday- Eat something green (green beans)
- Wednesday-Eat something tan (oatmeal)
- Thursday-Eat something purple (eggplant)
- Friday-Eat something red (apples)
- Saturday-Eat something blue (blueberries)
- Sunday- Eat something yellow (squash)
To help get you started on better nutrition, visit the display of books, audiobooks, and DVDs celebrating National Nutrition Month in the Business, Science, and Technology department of the Birmingham Public Library. Please contact us at 205-226-3690 if you have questions.National Nutrition Month is a federally registered service mark, and its graphics, themes, and logos are copyrighted.
- Last dance : behind the scenes at the Final Four
- The men of March : a season inside the lives of college basketball coaches
- NCAA March madness : Cinderellas, superstars, and champions from the NCAA Men's Final Four
- String music : inside the rise of SEC basketball
- Underdawgs: how Brad Stevens and the Butler Bulldogs marched their way to the brink of college basketball's national championship
- When March went mad : the game that transformed basketball
Mr. Maury Shevin, attorney and member of the Alabama Holocaust Commission, will speak about anti-Semitism in both its historical and current forms. His presentation will discuss some of the more alarming forms, including the notion that Zionism is racism, and the way in which the president of Iran and other Holocaust deniers are welcomed into the fraternity of nations. Wednesday, March 16, noon.
Tuesday, March 08, 2011
Torch is a short documentary that examines one of Birmingham’s most unique landmarks. In the early 20th century, the city commissioned a giant cast-iron statue of Vulcan, the Roman god of the forge. The statue, the largest of its kind in the world, would symbolize Birmingham's iron and steel industry. However, just a few short years later, another use for the statue was put into action. A group of civil activists suggested that the city utilize Vulcan as a reminder for its citizens to drive carefully. A light was erected in place of Vulcan's spear, which would glow red in the case of a traffic fatality. This civic project, which was only supposed to last for six weeks, remained active for 53 years. Torch explores the history of this phenomenon, and the impact that it had on the people of Birmingham.
Torch: Birmingham’s Roman God of the Forge
Part of the Birmingham Bound Winter Series of Author Talks & Films
Central Library, 2100 Park Place
Wednesday, April 6 at Noon
Free and open to the public
The Birmingham Bound series recognizes authors and filmmakers who researched their projects in the Birmingham Public Library Archives. Historians, journalists and others from throughout the United States and around the world have produced hundreds of books using the Archives’ collection of more than 30 million historic documents. These books include five recipients of the Pulitzer Prize. Films researched in the Archives include recipients of the Academy Award, the Emmy, and the Peabody.
Friday, March 04, 2011
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
-T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets 4: Little Gidding
Beyond the Basics of Genealogy (BtB) workshops, a series of classes covering various topics on genealogical research, will be conducted in the Birmingham Public Library (BPL) beginning in April 2011 in the Southern History Department. Workshops will run from one to two hours, and be conducted by members of the Southern History Department staff.
Participants will gain in-depth knowledge on specialized areas of researching genealogy. The BtB classes are designed to expand on information provided in the “Introduction to Genealogy” classes, which are offered throughout the year by the Southern History Department. Registration is limited to the first 12 respondents. Classes will be held at 10:00 a.m. in the East Room of the Southern History Department.
Subject areas and workshop dates are as follows:
• Finding the Promised Land: Research in Church Records – Saturday, April 9
• Cards to Computers: Getting the most out of the Library’s Catalog – Saturday, May 21
• In the Heart of Dixie: Researching Alabama Ancestors – Saturday, August 13
• Getting the Good Dirt: Using Land Records – Saturday, September 17
Registration for each workshop is $5.00, which includes the class handout. To register, contact the Southern History Department of the Birmingham Public Library at 205-226-3665 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Seating is limited to the first 12 to register.
Thursday, March 03, 2011
The Birmingham Public Library (BPL) hosts its sixth poetry slam on April 1 at the Central Library. Bards & Brews showcases both veteran slammers and first-timers. Held on the first Friday of each month, slams are emceed by poetry slam events director Brian “Voice Porter” Hawkins. Each contestant contributes $5 to the pot, and winner takes all. Southern Fried Slam rules will be observed. Craft beer will be available for sampling. You must be 18 years or older to be admitted, and 21 years or older to be served. IDs will be checked. Live music at 6:30 p.m. Call time is 7:00 p.m. Check out the Bards & Brews page on Facebook for more information. This program is made possible by grants from the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. Word up, y’all!
Bards & Brews: Birmingham Public Library Poetry Slam Series
Central Library, 2100 Park Place
1st Friday of every month
6:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
Live music and sign-up is at 6:30
Call time is at 7:00
Brian Hawkins (AKA Brian “Voice” Porter) will serve as emcee for the Bards & Brews Poetry Slam. He is a full-time performance artist and poetry slam events director. Mr. Hawkins has hosted "On Stage at the Carver" at the Carver Theater, the longest running poetry open mic in Birmingham (almost 7 years running). He has hosted numerous additional events of this nature and has also performed his own works many times across the country.
Wednesday, March 02, 2011
Dr. Robert Adler will speak about the development of the Holocaust in Austria, focusing on his father's personal experience before, during, and after his capture by the Nazis as well as his eventual arrival in the United States. He will also speak about the role of the Catholic Church, and particularly the role of Pope Pius XII, in the rise of the Third Reich and the spread of Nazism in Europe, contrasted with the Pope and the Vatican's aid to Jews escaping the Holocaust. Wednesday, March 9, noon.
Tuesday, March 01, 2011
I bet The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan album cover stirs a lot of good memories in a lot of people. It does for me, and I arrived late to the folk scene. In fact, Freewheelin' was released two years before I was even born. But I've loved poetry and rhymes since I first learned to read, and I think that's why folk music appealed to me when most of my peers were listening to Madonna and A Flock of Seagulls. The purity of a story comes through so clearly in a folk song.
In the '80s my dad bought me a 1967 Toyota Corolla and had it painted candy apple red. For years while I was building up my record collection, I would hop in that Toyota just about every Saturday and cruise down Shannon Road, headed for the Bessemer Flea Market where I would scour the booths for old folk albums. Freewheelin' was one of the many scratchy treasures I found there.
What's appealing about this album cover is how intimate it is: a candid photograph of a couple walking through the streets of New York City. That's Bob Dylan's girl at that time—17-year-old Suze Rotolo—hanging on to his arm. They say she was his muse for a while, and that you can pick out pieces of her in the classic Dylan songs "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right," "One Too Many Mornings," "Tomorrow Is a Long Time," "Boots of Spanish Leather," and the harsh break-up song, "Ballad in Plain D."
Upon first laying eyes on her, Dylan said she was the most erotic thing he had ever seen, a "fair skinned and golden haired, full-blood Italian." They dated for three years, and then Dylan moved on to Joan Baez and soon after married Sara Lownds. In 1967 Rotolo married Italian film director Enzo Bartoccioli. Rotolo died February 24 after a long battle with lung cancer. She is survived by her husband, sister, and son, Luca.
If you want to know more about the smiling girl on the Dylan album cover, she published her memoir, A Freewheelin' Time: A Memoir of Greenwich Village in the Sixties, in 2008.