Meet BPL's Steam Punk Librarian, Mary Anne Ellis


The "Steampunk Librarian" showed up today as the Birmingham Public Library staff celebrated Halloween.

For years, Mary Anne Ellis has used Halloween as a time to transform herself from a mild-mannered Southern History Department Librarian into the "Steam Punk Librarian." Several patrons and fellow employees love taking photos with her.

 "It's my way of paying tribute to the steam punk movement depicted in science fiction movies, a world run by steam or diesel power instead of electricity," Ellis said. 

A website, The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences, is dedicated to the steampunk movement. It says:

"Steampunk is an inspired movement of creativity and imagination. With a backdrop of either Victorian England or America's Wild West at hand, modern technologies are re-imagined and realized as elaborate works of art, fashion, and mechanics."

Authors Jules Verne and H.G. Wells are considered among steampunk’s most revered heroes. While Verne and Wells are regarded as part of the foundation of Science Fiction, they would be listed as steampunk authors if they were alive today. 

 The actual term steampunk was coined by K.W. Jeter in 1987 to describe themes common in literary works that combined both futuristic technological elements with elements seen in the 19th century. The steampunk movement has been depicted in several movies, including Hellboy 2, The Time Machine, and Wild, Wild West. 

Learn more interesting facts about the steam punk genre by clicking on this blog below.

 Meanwhile, check out these photos of Mary Anne Ellis aka "Steam Punk Librarian"