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October 2008 HAVERFORD COLLEGE No. 8

Table of Contents

From the Director

by Bob Kieft

As many readers of this Newsletter know, I am leaving Haverford after 20 years to take a new position as College Librarian at Occidental College in Los Angeles. I spent many years as editor of this publication and, later, as Librarian of the College and, still later, Director of College Information Resources (CIR), working with current editor, Norm Medeiros, to bring news of important events and programs to friends of the Library and College Information Resources. Of late, I have tried to use this column to discuss developments in the delivery of support for the work of faculty and students, and as a frame of reference for this, my last column, you might want to take a look at the backfile of the Newsletter
( in order to see how much things have changed, and conversely, stayed the same during my time at the College.

I came to Haverford in the spring of 1988, arriving shortly after my predecessor, Michael Freeman, assumed the Librarianship in 1986 upon the retirement of Edwin Bronner. Having no experience of the East Coast and knowing almost nothing of the College, I came as Coordinator for Reference Services and Collection Development, and my arrival coincided with the College's renovation of its library program, a wave of new hires, of which I was a part, and the selection of a library system with the Bryn Mawr and Swarthmore College libraries. Upon Michael Freeman's death in 1999, Elaine Hansen and Tom Tritton appointed me Librarian of the College, and in 2004 I gained responsibility for computing.

The departments now organized as College Information Resources have evolved tremendously in twenty years. We have seen in that time the movement of library collections and services online, the replacement of mainframe computing with desktop, the development of new means and patterns of communication, and, not least, the advent of the Internet and all that it has meant to how and by whom work gets done, and how resources for teaching and research are created, delivered, and used. Indeed, it is hard to imagine that twenty years have wrought so much change to the assumptions that I came to Haverford with about library collections and services, and about the place of technology in my daily work.

As technology and globalization march relentlessly on, and as communication tools as well as student and faculty demographics and interests evolve new expectations, working relationships, and work practices, CIR and the College will address many challenges, not the least being the following:

  • building infrastructure for both wireless and wired networks
  • installing technologies for classroom teaching and meeting demands for greater classroom media use
  • modernizing such facilities as Magill and the Music Library to accommodate the changing needs of students and faculty
  • improving facilities for housing the Library's internationally important special collections
  • upgrading or creating spaces around the campus for multimedia production
  • improving college business systems
  • implementing better collaboration tools like email, calendaring, and document sharing
  • managing the College's digital assets and electronic records
  • addressing the many legal and policy issues that technology use and licensed online library materials present
  • continuing the development of the Library's collections in the many formats that a collection now involves, and continuing the development of the partnerships that are required today with other libraries, library organizations, and commercial entities to give access to the array of materials students and faculty use in their daily work
  • increasing and right-sizing staffing and budgets as the College grows the faculty, and as faculty and student work and communication methods retain familiar and incorporate new tools
  • increasing capacity for scientific, social science data, and humanities computing
  • increasing capacity for production of the image and audio materials used in teaching

The list will doubtless grow for my successors, but I leave the College knowing that staff are prepared to plan for and meet these challenges. I also head to my new job as a librarian whose view of what librarianship needs to be these days has been crucially formed by the Tri-College collaboration on library systems, collections, and staff. I am grateful for the opportunity my Haverford and Tri-College colleagues have given me to work hard on the forward-looking tasks that information services organizations should be attending to these days, and I am privileged to have spent these Haverford years in the company of staff who are committed to their work and to the larger work of higher education. Grateful to all at Haverford for their collegiality over the years and for the stimulating environment the College has created, I am taking the best possible work experience and memories of Haverford with me, and am honored to have become part of an institution whose workplace values go far beyond offering a magnificent academic environment for students.

-Bob Kieft is Director of College Information Resources
& Librarian of the College

The privilege has been ours.  Happy trails.  –Ed.

Stuard Honored for Her Work

by Margaret Schaus

Susan Mosher Stuard, history professor emerita at Haverford College and scholar in residence at Magill Library, was recognized in May at the 43rd International Congress on Medieval Studies at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo.  This annual conference draws over 3,000 attendees, many from other countries, to more than 600 sessions exploring every aspect of the study of the Middle Ages.  The Congress lasts for three and a half days and offers demonstrations, performances, workshops, and exhibits in addition to the thousands of scholarly papers delivered.

Photograph of Susan Mosher StuardTwo sessions were held in Stuard’s honor, one concerning economics and the other about the study of women’s history.  Both of these fields are areas in which Stuard has made important contributions including the pioneering collection of essays she edited, Women in Medieval Society (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1976) and her most recent book, Gilding the Market Luxury and Fashion in Fourteenth-Century Italy (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006). In the session “Women and the Economy,” three speakers gave papers on their research concerning women and the economy among merchant women in Paris, Flemish women’s legal identities, and English nuns’ efforts to administer their lands.  The second session, “Becoming Visible in Medieval History and Historiography: Can You See the Women Yet?” echoes the title of a leading textbook, Becoming Visible, that Stuard has edited along with two other historians (now in its third edition). The session was a roundtable with short presentations from four speakers followed by a panel discussion and reactions from the audience.   The four speakers’ remarks will be published in the next issue of the Medieval Feminist Forum, a publication of the Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship.

Both sessions were very well attended by colleagues, former students, and admirers.  Before the speakers began, Stuard “worked the room” greeting every person in the audience.  One graduate student, no doubt echoing many others that day, thought the opportunity to speak with Stuard made the event truly memorable.

-Margaret Schaus is Bibliographer & Reference Librarian

The Tri-College Library Symposium

by David Conners

Photograph of Susan GibbonsOn Friday July 18th, the 4th Tri-College Library Symposium was held at Haverford College on the theme of users and collections.  Thirteen different talks were given throughout the day by staff, faculty, and invited guests.  The keynote address entitled, "They Did What? Qualitative Collection Use Studies," was given by Susan Gibbons, Vice Provost and Dean of River Campus Libraries at the University of Rochester.  Gibbons discussed the methodology and outcomes from Rochester’s anthropological study of its library users.  The remaining presentations featured topics such as use of physical and electronic collections, assessment, streaming video, and social networking.  Among the invited speakers were Andrew Nagy of Villanova University, developer of the popular VUFind next generation catalog; Bob Rehak, Professor of English at Swarthmore College; and Laurie Allen, Haverford’s Coordinator for Research, Instruction, and Outreach, who was a developer of the innovative PennTags tool while with the University of Pennsylvania.

The symposium ended on a bittersweet note as Peggy Seiden, Swarthmore’s College Librarian, and Elliott Shore, Bryn Mawr’s Director of Libraries and CIO, honored their departing colleague, Bob Kieft, for the work he has done over the years to foster Tri-College Libraries collaboration.     

-David Conners is Digital Collections Librarian

Special Collections Receives Conservation Bookshelf

by John Anderies

Treasured documents and artifacts held by Haverford College Special Collections will be preserved for future generations with help from the IMLS Connecting to Collections Bookshelf, a core set of conservation books, DVDs, and online resources donated by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), the primary source of federal funding for the nation’s museums and libraries.

Special Collections has been awarded this essential set of resources based on an application describing the needs and plans for care of our collections.  The IMLS Bookshelf focuses on collections typically found in museums and special collections. It addresses such topics as the philosophy and ethics of collecting, collections management and planning, emergency preparedness, and culturally- specific conservation issues.

Haverford’s application emphasized the ongoing care our collections receive under the stewardship of Library Conservator Bruce Bumbarger.  Bruce’s own personal library provides guidance on specific conservation treatments, but the IMLS Bookshelf will provide more depth in terms of general preservation-related information.  Additionally, the Bookshelf will prove to be a worthy resource that we can share with our Tri-College counterparts at Bryn Mawr and Swarthmore Colleges.

Our greatest challenge to date is providing adequate housing for our materials. Storage space has reached capacity for some portions of our collection. During the coming year some pressure will be relieved by the reconfiguration of approximately 1,600 square feet of general stack space into an annex to our Special Collections.  Still, this newly converted space will require careful monitoring to ensure the longevity of such precious materials.

Haverford College Special Collections is responsible for maintaining the college’s unique and rare materials.  The principle collections include the world-renowned Quaker Collection, college archives, rare books and manuscripts, and fine art.

-John Anderies is Coordinator for Collections
& Head of Special Collections

Special Collections Staff Attend

by Ann Upton

Photograph of Woodbrooke Quaker CentreThe Conference of Quaker Archivists and Historians, founded by the Friends Historical Association in 1974, meets biennially. The group consists of scholars of Quaker history, the librarians and archivists who support them, and those who find a historical perspective important to their spiritual lives. This year’s gathering was the first held outside of North America.

Four staff members from Special Collections attended: John Anderies, Emma Lapsansky-Werner, Diana Fransuzoff Peterson, and Ann Upton. John and Emma were speakers on the topics of digitization of the Dictionary of Quaker Biography and Thomas Clarkson's History of the Abolition of the African Slave-Trade, respectively. Additionally, five attendees were recent recipients of the Gest Scholarship, an award offered by the College and Special Collections to use Quaker Collection resources to explore the connections and relationships between the expressions of religious beliefs. These scholars were Richard Allen (University of Wales), Paul Anderson (George Fox University), Dee Andrews (California State University, East Bay), Timothy Hayburn (Ph.D. Candidate, Lehigh University), and Jordan Landes Ph.D. Candidate, University of London).

The conference was held at Woodbrooke Quaker Centre in Birmingham, England and ran from Friday, June 27 through Sunday, June 29, 2008. There were 75 attendees; housing and presentations were all held on the beautiful grounds of the historic campus. The centrality of the experience was important in keeping it simple, restful and conducive to study and reflection.

There were many things the staff was able to learn and appreciate while at Woodbrooke. It was greatly satisfying to recognize the scholarship of those who have been helped by our resources in the Quaker Collection at Haverford College. We were able to meet those with whom we had provided Quaker reference services, in person or at a distance. We witnessed the growing interest in Quaker historical research by scholars, both Quaker and non-Quaker, and in that way found our services to be a form of outreach to a new population of scholars. It was an excellent opportunity for all attendees to meet historians from other parts of the world, including Europe, Scandinavia, Australia, and other parts of the United Kingdom. The effect of our conference will strengthen interest and research into Quakerism and Quaker-related issues worldwide.

The next gathering of the Quaker Archivists and Historians will be held in June 2010 at Wilmington College in Wilmington, Ohio.

-Ann Upton is Quaker Bibliographer
& Special Collections Librarian


Readers Respond to Newsletter Survey

by Norm Medeiros

Over 40 recipients of the print version of the College Information Resources Newsletter responded to a brief survey inserted in the Spring 2008 issue asking their opinion on whether to cease print production of the Newsletter in favor of electronic delivery.  For various and compelling reasons, most respondents indicated they preferred to receive the Newsletter in print.  As a result, College Information Resources will continue to mail a print issue to off-campus recipients, while maintaining the practice of electronic distribution to Haverford community members.  Individuals who would like to be removed from the print distribution list and added to the electronic mailing list should contact Norm Medeiros <>. 

Many thanks to those responding to the survey.


-Norm Medeiros is Associate Librarian of the College
and Editor of the Newsletter


Staff News and Notes

Compiled by Mike Persick

In May, David Conners, Digital Collections Librarian, married his partner of four years, Misha Isaak.  David also published an article entitled “A Ghost in the Catalog: the Gradual Obsolescence of the Main Entry” which appeared in The Serials Librarian (vol. 55, nos. 1-2).

Bob Kieft, Director of College Information Resources & Librarian of the College, leaves us this fall, after 20 years of service, to return to the west coast to become College Librarian at Occidental College in Los Angeles.

Norm Medeiros, Associate Librarian of the College, was a contributing author to E-Journals Access and Management (Routledge, c2009).  Norm’s chapter, “Access Revolution: The Birth, Growth, and Supremacy of Electronic Journals as an Information Medium,” tracks the means by which libraries have provided access to e-journals over the past 20 years.

In August, Michelle Oswell, Humanities Librarian for Music and Literature, successfully defended her dissertation at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill entitled "The Printed Lute Song: A Textual and Paratextual Study of Early Modern English Song Books."  She will graduate with the Ph.D. in musicology this December.

Johanna Riordan, Bibliographic & Digital Services Assistant in Acquisitions and Serials, graduated from Drexel University in March with her master’s degree in library and information science.

Hiroyo Saito, Director of the Language Learning Center, gave a presentation entitled “Use of Technology to Improve Pronunciation” at the 25th annual Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium (CALICO) conference, hosted by the University of San Francisco in March 2008.   

Hiroyo was selected as one of the National Institute for Technology and Liberal Education (NITLE) Technology Fellows focusing on technologies for teaching languages.  She also participated in the NITLE grant-funded  “Language Technology Boot Camp,” a collaborative project hosted by the Foreign Language Resource Center at Pomona College in April 2008.

In addition to Bob Kieft, one other staff member is leaving, and we welcome two new ones:

Laurie Allen, the Library’s new Coordinator for Research, Instruction, and Outreach, comes to us from the University of Pennsylvania, where she had served as the Social Sciences/Data Services Librarian, and chaired the team that developed PennTags, a social bookmarking tool that allows users to tag and organize resources.

Christina Webster has joined CIR as our Information Resources Assistant.  Christina is working with the Computing Center as well as doing various projects with the Library.  She comes to us from West Chester University, where she worked as a graduate assistant in the Faculty Technology Center.

Christa Williford, User Services Librarian, leaves us to work as a project coordinator for the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR), of which Haverford and the other Tri-College libraries are sponsors.  Christa will be telecommuting and will occasionally do her work from the Haverford and Bryn Mawr College Libraries, so she’ll still be around once in a while, and the Library will help support CLIR by making space available for her.

-Mike Persick is Acquisitions Librarian & Assistant Catalog Librarian


Haverford, PA 19041

Questions or Comments?