Friday, December 19, 2008

Santa Visits the Rosenberg Library

Santa Claus arrived early at the Rosenberg Library to celebrate the joys of Christmas with young patrons. Youngsters enjoyed a holiday theme storytime a personal visit with the jolly old man in red and a free book courtesy of the S.M.A.R.T. Family Literacy Project. Many children dressed up for the occasion and parents took the opportunity to take memorable photos. Visits took place on December 6, December 9, and December 18. In the photo Karen Stanley, Children’s Department head and Santa hand out a gift book.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Rosenberg Library Reports at D8 CyFair

At District 8, Texas Library Association meeting at CyFair College, on Saturday, October 18th, with 150 librarians in attendance, Poom Taylor reported that:
Rosenberg Library continues to offer services in stages as conditions permit. The library building is not open to the public.
Many thanks to HALS for helping the library with Texpress costs.

· Patrons may now request books for pick up
· Return materials
· Schedule a story time to be held at an offsite location with Children’s dept
· Extension Services will resume outreach for homebound patrons
· The Galveston and Texas History Center, a nationally recognized collection, and the Museum suffered no damage in Hurricane Ike. Special Collections staff is daily monitoring conditions in the archives vault and the Museum storage areas and galleries. There have been no signs of mold infestation in any of these areas.
· Library databases are up
· Library website up
· Library blog up
· Systems up, electrical, alarms, some phone lines
“Books to Go” offers patrons an opportunity to continue their reading habits. Library card holders will be able to check out 3 items at a time by requesting the items via the Rosenberg Library’s online catalog.

Financial contributions to help offset the expenses the Library is facing may be mailed to Rosenberg Library, 2310 Sealy Avenue, Galveston, TX 77550. Checks may be made payable to Rosenberg Library. Due to constraints on space and staff, the Rosenberg Library would appreciate monetary donations only. Our website is up, and donations through PayPal will be appreciated. Your contribution will be fully tax deductible up to the maximum allowed by IRS regulations. The Rosenberg Library is a 501(C)3 non-profit organization.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Rosenberg Library Recovers~

Many of our staff are back, and checking on our home library. Louise was checking on the books in the attic, department heads were planning and helping our core survivors, director John Augelli, Carol Wood and Michele Quinn.

Post Ike Rosenberg Library is in full recovery mode, with Service Masters and AMS contractors helping us to restore the first floor.

We checked on the library van, which is fine, pulled books from our book drop, over at the Moody Methodist Church, with one molded book: Water for Elephants! Of all the items we recovered, just this one had mold, with such an inauspicious title, filled with water, flooded with water, and... more water, everywhere. But, we do ask that our patrons, please hold on to your books. We will waive fines, and take into consideration water damage.

Girl with turtle, nicknamed Geraldine, was saved. She was filled with water, we had to get her drained, and our statue, too, survived.

Our skink, Rose, is also thriving, at the home of our Children's Librarian, Karen.

1. Basement windows survived, only some panes damaged.

2. Rosenberg Library's book drop and van

3. Girl without turtle statue, the aforementioned Geraldine

4. Side view of the Rosenberg Library, from the Ball Ave alley

5. Leather chair amongst debris on Ball Ave alley from the Rosenberg Library

Friday, August 8, 2008

South Porch Stairs

Phase II Construction on South Porch of the Rosenberg Library.

Stoddard Construction is back, and will be demolishing the cement retaining wall. This will uncover the stairs, allowing access to the south porch, on the Rosenberg's Sealy Ave.

Work began on Thursday, August 07 and seemed to be completed by Friday.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

New Railing on South Porch

New railing was installed on the south porch, on the Sealy Street side of the Rosenberg Library. The cement pieces were replaced due to corrosion of the metal pins.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Ready to Read on the Bolivar Peninsula~

Rosenberg library staff were on hand to kickoff the summer for young readers on the Bolivar Peninsula. Coordinators on the Bolivar side were: Gerry Lang, Susan Shafer, Bill Heuman(Principal at Crenshaw Elementary/Middle School).

Shannon Greene and Marilyn Lyons from the Rosenberg Library's Extension Department distributed books for children ages 1-18 years. Thanks to Karen Stanley and Barbara Arnold of the Rosenberg's Children's department for taking pictures and supporting the Bolivar Summer Reading Program with Reading Logs and prizes.

Kudos to all the people mentioned above who made this happen, today!

This reading program was the brainchild of Gerry Lang and thanks to John Augelli and Bill Heuman for their enthusiastic support. The Seamless Summer Feeding Program is scheduled for June through August in Bolivar. The Feeding Program is federally funded through GISD.

Monday, April 7, 2008

TAM Reception at Rosenberg

The Texas Association of Museums Annual Meeting is a yearly conference which offers programs on current developments in the museum field for staff, trustees, and volunteers from museums of all sizes and disciplines, and provides a forum in which to meet colleagues. Participants attend professional sessions which explain and debate the wide spectrum of issues facing the museum world.
The 2008 TAM Annual Meeting, March 25th-28th, explored the ways that museums can prepare for a future with an unpredictable forecast. Presentation topics included natural disasters and emergency preparedness, funding, security, and technology.
The Rosenberg Library hosted a reception Wednesday night honoring those who serve as board members and directors for museums throughout the state of Texas.

By Nikkie Ferre

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Galveston County Reads Announces Short List for 2009

Community invited to vote.

Galveston County Reads announces the short list of candidates for the sixth year of the community wide book club. In the spirit of the electoral process, the voting will be open to the public this year. Copies of the books are available at local public libraries, including Rosenberg Library, and at area bookstores. The committee is a volunteer organization that invites your participation. To cast your vote or become a committee member, please email Karen Stanley at or call 409.763.8854 x119. Voting ends April 25, so start reading and join the discussion.

Following are the book nominations for the 2009 season:

The Glass Castle
By Jeannette Walls
In The Glass Castle, Jeannette Walls takes us on a journey of her childhood that begins with setting herself on fire at the age of three while cooking hot dogs on the gas stove and ends with her struggle to create a sane, stable life for herself. Walls expertly develops the characters in the book, slowly revealing bits and parts of their personalities to help the reader understand what drives their bizarre actions. High praise for any novel, but The Glass Castle is a memoir and the characters are the members of the Walls family. As she chronicles the often terrifying events of her childhood, Walls shares intimate glimpses of the family. Fleeing town in the middle of the night so often that no place can ever become “home,” being taught to hold your nose in order to stomach eating rotten ham and barely surviving a ride in the back of a u-haul with the doors flapping open as the parents obliviously ride in the safety of the cab are just a few examples. Many of the images Walls shares are horrifying, yet they are balanced with humor, hope and a belief in the ability of individuals to rise above struggle, adversity and even deprivation to discover who they truly are. The Glass Castle takes the reader to a new understanding of mental illness and homelessness, but also illustrates the power of familial love even in the most dysfunctional setting. Book available in paperback, hardback, Large Type, CD and cassette.

Orxy and Crake
By Margaret Atwood
Reviewers have called Orxy and Crake a work of science fiction that is more like Jonathan Swift than Robert Heinlein because there are no flying cars in this book. Although it is set in the future there are already parallels that can be drawn between the events in the world of this novel and those in the real world today. The narrator, Jimmy, who calls himself Snowman, may be the last human alive. In flashbacks, he tells the reader of the events that lead up to his present circumstances. Margaret Atwood, a talented Canadian author, spins a great narrative that includes genetic engineering, an unknown apocalyptic event and an ending that allows for intriguing speculation. This book is a vast departure from other Galveston County Reads selections and from titles on the list this year. However, it is a masterfully written thriller that has lots of dark humor and endless possibilities for discussion. It is available in hardback, paperback, audio and download. May also have limited availability in Spanish.

Water for Elephants
By Sara Gruen
Water for Elephants is a novel told in flashback by Jacob Jankowski, now in his nineties and spending his days in a nursing home. Jacob takes readers back into the Depression when he was a young man preparing for veterinary exams at Cornell. Jacob receives the sad news of his parents’ demise and finds himself facing a mental breakdown. Jacob flees school and his old life to join the circus where he’s hired to care for the animals. Jacob learns the inner workings of circus life, falls in love, and begins to understand himself a little better in his new and strange surroundings. This is a beautiful and well-written historical novel that will likely touch the reader by the emotional honesty and depth of Jacob. Book available in paperback, hardback, Large Type, CD and Spanish, Aqua Para Elefantes

The Worst Hard Time: The untold story of those who survived the Great American Dust Bowl
By Timothy EganTimothy Egan, a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, has brought to life the heartbreak and hardships endured by the families that attempted to eke out a living in the American Great Plains during the extensive drought of the 1930s. Through interviews with survivors and the use of newspaper accounts, journals, and letters written at the time, Egan provides moving portraits of several families struggling to exist while watching their farms blow away. Much of the action is centered around Dalhart, Texas, one of the hardest hit areas in the 400 million acre dust bowl. Egan examines government policies on homesteading, water, and wheat subsidies during the wars as well as farming practices of the times as contributing factors to the disaster, prompting the necessary discussion of water policies that will haunt our near future. Informative, moving, and highly readable, this book is available in hardcover, paperback, audio CD, audio download, MP3 CD, and Kindle book formats.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Mardi Gras in Galveston

Here in Galveston, Mardi Gras is celebrated for two weeks, leading up to:
Super Fat Tuesday!
There were parades, beads and pets galore.
Thanks to John Augelli for the pictures of the Bows and Meauxes(dogs and cats parade).

Friday, February 1, 2008

February Treasure of the Month

During the month of February, the Rosenberg Library will exhibit a selection of vintage Mardi Gras ball gown sketches. The colorful sketches, dating from 1938 through 1949, were prepared by fashion designers at the Emile Robin studio in San Antonio, Texas. Robin was a well known interior decorator, set designer, and float manufacturer in San Antonio during the first half of the twentieth century. In addition to creating spectacular costumes for Galveston’s Mardi Gras, Emile Robin and his brother, Marcel, designed and built many of the parade floats used for San Antonio’s famous Fiesta celebrations. The French-born brothers trained at the illustrious École des Beaux-Arts in Paris.

Galveston’s first Mardi Gras celebration was held in 1867. Events included lavish masquerade balls, elaborate theatrical performances, and grand parades. Mardi Gras was discontinued during the time of World War II, but it resumed in 1949. City-sponsored Mardi Gras celebrations ended after the mid-1950s because they were too expensive to continue.

In 1985, Galvestonians George and Cynthia Mitchell launched a revival of Mardi Gras, and it has been a great success for the past twenty years. The twelve-day event still includes the traditional street parades, theatrical performances, and galas. However, art exhibits, live music, and sporting events have also become part of the Mardi Gras celebration. Today, more than a dozen krewes participate in the festivities.

The Rosenberg Library Treasure of the Month exhibit is located in the first floor lobby. The costume sketches will be on display throughout the month of February. For more information, please contact Eleanor Clark at 763-8854, ext. 125.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Window Wells Update~

Down here in Technical Services, the windows are in and letting the light shine through!
The grates are installed, with beautiful rosettes decorating the center pieces.
Note the touch of green framing, all over the Library windows!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

January Treasure of the Month

Photo: Iron tsuba decorated with bamboo and a tiger in gold in bronze.

Japanese Tsubas

During the month of January, the Rosenberg Library will display an assortment of Japanese tsubas, or sword guards, from the museum collection. These tsubas are fashioned from iron or brass, and many are beautifully decorated with intricate silver or gold inlaid designs. The tsubas were collected by Mr. George Sealy II and were donated to the library in 1940.

A tsuba is the protective hand guard plate of a Japanese sword. The tsuba served several functional purposes. First, it kept the blade and the hilt of the sword in balance. Second, it prevented an opponent’s blade from injuring the sword holder’s hand. Third, the tsuba helped the warrior guide his weapon back into its scabbard.

Tsubas were also means of communicating a warrior’s social status. The designs chosen often signified one’s clan, school, or belief system. Tsubas were made by skilled artisans whose sole vocation was the crafting of these sword guards. Often tsubas were lavishly ornamented and were passed down as heirlooms by one generation to the next. Sometimes a family crest was used as part of the design on a tsuba. Other motifs that appear on tsuba are animals, plants, mythological figures, or religious images.

In its simplest form, the tsuba was a plain, unadorned plate. Many tsuba were quite a bit more embellished and featured surface texturing, elaborate openwork designs, and decorative inlay or overlay. Styles were primarily determined by the time period, region, and the artist who fashioned the tsuba. The oldest tsubas date back to the 14th century Japan when fighting between feudal lords and powerful clans was a regular occurrence. Tsubas from this era were usually made of durable iron and had very basic designs. By the 19th century, however, tsubas were mainly used for personal adornment and were decorated with precious metals like gold or silver.

The Rosenberg Library Treasure of the Month can be viewed Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The artifacts will be on display in the main lobby, located on the library’s first floor. For more information, please contact Eleanor Clark at 409-763-8854, ext. 125 or at