Preview Shelf: March 2017

March 30, 2017

WWI Display at CDPL

By Dianne Combs

I recently completed a display on the second floor at CDPL titled, “Montgomery County ‘Over There .’” I researched local soldiers’ involvement in Europe during 1917-18, and have compiled a book containing soldiers’ letters printed in the Crawfordsville paper of the time. My interest in women’s engagement in “the War to End All Wars” piqued when I found that a local school teacher, Miss McKinney, had fled over the mountains from Tabriz to find shelter with British forces when the Turks invaded northern Iraq. I had no clue that we had any troops in that area, never mind a local woman. So I found “Into the Breach: Amer ican Women Overseas in World War I” by Dorothy and Carl J. Schneider (940.31 Sch) in our history section. This book really opened my eyes to the serious, and often dangerous, work undertaken by at least 25,000 American women in places as diverse as France, Serbia, and Siberia during World War I. They were nurses, doctors, and Red Cross workers in England, France, Italy, Belgium, and occupied Germany. Women traveled by train, by foot, and by cart to entertain the troops. Telephone operators, or “Hello Girls” played a vital communications role in the operations of our military. One very telling photo is of a Salvation Army worker repairing a soldier’s jacket amid rubble.

Emily Simmonds became legendary when she saved the lives of hundreds of Serbian boys by marching them hundreds of miles to get away from conflict. She nursed and doctored many people, even though she had never operated on anyone before. Many women’s colleges, such as Vassar and Wellesley, sent volunteers in groups. Smith College’s women were the most successful at keeping their group together and doing good work. They worked at Chateau-Thierry, France, putting together a library for the villagers, hosting woodworking classes to repair and replace burned furniture, restocking damaged farms, and replacing fruit trees. On March 21, 1918, when the German army was upon them, they helped “their” villagers escape to train stations, fed hungry soldiers, and evacuated their own livestock. At one point, they loaded elderly villagers on top of a pile of mattresses on a truck to get them to safety, all the while enduring bombing raids by the enemy.

Women journalists lived the most precarious lives, often times finding themselves right in the thick of things. During the same time as western countries were fighting Germany and her allies, Russia was bubbling with revolution. Louise Bryant was present during the Bolshevik attack on the Winter Palace, in November of 1917, along with Bessie Beatty. They witnessed soldiers digging mass graves in front of the Kremlin. They watched the unraveling of the Russian governmental and social systems.

The authors wrote “Into the Breach” in such a way that you feel as if you are right there alongside the many intrepid women that they highlight in this book. Along with this title, I also recommend “American Women in World War I:They Also Served,” by Lettie Gavin (940.4 Gav).


March 23, 2017

Happy Puppy Day!

By Suzie Baldwin

One thing that always brings humor to my life is seeing the outrageous “events” and “holidays” on calendars like on Granted, if you know me there are numerous things that bring humor to my life- but if you get a few spare moments check out some of the crazy “days” listed on this website. Today’s funnier celebrations include: Chip & Dip Day, Melba Toast Day, and Puppy Day and tomorrow includes Chocolate Covered Raisins Day. Did you know that on April 1st, it isn’t only April Fool’s Day, but also Pillow Fight Day?
Two of the upcoming March days are Doctor’s Day on March 30 and Crayola Crayon Day on March 31st. So, to celebrate these two quirky days I will highlight Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak and Doctor Who: After Life (Graphic Novel). There is an endless supply of books regarding physicians, but these two titles – 1. a Classic and 2. a sensation with a HUGE following (The Whovians) are entertaining to say the least. For Crayola Day try reading Turning Wax into Crayons by Herald McKinley (j741.23 McKin). Another spectacular crayon book is Red: A Crayon’s Story by Michael Hall. In this tale, the “red” crayon isn’t very good at his job. All the other crayons and art supplies criticize the “red” crayon. Until one day, a berry tone realizes maybe “red” can draw a beautiful blue ocean. This changes “red’s” life and the other crayons then support their friend. It would be fun to check-out this book to see if your tots can guess why “red” is really drawing in blue.

April contains National Poetry Month and Humor Month. So, I have to include my favorite Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein. How can “Ickle Me, Pickle Me, Tickle Me too, went for a ride in a flying shoe” not put you in a good mood? Another interesting poetry book is The Poetry of the American Civil War (811.3 Poe). The book is divided into 5 sections: The War Scene, The Holy War, Social Commentary, Slavery, and Stories of the War. Many of the poems are more like a short story but set the scene perfectly of brothers fighting brothers and the country tearing itself apart piece by piece. If you read some of the Civil War poems, you might then want to be silly again and discover the humor books. Goofballs: A book of Sports Jokes by Mark Ziegler (j818.54 Zie) includes an amusing collection of witticism. “Why was Cinderella such a bad soccer player? (Because she always ran away from the ball) Another comical book is Barbara Johnson’s Humor Me, I’m Your Mother! One of the cutest comics included as a mother ill in bed while her son is asking, “Dad said you got a 24-hour virus … How much time do you have left?” Yes, this definitely sounds like motherhood.

Don’t forget to stop by CDPL to visit, view our gallery and displays and become involved. There are programs offered and in April there will be a Poetry contest. Stop by to learn how to enter. Before next time, Read, Read, Read!

March 16, 2017

National Craft Month!

By Suzie Baldwin

March is National Craft Month. Do you have an interesting skill? Until a few years ago I had never heard of tatting (but one of my best buddies can tat). I can also remember a funny library correspondence when I was pulling a multitude of items off the shelves when someone asked me about “quilting” – unfortunately the person had actually said “quilling” which I had also never heard of until about 15 years ago. So, I learned about two new crafts just from working in the library. The techniques required for tatting and quilling are unique and very interesting. If you would like to have some fun with others on March 21, 2017 the library will be hosting a craft day at 2:30pm and 6:30pm. If you are interested please contact the Circulation Desk (765) 362-2242 x 109 to register (to ensure ample supplies).

Crawfordsville Library also has a multitude of craft books (shelves and shelves) in case you want to begin a new hobby or perfect one you’ve already started. Maker Dad: Father-Daughter Projects by Mark Frauenfelder is filled with easy-to-follow instructions and step-by-step color photographs. The crafts and gadgets are both rewarding to make and delightful to play with – perfect for any parent-and-child team. There is a lunchbox guitar, a silkscreen t-shirt, a drawbot and ice cream sandwich necklaces. This book is located on the second floor under 745.5 Fre or you can call and request the item and we could hold it at the Circulation Desk for you.

Another interesting (and freshly purchased item) book called Plant Craft: 30 projects that add natural style to your home by Caitlin Atkinson infuses your home with the beauty of the natural world. Atkinson is an interior stylist and helps match your tastes with nature’s handiwork. A chandelier is designed with trailing succulents; an underwater driftwood garden will also delight your visitors with whimsical tillandsia nests or even grow a living wall of plants. The illustrations include easy, step-by-step directions to guarantee success.

Adrianana Adarme (the creator of the Cozy Kitchen) has another beautiful book titled The Year of Cozy. There are 125 recipes, crafts and other homemade adventures incorporating the four seasons of the year. Adarme writes she was unhappy and unfulfilled until she began to write this book and doesn’t believe living a good life has to mean “fancy things.” In the autumn section her talents range from crafting a marbled bowl to baking a scrumptious dish of burnt butter-pear-ginger crumble. Just the photograph will make your mouth water.

The library has a fun Mary Engelbreit (Crafts to Celebrate the Seasons) title, The Complete Photo Guide to Felting by Ruth Lane, and a Classic Crafts: A Practical Compendium of Traditional Crafts published by Simon and Schuster. These, along with other books will entertain you, encourage you, and entice you to be crafty! By using your library card you can also access items on Hoopla to assist you with your inventiveness. Don’t forget you can always search our website from the comforts of your recliner and place items on hold to pick up within a 5-day time period. We love to help you locate items that encourage the love of reading and learning. Until next time … read, read, read.


March 9, 2017

Training offered for RefUSA

Jodie WilsonBy Jodie Wilson

Are you interested in marketing your small business more effectively? Would you like to learn more about the Montgomery County business community? Or could you take advantage of some job search data that would allow your resume to land on the right desk? These are just a few of the potential uses possible with a brand-new premium business database now offered through CDPL.

ReferenceUSA, offered by InfoGroup, has been added to the many other online resources now available through our library. You can gain access via the library’s website at From the library’s main web page, choose the ReferenceUSA blue body text and you will be prompted to agree to terms and conditions, then will need to enter the barcode digits on the back of your current library card. Don’t have a library card? Call (362-2242 opt.1) or stop by CDPL to determine what steps will be necessary to receive your very own card. Once you’re ready with your library card, you can proceed to using the database, either at the library or in the comfort of your own home or office.

Let’s look at just one sample search from only one of the databases within ReferenceUSA. By selecting the U.S. Businesses Database, we can learn a lot about the businesses in Montgomery County. To begin, let’s click on advanced search. On the left hand column, click Company Name, then Under Business Type, select Keyword/SIC/NAICS. Next, Under Geography, Select County, then populate the small box with Indiana, then choose Montgomery County. Under Business Size, click Number of Employees, and Sales Volume. When you’re finished customizing your search, click View Results in the right-hand column.

A list of 1,604 businesses is generated by this search. They are displayed in an alphabetized list by name of company, including address, phone number, and executive name. Businesses owned by large chains also display their parent company contact information.

Next, click on the Heat Map tab, and you’ll see a representation of the density of businesses in Montgomery County with red areas highlighting the locations of highest business density, and green the lowest. Click “Back to Results” when you’re done exploring this feature.

Click on the Charts tab, and the charts are configurable to display any of the characteristics listed. We can see here that nearly 62% of our county’s businesses employ 1-4 people. By sorting by city, we see that 1300 of our county’s results are located in Crawfordsville. Facts such as these can quickly illuminate an in-depth study of local business.

Using this database, you can create custom lists of addresses, and even print labels. But this is just one of the available databases. Other database content includes U. S. Standard White pages listings, U.S. Jobs & Internships, U.S. Homeowners, U.S. Historical Businesses, U.S. Healthcare, and U.S. Consumers/Lifestyles.

Have questions, or like to know more about the power of ReferenceUSA? InfoGroup trainer Andra Roussel will be visiting CDPL on April 4th to demonstrate the many uses of these databases. Please reserve your spot by March 17th to attend the training, which will be held from 11:30-1 p.m. in the Donnelley Room on April 4th. Lunch will be provided by Maxine’s on Green. Please call 362-2242 ext. 117 or e-mail us at to make reservations.


March 2, 2017

Jodie WilsonBy Jodie Wilson

As our Digital Initiatives Librarian, Angela White, announced in the Preview Shelf column on February 16th, we are offering a Digital Drop-In on Monday afternoons from 4-6 p.m. We will be offering this event every Monday in March. If you would like some assistance with technology, please stop by and our patient and friendly staff will do our best to assist you with your tech questions. If you’re wondering how to download free e-books from the library collection, needing help learning to use your new iPad or tablet, or trying to figure out how to get those photos off your smartphone, we’ll be happy to help you out!
Please note that these sessions must be limited to 15 minutes if there are others waiting for assistance. A few limitations: We cannot fix broken hardware; we cannot keep any device for repair; we are not able to guarantee that we can provide an answer or fix your issue. All patrons will be required to sign a liability waiver. Please have your device fully charged, bring connection cables if appropriate, and be sure you bring your sign-in information and passwords. We look forward to seeing you!

We also have a new online service to announce this week, as well as a milestone in local genealogy!

For years, CDPL has been offering free onsite access to, and our subscription to HeritageQuest is also available to local history and genealogy researchers both on and off site. These services have been quite popular, and CDPL is known for its local history and genealogy collections. We’re pleased to announce we’re expanding our resources to include onsite access to Fold 3, a service providing historical military records owned by Onsite access should be available at the library within a few days.

Fold 3 will offer expanded information on US military resources, including stories, photos and personal documents from service veterans. Records include content made available from the National Archives and Records Administration, Allen County (Ind.) Public Library, Family Search Archives, and many additional sources.

If you’re not familiar with our existing genealogy resources, our Library Edition includes digital images of historical documents and historical photographs. Indexes and an incredible number of other resources are available, including member-contributed family pedigrees with their own family photographs. Although these pedigrees themselves are not authoritative as sources of information, they can provide possibilities to direct research, and give a starting point to verify with the documentation available through

HeritageQuest Library Edition includes both onsite and offsite access to city directories, slave schedules, U.S. Indian Census Rolls, Mortality Schedules, Agricultural and Industrial Schedules, and extensive federal census rolls.

An additional resource to assist in your family research is the Genealogy Club of Montgomery County, which will be celebrating its 15-year anniversary on Tuesday, March 14th. Get to know the club members by attending the 6:30 p.m. reception, and 7 p.m. meeting and ceremonies. Judi Kleine will speak on the current status of the club’s cemetery project. Others will be recognized and honored. For more information, contact GCMC President Dellie Craig at 765-362-2242 extension 117. You can view the club Facebook page at to receive updates and view photographs of club events.