The Woman’s Literary Union was organized in 1889. The organization’s stated goal was to promote the intellectual life of its members through lectures, entertainment, and community work. The Portland Room has a small collection of pamphlets and ephemera pertaining to this organization, which we have digitized and uploaded to the library’s Digital Commons platform: http://digitalcommons.portlandlibrary.com/wlu/
Though small in scope, the collection offers tantalizing glimpses into the lives of some of the city’s women. It also provides opportunities to explore other online historical resources.
Annual Dues Receipt
For example, Mrs. Hubbard’s annual dues receipt gives her address. A photograph of her house as it appeared in 1924, a year after the date on this receipt, can be seen on the Maine Memory Network web site. The digitization of the 1924 tax photographs was a collaborative project involving the City of Portland, the Maine Historical Society, and the Portland Public Library.
Gail Laughlin, whose name appears on a 1926 list of officers, had an illustrious career as a lawyer, women’s rights advocate, and politician. You can see census entries and city directory listings for her by accessing Ancestry.com through the Portland Public Library’s computers (http://www.portlandlibrary.com/research/) (Incidentally, you can also find a photograph of her house in the 1924 tax records collection.)
We did not pursue every lead in the collection or track down every name. We leave that for other researchers. We just hope the collection will spark interest or get you curious about other historical collections. As always, call us (207-871-1700 x747), email us (firstname.lastname@example.org), or stop by if you are curious about Portland history or library resources!
The Portland Room is open Monday-Thursday 10am-7pm and Friday 10am-6pm.
July 31 update: Online sales have now closed. A limited number of physical tickets are available at the Main Library lending desk and at Longfellow Books for purchase. Only 100 tickets will be sold at the event when the doors open at First Parish Church at 6:30 pm. If you have will-call tickets, please check in at the door at First Parish Church at 6:30 pm.
Portland Public Library and Longfellow Books present a book talk and signing by Louise Penny on Thursday, July 31st at 7:00pm at First Parish in Portland. Penny will speak about her newest in the Gamache series, How the Light Gets In. Ticket holders will receive 20% off one Louise Penny book at the event. Tickets are available online at Brown Paper Tickets http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/735793 or at Longfellow Books and the Main Library in Monument Square.
About the book
Christmas is approaching, and in Québec it’s a time of dazzling snowfalls, bright lights, and gatherings with friends in front of blazing hearths. But shadows are falling on the usually festive season for Chief Inspector Armand Gamache. Most of his best agents have left the Homicide Department, his old friend and lieutenant Jean-Guy Beauvoir hasn’t spoken to him in months, and hostile forces are lining up against him. When Gamache receives a message from Myrna Landers that a longtime friend has failed to arrive for Christmas in the village of Three Pines, he welcomes the chance to get away from the city. Mystified by Myrna’s reluctance to reveal her friend’s name, Gamache soon discovers the missing woman was once one of the most famous people not just in North America, but in the world, and now goes unrecognized by virtually everyone except the mad, brilliant poet Ruth Zardo.
As events come to a head, Gamache is drawn ever deeper into the world of Three Pines. Increasingly, he is not only investigating the disappearance of Myrna’s friend but also seeking a safe place for himself and his still-loyal colleagues. Is there peace to be found even in Three Pines, and at what cost to Gamache and the people he holds dear?
On Tuesday, June 24th, Portland Public Library’s Choose Civility Initiative and City of Reader’s Team hosted Dr. Susan Feiner, USM professor of economics and gender and women studies and Garrett Martin, executive director of Maine Center for Economic Policy to help us better understand the work of Thomas Piketty and the book Capital in the 21st Century.
More than 40 people attended the event, out of curiosity about the ideas in the book and also curiosity about why this particular book became such a bestseller at this time. Those who couldn’t make it can find some tidbits and links at our dedicated Twitter hastag #pplpiketty.
Anyone who would like to sink teeth into text, please contact Jason who would like to organize a reading group around the book (this is NOT a library sponsored call but a private one).
If you’d like further information or an opportunity to explore the ideas more, please let us know in the comments section or by email. Similarly, if you have ideas for other programs based on current nonfiction, we’d love to know what you’re curious about!