Thursday, June 23, 2005


Yesterday, June 21, was the first day of Summer in the Northern Hemisphere for 2005, the Summer Solstice, the longest daylight of the year. In some areas, the sun never really sets at all--the famous Midnight Sun of the Northernmost areas of the Northern Hemisphere. Many civilizations and religions treated this day as a cause for ceremonies and celebrations. Today we still celebrate the Summer Solstice, but in a more modern way.

Sunday, June 19, 2005


Today is Fathers Day, a day of appreciation for all those wonderful Dads who have supported, taught, and loved their children. It seems that most websites for Fathers Day are meant for little kids, with games, jokes, and activities; here are a few, plus some for everyone:

Black Dogs Activities
Primary Games
Twilight Bridge
Yahoo Directory--links has a list of Famous Fathers and Sons and a list of Fatherhood movies. Law Related Films about Fathers and Classic Movies: Salute to Dad have lists of films featuring dads.

The Elk Grove Library has many interesting books about fathers; here are a few of them:

Gifts of Our Fathers: Heartfelt Remembrances of Fathers & Grandfathers (1994) edited by Thomas R. Verny ; photographs by Marianne Gontarz. (306.8742 GIF)
Fatherhood (1986) by Bill Cosby (PC 306.8742 COS)
Don't Make Me Stop This Car!: Adventures in Fatherhood (2000) by Al Roker (306.8742 ROK)
The Raising of a President: The Mothers and Fathers of Our Nation's Leaders (2005) by Doug Wead (NEW 973.099 WEA)
Good Morning, Merry Sunshine: A Father's Journal of His Child's First Year (1985) by Bob Greene (306.874 GRE)
Like Father, Like Son (1996) by Hunter S. Fulghum (306.874 FUL)
Zen and the Art of Fatherhood: Lessons from a Master Dad (1996) by Steven Lewis (306.8742 LEW)

Thursday, June 16, 2005


On June 16, 1775, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was officially created. Famous for bridge and road building during wars, they are also responsible for building roads, canals, bridges, dams, and railroads throughout American history since that time. They are still building today, here and abroad. Illinois is in the Mississippi Valley Region and has a District location in Rock Island. There is also a Chicago District.

The Elk Grove Library has a book on the history of the Chicago District, Those Army Engineers : a history of the Chicago District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (1979) by John W. Larson (359.220977 LAR).

Tuesday, June 14, 2005


Today was Flag Day, a day on which Americans are encouraged to proudly display The American Flag. It is an actual holiday only in Pennsylvania. Many Internet sites have the history, etiquette, and trivia surrounding our flag, as well as lots of links; i.e.,:
Viking Phoeniz
Flag Day in America
Holiday Insights: Flag Day
Our Flag: How to Respect and Honor Her--includes a neat animation of proper flag folding
US Flags--illustrated history

Related to the American Flag is the National Anthem, "The Star-Spangled Banner". The history behind the song lyrics can be found on World Wide School and Nina Gilbert's Page. More links can be found at Old Glory and Star Spangled Banner Links (which also displays a facsimile of the original manuscript). Most of these sites also provide audio of the song.

The Pledge of Allegiance is also connected to the American Flag. Information on its history and the controversy concerning the inclusion of the phrase "under God" can be found at the American Legion site and at Restore the Pledge.

The Elk Grove Library has many, many books on the American Flag, "The Star-Spangled Banner", and "The Pledge of Allegiance", mostly in the Youth Department.

Monday, June 13, 2005


William Butler Yeats was born in Dublin, Ireland, on this date in 1865 . He was a poet, a playwright, and collector of Irish fairy and folk tales. He was obsessed with Mysticism and the Occult all his life. He became involved in the Irish Independence Movement. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1923. He died in France in 1939.
Other on-line biographies can be found on:
The Literature Network
The Columbia Encyclopedia
Poetry Connection

Lots of other links can be found at Open Directory. There is also an official Yeats/Sligo site. His collected poems are available on-line at California State University at Northbridge.

Elk Grove Village Library has some of Yeats' writings:

The Collected Poems of W.B. Yeats (821.8 YEA)
The Poems (821 YEA)
The Collected Works (821 YEA)
The Collected Plays (822.912 YEA)
The Secret Rose: Love Poems of W.B. Yeats (821.8 YEA)
Essays & Introductions (824.912 YEA)
Fairy & Folk Tales of Ireland (398.21 FAI)
Fairy tales of Ireland (J 398.2 YEA)

There are also several biographies and criticisms available, including:

W.B. Yeats (1970) by Raymond Cowell (821.8 COE)
W.B. Yeats, a New Biography (1988) by A. Norman Jeffares (B YEA)
Critics on Yeats (1971) compiled by Raymond Cowell (821.8 COW)
William Butler Yeats (1986) edited and with an introduction by Harold Bloom (821.8 YEA)
Yeats (1976) by Frank Tuohy (B YEA)
Critical Essays on W.B. Yeats (1986) edited by Richard J. Finneran (821 YEA)
William Butler Yeats (1982) by Richard F. Peterson (821.8 PET)


In a recent posting (June 4), Molly Williams, on the Waterboro (ME) Public Library Blog, noted the website for Factory Tours USA with special emphasis on those in Maine. Several tours are noted for our own state, Illinois, including Fermilab and Eli's Cheesecake world [yum!].

Saturday, June 11, 2005


My husband and I recently returned from a trip to Seattle. While there, we also visited Olympia and were fortunate enough to be able to participate in a guided tour of the Capitol Building there--yes, the very one damaged in the 2001 earthquake. The tour guide not only showed our small group the public chandeliers and bust of Washington, but he unlocked doors for us to the Grand Reception Room (in which we were treated to a lovely rendition of "America, the Beautiful" by another visitor on the unique German-made grand piano) and to the two legislative chambers. It was a wonderfully informative tour--highly recommended.

Pictures and histories of Washington's and other U.S. State Capitol buildings (which may also provide guided tours)can be found on several Internet sites:

Cupolas of Capitalism
Architects Attic--links to state sites
State Capitol Buildings--photos of c.25 buildings
State Capitol Buildings--postcards

The Elk Grove Village Public Library does have several books on the State Capitols that include pictures:

State Capitals [sic] (1990) by Thomas G. Aylesworth (725.11 AYL)
America's Heritage: Capitols of the United States (1993) by Willis J. Ehlert (J 917.304 EHL)
State Capitals (1999) by Tracy Maurer (J 973 MAU)
State Names, Seals, Flags, and Symbols : A Historical Guide (1987) by Benjamin F. Shearer and Barbara S. Shearer (973 SHE, J 973 SHE, & 929.92 SHE [1994 edition])