Blog

November 11th 2018

Looking for something to read? Try checking out our staff picks page, here's the link.

It features what your current Somerville Librarians are reading!

Comment below and tell us what your going to read next!

November 2nd 2018
Great American Read logo

The Great American Read, the 8-part series in which PBS attempted to determine which novel is America's favorite, is over.  On October 23rd the network announced (to no one's surprise) that the winner was To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

To Kill a Mockingbird was on my list of favorites too, as were many of the other titles on the list of 100 novels which were selected for inclusion in the contest.  Continuing in the spirit of competition, I hereby announce that all of my best-... Read Post

September 20th 2018
Hurricane 1938 Somerville Smashed Car

This week we were spared the worst of Hurricane Florence’s destruction, but 80 years ago on September 21, the 1938 hurricane known as the Long Island Express walloped New England with 100+ mph winds, killing more than 700 and leaving more than $300 million in damage (in 1938 dollars).

Here in Somerville, the damage was estimated to be $1 million. According to the Somerville Journal, the storm hit around the 5pm rush hour, injuring a dozen people, uprooting thousands of trees, and... Read Post

September 11th 2018

We love storytime at the West Branch.  We love the books, the friends, moving and dancing and singing, and we really love the song “Roly Poly”!!! 

Some of our friends have recently moved and are missing Storytime at West, others want to share this song with grownups who can’t make it to storytime, and some just love Roly-Poly-ing their little hearts out.  A few Storytime regulars sat down with Alison this morning to record an enthusiastic version of Roly Poly for everyone to share at... Read Post

September 4th 2018
Image of books that are banned.

It’s that time of year again: Banned Books Week is from September 23-29, 2018, celebrating books that a community or person has deemed as unfit or offensive and asked to be removed from a library, school or bookstore. Banned Books Week is a celebration of your freedom to read and your First Amendment rights!

 

Below are some staff picks of our favorite banned books!

 

Glenn, Library Director

Bible - has been challenged for its religious viewpoints in... Read Post

August 23rd 2018
Wilson Memorial Fountain, Central Hill Park, Somerville, MA

Central Hill Park was the first public parkland in Somerville. Created in 1870 with the purchase of 38 acres by the City (price tag: about $38,000), the lot spanned Highland Avenue between Walnut and School streets, and bordered by Medford Street on the north. Public buildings included City Hall, the high school, the Central Library, and a fire station which was relocated early in the 20th century.

Central Hill was the site of Revolutionary War fortifications, and the park originally... Read Post

August 3rd 2018

...to cook. In New England many of us spend half the year longing for summer, but once it's actually here we realize that hot weather makes certain basic life-maintenance tasks (such as cooking) unappealling. However, we still have to eat, even when the thermometer goes way up and the weather is sizzlin' hot.  Some of SPL's books on seasonal cooking and main dish salads can help you find dinners to prepare without turning your kitchen into a furnace. When Mark Bittman was still writing his "... Read Post

August 2nd 2018
West Branch of the Somerville Public Library

The West Branch of SPL opened to the public on May 27, 1909. It was one of 2,509 libraries built in the U.S. with funds from Andrew Carnegie - the Central Library and East Branch were also built with Carnegie funds. The image here shows the adult reading room in the early 20th century, now home to mysteries and audiovisual materials. Wait, is that a ghost in the picture? See if you can find the double-exposure "ghosts" in the frame. More images (and more ghosts!) of the West Branch in its... Read Post

July 18th 2018
George Dilboy at Camp Keyes, Concord, NH

Dilboy is a familiar name our city: Dilboy Field in West Somerville, the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 529 – Dilboy Post - on Summer Street; the statue of Dilboy by City Hall. He was killed in action on July 18, 1918, near Chateau Thierry, France, and awarded the Medal of Honor for bravery posthumously. In May of this year, he was honored along with other World War I veterans at the Chateau-Thierry American Monument in France, where the American Battle Monuments Commission launched an... Read Post

July 6th 2018
Free Summer Meals for Somerville Youth

Somerville youth under the age of 19 can enjoy free breakfasts and lunches Monday through Friday from now until August 18th.  The meals are prepared by Somerville's award-winning Food and Nutrition Services Department and are brought to you courtesy of the Somerville Public Schools and the Somerville Recreation Department.  Look for the Food and Nutrition truck to get your free nutritious meal!  A schedule of times and places the trucks will stop can be found here.

More information... Read Post

June 28th 2018

Well, if you would like to read a magazine in Spanish, we have a few to recommend! All magazines, including the most current issues are free to check out with your Minuteman Library card.

National Geographic en Español  --  inspiraiόn para cuidar el planeta. A stunning array of photographic images from every corner of the planet with in-depth, well-researched articles. Become an adventurer with diverse writings on culture, people, natural marvels, the animal world, science and... Read Post

June 21st 2018
SHS Radiator cover 1945

Today we know the Somerville High School Radiator as the annual yearbook, but in the 19th and for part of the 20th century it was a monthly student literary and news magazine, often with striking cover art and design. The group of covers we're featuring for today's Throwback Thursday were created by Bill Hanley, who graduated from SHS in 1945. His later work appeared on the covers of the Boston Globe Magazine and other magazines, book jackets, and commercial advertising. He was the art... Read Post

June 14th 2018

All the action in James Joyce's Ulysses, arguably one of the greatest novels ever, takes place on June 16, 1904, a date now known as Bloomsday, after the novel's main character, Leopold Bloom.  And now every June 16 around the world, fans of Joyce's encyclopedic, beautiful, baffling book gather to celebrate the author and his work.  This Saturday is the 23rd annual Worcester Ramble: from 8 am to 9 pm, participants walk through Worcester to sites reminiscent of places in Ulysses and read... Read Post

June 5th 2018

Can’t find a book in the Minuteman system? Well, maybe you should try searching the Commonwealth Catalog, a.k.a.  Comcat. Using Comcat you can look for books, CDs, DVD’s and audiobooks in other library systems throughout all of Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

 

This expands your search to library systems in Western Massachusetts, The North Shore, South Shore, Cape Cod, Central Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

 

As part of the Minuteman Network we get certain... Read Post

May 25th 2018
The Well-Informed Are Buying Ice

We at the library recently created a Flickr page for sharing photos and images from our local history collection. So far, we've scanned and uploaded photos of Somerville kids dating back to the 1920s; the city's centennial celebration in 1972; Davis Square landmarks from the 1960s, before the Red Line; Somerville High School, and advertising from 19th- and 20th century Somerville businesses, like the Metropolitan Ice Company card featured with this post. We'll be adding more images regularly... Read Post

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