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written by "Hadley, Chalmers"
...ltars are our public libraries. We had long ago our buildings of city and state, our halls of legislation, our courts of justice. But these all speak more or less of wrongdoing, of justice and injustice, of repression. Most of them touch on partisanship and bitterness of feeling. We have had, since many centuries, in all our cities, the many meeting places of religious sects—our chapels, churches and cathedrals. They stand for so much that is good, but they have not brought together the communities in which they are placed. A church is not always the center of the best life of all who live within the shadow of its spire. For several generations we have been building temples to the gods of learning and good citizenship—our schools. And they have come nearer to bringing together for the highest purpose the best impulses of all of us than have any other institutions. But they are all not yet, as some day they will be, for both old and young. Then they speak of discipline, of master and pupil, instead only of pure and simple fellowship in studies. [Pg 11]And so we are for the first time in all history, building, in our public libraries, temples of happiness and wisdom common to us all. No other institution which society has brought forth is so wide in its scope; so universal in its appeal; so near to every one of us; so inviting to both young and old; so fit to teach, without arrogance, the ignorant and, without faltering, the wisest. The public library is to be the center of all the activities that make for social efficiency. It is to do more to bind into one civic whole and to develop the feeling that you are citizens of no mean city, than any other institution you have yet established or than we can as yet conceive. J. C. DANA.    PUBLIC LIBRARIES, A WORLD-WIDE MOVEMENT The world-wide library movement of the past few years is an important factor in the educational world. The public library is now re...

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