Traveling Library Services in Minnesota
by Beth Goodrich, Assistant Program Coordinator, Minitex
eLibrary Minnesota Resources (for Minnesota residents)
2. "Bookmobile." Britannica Library, Encyclopædia Britannica, 19 Sep. 2016. Web. Accessed 6 Jan. 2017.
3. Hyatt, Jason, and Angela Craig. "Adapt For Outreach: Taking Technology On The Road." Computers In Libraries 29.9 (2009): 35. MasterFILE Premier. Web. 6 Jan. 2017.
Additional Resources for Research
1. Amundsen, John. "Bookmobiles: A Proud History, a Promising Future." American Libraries, 11 Apr. 2012. Web. Accessed 18 Jan. 2017.
Teaching Guide: Traveling Library Services in Minnesota
Primary Source Analysis
For each source, ask students to indicate:
- the author's point of view
- the author's purpose
- historical context
For inquiry-based learning, ask students to:
- explain how a source tells its story and/or makes its argument
- explain the relationships between sources
- compare and contrast sources in terms of point of view and method
- support conclusions and interpretations with evidence
- identify questions for further investigation
This teaching guide helps instructors use a specific primary source set, Traveling Library Services in Minnesota, in the classroom. It offers discussion questions, classroom activities, and primary source analysis tools. It is intended to spark pedagogical creativity by giving a sample approach to the material. Please feel free to share, reuse, and adapt the resources in this guide for your teaching purposes.
1. Notice the early bookmobiles had the book shelves facing outward, while the later bookmobiles had interior shelves and were large enough for patrons to go inside. What would be the advantages of a bookmobile with the shelving facing to the outside? What would be the advantages of a bookmobile with shelving on the inside? How else have the bookmobile vehicles changed over the years?
2. Look at the pictures of the interiors of the bookmobile. How do they compare to your local school or public library? How are they different?
3. On page 5 of the Script III, Fact Finders Radio Program there is a desciption of the traveling library service available in the state in 1938. What was happening in U.S. history in 1938 that would affect library services? How would a traveling library service fulfill the public needs for library services at that time?
4. Examine the photographs of the bookmobiles through the decades. What types of people are using the bookmobile service? Why do you think they are using the bookmobile rather than going to a traditional library building?
5. The Stearns County Library Bookmobile has a slogan on the side that says "Education, Information, Recreation." What does that slogan tell you about the types of materials or service a patron could find in the bookmobile?
6. In Tres Lacs, March 1939, the Newsletter of a Civilian Conservation Corp camp in Rochert, Minnesota, a partial booklist for a traveling library is included on page 5. Look at this list and compare it to the Travelling Library Number 2 booklist. What do these book lists tell you about the types of audiences using these traveling libraries?
7. While bookmobiles still serve many communities in Minnesota, libraries have other means to get library materials to patrons. Many libraries offer interlibrary loan services, where materials are borrowed from library systems across the state or country and delivered to a patron's home library. Library patrons also have access to digital resources such as online articles, ebooks and digital collections like Minnesota Reflections. Patrons can access these digital resources from any place with an internet connection. What advantages and disadvantages do you see for digital materials over mobile library services such as bookmobiles, traveling libraries or interlibrary loan which deliver physical library materials directly to patrons?
1. Imagine your community has no library nearby. What kind of a traveling library would you like to see delivered to your neighborhood? Assuming your traveling library must fit inside one box, create a book list. Think about the types of books and materials that would be of local interest and would appeal to many people in your community. Consider any specific needs that people in your community might have when borrowing library materials. Create a list of some specific titles or the types of materials you would like to include in your traveling library.
2. Design a bookmobile for your community. Consider how patrons would access the collection and the types of locations the collection would visit. What would be the ideal size and type of vehicle for your mobile library? How would you make the best possible use of resources? How would your mobile library be funded?