By Angie Georgeff
Libraries today do much more than they used to do. We still lend books, along with DVDs and audiobooks, but we also connect people to information in many other ways. Home schooled children can learn about art, science or coding at their library, while adults can learn how to use a computer or trace their family history. Patrons often call or come in to find phone numbers, driving directions, song lyrics or where their grandfather is buried.
I even had a caller who asked for information about the Holy Roman Empire. Of course, we don’t get that kind of call every day, but often they are the most fun, for me at least. I’ve always liked history. Perhaps the funniest was from a caller who wanted the phone number for 911. In spite of what you may be thinking, it was not a prank call. The individual needed the non-emergency number for dispatch, which we were able to provide.
During the course of a year, we field thousands of reference questions. Some are simply matters of curiosity. Others concerning the availability of food, shelter, transportation and employment are much more urgent. The Holston River Regional Library has sent us reinforcements to help us answer those vital questions. A social work intern from ETSU is now available at the library on Monday and Wednesday afternoons from approximately 12:30 to 3 p.m. to help us provide information and assistance. These young ladies can even assist patrons with assessments and resume building. In addition, they will help our staff become more familiar with resources available in our region. If you know anyone who needs this kind of assistance, please let them know it is offered at their library.
Whether you are just setting out on a quest to know your ancestors or have come up against a “brick wall” after several years of research, come to the library at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 17, for our genealogy workshop. We can’t promise to prove your descent from Charlemagne, but we can help you get started or suggest some strategies that you may not have tried. The fun will start at 6 p.m. and continue for about ninety minutes. Please call the library at 743-6533 for further information.
The library will be open for two hours, instead of the usual four hours, on Saturday, Nov. 19. We will open at 11 a.m. and close at 1 p.m. so that our staff may attend a memorial service. We regret any inconvenience and appreciate your understanding.