Sunday, December 4, 2011
Happy 150th Birthday Electra Doren, Dayton Librarian
December is a big month for significant birthdays for former library leaders. Today is the 150th anniversary of the birth of Electra Collins Doren whose claim to fame rests primarily with her leadership of the Dayton (OH) Public Library. She has been inducted into the Ohio Women's Hall of Fame and the Ohio Library Hall of Fame. She has also been inducted into the Miami Valley Walk of Fame. Doren started her career at the Dayton Public Library in 1879 when she was only 18 years old. She became director of the library in 1897. She left Dayton to help start the library school at Case Western in 1905, but returned to Dayton where she was reappointed head librarian in 1913. Kudos to the Dayton Public Library for naming a branch library in her honor and for noting her contribution to outreach services on its website. There's a nice write up about Doren in the Dictionary of American Library Biography (Libraries Unlimited, 1978) by Robert E. Kingery.