Friday, March 23, 2012
Library War Service Map Poster, 1918
I'm working on an exhibit of my ALA WWI Library War Service memorabilia in one of Wisconsin's public libraries for April. I've exhibited this collection on one previous occasion. I've added a very nice item for the upcoming exhibit. It is a poster of a map of the United States (see above) which documents the extent of ALA's Library War Service. It proclaims, "Every Dot on the Map Means a Special War Library for Our Fighting Men". A larger square dot indicates camps with libraries, and a smaller round dot indicates libraries in other buildings. It includes an impressive list of statistics for the Library War Service. They include: 41 camp library buildings in operation; 143 hospitals and Red Cross houses supplied; 243 librarians maintained in the Service; 315 small military camps and posts supplied with books; 600,000 books purchased; 1,030,458 books shipped overseas; and 5,000,000 gift magazines distributed. One of the purposes of the poster is to promote the United War Work Campaign during the week of November 11, 1918 in which ALA actively participated. The poster is 20" x 25" and was probably distributed widely to libraries among other entities. The paper which it is printed on is not the best, and I feel fortunate to have a surviving copy. It is the only one I've seen.