Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Wild Rice Sauté

(by Heather Hernandez, Technical Services Librarian)

The recipe that follows is on the page following the one for sauce bèarnaise in the Library's copy of  The captain's table : 18 recipes for famous dishes served aboard the S.S. United States and S.S. America.  At the head of the page is a portrait of Mrs. Reed Albee, with the following:
"During a recent trip abroad, I was delighted to find the great tradition in good food continues on board the S.S. United States. So many of their wonderful dishes deserve mention, but this famous spécialité du paquebot is one of my particular favorites." Mrs. Reed Albee, well known in the theatre world, is a regular traveler on United States Lines.
Why not try one of Mrs. Albee's favorites?

Wild Rice Saute
(For Game or Fowl)

Wash well 12 ounces wild rice and cook it in a large quantity of boiling salted water for 40 to 50 minutes, or until it is tender.  Drain the rice well and dry it briefly in a slow oven (300F).  In a skillet saute 4 shallots, finely chopped, in 1/2 cup butter until they just begin to take on color.  Add the rice and saute it over very low heat, stirring it with a fork, for 8 minutes.  Stir in 2 tablespoons red currant jelly and cook the rice, stirring, for 2 minutes, or until the jelly is melted.  Serves 4.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Holiday hours

(by Heather Hernandez, Technical Services Librarian)

The Library will be closed from Thursday, December 20, 2012, through Tuesday, January 1, 2013; regular service will resume on Wednesday, January 2, 2013.

For more information, contact us or see our Plan Your Research Visit site.

(Updated and corrected, December 20, 2012.)

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Behind the scenes in Technical Services: Koha serials tweaks we like

(by Heather Hernandez, Technical Services Librarian)

We still feel very new to Koha, the software that powers our Keys Catalog of Library Materials, but we've discovered a few little features that make our serials work much more efficient.

Before I dive in, let me recommend ByWater Solutions' serials tutorials--like all their tutorials, they're great introductions and overviews.  We've found that even if the tutorial is for an earlier version of Koha, a lot of the functionality remains the same.

The first feature we've come to appreciate is the nonpublic note.  This note shows up in the staff client display of the title when the "Subscriptions" tab is selected, right above the table of received issues, for example (this is how it looks in our version of Koha,

We're recording the source of acquisition, any other separately cataloged titles arriving on that subscription, and the mailing address to which the title is sent.

Why is this all useful?

When receiving an issue of a serial, we need to record the source of acquisition in the item record that is then created, but it's not visible anywhere on that screen--putting it in the nonpublic note solves that problem.  For example, here's Sailing in the middle of receipt--after it has been received in the "receipt box" but before any fields have been filled in on the new item record.  Seeing "NPSPURCH" tells us this is a purchased subscription (as opposed to one available gratis, via a donated subscription, etc.):

Eagle-eyed readers will also notice that these two subscriptions are addressed very differently.  Why?  When there is a staff change, or a change in job duties, or for various other reasons, the person actually paying for the subscription renewal can change.  If we have a problem with the subscription it's handy to have the exact address under which it's entered, and also handy when renewing, so we can make changes at that time.

We have also found that entering vendor information, even though we don't use Koha to generate claim letters, has proven very useful.  It's a central location, easily updated, for all the contact information regarding the source of our subscription, and has proven great when claiming (via email, phone, etc.) and renewing our subscriptions.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Site picks and newly available Niantic journals

(by Heather Hernandez, Technical Services Librarian)

We are delighted to announce that the latest issue of our Park's Maritime News, now available online as an Adobe Acrobat .pdf file, contains two articles by Collections Dept. staff members:

  • Reference Librarian Gina Bardi writes as entertainingly as always in her article, "Plumb the Depths with Online Maritime Resources."  The sites included aren't just for hardcore researchers--she includes sites that will entertain and delight as well.
  • Dan Brogden, Archives Specialist, contributes "Vividly-Written Journals Detail Four Voyages of the Niantic," an excerpt of a longer piece, available on the Park's website in its entirety, about exciting additions to our archival collections.  (But be sure to see the Maritime News version for two images not included in the online version.)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Digging for Gold at the Library: Gold Rush Ships

(by Gina Bardi, Reference Librarian)

The reason I am here today and you are reading this blog is Karl Kortum. Karl was the indefatigable visionary who got this museum up and started. He was a collector, historian, sailor, achiever, and all around bulldog of a man, from what I hear. I never met him, but I run into him every day--his records, his notes, his general mark on this collection is ubiquitous. One of my favorite things in the library is something he put together with Harlan Soeten and Albert Harmon, Notes on the Gold Rush Ships.

This large format (it measures 59 x 42 cm) book is a lovely combination of text, images, maps, newspaper clippings and other delights. It’s one of the most engaging resources we have. There’s all sorts of information on arrivals, departures, wharves, buried ships- knowledge enough to entice the novice and excite the pro.
When I first started here, I thought the Gold Rush would be our most popular topic. It is up there in the top 10, but I don’t have as many chances to bring this out as I would like. I've included some photos below to entice you, but please, do me a favor. Come to the library and ask to see this remarkable piece of history.

views of early San Francisco

map of San Francisco in 1848

map and views of San Francisco with table of Gold Rush storeships