Two days in a librarian’s life

Librarians have varied and interesting jobs! This librarian works 15 hours per week in a Local Studies post, and has shared with us the enquiries they researched and responded to, with the help of one assistant, in just two days last week:

  • Two separate TV companies want background info for programmes they are making for this autumn.
  • I need info on the founder of a local college for the deaf.
  • Please find me a local newspaper report of the death of a motorcyclist in 1951 (narrowed it down with GRO indexes on Ancestry).
  • Please search local trade directories for me for a pub on the county borders, 1870s to 1880s.
  • A lady from the USA comes in to research her family, who lived at a local manor house. She is delighted with the amount of resources we have on them.
  • Another lady needs help copying an exact small rural area on the 1880 map.
  • A man comes in to research the navigability of the local river.
  • Another man needs intensive staff help to search the FindmyPast site.
  • A lady needs guidance in using newspapers on microfilm.
  • When did a local village magazine start, and how can I write to them?
  • Please can you help us trace the whereabouts of a book containing original watercolours by a Victorian lady artist, which we think we saw in a local museum in 1995?
  • We need photographs and history of a jeweller’s shop in the county town.
  • A colleague from another council dept asks if we can suggest a local book suitable for official presentations? (We recommend a very good one published by ourselves, which will mean income for our photo website).
  • Local man would like us to run off more copies of his little book which we produced for him; his nephew has mentioned it on Facebook & it’s selling like hot cakes.

In addition:

  • Several people just coming in and getting on quietly with their own research, using the resources themselves.
  • Booking people on to computers, website advice, sorting out printing problems etc.
  • Liaising with IT dept re library management system glitches.
  • Ditto the electricians who have come to replace some of lights.
  • Branch library needs me to organise replacement copy of a touring display which should have come to her library and has got lost en route.
  • Is it ok for us to discard this local studies book from our branch?
  • Have you got this book? (x 5 or 6), plus daily request list from our pool stock, copies to find & dispatch.
  • I also normally have an indexing workload (new and retrospective) and am responsible, with my jobshare partner, for management of staff and library.