THAYER MEMORIAL LIBRARY was recently awarded a federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant for $30,000 from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC). “These grants are competitive and require serious planning, great idea development, and a strong commitment to meeting well-defined local needs,” said Ruth Urell Head of Library and Advisory at the MBLC. “The librarians are to be congratulated for their dedication to improving library services in their communities. The federal grants go a long way to opening new avenues for innovation and targeted services in Massachusetts libraries and the results are impressive and manifold.”
THAYER MEMORIAL LIBRARY plans to use LSTA funds to conserve several volumes of unique, manuscript materials collected and organized by notable Lancaster resident Henry Stedman Nourse (1831-1903). The nature of the project is to apply conservation treatment and digital imaging to over 1,400 pages of unique manuscript material relating to the history and geography of Lancaster, Massachusetts.
Library Director Joseph Mulé reflected on the unique opportunity winning this grant provides Thayer Memorial Library,
“We believe a work like this provides local students and residents, as well as scholars and researchers interested in early American history in general and/or Lancaster history in particular, a valuable asset that to our knowledge many interested parties have not examined and of which they may not be aware”.
The MBLC developed this direct grant program using federal funding to help libraries meet local community needs including financial and health literacy programs, STEM and STEAM projects, programs that help new Americans learn English and become citizens, programs that serve teen needs and projects that preserve valuable historical documents. The MBLC also offers grants to increase access to library services for people with disabilities.
In addition to the direct library grant program, the MBLC uses LSTA funds to support statewide programs and services including summer reading programs, research databases, the Commonwealth eBook program, the Commonwealth Catalog (the new virtual catalog) and mass.gov/libraries that has information and resources for residents. LSTA is administered on the federal level by the Institute of Museum and Library Services and in the Commonwealth by the MBLC. More information about LSTA can be found on Board’s website at www.mass.gov/mblc.
The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) is celebrating its 20th Anniversary. The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s approximately 123,000 libraries and 35,000 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. Our grant making, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive. To learn more, visit www.imls.gov and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Joe Mulé, Director
Thayer Memorial Library