#ALAAC15 Let’s Be Librarians!

Librarians A to Z coverLibrarians A to Z

Submitter: When I first started at this job back in 2000 , we were still using those flip ledgers that women is using on the back cover. It seemed ancient then. After two weeks, I was done and automated the process. I of course had to include W is for weeding and X is for crossing out. Excellent!

Holly: Here’s a nice bit of #alaac15 inspiration. Please attend one of the collection development sessions if you have items like this in your collection! Also, what the heck is that flip ledger thing?? I got my MLIS in 1999 and have never seen or heard of such a thing.

Librarians A to Z back cover

C is for Cataloger

V is for videos

W is for weeding


  1. When we weed, we *always* throw the books into a pile in the middle of the floor like that, don’t you?

  2. I used the flip ledger to track periodicals. Its like a printed out excel sheet. You would write in each issue or volume, the month and such. I would have to put an X in the box if we received it. The end of the year, we would claim whatever we missed. Needless to say, I automated that within the first few months.

    1. We still do our periodicals this way–some come through the jobber, EBSCO, and some we subscribe to individually. Too many people checking magazines in, and not everyone (work-studies, for example) has access to a specific computer or the unified drive, or any other one-stop place.
      Every 3 or 4 months someone just flips through the pages to see if any aren’t coming in like they should, and they tell me so that I can contact EBSCO or the magazine proper.

  3. I love that grin on the librarian’s face that orders the “videos and films”. She views the videos or films so she can catalog them! She would be completely out of her mind if she had to do that now! We have hundreds of “videos” in our collection.

    1. She looks superficially pleased at something, but actually annoyed. Possibly at being interrupted by the photographer while viewing the video.

    2. Nowadays we are busy weeding the videos — VHS is not nearly as popular a format as it was and many of the tapes have deteriorated. Ditto for music cassettes; I can count on my fingers the number of those that go out a year now.

  4. the flip ledger looks similiar to a Kardex system, used to keep track of inventory. one used a pen with a star on the other end to show that the invoice had been posted, and by the end of the day one went home with ink everywhere!!!

  5. Printing library cards in 1988? We quit doing that in our (relatively small) library in 1984. Our catalog has been online since then. Although, in fact, 30 years later, some patrons still look for the cards. Many look at the Vertical File drawers. (They must be expecting large cards there! Maybe for the large-print books.) This is when I put on by big happy librarian smile and ask “Can I help you?” … and show them how to use the catalog-only terminals right next to the VF cabinet!

    1. Happy to hear, I am not the only librarian who still has a Vertical File. Our students love it. There is some good stuff in there.

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