Library Acquires St. Joseph Record

The History, Philosophy, and Newspaper Library at Illinois has recently acquired The St. Joseph Record from the St. Joseph Township-Swearingen Memorial Library . The print run of this newspaper includes 96 bound volumes from 1894 to 1980.

This fall, Susan McKinney, librarian and director at the St. Joseph Township-Swearingen Memorial Library , inquired with the University Library about transferring the newspapers to the University to better preserve them and to maximize their availability. Considering its importance for local Illinois history, the University Library responded quickly and proposed to house the collection.

“On behalf of the St. Joseph Township-Swearingen Memorial Library, I’m excited that the University of Illinois has taken ownership of these important newspapers of historical value and that they will permanently reside in a climate-controlled environment,” said McKinney.

Like almost all newspapers of its era, The St. Joseph Record was printed on inexpensive, mass-produced, wood-pulp paper. Its chemical properties cause it to become increasingly acidic and to deteriorate as it ages, especially under conditions which, because they are most conducive to human comfort, are typically found in libraries.

“Although it is impossible to reverse the deterioration of paper, we can slow that process by controlling the conditions in which the paper is stored,” said Marek Sroka, newspaper librarian at Illinois. “ The St. Joseph Record will be housed in a state-of-the-art storage facility specifically designed for the long-term preservation of paper-based documents (minimal exposure to ultraviolet- and infrared-emitting light, a stable temperature of about 50° Fahrenheit, and a stable relative humidity of about 30%).

To access issues of The St. Joseph Record , make arrangements with History, Philosophy, and Newspaper Library staff by calling (217) 333-1509 or emailing .

Do you have a story you’d like added to the Library News & Events? If so, please contact Heather Murphy ( ).

Image of Research Competition

The Scholarly Commons of the University Library and the Graduate College are partnering to host The Image of Research, a competition celebrating the diversity and breadth of graduate student research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Graduate and professional students at Illinois are invited to submit entries consisting of an image and brief text that articulates how the image relates to the research. Entries will be judged by a multidisciplinary panel for connection between image narrative and research, originality, and visual impact. The entry deadline is Monday, February 10, 2014.

Finalists will compete for First, Second, and Third Prize; the top prize is $500. In addition, there will be a People’s Choice Award and Honorable Mentions. All awards will be presented at a reception on April 9, 2014, in conjunction with the 2nd Annual Graduate Student Appreciation Week at Illinois. The reception, as well as an exhibition of the semifinalist and finalists, will take place at the Illini Union (1401 W. Green Street, Urbana).

The Image of Research is supported by a generous gift to the Scholarly Commons from the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics. For more information about the competition, including requirements, deadlines, judging criteria, and a forthcoming online exhibition of all entries, please visit .


The Scholarly Commons is a technology enriched space for faculty, researchers, and graduate students to pursue research and receive expert copyright, data, digital humanities, digitization, scholarly communications, and usability consultation services. Scholarly Commons services are supported by experts in the Scholarly Commons, subject specialists at the University Library, and partners throughout campus. For more information, please visit .

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library holds more than thirteen million volumes, more than 120,000 serial titles, and more than nine million manuscripts, maps, slides, audio tapes, microforms, videotapes, laser discs, and other non-print material. The University Library is ranked highly nationally and globally, and its collections and services are used heavily by students, faculty, and scholars. More than one million items are circulated annually, and many more are used on site and virtually from anywhere in the world. For more information, please visit .

The Graduate College provides campus-wide leadership for the advancement of graduate education; promotes excellence, integrity, and equity in all graduate programs; and serves the scholarly and professional needs of prospective and current graduate students from recruitment and admission through graduation. The College works with graduate faculty and staff to establish academic policies and programs designed to assure quality and support student progress, and provides a number of services and resources for graduate students and postdocs on at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. For more information about Graduate College resources and initiatives, please visit the web at .

Do you have a story you’d like added to the Library News & Events? If so, please contact Heather Murphy ( ).