Catalog

Search our Catalog

History

Happy Birthday Thomas Edison

Today is Thomas Edison's 164th birthday. Thomas Edison was one of the world's most famous inventors. Some of his inventions include the phonograph, the motion picture camera, and an electric light bulb. He has 1,093 U.S. patents under his belt making him one of, if not the, most achieved inventors of all time. Learn more about Thomas Edison and his inventions.

RoboCop Statue a "Rocky" Proposition?

RoboCop, a cinematic gem of the 1980s, exemplifies the attitude of many people toward Detroit: crime-infested urban ruins. So, despite the title character being [spoiler alert] a hero, the movie's setting is not depicted in such a positive light.

This is in contrast to Rocky, which shows Philadelphia in a mostly-neutral light; along with a glorious training montage that made the Philadelphia Museum of Art steps an icon and tourist attraction. Given the positive effect of Rocky on Philly tourism, the strong identification of that film with a particular filming location, demand for a statue for photography purposes, and the pre-existence of a bronze Rocky statue (which was created as a prop for Rocky III), the permanent installation of the prop statue seems natural.
Now, in Detroit, with the resurgence of civic pride and national recognition:

Some people have come forward to have a statue of Detroit film history erected.

But where? The Detroit in the film bears little resemblance to the rising-Phoenix-Detroit we see today. Additionally, no location in the film was particularly memorable above others. Maybe RoboCop isn't the right fictional Detroiter for a statue. Here are some films set in Detroit for your sculptural inspiration:

Black Americans Making Their Stamp on History

In honor of Black History Month stop by and view our display case near the receptionist desk. It includes an authentic USPS Black Heritage stamp collection and portraits on loan from the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. Also showcased are just a few of the many Black Americans that have given their lives to shape our world through leadership, inventions, medicine, arts & entertainment, civil rights, sports, education, and more.

Check out our wide selection of materials including books, videos, CD’s and cassette tapes noting the achievements and notable moments in history of those of African descent. Let’s celebrate Black History Month together here at your Canton Public Library!
(image from Kevin Fell at HOZA)

Motown Museum

Note: This event has been canceled due to unforeseen circumstances.

Kick off Black History Month by reminiscing about Motown greats, such as the Temptations, the Supremes, the Miracles and Smokey Robinson and many more. It was an era of unique Detroit sound shared around the country. Lina Stephens, chief curator of the Motown Museum, shares the history, the personal stories and music with us.
No registration is needed

Remember the [blank]

A call to remember notable events, especially surprise attacks and disasters, is a well-known trope in the cultural memory. As George Santayana quipped, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." So, in case you have forgotten, here are some resources for remembrance of things past:

Remember the Alamo

The Alamo: a cultural history by Frank Thompson

Sleuthing the Alamo: Davy Crockett's last stand and other mysteries of the Texas Revolution by James E. Crisp

The Alamo [videodisc] by The History Channel

Remember the Maine

How the battleship Maine was destoyed by H.g. Rickover

Celebrate Dr. King

Saturday, January 15 would have been Martin Luther King Jr.'s 82nd birthday. We celebrate his life, his message, and the spirit of the Civil Rights movement on the third Monday of every January. For some, this means a day off of work or school; for many others it's a day of community service (Find volunteer opportunities on the All for Good site). Whether you choose to serve, attend special community events, or simply reflect, Canton Public Library has useful resources for you:

Martin Luther King — Books

Behind the dream: the making of the speech that transformed a nation by Clarence B. Jones and Stuart Connelly

The Word of the Lord is upon me: the righteous performance of Martin Luther King, Jr. by Jonathan Rieder

What would Martin say? by Clarence B. Jones and Joel Engel

History, boring? Never!

Looking for some fun historical reads? Look no further.

Sugar changed the world: a story of magic, spice, slavery, freedom, and science by Marc Aronson and Marina Budhos

Countdown by Deborah Wiles

Journey into Mohawk Country as written by H.M. van den Bogaert with artwork by George O'Connor and color by Hilary Sycamore

We Remember Rosie the Riveter

Geraldine Hoff Doyle, the Lansing, Michigan resident best known as "Rosie the Riveter" died today at the age of 86. She was 17 when she posed for the now famous photo that was used for the "We Can Do It!" poster campaign to encourage women to enter the work force during World War II. Read more about this amazing woman here at the library.

Mark Twain (1835-1910)

Mark Twain, one of America's best-known and well-loved authors, was born on November 30, 1835. His works have been translated into hundreds of languages, and Hollywood continues to produce film adaptations of his books. The following Special Collection focuses on his life and work.

Coming Up...at the Harlan Hatcher Graduate Library

Tuesday, December 7th, 7:00-8:30PM at Harlan Hatcher Graduate Library, Gallery in Room 100 (use Diag entrance) — 913 S. University Ave., Ann Arbor, MI

Blaine Pardoe, author of Lost Eagles: One Man’s Mission to Find Missing Airmen in Two World Wars

Pardoe tells the complex story of Frederick Zinn, a man who brought peace and closure to countless families who lost airmen during both world wars. Zinn created the techniques still in use to determine the final fate of airmen missing in action. The presentation will be followed by a book sale and signing, courtesy of Nicola’s Books.

Pardoe is an accomplished author who has published dozens of military fiction novels and other books, including the widely acclaimed Cubicle Warfare: Self-Defense Tactics for Today's Hypercompetitive Workplace.

Part of the University of Michigan Press Author Series.

Thanksgiving Picture Books

Give thanks for the picture book with these wonderful Thanksgiving stories. Enjoy some turkey tales while waiting for the special holiday to arrive!

Gus, the pilgrim turkey by Teresa Bateman ; illustrated by Ellen Joy Sasaki



The Berenstain Bears' Thanksgiving by Stan & Jan Berenstain



An old-fashioned Thanksgiving by Louisa May Alcott ; illustrated by James Bernardin

30 Big Links of 1980

Jimmy Carter, U.S President. A first ever 24-hour all news network CNN launched by Ted Turner. Gordie Howe, professional hockey player, retired after 32 seasons. New York Islanders won their first Stanley cup. University of Michigan lost to North Carolina at the Gator Bowl 15 to 17. Consumers first saw cordless phones on the market. 3M's post-it notes sold nationwide. The Olsen brothers manufactured the first Rollerblades in their parents’ basement in Minnesota. WordPerfect, a word processing application, being sold by Satellite Systems International (SSI). John Lennon, former Beatles rock star, shot and killed outside his apartment in Manhattan. George Nichopoulos indicted for over-prescribing drugs for Elvis Presley. Ronald Reagan elected 40th

Weird Michigan History

Reasearcher, archivist, author and lecturer, John E.L. Tenney, will share stories of weird Michigan ghosts, hauntings, monsters, secret societies and conspiracies that make up our unique history.

Teens and adults, please join us on Thursday, November 4th at 7:00PM. No registration required.

30 Things I Remember

Canton Public Library is celebrating our 30th Anniversary, and to mark the occasion we're making lists of 30 things. Today, Adult Services Department Head Rebecca Havenstein-Coughlin recounts 30 things she remembers from throughout the library's history:
  1. We started out on the 3rd floor of Township Hall
  2. The card catalog was a piece of furniture
  3. To call someone in from lunch to help at the reference desk we rang a bell from the 3rd floor window
  4. We had a huge fly problem when we were in the old building and we were intimately acquainted with the "death dance" flies do
  5. All reference questions were answered from one reference desk
  6. Monday mornings the entire staff filed cards into the catalog
  7. On opening day, our staff numbered 9 people
  8. A large part of our opening day collection was discarded from the Wayne County General Hospital collection
  9. The night before we opened we worried that no one would come
  10. At the end of our first open day, there wasn't even 1 picture book left on the shelf
  11. The book drop was a long 3 floors down when the elevator wasn't working & books were hauled up the stairs in canvas bags
  12. Name badges looked like this
  13. A president visited the library
  14. It was big news when in 1990 we stopped charging rental fees for videos, compact discs, and new books
  15. In the late 80s there was a shortage of public librarians that really threatened our ability to offer the best customer service possible
  16. The library once had an assistant director [it was me!]
  17. My confirming letter
  18. The library has always been known for its strong customer service and was the front page feature of the July 1990 "Customer Service Report"
  19. Books received a due date stamp rather than a printed receipt
  20. Reference questions were answered from reference books rather than from the internet
  21. We maintained a Fugitive Fact file of reference questions which I believe morphed into what is now Google
  22. Old newspapers were viewed on microfilm rather than as digitized images on the web
  23. The library once had a LAN instead of internet databases
  24. Books were checked out with paper forms rather than on a PC
  25. Many of the best-selling authors of 30 years ago are still best-selling authors today
  26. Email didn't exist and we mostly ran around desk-to-desk when we needed to communicate with colleagues
  27. Phone messages were delivered on pink memo slips rather than via voicemail
  28. Students prepared reports using our typewriters rather than computers
  29. Students used the Readers' Guide To Periodical Literature to search for magazine articles
  30. Our library logo was once a tree

Mad Men at CPL

The New York Public Library posted a list last month with many of the books that appear or are mentioned in the acclaimed TV series Mad Men. If you love the show, or are looking for what people may have read in the 1960s, these are the titles from the NYPL list that CPL has:

The best of everything: a novel by Rona Jaffe

The chrysanthemum and the sword: patterns of Japanese culture by Ruth Benedict; with a foreword by Ezra F. Vogel

Exodus by Leon Uris

Contest: Most Intriguing People

Three presidential candidates took part in the 1992 presidential debates: Republican nominee and then current President George H.W. Bush, Democratic nominee William Jefferson Clinton, and Independent Texas billionaire H. Ross Perot. Which two of these nominees were also named to People Weekly's annual list of the 25 Most Intriguing People of 1992?

The first poster with a correct answer that includes a link to the CPL database where you found it wins a prize!

Sew Retro

Sew retro : 25 vintage-inspired projects for the modern girl & a stylish history of the sewing revolution by Judi Ketteler
This book is a treasure trove for the home sewer. It offers quick glimpses into the history of home sewing and includes easy projects inspired by vintage pieces. The vintage color photographs and illustrations are enough to make this a fun book to flip through, but the projects are also great for hobby seamstresses at any level.