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Gratia Alta Countryman

Page history last edited by PBworks 15 years, 4 months ago


Gratia Alta Countryman receives her appointment to the position of chief librarian at the Minneapolis Public Library. Countryman serves in this role actively until 1936. She is the first female to head this library.




Countryman’s vision for her library at the time is important to note: “How to reach the busy men and women, how to carry wholesome and enjoyable books to the far-away corners of the city, how to enlist the interest of tired factory girls, how to put the workingman in touch with the art books relating to his craft and so increase the value of his labor and the dignity of his day’s work – these are some of the things which I conceive to be my duty to study, if I would help this public library to become what it is for” (131).




Countryman contributes much to the advancement of information outreach and library services. Her library serves as an exemplary, progressive model for others around the United States. Countryman mounts campaigns for extensive business and factory outlet libraries, traveling libraries, a children’s room and a Fine Arts and Music Department.




In 1933, Countryman is also voted in as ALA President.








Pejsa, Jane. Gratia Countryman: Her Life, Her Love, and Her Library. Minneapolis: Nodin Press, 1995.


See image of Countryman here:





-Amanda Kramer


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