JVB Check It Out

After a month of offering technology assistance on how to download free e-books and audiobooks at the James V. Brown Library, they will offer the same assistance from 2 to 4 p.m. Aug. 8 at Panera Bread, 202 Basin St., and continuing on the second and fourth Thursdays of each month.

Anyone can drop in, pick up a drink or treat, and learn how to download books to their device from eBranch2Go.lib.overdrive.com.

Smart phone and tablet users will learn how to use the OverDrive Media Console app. Titles will be checked out, downloaded and read, all on one device.

Remember to bring a Lycoming County Library card.

This program is brought to you by the James V Brown Library, your place to go to learn, connect, and grow.

JVB Check It Out

ConnectWilliamsport now has its own Facebook page and Twitter feed to help better connect the popular community calendar website with its community.

“Social media helps us raise the profile of the site, find new users, and start a dialogue with our fans,” said Robin Glossner, library development director. “We’ll be using Facebook and Twitter to highlight events, send people to the site, and to have fun contests and giveaways. The social media presence allows users to talk to us about what they need, like and don’t like about Connect Williamsport.”

In addition, the Connect Williamsport team will be offering content about the community on these social sites. Connect Williamsport’s Facebook page is www.facebook.com/Connect Williamsport, and it can be followed on Twitter at @ConnectWport.

Right now Connect Williamsport is sponsoring a photo contest to find new images of Williamsport and the surrounding area to refresh its home screen.

The contest deadline for submissions is Aug. 1 and the winners will be announced on Aug. 23.

Full details about the contest are available on www.jvbrown.edu, and the library will be keeping the public up to date on its social media sites. Winners in each category will receive a $100 Visa gift card.

Connect Williamsport is a service of the James V. Brown Library, the place to go to learn, connect and grow.

For more information, contact Robin Glossner at 326-0536.

JVB Check It Out

As the nation celebrates its birthday this month, why not glimpse into the past by exploring the local library’s history section? Libraries in America have been in existence since the late 17th century.

Benjamin Franklin is noted as having founded the first subscription library, The Library Company, as well as the State Library of Pennsylvania, both of which remain in existence today as research facilities, one in Philadelphia and the other in Harrisburg.

Libraries throughout Lycoming County protect treasures of their local communities, such as tombstone inscriptions, obituaries, family histories and church records. The information preserved in these volumes can inspire local residents to honor and cherish the neighborhoods in which they live and work.

Old black and white photographs clearly illustrate how quickly our communities flourished and developed. Many people find it interesting and thought-provoking to look at pictures from their town center and compare them to today. Original handwritten diaries also provide vital insights about life in previous eras.

There are many examples of wonderful treasures from our own Lycoming County Libraries. Montgomery Area Public Library has the Montgomery Mirror newspaper on microfilm from 1849 to 1948 and the Montgomery Historical Society is located downstairs in the Adam Room.

The Jersey Shore Public Library has 30 volumes of Pine Creek Valley Early Families, an essential tool for genealogists. The Konkle Memorial Library has Don King’s collection of Montoursville history, plus numerous photographs and newspaper clippings. Many of the libraries also have yearbooks from their local high schools. Visit your library today for more examples.

In addition to local libraries, Pennsylvanians have a wonderful resource in the State Library. The stories of Pennsylvania can be found there in the largest collection of Pennsylvania newspapers as well as the Genealogy and Local History Collection, which consists of family genealogies, state and county histories, atlases, maps and compilations of church and cemetery records.

The collections also include the Pennsylvania Federal Census records on microfilm and federal publications on historical events, which took place in Pennsylvania. The State Library is open to the public on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. as well as 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the second Saturday of each month.

It is located in the Forum Building, 607 S. Drive, Harrisburg. Many newspapers and genealogical and local history resources are also available from the State Library through the interlibrary loan system of your local library.

Today’s libraries offer much more than books. They are agile institutions connecting and building stronger communities through a wide array of print and online resources, programs and services. Pennsylvania libraries offer tools and knowledge to help residents effectively contribute to and connect with society.

Strong local history collections are one way libraries give citizens of all ages the knowledge and skills they need to enrich their lives, contribute effectively in their communities, and participate in civil discourse. For more information on how libraries impact Pennsylvania, visit www.paforward.org.