Kudos to the Minnesota SLA division’s Terri Horsmann for converting this 1964 information film to a YouTube video for all to see. It was fun to see how the information research of 1964 corporate libraries has changed, but it was more interesting to see how much of it still runs parallel to today’s research techniques.

As you watch the video, pay attention to the number of times you see the “Reading is Key” posters in each of the different corporate libraries. I’m thinking that was the ALA Library Week Theme that year…

Here’s the description of the video, and you can go to the Minnesota SLA YouTube channel to leave comments for Terri and the others responsible for archiving this little piece of corporate librarian history.

Get a rare glimpse into a day in the life of a corporate research librarian in 1964! Created for National Library Week by Grieg Aspnes, Research Librarian for Cargill, the film shows Grieg going about his day as he visits other libraries throughout the Twin Cities, trying to answer a complex question for an internal customer. At the time, the film was sent several places in the U.S., as it was used by several library schools and at professional events. It was also shown on local television station, WCCO TV, channel 4, along with a panel of special librarians, for a career segment.
As you watch, be sure to pay attention to the “little black bag”!The original film is held in the archives of the Minnesota Chapter of the Special Library Association (SLA), and was converted to digital format in 2010.

  • With the exception of the ashtray in the last scene, this is my idea of heaven. Real shelves with real books. Stacks, old papers, seeing information in context within a bound source and not as a pop up on a WEXIS/Google screen. Ah, the good ole days.

  • Greg,
    When you put together the "3 Geeks' Best of 2010" album, you must include this post!

  • Jennifer Boettcher

    How long do you think all these visits took? Would any current user wait and wait and wait to find an answer? I'm happy with my computer resources….

    It's true, reading is still the key. You can't understand any research without reading and context.

    Thanks for putting this up 3 Geeks.