ERIC Number: ED543870
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1954
Reference Count: 0
Public Library Statistics, 1950. Bulletin, 1953, No. 9
Dunbar, Ralph M.
Office of Education, US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare
The Office of Education has long been interested in the development of public libraries as agencies to further the educational progress of the nation. Beginning with 1870, it has issued at intervals statistical compilations on the status of the various types of libraries. Marking a change in that program, the comprehensive collection covering basic data for fiscal 1939 was devoted exclusively to public libraries as was also the one treating fiscal 1945 statistics. This current study, which deals with 1950 statistics, is thus the third in a new series designed to set forth at regular intervals the status of public libraries throughout the United States. These national analyses have proved useful to educators, library administrators, governing boards, appropriating bodies, professional associations, and others interested in the development, efficient management, and full utilization of these educational agencies. This compilation of 1950 data also carries some comparisons with statistics in previous studies, which may be helpful in noting trends. Answers were sought to the following questions covering the fiscal year ended during 1950: (1) How many public library systems are operating in the United States?; (2) How large are the collections of books and related library materials?; (3) How great is their use?; (4) What is the annual amount of public library income and what are the sources?; (5) For what purposes and in what amounts are public library incomes spent?; (6) What size staffs and what levels of workers are operating these libraries?; (7) What sizes of population groups are these libraries serving?; (8) What sizes of geographical areas are these libraries serving?; (9) What is the extent of bookmobile service?; and (10) What are the units of support for public libraries? In this nationwide study, the term "public library" has been defined as a "library which provides free library service of a general nature to the people of its community." In addition to the well-known tax-supported public library--municipal, county, or regional--this definition includes those privately controlled libraries, supported by endowment or other invested funds, which render without charge general library service to the community or to a considerable portion of it. Public-school libraries are not included unless they are open to the adult public and render service beyond that connected with the curriculum of the school. (Contains 16 tables and 19 footnotes.) [The statistical reports in this study were edited and the data tabulated by Mary M. Willhoite, assisted by Doris R. Chambers and Jessie C. Boehlert, under the general direction of Ralph M. Dunbar and Emery M. Foster. Best copy available has been provided.]
Descriptors: Governing Boards, Library Services, Public Libraries, Statistical Data, Professional Associations, School Libraries, Library Materials, Trend Analysis, Income, Books, Geographic Regions, Taxes, Counties, Municipalities, Private Financial Support, Financial Support
Office of Education, US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Office of Education (ED)