Speaking of History:The Words of South Carolina Librarians

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Listen to Nancy Jane Day

Nancy Jane Day talks about being a librarian in Thailand.

RVW: What about interpreting American library philosophy to them?

NJD: I think we did that -- I don't know how successfully -- but I think so, just like serving, you know. I think their idea was not always serving. One student told me once -- we were talking about books that had to be put up or something -- he said he wasn't educated just to put up books. You know -- do different things. But, anyway, I think they got philosophy pretty well for what you wanted in a library -- the amount of the service -- because of what you did. Because we put our books on -- the books that I brought and the ones that I got from USIA--went on to open shelves. They were very good. Mary Englemeyer was there when I first went there -- in the library. I think they began to understand that. I don't know how much the government would understand that. You could talk whatever you wanted to. I don't know that you could act whatever you wanted to. You knew there were people there who knew what you were doing and what you said, because I mentioned the fact they had this illustrated Thai magazine -- we were talking about things -- and I said, "Now this is an excellent source." I ran across this and I said, "It's an excellent source for new materials that you may want to refer to the files and so forth. I believe it would be a wonderful periodical for looking up some things about your country." And I want you to know it wasn't more than three days before I got a stack like this sent to me. So somebody had heard, you know, what was said out of one man. But I think you could get across some ideas. You always had that feeling of books being lost, and of what you were educated to do. The basis, I guess, is important.

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