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Archbishop Ireland Library, Kudos, News & Events

Remembering Tom Kosowski

As we go about our business in today’s world, it’s easy to forget that the convenience and efficiency we enjoy doesn’t come from nowhere. Of course, as you come to check out a book at Ireland Library’s front desk, you’ll be greeted by our staff or helped by a student worker, but we aren’t the whole show. In fact, in a very fundamental way we’re only icing on a very large cake.

Tom Kosowski

Tom Kosowski

Every day without fanfare, Ireland’s dedicated custodians come to make sure the building is clean, up to spec, and a pleasant place to work. These folks allow Ireland Library to be what it is, and without them we’d be in a world of hurt.

Fortunately, God has blessed us with a number of great guys over the past few years, and Tom Kosowski was one of the best. Always a happy guy up for a conversation, Tom brought a passion to his job I haven’t seen in a long time. This library mattered to him, and every week I saw him do something above the call of duty. He cleaned every nook and cranny of this building, fixed anything broken that came his way, and always kept us posted. Among many, many other things, Tom took it upon himself to singlehandedly wax our floors one year, and they were the most beautiful they’d been in years.

All things have their season, however, and in their times all things pass under heaven. Tom’s season came to a close this Sunday after a long fight with cancer.

Our prayers go out to all those who knew and loved this wonderful man. May we grow to care for others as he did and not forget those to whom we owe so much.

~ Mason M., Ireland graduate student staff

Archbishop Ireland Library, Kudos, News & Events, Theological Libraries Month

Book Spine Poetry Grand Prize Winner!

Ireland Library is pleased to announce “With Roots and Wings” as the Grand Prize Winner of the Theological Libraries Month Book Spine Poetry Contest!  Sean Goossens & Andrea Bettschen teamed together to create the simple and evocative poem.  They will receive a box (30 pieces) of the Queen’s Assortment from Regina’s Chocolates.

The 2013 Winners of Ireland Library's Book Spine Poetry Contest:  Andrea Bettschen and Sean Goossens!  Congrats!

The 2013 Winners of Ireland Library’s Book Spine Poetry Contest: Andrea Bettschen and Sean Goossens! Congrats!

The staff of Ireland Library thanks the following folks who made Theological Libraries Month special:  our Book Spine Poetry contestants, all you who voted for your favorite Book Spine Poetry, all the student staff at Ireland who created sample book spine poetry, and especially Sarah P whose enthusiasm for social media made this contest possible.

Archbishop Ireland Library, Kudos, News & Events, Science, Special Collections and Archives

Chemistry Department & Libraries Work Together to Preserve Books

More Books with Spew

We all know that UST Libraries have a wonderful collection of rare and archival materials. Sometimes, however, taking care of so many old books can be a challenge, especially when they are discovered to be growing things they’re not supposed to. Who knew that we had a real-world chemistry problem sitting right here on campus!? 

Books with SpewBooks with SpewWhen Mr Curt Le May, Director of the Archbishop Ireland Memorial Library, approached the Chemistry department for help in identifying white film forming on the surface of leather bound 300-year-old books, Meghan Talbot, chemistry major and a research student under Dr. Marites Guino-o, was glad to help.

Meghan Talbot

Meghan collected the white film/powder by using a spatula and carefully scraping off the residue found on the surface of the leather bound book, “Histoire des variations des églises protestantes.”  Through a combination of three characterization techniques (FTIR, Mass and NMR spectroscopy), she deduced that the white film/powder is a spew (or speu). A spew is a combination of carboxylic acids that originated from the leather itself, and leather dressing used to increase the leather’s preservation and flexibility.

“Being able to work on a project such as this was a great honor. It was a very interesting experience to be able to work with a book that was evidence of a time in which I had learned about in previous history classes. I am glad that the work that I was able to do has the ability to help the library preserve books, such as this one, as they are such a crucial connection to our past.” ~Meghan Talbot

We at the library are grateful to Meghan for helping us find out what the white substance was, so we could find a way to safely remove it and keep these books for future Tommies. Cooperation across the campus can certainly be a great thing!  

Archbishop Ireland Library, Circulation, Kudos, News & Events, O'Shaughnessy-Frey Library

UST Libraries Food for Fines (2013 Results)

The O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library and the Archbishop Ireland Memorial Library wrapped up their annual Food for Fines drive this past week.


UST Library patrons donated a total of 699 lbs. of canned food. Donations will go to the Emergency Food Shelf at the Saint Paul Area Council of Churches.

Library patrons were able to donate canned food in exchange for the waiving of overdue fines (1 can = $2).

Over the past 4 years we have donated a total of 2,417 lbs. of food.

Previous recipients were the Franciscan Brothers of Peace and Francis Basket Food Shelf.

Thank you to all who participated in this semester’s drive!

Kudos, Libraries, News & Events

Welcome, Dr. Sullivan!

We at UST Libraries are excited to welcome our President-Elect and share with her our tradition as “the intellectual and technological crossroads of information resources, teaching, and learning at UST.” 

To get started, here are some highlights we hope Dr. Sullivan will find helpful and interesting as she transitions into her new position (and that we thought you library-lovers out there might like to check out, too!):

Our Newly-Designed Website and Online ResourcesNew site screenshot

Providing easy-to-use mini research portals to through our Google-like Summon search engine, catalog, research Subject Guides, and more.  Read more about it here.

Great Scholarship


UST Research Online, our online reseach repository, is a wonderful place to familiarize yourself with the work being done by faculty and students

Virtual Tours and Histories of  St Thomasarchive_photos 

University Archives Photograph Collection contains a fascinating array of images related to the school’s history

Historic Walking Tour of the Saint Paul campus is a great way to get oriented with the history of the campus – can you find the pictures of Lake Mennith?

Written Histories of St. Thomas and the Saint Paul Seminary:

stpaul academyThere have been many books written about UST.  Here are two of the most popular:  

More can be found in the University Archives.  


*For more information about our President-Elect, Dr Julie Sullivan, please visit the St Thomas Newsroom.


Kudos to Karen Brunner!

I was talking to one of the full time MBA students yesterday and she told me that she is a fan of our new chat reference feature. She then told me how amazed she was that not only was she able to chat with a librarian around midnight about her ABR project, but that she was very happy with the help she received. And I should note too that the Applied Business Research project she was working on involves a relatively high level business research so she assumed that she was talking to one of us (!)

Because of the late night timing of her questions (and I did verify that she was working/chatting past 10 PM) I knew it had to be Karen she was ‘talking’ to. I was very pleased when she told me all of these things that I had to share.

Thank you Karen for making her very happy and making the rest of us look good!


Recognizing Library Facebook Updating

Karen Brunner and Nathan Wunrow are doing a wonderful job sharing comments and thoughts  frequently on the UST LIbraries Facebook page. Great work! And thanks to Earl too for his contributions and being the first to get an account up and running.  Diane


Dissertations and Theses full text

Thanks to a great collaborative effort to bring Dissertations and Theses: full text to our work space! Talia, Merry, Faith, CMC

Great – nice review, Merrie and thanks to CMC for making this decision. It is a good one. Dan