Blogs

Math in basketball, special effects and music? Why, yes! Discover algebra uses in the real world so you don't have to ask, "Why do I need to know this?" Back in high school, I regularly asked my Algebra teacher that question. Maybe you've asked this same question to your teacher. Luckily, there are a number of great Web sites that explain real world math in action. Get the Math does just that. In reality TV challenge style, teams of teens must solve a real world math problem presented to them by rising stars in their fields. 

Get the Math website screen shot.

Musical duo DobleFlo share how they use math to create hip-hop music. Fashion designer and winner of season two of Project Runway, Chloe Doe, illustrates how math helps her design drawings to become fashion reality. And did you know math is the secret behind a perfect free thow? Basketball star, Elton Brand, shows his challenge team how. In addition to these challenges, the six teams work to properly price guacemole on a restaurant menu, create the perfect special effect explosion and build a popular online video game. 

Screen shot of CyberChase website.

This online pre-algebra companion to PBS Kids' Cyberchase show explains real world uses of algebra with fun, animated and live action videos.  How does the super sleuth CyberSquad foil the Hacker trying to take over Cyberspace? Using math, of course!

But how does Algebra help me right now? I'm a librarian, not a fashion designer or a dubious hacker. Snowboarding! Did you know it uses real world algebra? Last winter I took my first snowboarding lessons and learned to link my turns (yay!) Now, this year, I plan to move off the bunny hill and onto longer runs, but I'm nervous of going too fast down the slopes. How fast am I going down a run? I watched this snowboarding on slopes video to figure this out:

 

Recently Livemocha discontinued its service to libraries. The site lives on at livemocha.com but we no longer are able to offer free access to the higher-level lessons.

Are you looking for a new online resource for your intermediate or advanced language learning? 

You may want to look again at Mango, which you can access through our site with your library card. While many languages only have ‘Basic’ courses — introductions to common words and phrases — more and more include ‘Complete’ courses, with in-depth and comprehensive language and grammar exercises. Click on a languages to find out what is available. Yes, the popular languages of French and Spanish include the Complete option, but so do the not-so-widely studied languages of Farsi and Norwegian, so it is always worth checking your language of interest! There is also a Mango app that you can find in iTunes and Google Play. The app is convenient and fun, but does not offer the full range of Mango’s offerings.


Open Culture - Learn 46 languages

Many web sites include impressively advanced and helpful language learning resources. For a high-quality list of sites and podcasts by language, check out Open Culture’s Learn 46 Languages Online for Free.’ 

Looking for more, or for a language that is not listed there? Ask us, we can help!

Greek and Roman history are subjects that continue to captivate our interests. A large part of this has to do with how much they influence our daily lives in literature, architecture, recreation, government, philosophy, and much, much more.

Even though there are remnants in today’s life, in comparison, life is very different than it used to be. Hour-long baths, arranged marriages, and having your father manage all your business until you are 25-years-old, are just some of the things that were customary then.  Would you be ready for public speaking or to lead an army when you turn 17 like this young adult living in Rome in 73 A.D.?

Life was exciting living in the Roman Empire with gladiators, chariot races, and exotic bath houses. It was a time that gave us great leaders such as Augustus, Nero, Julius Caesar, and Claudius. If you were a Roman leader, who would you most resemble?

There are some similarities to what life was like in Greece and Rome, but still, things were varied. Life could be very different even in places as close as Athens and Sparta. Depending on where you were born, and whether you were a boy or a girl, you could have a very different experience from those youth close by. Play this game from The British Museum that allows you compare the lives of both men and women from these two Greek cities, and learn more about daily life in ancient Greece. Be sure to take the Greek “house challenge” to see where you would find men and women hanging out, and doing what, under the same roof.

When I was on a tour in Germany about ten years ago, we stopped at a viewpoint overlooking Nuremberg. While I was admiring the red roofs and the medieval architecture, I was surprised to learn that many of the buildings we were looking at had been bombed during World War II, but had been rebuilt to match the pre-war structures. In The Aftermath, a new historical novel by Rhidian Brook, Colonel Lewis Morgan is in charge of rebuilding Hamburg, a city that was heavily bombed during WWII. The British government has requisitioned a beautiful home for him in an unscathed area of the city and has informed the current owner, Stefan Lubert, that he and his daughter must move out. Lubert, an architect before the war, is now working at a menial job while he waits to be cleared as a "good German", one who was not heavily involved with the Nazis.  While Colonel Lewis is awaiting his wife and son's arrival in Germany, he decides that Lubert should stay and share the house with his family. His wife is NOT happy with that decision. Their older son was killed by a German bomb while playing in a house in Wales, and she is not ready to forgive the Germans or her husband, whom she partially blames, for that tragedy.  I was fascinated by Rhidian's stories of people in immediate post-war Germany, both the Germans and the British, and was touched by the humanity and forgiveness that shines through the characters. This novel, based on the post-war experiences of the author's grandfather, will stay with me for a long time.

For another historical novel featuring strange bedfellows, check out Burial Rites by Hannah Kent.  Based on the life of the last woman executed for a crime in Iceland, Kent tells the story of Agnes who, along with two others, is accused of murdering a man.  Because there are no suitable prisons in Iceland in the early 1800s, she is sent to live with a family on a remote farm until the time of her execution.  The waiting period of several months gives the characters a chance to adjust to each other and move from anger and resentment to acceptance.  Burial Rites is a quieter, more slow-moving book than The Aftermath, but is similarly compelling.  Both novels made me want to delve into other historical events that I know little about (and there are many)!

At this time of year many people are tempted to pull out the tarnished sax hiding under their beds or dust off the old ivories to see if their after-school piano lessons can be resurrected. But what to play? "Go Tell Aunt Rhody" can get a little tired after the second or third time through.

Never fear - Multnomah County Library has one of the best collections of sheet music anywhere around.

For instance, maybe you'd like to know what the kids were singing in the 90's - the 1890's, that is. Take a look at Songs of the Gilded Age, which includes such great tunes as "Elsie from Chelsea" and that old favorite "She is More to be Pitied, than Censured", not to mention "Where Did you Get that Hat?".

Perhaps your instrument is your voice. Then maybe you'll want to check out the American Idol Presents series - complete with sheet music and CD accompaniment. You're sure to be a star in your own living room.

Or maybe you'd like to rock out and take it up to elevenThe Zen of Screaming might come in handy. It's a training program for rock singers "to preserve their vocal cords without compromising their passion."

You say you and your friends would like to present a musical tribute to Lady Gaga? Here's the place to start

According to Malcolm Gladwell in Outliers: The Story of Success, it will only take you 10,000 hours of practice to become just as good a guitarist as Etta Baker was. This instructional DVD might even cut it down to 9,500 hours. 

After all, as the writer, Alexander McCall Smith asked, in a recent New York Times article, "why should real musicians — the ones who can actually play their instruments — have all the fun?"

The new year is upon us! 

In addition to remembering to write 2014, making and following our new year’s resolutions, and welcoming the gradual return of the light, we also have a slew of new laws in the state of Oregon that will take effect January 1, 2014.

Large stack of papers.

The news outlets, such as The Oregonian and KVAL 13, have published stories about the new laws, providing a digest of some of the most interesting or unique laws soon to be in effect.

Highlights include Senate Bill 444 A that makes smoking in a motor vehicle with a minor under the age of 18 present a secondary traffic violation ($250 fine for first offense). The Oregon American Lung Association has additional information online as part of the Smokefree Cars for Kids campaign. Another motor vehicle law of interest for many may be Senate Bill 9 B that increases the fine to a maximum of $500 for using a cell phone or other mobile communication device while operating a motor vehicle, some limited exceptions do apply.

A more specific law due to take effect January 1, 2014 is  House Bill 2104 A that will prohibit medical imaging procedures done for any other reason than a medical purpose ordered by a licensed physician or nurse practitioner.  While this bill stops the creation of ultrasound images by nonmedical professional made purely as keepsakes, another bill House Bill 2612 will now permit postpartum mothers to take home their placentas from the hospital if they so wish. Even more unique is House Bill 2025 B that establishes economic liability for bison owners who allow their bison to run at large and cause damage.

Oregon State Legislature Bill and Reports IconsAs you can see there is a new law for almost every occasion. If you are interested in browsing all of the bills from the Oregon State Legislature, even the ones that did not pass, you can view them online.  The bills are broken up into the 2013 Regular Session and the 2013 1st Special Session.  From the  Oregon State Legislature website you can search the bills by Bill Number, Bill Text, or Bill Sponsor by clicking on the Bills icon in the upper right hand part of the screen.  You can also access a list of just the Senate and House Bills that were actually enacted in the Regular Session and the Special Session.  These reports and a number of other legislative reports can be found by clicking on the Reports icon. You can also learn how an idea becomes law and review a flow chart illustration of the process.  For a more animated version try Schoolhouse Rock's I’m Just a Bill.    

As always librarians are not lawyers and cannot give legal advice, including selecting or interpreting legal materials, but we can happily make suggestions about research tools to use to find the information you are seeking.

Wishing you the best in a lawful new year!

 

Weight information network tips to get healthyThe beginning of a new year can be a great time to try a new fitness routine, but it can be hard to know how to get started. Luckily, many resources exist to help, no matter your fitness level.

The Be Active Your Way guide to getting started from the Department of Health and Human Services explains how much exercise you need each week, how to get started if you haven’t exercised before, and how to increase your activity level if you’re already active.

Still not sure how much physical activity you need? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Physical Activity for Everyone site has information for children, adults, seniors and pregnant or postpartum women.

Once you know how much activity you need in your day, how do you turn that into action? The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute’s Tips for Getting Active provides ways to include more movement in your day. Some of them may surprise you!

Still having trouble getting moving? The Weight Control Information Network’s Tips to Help You Get Active can help you beat some common barriers to exercise.

The MedlinePlus Exercise and Physical Fitness page will help you find trusted information about all sorts of health topics related to fitness, including nutrition, tutorials, the latest fitness news, and low-cost ways to get fit.

Ready to get started? Take inspiration from the Providence Heart to Start program or check out The Walking Site.

 

 

We get energy from many different sources, both renewable and nonrenewable.  A renewable energy source is one that is naturally replenished like wind, hydro, biomass, and solar energy.  Nonrenewable energy sources cannot be replenished in a short period of time; they include oil, coal, natural gas, and nuclear power.

Energy consumption by source, 2012.

Compare and Contrast 

The Energy Kids site, produced by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, includes timelines of energy resource development, pros and cons of energy sources, and statistics about prices, production, and consumption.  The National Academies site, "What You Need to Know About Energy," compares energy sources, their uses, costs, and efficiency.

Another good overview, which comes from the BBC, includes handy tables of advantages and disadvantages of different energy resources.  It includes an interesting case study on changing energy use in Britain.  Energy Resources is a site created by a British teacher which covers a variety of energy resources, and includes summary worksheets and quizzes.

 

Mapping Energy Resources

Maps can be a useful tool for packaging lots of information in a visually appealing way.  The U.S. Department of Energy creates lots of energy-related maps, whether of per capita energy consumption by state, or windfarm placement.  Find maps of renewable energy availability - as well as many others - at the National Atlas.

 

America's Energy Future

 

How will life in America change as our energy outlook changes?  Here’s what the scientists at the National Academies think:



 

Want to learn more?  Librarians can always help you find more resources.

If you’ve studied the periodic table of the elements, you know that there are, well, lots of elements.  Having trouble keeping them straight and remembering their properties?  Check out Periodic Videos from the University of Nottingham’s Chemistry Department.  Each element has it’s own video.  You can watch an (often explosive!) experiment with each element and listen to a mad scientist (complete with crazy hair) explain the element’s properties.  Here’s a video about the very reactive element, potassium, to give you an idea of what to expect from this site.

As you learn more about the periodic table, you’ll begin to understand that it’s organization is meaningful: each element's place within the table can tell you a lot about its properties.  But what if you arranged the elements in a different way?  What other properties of the elements could you use and how would that change the periodic table?  What other periodic tables could you make?  To answer these questions, check out the Internet Database of Periodic Tables where you can find everything from ancient periodic tables to three-dimensional ones.

If you need more information about the periodic table and the elements, you can look at the books on the list below.  Most of them are at a middle-school or high-school level and a few of them include cartoon pictures.

When people speak about the mystery of Christmas, they generally aren't talking about crime novels, but I like to read something holiday-ish in December, and for some reason I gravitate towards mysteries.  The following titles range from crimes as simple and relatively innocuous as a stolen Christmas tree to a death at a Victorian holiday party.  Make a cup of cocoa, throw another log on the fire, and check 'em out if you'd like to celebrate the holidays with a mystery!

picture of A Highland ChristmasA Highland Christmas by M.C. Beaton
Hamish MacBeth is on the trail of a stolen Christmas tree and lights, as well as trying to solve the mystery of a missing cat.

 

 

picture of Jerusalem InnJerusalem Inn by Martha Grimes
Two dead bodies make for a not-so-merry holiday for Scotland Yard's Richard Jury and his friend Melrose Plant.

 

 

picture of A Christmas HopeA Christmas Hope by Anne Perry
When a woman dies at a holiday party, the wrong person may have been accused.  Claudine Burroughs wants to make sure that the truly guilty party is caught.  This is just the latest in Anne Perry's series of Christmas novels.

 

picture of Past Reason HatedPast Reason Hated by Peter Robinson
Just three days before Christmas, Inspector Alan Banks must sort out a tangle of relationships to find a killer.

 

 

Merry Sleuthing and a Happy Clue Year!

Fostering Computer Literacy in Gresham

by Donna Childs

Photo of Dick Pyne

Dedication, respect, collegiality, enthusiasm, fulfillment - these are the words that came to mind after meeting Richard Pyne, the volunteer computer instructor at Gresham Library.  Dick is a tech-savvy retired electrical engineer who values being useful.  He teaches computer classes specially designed for older adults and brought to the library through a partnership with OASIS, a national organization devoted to lifelong learning for adults over 50. Dick teaches twice a week in a lovely media-filled room dedicated to that purpose.  On the first day, his “Meet the Computer” students spend their two-hour sessions focusing on basics, from turning on the computer to email.  Many have been given computers by children or grandchildren and want to use email with their family.  On the second day, his more advanced students focus on becoming proficient in Microsoft Office programs—Word, Excel, PowerPoint--often working on resumes or other career-related tasks. Dick is a popular teacher, and many of his basic students move on to the more advanced class.  He spends many hours outside the classes preparing material and setting up the computers for the students.

In addition to a varied career in both the engineering and business sides of his field, Dick has volunteered as a GED teacher, a cooking instructor, and at OMSI.  His heart is with OMSI and the library.  In addition to respecting the missions of both organizations, he feels valued as a colleague by staff at both places, feeling that he and the staff are working together to help the public.  

Thanks to his dedication and competence, at OMSI he has worked his way up from greeter, to Speaker’s Bureau, to being a one-man outreach department, traveling to more than 30 neighborhood events to talk about OMSI.  Likewise, at the library he has worked his way up from shelving, to some computer training at Rockwood to his present position as instructor at Gresham.  "I’d be happy to stay here forever," he said.  It sounds like everyone would benefit from that.

A Few Facts About Dick

Home library: Gresham Library

Currently reading: I often read multiple books at once; for instance, recently I was reading a tech manual and Phantom of the Opera.  I often read non-fiction, but also occasionally a fiction writer such as Dan Brown.

Most influential book: Definitely the management book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven Covey.

Favorite book from childhood: Beautiful Joe by Marshall Saunders about a badly abused dog, though it had a happy ending!  I read and reread it for several years.

A book that made you laugh or cry: I don’t know.  I think I read too many serious books.

Favorite section of the library: The tech section, though I like to roam all the library aisles and see what I find.

E-reader or paper book? Despite being a techie, I prefer paper books.

Favorite reading guilty pleasure: Books I enjoy, even though I know they have no real literary merit.  I am still working to convince myself that it really is OK to just read to relax in a sort of mindless way.

Favorite place to read: In the family room with music. In addition to reading, our entertainment often includes Great Courses DVD’s. I haven’t watched TV in 20 years.  I get news on the internet.

 

 

If you're part of a nonprofit organization, you've probably heard about or explored the world of foundation grants. But with so many nonprofits competing for funding, how can you increase your chances of getting chosen? Perhaps you've been asking the following questions:

  • What are the main characteristics of successful funding proposals?
  • Increasingly I see foundations say they don't accept unsolicited proposals. How am I supposed to get a grant?
  • If I'm turned down, can I try again?
  • Do funder guidelines describe accurately what they fund?

Author Martin Teitel answers these questions and more in his Guidestar article Questions I'm Most Often Asked about Winning Foundation Grants.

Doctors and nurses help people who are sick, but when a whole group of people, like in a town or a school, get the same disease or other health problem, there's a special name for the scientists who figure out what is going on: epidemiologist.  They look for trends and causes behind outbreaks, and some people even call them "disease detectives".

In real life epidemiology can be serious business, but have some fun with it by picturing yourself as an epidemiologist or other type of scientist while playing Imagine Yourself... or investigate infectious disease outbreaks in MedMyst. Check out real-life stories of some current epidemiologists, or watch a video about Disease Detectives throughout history.  You can even see some current outbreaks on this interactive map!

And you can always contact a librarian for more info!


This is part three of a multi-part series on researching past residents of your Portland-area house:


In the other two installments of this series, I talked about how to use old Portland city directories to find names of people who lived in your house in the past, and about how to find the address your house had before Portland's city-wide address system revision in the early 1930s.

Now we're going to talk about finding past residents of houses that are not in Portland, or that did not used to be in Portland

Map of historical annexations to the City of Portland (pdf, from Portland Bureau of Planning & Sustainability)As I have pointed out, Portland has grown a lot over the last hundred or so years!  Many neighborhoods that now seem like they've been in the city forever were actually annexed fairly recently, for example:

  • If you live in Montavilla, or Richmond, or Foster-Powell or any of the other close-in east-side neighborhoods between 42nd and 92nd, your house wasn't in Portland until sometime between 1900 and 1910.
  • If you live in St. Johns, your neighborhood was its own incorporated city before it joined Portland in 1915.
  • If you live in Multnomah or the neighborhoods to its south and west, your house wasn't inside Portland city limits until the 1940s at the earliest.
  • If you live east of 92nd Ave., or in the Brentwood-Darlington neighborhood in SE, or the Cully neighborhood in NE, your neighborhood was annexed in the 1980s.

The Portland Bureau of Planning & Sustainability has a really helpful map of historical annexations to the City of Portland (pdf) which you can consult for more detail.

The historical Portland city directories mostly contain listings only for people and businesses that were, at the time the directory was published, within Portland city limits.  This presents a problem if your house is in Parkrose or Collins View or one of the other neighborhoods that joined Portland after a lot of houses were already built.  So, is it possible to find out who lived in your house in those early, pre-annexation years?

And what if your house is in Maywood Park or Gresham or Fairview or somewhere else near to but outside of Portland?  Is there any way to find out past residents of houses outside of Portland?

Title page of Polk's Gresham city directory, 1962The answer to both questions is a qualified "yes."  Yes, it's possible, but, it can be kind of a challenge!  Because each neighborhood or city is different, I can't provide comprehensive instructions for each and every situation, but here are some general tricks you can try:

Other city directories.  The library has many, many city directories for towns and cities around Oregon.  They are often useful, but not always: some smaller-town directories were only published in scattered years, and some have listings by name only, with no by-address section in the back.  R.L. Polk & Co.'s Gresham directories (they began publication with the 1962 edition, pictured at right) are a good example of a smaller-city directory that does include a cross-reference-by-address section in the back.  To consult the Oregon city directory collection, visit the Literature and History room on the third floor at Central Library in downtown Portland.  The librarian on duty can get you started.

Cover of Tscheu Publishing Co.'s Rural Directory of Yamhill County, 1967Rural directories.  A company called Tscheu Publishing produced a wide variety of rural directories for Oregon localities, which might be useful if your house was in a rural or suburban unincorporated area when it was new.  Most of Tscheu's rural directories contain maps of "rural routes" that were used in lieu of addresses for rural mail delivery, and you may be able to use these maps as a way to look for residents based on the location of rural route boxes.   Tscheu published this series from the late 1950s to the late 1970s, and as with the other non-Portland directories coverage (both for date and for location) is a little spotty.  The Tscheu directories are also located in the Literature and History room at Central Library – ask the librarian on duty there to help you find one for your area.

Search the library's Historical Oregonian (1861-1987) database for your house's address to see if you can find news articles, rental or real estate advertisements, or funeral notices from early issues of the Oregonian daily newspaper that reference your house.  Please note: this can be a tricky database to search!  A comprehensive search for your house's address may require several steps (general tips on searching the Historical Oregonian for mentions of your address are in part two of this series - scroll down to the bottom of the page), and it might help to add the name of your town or neighborhood as well.  Remember, you are searching the words that appeared in the newspaper, so think about what words a homeowner might have included in a classified ad, or about what words a journalist might have used in a local news story.  If you have an questions about using Historical Oregonian (1861-1987) or if you'd like a librarian's help getting started, don't hesitate to contact us.

Contact your local library.  If you live in Clackamas or Washington county, your local library may have more resources to help!  They are the experts about their cities and neighborhoods. Get in touch with your librarians through Washington County Cooperative Library Services or Libraries In Clackamas County.

Search for early owners.  If you can't find a list of residents, you might be willing to settle for a list of owners - who, let's face it, do often live in the houses they own!  You should be able to find a list of everyone who has ever owned your house (including people who owned the land before your house was built), by combing through the property records at your county assessor or recorder's office.  This research can be quite a bit of work – and you'll need to visit the assessor or recorder's office in person – but if you're diligent you should be able to find property records all the way back to the 1850s or 1860s.  If your house is in Multnomah County, you can find records at the Public Records Access room at the Multnomah County Division of Assessment, Recording & Taxation. To research previous owners of property in Clackamas County, visit the Recording Division of the Clackamas County Clerk's office; for Washington County records, go to the Recording Division of the Washington County Assessment & Taxation Division.

And, one wrinkle to consider: old addresses! If your house was in an unincorporated area when it was built, but is in a city now, it is quite possible that it has had a couple of different addresses over time.  If you'd like help gumshoeing that mystery, definitely get in touch with a librarian and we'll get you started.


There you have it, all the basics for finding out who lived in your house in years past!  To get a refresher on using city directories to find out who lived in your Portland house from 1934 to the present, take a look at part one of this series.  Or, re-read part two, in which I discuss basic tools for finding your Portland house's pre-1930s address, and for tracking down pre-1930s residents.

Have fun researching the history of your house; and as always, be sure to ask your friendly librarian any time you have questions, or whenever you'd like help with a research project!


 

 

Micrograph of flu virusOne type of microorganism, the virus, has a huge impact on our everyday lives, causing colds, flus, stomach aches. What is a virus, and how is it different, for example, from bacteria? Roll on over to Manchester Children’s University site to play around with beginning facts about viruses and bacteria. (You can also become an expert on mushrooms and other fungi.) And how do these tiny threats get in our body and get us sick? Watch the adventures of the inept "Staph Sargent" and his trusty sidekick as they try to infect the world with germs. And while the Staph Sargent can be defeated by hand-washing, purses are carrying even more bacteria and viruses, as seen in this newscast.

To get up close and personal with these mischief-making microorganisms, you can browse the fascinating and legally downloadable images at the World of Viruses. To see a picture of a specific microorganism, you can also investigate at, Microbe World Beta. For more light-hearted death and destruction, you can read a Virus Comic Book such as the Frozen Horror or infect the world at the almost too realistic Plague Inc game.

If you want to know more, librarians can help you find more resources.

 

If you think cells are simple boring organisms, well think again, cells are in fact fascinating basic structural, functional living organisms that also refered to as "Building Blocks of Life". Even though cells come in all shapes and sizes, they seem invisible to our eyes. We need the aid of microscopes to explore the world of cells. You can visit “A Tour of the Cell” by clicking on the video below provided by Bozeman Science. Further, you can find out more about cell division through this link “Scientists Solve a Mystery of Cell Division” provided by Today’s Science.

Chromosomes, DNA and Genes

The command center of a cell is it's nucleus. Within the nucleus is the genetic material or the blue print of each cell also known as DNA. The DNA molecules form into a structure that shapes like a letter X. For more information about chromosomes and DNA check out the videos below. 

 

We celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on the third Monday in January. This year marks 45 years since his death; had he lived January 15th would be his 85th birthday. If you are looking for more information about Dr. King and his work, look no farther.

First,  check out these research tools from the library. Biography Reference Center and Biography in Context are resources that provide both full length and short biographies. In Biography in Context you can even find articles from daily newspapers and wire services, plus magazine articles. If you need even more print materials, check out the Biography and Genealogy Master Index. This resource contains citations only, so it is helpful for locating biographies in other reference books and journals. If you aren’t at a Multnomah County Library location, you’ll need to log in with your library card and PIN to access these biography resources. 

For primary sources, both The King Center and The King Research and Education Institute are good sites to visit. The King Center was created by the late Coretta Scott King in 1968 and is dedicated to “educating the world on the life, legacy and teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” His papers are archived here, and you can search the digital archives from the website. The King Research and Education Institute located on the  Stanford University campus also has a great website that provides a timeline, biography, and writings by an about Martin Luther King, Jr. Audio from Dr. King’s speeches as well as videos about his work during the Civil Rights movement and other movements he inspired are available online as well.

One of the most famous speeches Dr. King is remembered for was the one he gave during The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The March took place in Washington, D.C., on August 28, 1963. Attended by around 250,000 people, it was the largest demonstration ever seen in the nation's capital. Visit InfoPlease for more information on the march. March on Washington crowd photo

For more amazing images, to enhance a project, or to get a better sense of the work of Dr. King visit The Seattle Times Special Report.The photo  below is from one of the galleries featured

Dr. King and Coretta Scott King

There are a number of great films and video clips about Dr. King. PBS featured a public television program called Citzen King.  This resource also includes primary resources including letters and speeches, a map of the Civil Rights hot spots, and a list of books, articles, and websites to find more information about Dr. King. Biography channel also has a short bio

Be sure to check The Oregonian for events around Portland in celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and also The United Way to participate in the Martin Luther King weekend of service. 

If you want to explore this topic more, or if you have questions about any of this, you know what to do: Ask a Librarian! We’re happy to help. 

The Divergent movie, based on the insanely popular series by Veronica Roth, is coming March 21, 2014. Looking through the cast list, I noticed several interesting bits of trivia:

Shailene Woodley, starring as Tris, appeared in another movie adapted from a young adult novel: The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp -- as did Miles Teller, who plays Peter. Ms. Woodley is also starring in another hotly-anticipated movie adapted from a young adult novel: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green.

Zoe Kravitz, daughter of musician Lenny, playing Christina, was in yet another movie adapted from a young adult book: It's Kind of A Funny Story by Ned Vizzini.

Theo James, playing Four, had an important role in the third episode of the first season of the BBC TV series Downton Abbey.

You might know Kate Winslet, playing the Erudite leader Jeanine Matthews, from Titanic or Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Back in 1994, when she was a teen, she made her feature film debut in the creepy and compelling Heavenly Creatures.

Tony Goldwyn, playing Tris's dad Andrew Prior, also plays President Fitzgerald Grant on the ABC drama Scandal. And he's the grandson of producer Samuel Goldwyn, who's responsible for the G in the name of the movie studio MGM: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. 

And finally, Mekhi Phifer, playing Max, was in Eight Mile along with Eminem and is name-checked in Eminem's famous track "Lose Yourself."

Lose yourself in books, movies, music & TV while you wait for the Divergent movie!

 

THOMAS JEFFERSON

The Lewis and Clark "Corps of Discovery", as it eventually came to be called, was conceived by Thomas Jefferson. He was dedicated to exploration of the vast territory west of the Mississippi River and learning about the Native Americans who resided there. He wanted to find a water route to the Pacific Ocean and map the topography. Also, he expected the Corps to catalog the flora and fauna they encountered. On the Monticello web site read about Thomas Jefferson's part in funding and planning the Corp's work.

MERIWETHER LEWIS AND WILLIAM CLARK

President Jefferson chose his secretary Meriwether Lewis as the ideal candidate to captain the Corps. Lewis then chose his Co-Captain, William Clark. They had served in the military together and were an ideal team.  Between them, they possessed the skills needed to face the challenges of their incredible journey.

TOUSSAINT CHARBONNEAU

Monsieur Charbonneau is not noted for his popularity with the rest of the Corps or his abilities as a member of the team...it appears that the only contribution of real value he provided was the interpreting services of his wife, Sacajawea. This description of Charbonneau makes it clear he was considered a sort of "necessary evil".

SACAJAWEA

There are many questions surrounding Sacajawea's story that have been controversial. One is the correct spelling/pronunciation of her name and another question is at what age and where did she die? My search for accurate information about these questions and others about Sacajawea led me to the descendants of her tribe of origin, the Lemhi Shoshoni. I found an article researched and published by the Idaho Statesman during the year of the Lewis and Clark Centennial. Tim Woodward interviewed members of Sacajawea's birth tribe. The story of the kidnapping and slavery of Sacajawea and her marriage to Charbonneau make difficult reading. Her life as a member of the Corps of Discovery is but a small piece of her complex history. From the time she was kidnapped, Sacajawea's life was determined by people who were not interested in her happiness but in taking advantage of her talents. Sacajawea probably died due to an illness that may have resulted from the birth of her second child, a daughter named Lissette.

JEAN-BAPTISTE CHARBONNEAU (POMPEY) 

Sacajawea gave birth to Jean-Baptiste during the first winter of the expedition when they were camped at Fort Mandan in North Dakota. William Clark was very fond of the toddler nicknamed "Pomp" or "Pompey". National Geographic Magazine describes the landmarks the Corps mapped and named after Pompey. After the expedition he was provided for by Clark, but never adopted by him. Jean-Baptiste spent time as an adult in Europe but eventually returned to the United States to take up a mountain man lifestyle similar to his father's. The man, who had traveled as a child on one of the greatest explorations of all time, died and is buried in Oregon.

Jean Baptiste-Charbonneau grave site in Oregon.

YORK

York was William Clark's slave and belonged to him from the time both were children. His contributions to the success of the Corps were as valuable as any of the other members. In recent years, letters William Clark wrote to his brother reveal that he did not feel York's "services" with the Corps had any value. He didn't care that York wished to live close to his wife and refused to grant him his freedom. Clark told his brother that if York didn't improve his attitude he was going to loan him to a harsh master. The final years of York's life are detailed by the National Park Service. You can learn how York's position in the 1800's is typical of the complexities of the slave/owner relationship.

SERGEANT CHARLES FLOYD

Sgt. Floyd holds the dubious honor of being the only member of the Corps of Discovery to perish on the journey. This unhappy event took place soon after the Corps embarked on their Missouri River voyage. Flying at Sgt. Floyd's monument is a replica of the 15 star and 15 stripe flag he would have defended for the military. Visit his Sioux City memorial to learn what ended Sgt. Floyd's trek.

SEAMAN

Seaman was a Newfoundland dog and a valued member of the Corps of Discovery. He was purchased by Meriwether Lewis for $20 (about $400 in 1806), perhaps because he had webbed feet and much of the trip was intended to take place by pirogue. Seaman caught small game, entertained the expedition members and provided excellent service at guard duty. There are many theories about what became of Seaman. This version of Seaman's fate is my favorite...and it appears to be based on some historical evidence.  Here is a great photo of a sculpture including Seaman which is located in Fort Clatsop National Park--he is paying very close attention to the flounder rather than his guard duty.

Stanley Wanlass Sculpture with Seaman

WHO WERE THE OTHER GUYS

The rest of the Corps included volunteer members of the U.S. Army and a handful of civilians. They were chosen for the skills they could contribute in carrying out the goals of the expedition and for keeping all members alive and safe. The U.S. Army created a terrific summary of the privates, the civilians, and the boatmen.

 

All of these online resources will help you understand how the human body works, and they also provide great images, diagrams, videos, and explanations.

Images of human bodies depicting the major body systems like: respiratory, skeletal,musculatory, digestive, and sensory systems

 

If you are in 1st-4th grade and want to know and see how the body works, click on How the Body Works on the Kids Health website to find out about the nervous system, muscles, organs, and the five senses. You can even play games to see how much you know!

You can also use factmonster to find our more information by clicking on Your Body's Systems. (hint: you might have to type it also in the search box next to the fact monster!)

5th-12th grade and beyond! Trying using innerbody for detailed and interactive diagrams and explanations about all the major body systems. Don't forget to scroll down on the web page to see all of the information!

 Try our Teen and Health and Wellness Database and click on the Body Basic page. Just scroll down and click on the topic that you need. (hint: you will need to sign in using  your library card and pin number)

If you need more information beyond what the major body systems do and how they work try the howstuffworks. You will need to type in your specific topic in the search box or you can try this Discovery Fit and Health page which features the major body systems. (hint: don't forget to scroll down on each webpage to view your information. It may look confusing, but just scroll down!) 

Need more information and/or guidance? Contact a Librarian!

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