Archives for June 2017

Legends of RPL

June at the Ross Pendergraft Library saw the departure of two beloved members of our family: Beverly Cooper and Delores Pollard.

Beverly has been our Public Services Assistant since 2010.  She graduated from Tech with a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education and Teaching and a Master of Education in Elementary Education and Teaching.  She worked for Oakland Heights Elementary, Crawford Elementary, and Center Valley Elementary until her retirement in 2005.

For many students frustrated and frazzled by the mysteries of library databases and research assignments, she was a hero who gently guided them through the myriad of resources here at the Library.  Beverly’s smile was usually the first thing people saw every morning at the Ross Pendergraft Library, waiting to help the lost and comfort the confused.  She also took the time to fill our display cases with new and interesting collections and she made sure the new books were out front and center as soon as they arrived.

We will deeply miss her and wish her well as starts a new chapter in North Carolina.

Chareen, Beverly, and Sherry–the Public Services dream team

Another legend, Delores Pollard, officially retired on June 30th after a whopping 37 years as a full-time Serials Librarian Assistant.

Delores with her family and friends

She graduated from Tech with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting, and started out in the library at a student worker back in 1975, when the library was in Tomlinson and grown men thought it was ok to wear sideburns, wide ties, and plaid pants.

Delores Pollard from 1979 Tech yearbook, the Agricola

Delores saw the transition of the library through waves of new technology—from card catalog cards to completely online collections and databases.  She faithfully drove from her home in Waldron, Arkansas, all the way to Tech every morning to help the library obtain, organize, bind, subscribe, and wrangle the library’s periodical collection.  Just about every newspaper, journal, ATU thesis, and microfilm roll since 1980 in this building has had her hands on it.


Cake decorated as a shelflist

Arkansas Tech University and the Library salutes Delores and Beverly on their new adventures.  Don’t you forget about us!

Judd Nelson and the classic scene from the Breakfast Club wherein he fist pumps the air

Got Music?

From now until July 9, be sure to add the Music Online Reference database to your Liszt of favorite websites.  The Ross Pendergraft Library is conducting a trial of this comprehensive music resource for Western classical music, World Music, Scores, and African American music.  You can find it in our A-to-Z list of databases, under New/Trial databases.

Picture of Handel: "too hot to Handel"

The collection includes reference titles like the Garland Encyclopedia of World Music, Baker’s Dictionary of Music, Baker’s Biographical Dictionary of Musicians, and Baker’s Student Encyclopedia of Music.

Picture of Hipster Beethoven: Composed Nine symphonies, I probably haven't heard them

Search the entire collection for composers, movements, music terminology, instruments, and periods of music history.  You can also explore each collection separately:

  • African American Music Reference
  • Classical Music Reference Library
  • Reference
  • Garland Encyclopedia of World Music
  • Classical Scores Library

Picture of Mozart: "if it ain't Baroque, don't fix it"

The African American Music Reference collection includes personal narratives from oral historians and interviews, as well as manuscripts, songsheets, lyrics, and other text sources.  The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music updates the 10-volume paper version in the Library’s Reference Collection and makes it searchable—no need to read it from front to Bach.

Picture of Bach: "Baby got Bach"

The Garland Encyclopedia also includes audio tracks of music from around the world, in a variety of musical traditions, instruments, and cultural groups.  You might find some of these tracks Verdi inspiring.

Picture of Schubert: "Ar you Schubert That?"

The Classical Scores Library contains more than 51,000 titles and 1.3 printable pages of important scores from the Middle Ages to the present day.  It includes scores from 4,600 composers. But don’t Strauss over too much information—each list of results can be limited by composer, work, score type, music key, and more.

Picture of Haydn: "The see me rollin' they haydn"

Each entry can be cited in multiple citation styles (APA, MLA, Chicago) and exported into Refworks.  Vivaldi options, your research paper is really going to Rachmaninoff!

Picture of Liszt: Classical music memes are so easy to come up with, I could make you a Liszt

Give Music Online Reference a spin and tell us what you think.  Your feedback helps the Library make the best selections while we’re Chopin around for the music resources.  Send us a note at AskALibrarian and tell us what you think about this database, other databases, or all these terrible puns.  Hurry–the trial ends July 9th!

Library and Chill?

Looking for a good film this summer?  With a film collection of over 6,000 DVDs, it can be a struggle to pick that perfect film.  If you have a title in mind, you can always try searching in our online collection of films at Find It.   You can also browse films by genre in the library as well as online, through our lists of films by category:

Still not sure?  Let our film aficionados on staff at the Ross Pendergraft  Library make some recommendations.  Here’s this summer’s staff pick list to get you going on titles ranging from epic classics to smaller films you might have overlooked.  All are available in the library on DVD.

Hacksaw Ridge (2017)

Cover of Hacksaw Ridge and a soldier carrying another soldier on his back.

Tells the extraordinary story of Desmond Doss, a U.S. Army medic who refused to carry a gun but nevertheless saved 75 men during the bloodiest battle of WWII on Okinawa, becoming the first conscientious objector to earn the Congressional Medal of Honor.

“True story and I admired the fact that someone let their turbulent childhood make them instead of break them.  It was interesting to watch the main character arrive at a solution that let him follow his convictions without sacrificing his beliefs.  I was also able to fast forward through the gory parts.” – Beverly Cooper.

Untergang = Downfall (2005)

Cover of DownFall, Hitler looking very worried

Travel into Hitler’s bunker, in 1945, during the brutal and harrowing last days of the Third Reich. Seen through the eyes of Hitler’s infamous secretary Gertraud (Traudl) Junge, optimism crumbles into grim realization and terror as it becomes clear that Germany’s defeat is inevitable. As the Russian army circles the city, the dimly lit halls of the underground refuge become an execution chamber for the Führer and his closest advisors.  In German with English subtitles.

“The film provides a window into the madness of  — and devotion to — the Nazi cause, from Hitler, to his generals, to even the women and children in the bunker and on the streets of Berlin.  I appreciated being able to see how the events came to a close once Soviet troops had taken the city.” –Brent Etzel.

Gigi (1958)  

Cover of Gigi. There's a painting of a girl winking and some dapper people below it.

A musical set in Paris in which a girl trained as a high society courtesan falls in love with a rich and handsome boulevardier.

”The music is wonderful, and the story is an overall amusing tale of not only growing up, but also that finding love is sometimes closer than you think.” –Phillip McCaslin.

Songcatcher (1999)

Cover of SongCatcher. There's an image of a couple looking pensive

When musicologist Doctor Lily Penleric is passed over, again, for a prominent teaching position, she decides to leave the city to visit her sister in the rugged mountains of Appalachia. While there, Lily, discovers a well spring of emotional “love songs” (ballads) that have been passed down through generations from the original Irish and Scottish immigrants who have settled in the area. Determined to document the history of the songs, and the recording of them as well, she is profoundly changed by the generosity, strength and freedom of the fiercely proud mountain people.

“I chose this film because it is a hidden gem. It is an authentic portrayal of the musical folk traditions of mountain peoples in the United States. It is an extraordinary illustration of how music has been preserved. It emphasizes the role of music as part of life and a way of life. It’s what people did after dinner and on Saturday nights before television, radio, or reliable transportation. Great things happen when these traditions meet and are shared.” –Sherry Tinerella.

What the Health (2017) 

Cover of What the Health where this is a burger but with pills and money instead of beef patty.

A surprising, and at times hilarious, investigative documentary that will be an eye-opener for everyone concerned about our nation’s health and how big business influences it.

“This investigative documentary exposes the many connections between government, big business, and some of the major health advocacy organizations that are supposed to protect us from unhealthful food.” –Lowell Lybarger.

E.T., The Extra-Terrestrial (1982) 

Cover of E. T.

A ten-year-old boy befriends a creature from another planet that has been stranded on earth.

“It’s my favorite childhood movie, with one of the most amazing soundtracks in the world. John Williams and Spielberg are an amazing team. The reason for this movie’s longevity is its soundtrack. In fact, the soundtrack was written first and the movie edited to fit the soundtrack. Usually it’s the opposite way around – edited first, then the soundtrack is written to fit.” –Slade Dupuy.

It’s a Wonderful Life (1947) 

cover of Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life

George Bailey, a desperate and suicidal man, is visited by a guardian angel who shows him how important he has been to those around him in his life.

“I think it appropriate for these times.” –Frances Hager.

Citizen Kane (1941)

Cover of Citizen Kane.

All-powerful press magnate Kane dies in his fabulous castle Xanadu, his last word being ‘Rosebud’, leading a reporter to seek the meaning behind the word and find the meaning of Kane.

“A movie about a newspaper tycoon who tries to manipulate the masses is as relevant today as it was in 1941. Citizen Kane with its extended flashback scenes and retelling of the main character’s life from multiple viewpoints, keeps the viewer’s attention from the start. Reflecting on unbridled ambition and its consequences, in the end, the most important thing to Kane was actually….You need to check out the movie to find out (and debate)!” –Luke Heffley.

Spirited Away (2001) 

Cover of Miyazaki's spirited away

When a young girl gets trapped in a strange new world of spirits, she must call upon the courage she never knew she had to free herself and rescue her parents.

“I love Spirited Away because the animation and the story gives you a different view inside the world of Studio Ghibli.  It’s a different side of Disney!” –Chareen Austin.

Napoleon Dynamite (2004)

Cover of napoleon Dynamite

Napoleon spends his days drawing mythical beasts, duking it out with his older brother, Kip, and trying to avoid his scheming Uncle Rico. When two new friends enter Napoleon’s life – shy Deb and mustachioed Pedro – the trio launches a campaign to elect Pedro for class president and make the student body’s wildest dreams come true.

“It’s my spirit animal and there’s a llama!” –MacKenzie Roberts.

Alien (1979)

Cover of Alien with Sigourney Weaver and tagline, In space No one can hear you scream.

Mindless, savage, and merciless alien is attacking the crew of an intergalactic freighter and it must be stopped before they are all killed.

“It mixes sci-fi and horror in just a fantastic way.” –Justin Wilkinson.

Memento (2000)

Cover of Memento.

An intricate crime story about a man who has lost his short term memory due to a rare brain disorder. Now he is out to catch his wife’s murderer, whose identity he cannot ever know for sure. The more he tries to figure out what is true and real, the more he sinks deeper into a multi-layered abyss of uncertainty and surprises.

“I like anything to do with crazies.” –Anna Pyron.

The Big Lebowski (1998)

Cover of the Big Lebowski, one of the greatest films of all time.


A lazy, unemployed Southern Californian stoner who loves bowling gets mistaken for a millionaire with the same name. He’s beaten up by men looking for money from the rich man’s wife and gets drawn into the kidnapping of the millionaire’s wife.

“I watch it every summer in a bathrobe, with a cold beverage.” –Jacob Wardlaw.

My Dinner with André (1981)

DVD cover of My Dinner with Andre.

Two friends, an intense, experimental theater director and a down-to-earth actor, meet over dinner in a New York restaurant and discuss their innermost feelings.

“It really is just two guys talking about reality and life, but I found it captivating.  It reminds me of late night conversations in front of a campfire with a few friends…and Wallace Shawn.”  –Angela Black.


Got a favorite film not on this list and not in our collection?  Make a suggestion at AskALibrarian.  Thanks to all the staff who submitted their favorites.  Until next time, the balcony is closed.