Image: Giant smug Capybara standing in a hoolahoop in a pool | https://imgur.com/gallery/7ZsSf

You don’t have to be the world’s largest rodent to stay chill this summer! The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) maintains dozens of pools, spray parks and beaches in and around the  greater Boston-area for free (or under $3). Find a place near you at DCR’s guide to swimming:

Swimming – Mass.gov
(https://www.mass.gov/swimming)

So, go grab a suit, some sunblock and get swimming (nb:  leave your cabybara at home)!

 

Hello and welcome to all the new residents starting this summer! We are looking forward to meeting you and helping you with any research questions or information needs that you might have. Stop by the Library Service Desk on the 4th floor of the Sackler building to check out materials, get help finding resources, or just to say hello!

Need remote help? Just Ask Us by email, chat, phone, or text!

A quick reminder about library access: at library orientation, you were given a temporary access number, but keep your eyes on your inbox for instructions on setting up your Tufts account and username. That will be your permanent way of accessing library resources from off-campus.

Have additional questions about setting up your Tufts username and password? Contact Tufts Technology Services at 617-627-3376 or at it@tufts.edu and they will be able to assist you.

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So the 4th didn’t fall so that we got a 3-day weekend, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun this Wednesday! There are still tons of fun events happening throughout the area and the forecast is clear for tomorrow night’s fireworks! Here are our suggestions for how to enjoy a happy and healthy holiday:

The quintessential Boston 4th of July celebration is the Boston Pops performance and fireworks show on the Esplanade. Visit the official event website for a rundown of the schedule and more event details. CBS Boston has also put together a handy guide with viewing location suggestions and other useful tips. Our favorite tip? Go to the rehearsal concert tonight (Tuesday) to enjoy the music and find a less hectic spot to watch the fireworks on Wednesday.

For activities with an educational bent, head down to Boston Harborfest. Dedicated to celebrating Boston’s harbor and history, it’s the largest 4th of July festival in the country and features tons of activities and tours, some free and some paid.  Here’s the full schedule.

Don’t want to fight the crowds for Boston fireworks on the 4th? Newton and Waltham will also have fireworks displays on Wednesday 7/4 and Somerville with have them on Thursday 7/5. If you’re interested in going farther afield, here’s a list of all the fireworks displays planned for Independence Day celebrations in MA.

 

Wherever and however you decide to celebrate, we hope you have a happy, healthy, and safe Independence Day. And don’t forget to wear sunscreen!

For the US Independence Day, aka 4th of July, the library will be closed on Wednesday, July 4th. The rest of the week will be regular hours.

We hope you have a fun and safe day. Enjoy the fireworks!

Photo credit: Tom Quinn

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Hi all,

It’s been a little bit since my last post on Hirsh Library Statistics, which means it’s time again! So pour your favorite caffeinated beverage, grab a plate of free food (statistically speaking, there’s free food somewhere in this building right now), and relax as I offer you some numbers and information that you will not be tested on.

What a relief, right?

So, first up: we’ve actually held relatively steady this year as compared to last year, in terms of circulation and head counts. This probably comes as a surprise to everyone who has only been busier every year (I know I have), but there are always environmental factors to account for. For instance, if everyone’s using ebooks, they don’t need to check things out of Reserve, and in the numbers it looks like we’ve gone down. But our Open Workshops, librarian consultations, and even on the fly assistance at the Service Desk have all been super busy. So I want you to keep that in mind as you read on: everything requires a grain of salt.

Also to keep in mind, these numbers will be from July 1, 2017 to May 31, 2018.  The most interesting ones are smack in the center of the school year, though. For instance: our single busiest circulation day of the year was October 4th, when we were averaging a checkout every 5 minutes. That’s nutty! And that doesn’t account for all of the research assistance, troubleshooting, or item returns.

Of the top 10 spots for busiest Circulation day of the year, 4 are in October (which accounts for the top 3 spots), 3 are in September, and then the remainder is split between November, February, and March (there was a tie for #10).

Yes, that’s right. February. February! Here, let me shock you: This year, the busiest month was October, at 3412 checkouts. Second place went to September at 2983, but the shocker is February as third place and 28868. Third! I’m glad that you all love our library so much more than the cold February weather, because dang.

Click to embiggen

Okay, so that’s the overall look of things. The blue bars are the total numbers of times we’ve checked things out, and the red bars are the total numbers of people we’ve counted in the library. Things to know: the blue bars do not count the number of people, just number of checkouts (we don’t have a way to count number of people who have checked things out). And the red bars require staff to physically walk around, so there’s an element of human error in there. But still, what a snapshot!

You may also notice that October, while still very full, was actually not the top spot in seating counts. That honor goes to March, and my best guess would be “exam season.” But October cinched its second place spot, followed (again!) by February in third. Each one of those months is over 12,000 people sitting in the library, by the way. And in case you’re wondering, October did have the single busiest day for those, at 2,590 people on the 29th. February comes in second place here, with 1,057.

Dang, what a month.

Okay, so I know what you’re thinking. “Tom, what about all those times we were asked what program we were with?  What’s the deal with that?” Well good news, I have the deal with that!

For those who might not remember: HHSL staff walked around a few times a day, 7 days in the month of October and again in March, in an effort to find out how much the various programs use our library space, and we got some neat data. Behold!

Click to enlarge

Click to make big

That’s a whole lot of people. That top chart focuses on the day of the week of a given count, and the bottom compares each program. I find that shift from being busier earlier in the week to being busier in the latter half rather interesting, although I don’t know if I can find a particular reason for it. Timing of exams, perhaps?

The second chart has my attention, however. Look at some of those numbers! I wonder what happened with the PHPD and MBS numbers, though. I do know that their exams did not quite line up with our counts the way that Dental and Medical’s did, so if I had to guess I’d say that it was just an issue of two or three weeks. Crazy how much of a difference that makes!

Finally, I will leave you with this chart, which goes to show just how much people love the 7th floor. Fun fact about this one: when you look at the numbers, the 7th floor is consistently twice as populated as any other floor. No wonder some people have trouble finding study cubicles – they’re always full!

Click to get all up in it

If you want to get a little deeper into this all, or have any questions about it, I am at the the HHSL Service Desk five days a week, and am always happy to talk shop. Otherwise, I hope you’re all enjoying the weather, and I look forward to seeing what the next year brings us!

Tom

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Hey dental students! Are you studying for the Boards (part 1 or part 2)? Did you know we have study aids for you both online and in person?

If you’re going home or away or just don’t feel like leaving your home in the heat, you can still use Board Vitals – an online study aid and question bank that gives you personalized feedback. It works no matter your location! Learn how to sign up for an account and get started studying.

If you’re staying in town and want to study in the library, be sure to check out our physical study aids including Mosby’s, Dentin, and Dental Decks. See the full list or just head to our Service Desk on the 4th floor of Sackler and ask for what you need.

Good luck on your boards!

 

https://pixabay.com/photo-602440/

Working on a cover letter? Stumped about starting your personal statement? Finishing up your thesis? Never fear, Health Sciences Writing Consultants is here! We will be interrupting our usual summer hiatus to bring you two special Thursdays in July where our consultant will be available to advise you on your writing projects.

On 7/19 and 7/26, there will be four appointments available between 11am and 2pm. Registration will open on July 2nd and close 24 hours before each session. Be sure to mark your calendar and check back next month to register! For more information, please visit our Writing Consultants LibGuide.

Regular sessions will resume in mid-August so stay tuned! In the meantime, you can visit our Resources page for recommended books and websites that will help you with a variety of writing projects.

 

If you ask most people when slavery was abolished in the United States, the closest you’ll get to an exact date is probably January 1, 1863, when the Emancipation Proclamation took effect. Drafted the prior September, President Lincoln used this document to “order and declare that all persons held as slaves within said designated States, and parts of States, are, and henceforward shall be free; and that the Executive government of the United States, including the military and naval authorities thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of said persons.”

Proclamation nonwithstanding, it is not as if slavery ended overnight. It is important to remember that the Civil War kept raging, the Presidential decree did not free all the slaves in the United States, and in the days before a 24/7 news cycle, word traveled slowly. June 19, 1865 is now commemorated as the day Major General Gordon Granger of the Union Army issued orders from Galveston, Texas announcing “The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free.” Despite the fact that more than two years had passed since the enacting of the Emancipation Proclamation, it was General Granger’s order that brought freedom to 250,000 slaves in Texas. Texas was a remote outpost on the American frontier, so many consider June 19th, or “Juneteenth” as the true end of slavery in the United States. Juneteenth was celebrated the next year, and celebrations continued and spread as the years went by, sometimes celebrated as “Emancipation Day.”

The stories surrounding Juneteenth are rich, and (of course) influenced by and reflected in the tumultuous state of race relations in past and present America. We invite readers to learn about Juneteenth from Henry Louis Gates, Jr., from the Atlantic‘s Vann R. Newkirk II, and from Jamelle Bouie at Slate. (Virtually) check out information about historical Juneteenth celebrations from the New York Public Library, and (literally) check out Ralph Ellison’s posthumously published novel about the complicated construction of race and identity in America.

While many Boston area Juneteenth celebrations took place over the course of last weekend, you can still enjoy special free Juneteenth programming Wednesday evening (6/20) at the Museum of Fine Arts. This multimedia event includes interactive art demonstrations, singing and dancing, and film screenings, and is open to all ages.

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Beginning at sundown this Thursday, (June 14) is one of the most joyous holidays in the Islamic calendar, Eid al-Fitr! Eid al-Fitr marks the end of Islamic holy month of fasting, Ramadan. Eid al-Fitr is celebrated around the world with family and friends, sumptuous feasts and fireworks. The Hirsh Health Sciences Library sends out best wishes for a wonderful Eid al-Fitr!  Eid Mubarak!

https://www.techicy.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/Eid-Mubarak-HD-Images-Wallpapers-free-Download-2.jpg

Want to learn more about Eid Al-Fitr? Looking for some dishes to contribute to your feast? Check out the fabulous links  below:

Here’s How Muslims Worldwide Are Celebrating Ramadan’s End (NPR.org)
https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/06/25/534302603/photos-heres-how-muslims-worldwide-are-celebrating-ramadans-end

Eid 2018: the Best Food Inspiration from Instagram (Independent UK)
https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/eid-al-fitr-2018-ramadan-food-inspiration-instagram-muslims-islam-celebration-a8389186.html

“Celebrating Eid al-Fitr, the End of Ramadan, with Sweet, Traditional Treats” – The New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/15/dining/eid-al-fitr-recipes.html

 

 

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June 17, 2018 is the 243rd anniversary of the Battle of Bunker Hill, an event we mark in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as Bunker Hill Day. It falls on Father’s Day this year, so instead of watching war reenactments on the History Channel, why not take Dad out to bone up on some local history?

  • Celebrate the belated birthday of Bunker Hill Hero Joseph Warren today or any day (his birthday is June 11) with a trip to his namesake landmark the Warren Tavern, a fine establishment dating back to 1780 and frequented back in the day by Warren’s good friend, Paul Revere.
  • Kick off the weekend early and celebrate Flag Day by visiting Memorial Hall and joining the Abraham Lincoln Post 11, Grand Army of the Republic for a Flag Retirement Ceremony, Thursday June 14 at 6:00 pm.
  • Visit Charlestown on Saturday June 16 for Bunker Hill Family Fun Day. There will be music, art projects for kids, talks led by the excellent National Park Service Rangers, musket-firing demonstrations, and much more. And it’s free! All Dads love free things!
  • Visit the Bunker Hill Monument for the “Decisive Day” guided tour offered by the Boston National Historic Park, which departs daily every half hour.
  • Head out to Quincy to the Adams National Historical Park on Sunday June 17 for the special event “Bunker Hill to Penn’s Hill,” where you can learn about Abigail Adams and young John Quincy Adams, who watched the battle rage from ten miles away atop Penn’s Hill.

If you don’t have time to get out this weekend, here are the Top Ten Things You Should Know About Charlestown and the Battle of Bunker Hill according to our Head of Research & Instruction and Charlestown denizen, Becky Morin

1) The Battle of Bunker Hill was mostly fought on Breed’s Hill. That’s where the Monument is. Bunker Hill is actually taller and steeper, and is home to the lovely Saint Francis de Sales, a beautiful Roman Catholic church dedicated in 1862. If you don’t know which hill is which, we know you’re a tourist.

Bunker Hill Monument and Col. William Prescott statue

By Siddharth Mallya. CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

2) Charlestown was actually not part of the City of Boston when the Battle took place. Charlestown is OLDER than Boston (as any proud Townie will gladly inform you), and did not become part of the City until 1874.

3) Charlestown is where Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride really kicked off. He was ferried in a rowboat from Boston, landing near the Charlestown Battery, where he picked up a horse from his friend Deacon John Larkin, a lifelong Charlestown resident.

4) There is debate as to why the Colonial forces fortified Breed’s Hill instead of Bunker Hill, although many think it is because Breed’s Hill is closer to Boston. The British had planned the siege to capture Bunker Hill, as they wanted to dig in fortifications on the area’s highest points.

5) It took the British three attempts to capture Breed’s Hill, even though their numbers were far greater than the Colonial forces.

6) Charlestown burned after the Battle, the first of two major fires to strike the community.

7) Proud Charlestown residents still fly the Bunker Hill Battle Flag.

Bunker Hill Flag

By DevinCook at English Wikipedia, via Wikimedia Commons

8) While the British defeated the Colonists at the Battle of Bunker Hill, they suffered severe casualties and the Siege of Boston came to a stalemate.

9) The Bunker Hill Monument (which you now know is on Breed’s Hill) is 221 feet tall and was completed in 1842.

10) Beloved French hero of the American Revolution, the Marquis de Lafayette, is said to be buried beneath a sprinkling of soil from Bunker Hill, procured by his son.

Want More?

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/the-true-story-of-the-battle-of-bunker-hill-36721984/
http://charlestownhistoricalsociety.org/history/historic-timeline/
https://www.masshist.org/revolution/bunkerhill.php
https://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/jun17.html