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UBC Publications

UBC Publications

UBC Publications

[Report of the Library] 1933-11

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 The University of British Columbia,
Vancouver, Canada.
L.S.Klinck, Esq., M.S.a., D.Sc, LL.D.,
Chairman of the Senate,
The University of British Columbia.
In accordance with the intimation given in my
letter of transmittal accompanying the last Library Beport
(September 1931-32) I have the honour herewith to present the
Beport of the Library which covers the period September 1932
to larch 1933.  fhe Intention of the Committee ia hereafter
to make the period of the Beport correspond with the University's
fiscal year.
lours very truly,
Library Committee.
29th November 1933. -2-
The Library
The University ef British Columbia,
Vancouver, Canada.
W.L.MacDonald, Esq., Ph.O.,
Chairman, Library Committee,
The University of British Columbia.
in the Beport presented to you, and to the Library Committee,
early in the present year, for the information of the Senate, it was
stated that the next succeeding Report would be for six months instead
of a year - from September 1932 to March 1933 - in order that future
annual reports might coincide with the University year. The present
Beport, therefore, is for the six months period.
At the end of Mareh 1933, the Library had 82,290 accessioned
volumes, and about 3,550 duplicates, a total of 85,840 books, and an
estimated total of between 9,000 and 10,000 pamphlets.
The growth of the book collection since 1928 is as shewn
March'33 Sept,'32 Sept.'31 Sept.'30 Sept.*29 Sept.'28
Hew Volumes   938
Total vols.)
accessioned) §2,290
Duplicates   3,550
Total     85,840
68,089 -3-
938 new books were added in the six months covered by this Beport.
This is the smallest addition, for a corresponding period, in the
whole history of the University.
During the session 1,893 students were registered as users
of the Library, while 30 persons unconnected with the University were
enrolled as Extra Mural Headers. In all, 80,299 books were loaned.
Of these, 33,575 were "Ordinary" and 46,724 were for "Reserved" books
for Required Beading. The following statement shews the use by months:•
Sept.  1932
Jan. 1933
Monthly aversge
5,596 volumes
Monthly average
7,787 volumes
This shews a substantial increase in the "Ordinary" loans,
the best test of the general reading cf the student bedy. The average
monthly loans for preceding years are as follows:-
(6 months)
There is, however, a diminution in the "Reserve" leans of
almost 900 volumes a month, as Is shewn in the following statement:- 1928-29 5,186 volumes
1929-30 6,554      »
1930-31 7,311      »
1931-32 8,657      "
1932-33 7,787      " (6 months)
This diminution in Beserved Loans is doubtless due to the
reduced hours of library service to which reference is made elsewhere
in this Beport.    The Library is open nine hours a week less than in
previous years, or almost twelve per cent.    This twelve per cent reduction in service would account for the whole of the 900 Reserved books
not loaned in the period covered by this Beport.
Due to reduced appropriations,  the Beading Booms were closed
on Friday evenings and Saturday afternoons.    The average daily attendance on the four evenings they were open was about 85,  the aggregate
monthly attendance beings-
October, 1932
January, 1933
In the last Report reference was made to the fact that the
reductions in the grant made by the Provincial Government to the
University were immediately and automatically reflected In the appropriations made to the Library by the Board of Governors. -5-
The Staff, already too small for the increasing work of the
Department, had to be reduced, as set forth in the last Beport. The
loss of the typist has resulted in a continuous congestion in all
those activities having to do with the preparation of new books for
the shelves. The Cataloguing Department is constantly in arrears in
its work. It needs two cataloguers to keep abreast of the requirements
of this Library, and when there is but one, and that member of the
staff has not the assistance of a typist In transcribing her manuscript, it is obvious that the catalogue, the key that unlocks the
resources of the book collection, must be far from the efficient tool
it should be, and into which it might be made. All that can be done
Is being done; but analytics and cross references that should be found
in the catalogue are not there, for lack of staff to do the work, while
the teaching staff has to reconcile itself to unavoidable delays in
new books being made available for use. This is a condition that
cannot be remedied until funds once more permit the engagement of a
typist. The correspondence of the Department, and the repcrts to the
Library Committee also suffer from the same cause.  In the course of
its work this Library has achieved a reputation among those of the
Dominion, and in consequence it receives numerous letters requesting
information or advice. With but one stenographer to earry oh. the
whole of the cataloguing and correspondence typing, these enquiries
cannot be dealt with in a satisfactory manner.
In the last Report the conditions created by the enforced
withdrawal of the appropriation for "Student Assistance" and the consequent situation as it affected the Circulation Department were set
forth, as also was the offer of four members of the Staff to give -6-
voluntary service during the evenings, and of twenty students (principally those majoring in History) to act as Student Assistants without
pay. The voluntary services of Miss Mary Barton, a professionally-trained
librarian, and of Miss Patricia Harvey, a graduate of this University,
were also gratefully acknowledged. In this Beport it is only necessary
to state that largely by virtue of the work ©f these volunteers, the
service given at the Loan Desk was quite satisfactory, though the hours
of such service had to be reduced from 73 to 64 a week.
It is with more than ordinary feelings of satisfaction that
the Librarian has been able to report these offers of voluntary service,
which saved the essential distribution and circulation service from
disorganization, to the Committee and now to the Senate. They are proof
of the estimation in which the Library is held by those It serves, and
evidence of the disposition of students of the University to come to
the help ef the instutition in times of financial stress.
In the six months period covered by this Report, the problem
of general finance was almost as serious as that of Staff and Administration. The appropriations made by the Board fer Books and Periodicals
have, in recent years, varied from suras of #12,000 to #15,000. for
the University year 1932-33 this appropriation was reduced to $2,000.
The reduction to one-sixth or one-seventh of the normal
appropriation created well-nigh insoluble difficulties. First and
worst of these had to do with subscriptions to periodicals, annuals, -7-
and serials. The Library was in regular receipt of almost seven
hundred periodical and serial publications, of which, possibly, one-
fourth are gifts from government or other instutitona. It requires
slightly over #4,000.00 a year to pay for these, and this cost has
always been considered a first charge on the Book and Magazine appropriation.
Thus the entire appropriation for the period under review
was barely sufficient to pay for one-half of this fixed item of expenditure. To meet the situation, all the Departments having unspent
balances to their credit on the books of the Library from previous
grants, notified the Librarian of their willingness to give these
credit balances toward the purchase of the periodicals specializing
in their own fields of knowledge - chemistry, philosophy, geology,
history, economics, botany, <&c.  In all, the sum of $1,513.00 was thus
transferred, making, with the Board's appropriation, a total of
$3,513.00 to Met periodical requirements of $4,000. There was thus
a further sum of about #500.00 required if the Library's subscriptions
were to be continued and important files remain unbroken.
After a careful consideration of the situation, the Library
Committee decided to request permission of the President and the Board
for an Appeal to the governing bodies of the University and to its
graduates and friends for help. This assistance might take the form
of a gift of money, or of the transfer of periodicals to which they
personally subscribed. Authority was given by the Board in September
1232, and a circular was sent to about 2,500 persons at a cost of
about #115.00. The circular listed about 500 periodicals, donations
of which were requested. -8-
The results of this appeal cannot be considered very gratifying. In all, $308.00 worth of subscriptions were received. The hulk
of this was gifts of periodicals, while $68.60 was contributed in cash.
These gifts, however, did enable the library to continue almost the
whole of its regular subscriptions, only about $250.00 worth of the
publications having to be dropped. When the #115.00 of expense is
deducted from the gifts received, there remains a net gift of #193.00.
Perhaps, however, the publicity given to the Library's circumstances
and needs can be set against this disappointing financial result.
In the last Beport, it was noted that for five years the
Library has received an appropriation of $3,000.00,later reduced to
$2,000.00, for Binding, and that in the year under review no fund for
this purpose could be voted by the Board. The ccnsequeneesof this
regrettable (and unavoidable) omission were duly set forth. All that
is now necessary to state is that the 800 volumes awaiting binding
at that time have since been increased by the completed volumes of
periodicals since received. An  immediate Binding appropriation of
#5,000.00 would not completely have met the situation with which the
Library was confronted at the beginning of the present University year.
On recommendation of its Canadian Advisory Committee, the
Carnegie Corporation of New York made grants, totalling $185,000, to
the Book Funds of a number of Canadian universities. The whole of -9-
the money was to be spent on Books for Undergraduate Beading in the
Liberal Arts, this and other terms upon which the gift was made being
stated in the letter notifying the University of the grant.
Five Canadian universities, of which as this was one, received
maximum grants of $5,000.00 a year for a period of three years. This
unexpected and generous gift, the first instalment of which was paid
in December, a«d coming, as it did, at a time when the Library Book
and Periodical Fund was at the lowest ebb in the whole history of
the University, was one of the few high lights in a period of enforced
economy and anxiety.
Owing to the premium on American exchange, the $5,000.00
remitted from lew York was equal to $5,871.87 in Canadian currency.
Further advantage was taken of the exchange relations to remit
$4,000.00 to a London bank for settlement of book purchases made in
England, and a smaller further profit was made by the transfer of
part of these funds back to Canada when the pound and the dollar
approached nearer parity.
The Library Committee gave careful consideration to the
allotment of this money among the Departments qualified to participate therein. Arrangements were made by the Library for separate
administration and accounting,and for special reports to the Carnegie
Corporation for all expenditures made from the Fund. Hardly any such
expenditures could be made, however, by the end of larch, the terminal
date of this Report. Fuller details will be given in that for the
succeeding University year. -10-
Th© Staff has h@en unchanged in number and personnel since
the last Beport presented to the Senate, and has continued to give
loyal and intelligent service, most of its members assuming additional
and unpaid hours of duty that the service might be maintained to users
of the Library.
The Library Committee has likewise remained unchanged, and
its members have continued to give to the work of the Separtment that
interest and co-operation which the Librarian has in previous Beports
appreciatively acknowledged.
Seven meetings of the Committee were held In the six months
covered by this Beport.
fiespectfully submitted.
John Ridington
29th November 1933.


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