Board of Trustees
of the Cleveland Public Library
325 Superior Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44114
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Transmitted herewith is the Annual Report of the Director for the year
1975. What it records is the merest summary of the many things the Library
does in .the normal course of its operations - things it has been doing
throughout the past one hundred years of its exi stence.
With the intent of being brief and to the point, your Director comments
on only those developments which seem to warrant particular attention
either because they are new or because they signal important changes to
Space does not allow us to credit all who made important contri butions
to the Library's progress during 1975. Above all, the Trustees and the
staff whose talent and continuing efforts make it all possible deserve the
But how much others have' done! The Friends, the Greater Cleveland
Growth Association, the Gund Foundation, the Cleveland Foundation, the
many clubs and organizations that work in the neighborhoods, the Citizens
Advisory Committee - and on and on. I fear to give offense by omission,
and I pray the indulgence of those not named.
Ervin j. Gaines, Director
Board President's Comment
All great public institutions face moments in their history which determine
for years to come the vitality and direction of that body. The
Cleveland Public Library is passing through just such a period as it
starts its second century of service to the Cleveland community.
Inadequate funding over several decades, the rapidly changing nature
of information and communications in our lives, the onset of massive urban
and socio-economic problems, and a library bureaucracy that was incapable
of adjusting with sufficient speed to meet the changing demands
of the community - all contributed to making 1975 a critical year for
Fortunately for all of us who enjoy the fruits and pleasures that a Library
has to offer, the proper elements came together to help us guide
the Library through this stormy period.
C.P.L. staff, though underpaid for many years, responded with enthusiasm
and renewed dedication to the programs of their new Director,
Ervin J. Gaines, and to the levy campaign committee which depended
heavily on it for support and guidance. Fern Long's contribution in this
effort can never be sufficiently appreciated. Miss Long, with her many
years of experi ence, was abl e to draw upon lifelong fri endshi ps throughout
the community to rally support for the critically-needed levy drive.
The arrival of Director Gaines in the closing months of 1974 afforded
the Library its first full-time director in almost 12 months. The strong
sense of direction and leadership Mr. Gaines brought to all of the Library's
aging systems will pay benefits for many years to come. Further
adulation can best be left to the record he is establishing. This will
speak for itself.
The Trustees of C.P.L. also faced a most difficult year. Desperately
needed tax rei ief was narrowly defeated in the fall of 1974, the community's
confidence in the Library Board was in question, and charges of racism
were still lingering at the close of 1974. The advent of 1975 witnessed
only three members of the seven-member board with more than
one year's experience. This placed an added burden on the experienced
members - Murray Davidson, Tom Kiousis and Marie Pittman. It also
demanded a quick course in library problem-solving from newer members
Rev. Dr. L ewi s Raymond, Cheryl e Wi II s, Rev. Mr. Wi II i am Hannah, (pri or
to July), Rey. Dr. AI Rowan (after July) and myself.
All in all, 1975 was a year that placed tremendous demands on the
time and tal ents of Board members. I am proud to say that the Trustees
responded to the challenge.
Last but certainly not least of the major contributors during 1975 was
the response and support of Clevelanders throughout the city. The willingness
of citizens to work and vote for the Library's first operating
levy underscores the importance the Library has in the hearts and minds
of my fellow CI evel anders.
While 1975 did not witness the resolution of the myriad of problems
facing C.P.L., the year did provide the reversal of a downward trend and
the laying of a foundation on which we all can start anew to builcf a great
Presi dent, Board of
The year 1975 was crucial for the Cleveland Public Library. With a
·new untried Director, a Library Board composed of a majority which had
served Iess than on e year, a chron ic budget defi cit, inadequate pay
scales, and a painfully slow rate in placing new books on its shelves,
the Library nevertheless succeeded in rallying the CI.eveland community
to its support. On November 4, 1975, the voters of the Cleveland School
District went to the polls. By a two-to-one margin, they granted the Library
Board authority to levy 1.5 mills on the property tax during each of
the succeeding 5 years, through 1980. With the prospect of $20 million in
additional revenues, the Library could plan seriously for the overhaul of
Its branch libraries and for making other much needed improvements in its
At one blow the financial shackles which had hobbled the Library for
almost a decade were broken.
The story of the levy campaign is a lesson in civic enterprise. The
efforts of the Board and staff were powerfully augmented by vol unteer efforts
from the commun i ty, notabl y from Professor Thomas Campbell, who
directed the campaign. The contributions which made a city-wide campaign
possible were owing to the personal intervention of Mr. Herbert
Strawbridge as well as to the efforts of the Greater Cleveland Growth
Association and the men and women who make up the Friends of the Library.
How well the Li brary responds to the obi igations imposed upon it by
this vote of confidence will be recorded in the annual reports of future
The Library Board
The Library Board experienced several changes during the year. In
January, Mr. Lee C. Howley, Jr., at the age of 27, was elected the youngest
Pres ident in its history. Two vacanci es created by resi gnati ons in
late 1974 were filled by the appointments of Mrs. Cheryle Wills and the
Reverend Mr. William Hannah. Unfortunately, the press of outside commitments
forced Mr. Hannah to withdraw after only t'ive months of service,
to be replaced by the Reverend Dr. Albert Rowan at mid-year. Then, with
a full complement by the time of the November election, the Board reorganized
its resources for an energetic campaign. Mr. Thomas Kiousis,
Mr. Murray Davidson and Mrs. Marie Pittman joined their long experience
with the enthusiasm of the Rev. Dr. Lewis Raymond and- those named
above for a superb team effort.
Early in the year, public attention had shifted dramatically toward the
branch libraries. A staff recommendation to reduce their number stirred
wide-spread debate, prompting the Library Board to hold a series of meetings
throughout the city. Their purpose was to determine the concerns of
the various neighborhoods, and then to explain the financial limitations
under which the Library was then operating.
These frank and open discussions had three visible and highly useful
results. They convinced the community (a) that the Library's difficulties
were serious, (b) that the deterioration of the branch system was citywide,
and (c) that the Board was sensitive to the needs of the people of
CI evel and as they perceived them.
Following these first meetings, the Board determined to call for a
more exhaustive study of the branch Ii brari es early in 1976 and to extend
its own efforts to open its meetings to citizen participation. Committee
meetings of the Board which had previously been closed, were declared
public well in advance of the Ohio "Sunshine Laws" .. Some Board
meetings were scheduled in branch libraries i.nstead of downtown. Frequent
news releases, articles, and radio and television appearances by
the Director and Board members strengtherJed communications throughout
the city. .
At the beginning of the year, the Libn.ry was still feeling the effects
of long-standing criticism of alleged discrimination in employment. Recognizing
that this sensitive issue required firm and positive action, the
Director appointed Mrs. Helen Summons, a mature and well-known community
leader, to the post of Equal Employment Opportunity Officer. She
moved swiftly to resolve many outstanding grievances, and she vigorously
investigated all speciHc charges of discrimination, advising and counseling
supervisors in the diplomatic conduct of their managerial responsibili
ti es. As ,a di rect resul t of her work, confl i ct sl owl y abated.
In the second part of a two-pronged assault on the problem, the Director
made several visits to library schools. He not only assumed direct
personal responsibility for recruiting minority students, but he determined
the difficulties the schools were experiencing in attracting minority candidates
to degre'e-programs in librarianship. This latter problem gave every
indication of being the basic contributing factor in CI'eveland's lag in
The evidence uncovered by the Director persuaded the CI evel and
Foundation to provide $50,000 in scholarships for minority staff members
interested in pursuing academic study leading to professional status.
While the Library's affirmative action program had a long way to go at
the end of the year, significant progress was observable. A rise in minority
employment from 29% to 31% was encouraging.
The most notable changes in the Libraryls staff included th.e retirement
of two of its leading figures, Dr. Fern Long and Miss Clara Lucioli.
Both earned natronal - even international - reputations for their life-long
advocacy of programs which made the Library accessible to people who
otherwise did not or could not use it.
Dr. Long, particularly, had developed a role for the Library in Adult
education and was instrumental in creating programs for older citizens
long before any national interest in this area had been aroused. Miss
Lucioli had made very special efforts to bring Itbrary services to the ill,
the homebound, the handicapped. Many of the Cleveland Public Library's
programs in the activity known as "Outreach" either trace their roots to
her personal efforts or were nourished to fruition during her long tenure.
Dr. Long and Miss Lucioli, pioneers that they were, will never be imitated.
They laid foundations. Dr. Long, in addition, must be remembered
for having twice served as Interim Director of the Library during critical
times. Much of the credit for bringing the institution through incredibly
stri ngent ci rcumstances belongs to her.
In June, the Director of Technical service resigned abruptly. This
precipitated a totally unforeseen crisis in leadership for the Library in
its most troubled department, just at the moment when it was undertaking
new programs for classifying books. The readiness of Mrs. Aubree
Brandow to fill the vacancy on an acting basis, and the strong leadership
of Mrs. Marjorie Mazur, Head of Catalog, are fully acknowledged. Together
they carried the Library safely past a dangerous point.
The list of new initiatives in the Library in 1975 is lengthy, but a few
of them should be mentioned in this summary report.
The Library began to classify its books under the system used by the
Library of Congress. Although this may appear to the public to be a highly
technical innovation of particular concern to librarians, its introduction
will have the long-range effect of bringing the Cleveland Public Library
into conformity with a system throughout the nation as a whole. This in
turn produces considerabl e savings in time, labor and money: much of
the data that is used to classify books is being generated elsewhere, and
the Library can now take advantage of this body of work without having
to duplicate efforts of professional librarians elsewhere in the nation.
Standardization under the Library of Congress scheme further enabled
the Library to take the step, long delayed, of becoming a member of the
Ohio College Library Center. This Columbus-based network of public and
academic libraries collects and distributes catalog information among its
on-line affiliated members. In 1975, the Cleveland Public Library acquired
three terminals and almost immediately there was a perceptible
decrease in the time required to process new books. In the future the
Library will in turn make information available about its rich collections
to other Ohio libraries linked by the OCLC computer system.
In the field of personnel, the Library codified and modernized its employment
rules and published them in what is projected as the first in a
seri es of procedural manual s. Payroll work was contracted to a local
bank, thereby reducing costs and increasing accuracy of record-keeping.
A WATS line was introduced into the Braille and Talking Book Department,
providing visually handicapped people in Northern Ohio with
the opportunity to communicate with the Library without incurring toll
The cost of the WATS line was met by a grant from the State Library,
which also supplied the funds for a new bookmobile especially equipped
to serve the elderly and handicapped. The State Library further made a
special one-time grant of $28,000 for the purchase of books to supply to
other libraries and users outside the Library's normal service area, thereby
removing the need for local taxpayers to bear the cost of this extension
In the autumn a new service, aimed primarily at the business community,
was launched. "Facts for a Fee" offers an opportunity to engage
the services of a professional research librarian for an extended period of
time for specialized business searches. The Library is reimbursed for
the time thus expended.
A volume entitled Black Names in America: Origins and Usage was
published under special arrangements made by the John G. White Departmen
t. It is a schoi ar Iy vo Iumewhich draw sitsmateriaIson th e_ 0 rig ins
of the names of American black people from the manuscript collections
compi led by Professo r Newbell Nil es Puckett an d don ated to th e J0 hn G.
Library cards were distributed to all the school children in the Cleveland
Public Schools. The cooperation of the Superintendent of Schools,
Dr. Paul Briggs, and his staff are gratefully acknowledged. While not all
that had been hoped for was achieved in stimulating young people to use
the Library, the experiment is worthy of future study.
Motion picture projectors were purchased for all branch libraries, increasing
the capabil ity of the Library for fi 1m showings and reducing the
need for continuous shuttling of equipment from the Main Library to the
branches. The ready availability of this increasingly popular audio-visual
equipment saved many patrons the inconvenience of making the long
trip downtown. New film inspection and repair equipment kept more films
in better physical condition.
In more workaday efforts, the Library replaced part of its fleet of
aging vehicles, made important renovations in some of its branch libraries,
and began the long process of rehabilitating the Main Library. Contracts
were let for the installation of new windows in the downtown buildings.
Other work contracted for in 1975 to begin at a later date, included
resetting the Main Library entrance steps, installing automatic controls
on the heating system, and laying a new sidewalk on Superior Avenue.
A notable gift to the Library, in addition to the $50,000 grant from the
CI evel and Foundation (al ready mentioned) was $18,400 from the Gund
Foundation for the conti nued development of the Envi ronmental Resou rces
Center. Smaller gifts of books and money totalling many thousands
of dollars in value are continuing testimony of the importance of the Library
in the affections of individuals and organizations in and near
Cl evel and.
In summary, 1975 seems to have been a year of transition holding many
promises of future improvement.
'1975 Annual Use Statistics
Ch i I dren
Library Materials Loaned for Home Use
Ma i n Lib ra ry
Loans to Other Libraries
Circulation of Library Materials
per Registered Card-holder
Ta I I y Quest ions
By Mai I
(Library open 306 days)
Talks, Story Hours, and Group Instruction by
Use of Publ ic Meeting Faci lities
Attendance at Main Library (both bur Idings)
Da i IY Average
J uven i Ie
a c-al Report
ear End-ng Dec. 31,1975
3,073,873.82 ---0--- 11,148,811.94
Bui Idi ngs
Cash on Hand
Total Fund Balance, Dec. 31, 1975
Total Capital Assets*
Excess of Assets
Total Capital Assets includes Land,
Balance January 1, 1975
Receipts - Revenue
Intangible Personal Property Tax
Fines and Reimbursements
state Aid for Library Services to the
Receipts - Nonrevenue:
Proceeds from Sale of Notes
Other - Nonrevenue
Total Receipts - Nonrevenue
Total Receipts and Balance
Library Service Materials
Operation of Library
Maintenance of Library
General Fund Debt Service
Transfers - Building &Repair Fund
Balance December 31, 1975
otal Expenditures plus Balance,
December 31, 1975
Clerk Treasurer of the Board of library Trustees
Andrew A. Venable
THE CLEVELAND PUBLIC LIBR RY
325 Superior Avenue, Cleveland, OhiO 44
ALTA East 125th Street near Mayfletd Road
ARLINGTON 12332 Arl ington Avenue
BROADWAY 3328 East 55th Street
BROOKLYN 3706 West 25th Street
CARNEGIE WEST 1900 Fulton Road
CLARK 4620 C,lark Avenue
COLLINWOOD 856 East 152nd Street
EAST 131st STREET 3830 East 131st Street
EAST 79th STREET 1215 East 79th Street
EASTMAN 11500 Lorain Avenue
55th-EAST 5510 Superior Avenue
FLEET 6511 Fleet Avenue
GARDEN VALLEY 7100 Kinsman Road
GLENVILLE 660 Parkwood Drive
HARVARD-LEE 4125 Lee Road
JEFFERSON 850 Jefferson Avenue
LANGSTON HUGHES 2390 East 79th Street
LORAIN 8216 Lorain Avenue
MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. 1962 East 107th St.
MEMORIAL 15212 Lake Shore Boulevard
MILES PARK Mi les Park &East 93rd Street
MT. PLEASANT 14000 Kinsman Road
NOTTINGHAM 760 East 185th Street
RICE 2820 East 116th Street
ROCKPORT 4421 West 140th Street
SOUTH 3096 Scranton Road
SOUTH BROOKLYN 4292 Pearl Road
STERLING 2200 East 30th Street
SUPERIOR 1347 East 105th Street
TREASURE HOUSE Crawford Road &East 86fh St.
UNION 9319 Union Avenue
WALZ 7910 Detroit Avenue
WEST PARK 3805 West 157th Street
WOODHIlL 2973 Woodhi I I Road
WOODLAND 5806 Woodland Avenue
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