Sharing new ideas, resources, knowledge and technology to keep abreast of new development in reference service field

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

New Year, New Reference Questions? Well.....Maybe

It seems the same reference questions keep surfacing all the time. Most are trivia, many a little tricky to find the answer to again. Although you may have looked the answer up numerous times, you may ask, as I often do, just where did I find that bit of information? Before the google age, librarians at The Worcester Public Library kept index cards, by subject on those stumpers. We also could turn to a notebook entitled "ELsie's Barn Door, " for the truly tricky to answer. This little treasure has a wealth of information . When a librarian worked on a question that was either time consuming, difficult to find, or a bound-to-be-asked-again question, we would make a copy, with a Xerox copier, not copy and paste, and keep it at the reference desk for easy retrival. From that gem of a reference source, the FAQS on our web page evolved. Go to, and click on web resources in the upper left hand corner. On that page, in the upper right hand corner, you will see the list. Many of these pertain to Worcester facts, such as the seven hills of Worcester. Others items may also be of interest, such as words ending in gry. I discovered another site with the same purpose in mind. The IPL,, has compiled a similar list by subject. I found it very useful, and interesting for quick facts and figures. I think both are worth a look. By the way, you just have to add these sites to your favorites list, print them out, or copy and paste. The questions may be the same. However, discovering the answers sure is a lot easier.

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CMRLS Regional Reference Center, Worcester Public Library, 3 Salem Sq, Worcester MA 01608