Library, Library Story

Louis L’Amour Story: My Dad and a Typewriter, by Beau L’Amour

Beau L’Amour is an author, art director and editor. He has also worked in the film, television, magazine and recording industries. Since 1988 he has been the manager of the estate of his father.

I have no idea of how we were trained, my sister and I, but we knew how to approach my father if he was working and we wanted his attention. We would enter his office picking our way through the piles of books and papers. We would stand to one side of him, just within his peripheral vision, and silently wait while he worked.  Sometimes he would lift his fingers from the keys and say, “Just a minute.”  Then he would go on and complete a thought or get himself to a place in the story that would remind him what he had been intending to say next. Then he was yours…

…for about ten minutes. Before long, you would see the story or some innate discipline calling him back. We never had to worry about interrupting him because, while he was happy to be briefly distracted, he guarded his work time very carefully, and it never occurred to us that he might behave in a different way. “You run along now, I have to get back to work.” He would lean forward then, hunting and pecking at the keyboard, back in the story and perfectly in tune with where he had left off. It seemed as if he always knew exactly where he was going and no interruption could confuse him or even make him pause for very long.*

*L’Amour, B. (2017) Louis L’Amour’s Lost Treasures Volume 1, xx.

Libraries, Library, Library Story, News

Louis L’Amour Story: Louis L’Amour and the University of Jamestown

Phyllis Bratton, University of Jamestown,  Raugust Library Director

Shortly after Louis L’Amour’s death, Kathy L’Amour gave the University of Jamestown’s Raugust Library copies of all of his books, and continued to do so for many years after his death, as more were found among his papers and published.  In this gift, she included many translations of his works.

As a result, Raugust Library holds 387 volumes of his work, 189 of them in a language other than English.  These include Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, Finnish, Czech, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, German, French, Greek, Hungarian, Slovak, Dutch, Hebrew, and Slovenian.  This might be the largest collection of his works in foreign languages in the world, outside of the Library of Congress!

Mrs. L’Amour also gave Raugust Library a set of his bound works in English.  For many years, these were on display with pictures and articles about him in the library’s lobby.  Now, they are housed in the “Listening Room”, where students go to watch DVDs and to use other audio/visual technology.  Library staff added western pictures and photographs to the room to enhance the theme.

Raugust Library welcomes residents of Stutsman County to use our collections.  Library cards are available and users may check out a limited number of items.  We have only two main restrictions:  we do not do interlibrary loan, and we ask that people in the community not come during exam week, as we are very busy helping students finish their semester.

Library, Library Story

A Library Story: Mrs. Smith, Memories of the Alfred Dickey Free Library

   Mary Jo (DeMersseman) Langhorne

Mary Jo is a 1964 graduate of Jamestown High School. She lives in Iowa City, Iowa with her husband John. She enjoyed a long career as a librarian in the Iowa City Schools and as an adjunct professor in the school of Library and Information Sciences at the University of Iowa. She still likes to read and travel. She and John travel to London to visit with daughter Jyl, her English husband, and two teenage grandsons.

A librarian at the Alfred Dickey Free Library, whom I knew only as Mrs. Smith, made a profound difference in my young life. I discovered reading at an early age, likely because my parents enjoyed reading to me. One of my best memories is of my dad reading Little Black Sambo to me, with great enthusiasm and humor. While that book is considered somewhat politically incorrect today, I believe my dad thought only that it was a book about a young boy who outsmarts the opposition because he loves pancakes. My dad loved pancakes, too.

While my parents bought books for me as they were able, that was not so easy to do in the Jamestown of the time. No Amazon, you see!! So I was thrilled to discover the library after we moved to Jamestown in 1955 when I was nine years old.

Designed by a student of Louis Sullivan (something I’ve discovered only recently), the building has a beautiful Prairie-style appearance, with the two-level features common to many libraries of the time: children’s room, offices and technical services on the lower level, and the adult collection and reading room above. And so, for a time my library experience consisted of turning to the left upon entering the library and descending the stairs to the children’s room. Children were not allowed upstairs until the age of 12 or 14 And, at the time, children’s book collections were very limited. I quickly read my way through the books that interested me on the lower level.

Enter Mrs Smith. One day, I marshaled my courage and ascended the steps to stand before the imposing oak desk in the center of the upstairs portion of the library. And there, behind that massive desk, sat a petit woman with a lovely smile—Mrs. Smith. After a nervous question or two on my part, she made it clear that I was very welcome to read the ”upstairs books”—the adult collection. And there a whole new world opened to me—Austen, Alcott, the Brontes, Dickens, DuMaurier and controversial “new” authors like Steinbeck and Pearl Buck. I could read anything I wanted, and Mrs Smith and her colleagues had selected a fine collection for the Jamestown library. Mrs Smith was always willing to help me find “the next book.” I read so much, and I don’t remember my choices ever being questioned at the checkout desk.

Eventually I became a librarian, too. I cannot say that Mrs. Smith was directly responsible, but surely the love of reading and libraries that she supported played a role. Some of Mrs. Smith’s family still live in Jamestown and should be very pleased at the role she played in my life and surely that of many other Jamestown residents.

“The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library.”
― Albert Einstein

“Your library is your paradise.”
― Erasmus

“Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation.”
― Walter Cronkite

“Librarians are the coolest people out there doing the hardest job out there on the frontlines. And every time I get to encounter or work with librarians, I’m always impressed by their sheer awesomeness.”
― Neil Gaiman

“(Public) libraries should be open to all—except the censor.
― John F. Kennedy

“Libraries raised me.”
― Ray Bradbury




Library, Library Story, News

A Library Story: a Family of Readers

Diane Jolin

Retired Title 1 Reading Teacher, K-8

Literacy has always been important to me. That is one of the reasons I became a reading teacher. I would tell my students that to become good readers they would have to read. The more they read, the better readers they would become.

I grew up with parents who loved to read. My father read just about every book I brought home, even some of my college textbooks.  We always had books around and at times my mother would have to tell us to quit reading and do our chores. We checked out books from our school library because we did not have access to a city library. We also received books as gifts. To me, reading is a necessity in my life. I do a lot of reading for pleasure.

In my own family both my daughters are readers. In our town we have a public library, a bookmobile, and a school library where they could check out books. As a reading teacher I was always encouraging them to take advantage of these opportunities.

My grandchildren love going to their local libraries. They check out a box of books and videos to take home every time.  My oldest grandchildren went on date days with their other grandfather. On rainy days they would hang out at their local library.  My youngest grandchildren enjoy their trips to the library with their mother.  Having their own library card was exciting and my youngest grandson couldn’t wait until he was 6 to get his card like his older brother. Their library has an afterschool program they attend once a week during the school year. When they check out books at the public library they receive a printout stating what it would have cost them to purchase all the materials they had checked out. By the first week in September their cost would have been $1,600.

Libraries are so important. The economic and educational advantage they have for all families is priceless. Everyone has the opportunity to use these resources no matter who they are. Every library contributes to the quality of life in the community.



Adult Programming, Book Club, Library

New Book Club For Young Professionals

BookshelfBooks & Bars @ Sabirs

Sabir’s will be the venue for the club meetings, on the 4th Tuesday of each month at 7pm, starting on April 26th. The library will have 10 of the chosen book available to check out. The goal of the club is to promote reading and literary discussion among adults aged 21 & up.

Please take a few minutes and answer our survey of seven questions. If you don’t live in the area, you can skip # 3.
Adult Programming, Libraries, Library




6:00 pm TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 2015

Mike Williams Photo

Michael R. Williams will speak on pre-planning funeral options, cremation, body donation, and deaths occurring out-of-state.  He will also discuss legal right to disposition and where ashes may or may not be interred.   He will also share his experiences of funeral celebrations and changing attitudes toward the traditional funeral rite.  Mike is a local funeral director and owner of Williams-Lisko Funeral Chapel of Jamestown and Edgeley.

Adult Program classes are held in the lower level Alfred Dickey Library conference room.

REGISTER HERE:!sign-up/nodfz

Adult Programming, Library

Read Local at the University of Jamestown, October 20, 2015



The University of Jamestown hosted a Read Local event in the Sheldon-Unruh lobby at the University of Jamestown on Tuesday, October 20 at 7:00 pm.  Read Local authors Bruce Berg, Keith Norman, Bill Kennedy, Laurel Woiwode, and Nancy Kuykendall were joined by UJ professors Larry Woiwode and Glauco Ortolano and read from published work and work in progress. The readings ranged from poetry, memoirs, local history and adult novels.

Read Local is an initiative that focus’s attention on local authors, books, literacy  in the community, and reinforces the importance of learning among all age groups.

Thanks to the English Deprtment Chair, David Godfrey, Dr. Badal’s assistant, Erin Klein and the rest of the UJ staff that helped make the evening rewarding to the authors and the fans of literature and learning that attended.

More readings will be scheduled in the spring.

Glauco Ortolano reads from his collection of poems.   L-R Larry Woiwode, Laurel Woiwode Pfau, Glauco, Keith Norman, Nancy Kuykendall, Bill Kennedy, out of the photo to Bill’s left is Bruce Berg.

Author Table. Larry Woiwode, Laurel Woiwode Pfau, Glauco Ortolano, Keith Norman, Nancy Kuykendall, Bill Kennedy. Bruce Berg cut off.

Audience 10.20.15

Libraries, Library, Summer Adult Programs

Summer Adult Programming

New Adult Programming starts in earnest next week.  Go to the Friends Of The James River Library web site to register for a class.  Registration

Dina Laskowski teaches Memoir Writing, A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Worlds

Dina Laskowski teaches Memoir Writing, A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Worlds


Rob Keller Talks About Balance Between Digital and Traditional Marketing

Broadcast Image

Kyle Dean talks about Careers in Broadcast.

Libraries, Library

Tourism’s Summer Jamestown Calendar

For a quick look at all the great activities scheduled for the Library, and in Jamestown, this summer, take a look at Tourism’s Jamestown Calendar

 Adult programs to learn something new and great kids programs to  to keep them reading all summer.                       

Dina Laskowski teaches Memoir Writing, A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Worlds

Dina Laskowski teaches Memoir Writing, A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Worlds

Aaron & Ryon Love Reading In The Summer

Aaron & Ryon Love to Read During  The Summer