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Literary Landmark Dedication, Hamilton Ohio
05/13/2015

Julius Pañares

Did you know that Ohio, until Saturday, May 7, 2015, had only one Literary Landmark in our great state? Considering the many authors from Ohio, that number is far too small! On Saturday May 7th author Robert McCloskey became the second author (the first is Harvey Pekar, Cleveland Heights-University Heights) to receive such an honor. I felt especially privileged to attend the Literary Landmark dedication in Hamilton Ohio at the Hamilton Lane Library. It was a perfect day, a perfect event and an enjoyable time with some interesting authors, friends of the Hamilton Lane Library and proud residents.

Toward the end of last year, I became aware of the Literary Landmark program sponsored by United for Libraries, American Library Association. I immediately went to their site to see what landmarks were in Ohio. It was then I discovered Ohio had only one! So, I sent an email to inquire about the program and was directed to contact Hamilton Lane librarian Gratia Banta, Youth Services. When I connected with Gratia, I learned she had already started to work on acquiring a plaque to honor the work of local author, Robert McC1loskey. I asked how OELMA could help and a collaborative effort began. The name of the Ohio Educational Library Media Association is on the plaque for perpetuity as OELMA made a donation (funded with the help of an anonymous donor). If you are in Hamilton, Ohio, you should stop by the Hamilton Lane library, built in 1866, and wander through this architectural beauty!

Finally, I would like to include some links sent to me by Gratia Banta in regard to the event. Gratia planned some awesome events to coincide with the plaque dedication, that included a read Lentil day in the schools, dinner with author Peter Roop (who did a delightful reading of Lentil), a McCloskey walking tour and the dedication, to name a few.

 

·         Heritage Hall

 

·         Hamilton Lane library   

 

·         Early picture of Hamilton Lane library

 

If you are ever in Hamilton, stop at the Heritage Hall museum to browse through the Robert McCloskey Musuem. Heritage Hall President, Nancy Follmer, is proud of hometown author, Robert McCloskey and eager to share the many artifacts collected there (even the doughnut machine!). The included picture shows Heritage Hall President , Nancy Follmer, Youth Services librarian, Gratia Banta and myself with a replica of the plaque. It was a great pleasure to represent OELMA at this event.

 

Finally, I think these words from an email sent to me by Gratia Banta summarize why an event such as this is so meaningful, “It is so important to me to celebrate our local History and model our love for it for future generations!  Yes, I am very proud of the team work of Heritage Hall, Viking, OELMA, the Lane Libraries, and the Hamilton Lane Library who made this event possible…Your mention that the Landmark was one of only 2 in the state, caught the attention of everyone! I especially like how the landmarks celebrate the places Children’s author’s called “Home.”