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02/08/2021 - 1:36pm

Until recently, an image of John Sime, a former Mechanics' Institute's (MI) Board of Trustee President has eluded me. For several years, I have been corresponding with John Sime's biographer, Barry Brown, hoping to find a photograph of one of MI's earliest founders, who served as Board President from 1857-58. Since Brown is known as an expert on one of Mr. Sime’s endeavors "the California Powder Works." I hoped he might provide helpful information. 

What I learned was t...

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02/04/2021 - 12:02pm

As we enter Black History Month 2021, there is much to celebrate in terms of representation. In the White House, Kamala Harris became the first Black woman and first Indian-American to be elected vice president. In the House of Representatives, Ritchie Torres and Mondaire Jones became the first openly gay Black men to be elected to Congress. Cori Bush became the first Black woman elected to Congress from Missouri in 2020. Khaleel Anderson’s victory in his race for a seat in the New...

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01/28/2021 - 11:00am

James Alfred Wight, better known as James Herriot, began writing the first of four books about his years as a country veterinarian in Yorkshire, England, during the Great Depression. After a long day of travel to remote farms caring for livestock in distress, Herriot sat down to type rough drafts of stories on an Olivetti typewriter.

Several years later, in 1972, Herriot published All Creatures Great and Small, f...

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01/26/2021 - 10:23am

PRINT BOOKS

FICTION
Maryse Condé Crossing the Mangrove
Shyam Selvadurai Funny boy
Leo Tolstoy Hadji Murat
Willie Carr Loose Cannons: The Adventures of Buell and Lloyd
Jun'ichirō Tanizaki...

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01/21/2021 - 9:59am

January is the time when many of us like to make New Year's resolutions. If books about change are in your wheelhouse -- whether they involve revitalization, reflection, or redemption -- MI Library has a title list to address those three Rs for 2021.

It's quite possible these inspiring books could change your life, too.

Becoming...

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01/13/2021 - 2:11pm

The Mechanics’ Institute recently hosted the 2020-2021 Pan-American Intercollegiate Chess Championship, the foremost team championship event open to colleges and universities from North, Central, and South America, and the Caribbean. Started in 1946, Mechanics’ Institute was honored to uphold the tournament's historic lineage by coordinating this year's event, which was online for the first time in its history.

The Pan-Am Intercollegiate, held from January 4-6, 2021, include...

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01/11/2021 - 12:14pm

Often finishing a beloved book is a bittersweet experience. How can one possibly find another title equally engaging? With the scarcity of open bookstores and recent library closures, it's a challenge to browse and ponder which books to read. There is always Amazon, which directs readers to related titles with its "customers who viewed this item also viewed" and "frequently bought together" capabilities, but discerning readers may crave a curated and more personali...

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01/05/2021 - 10:12am

As the COVID-19 pandemic rages on, many have turned to books for safe, stay-at-home entertainment and enjoyment. Your Mechanics' Institute membership makes it easier than ever to procure a mile-high stack of books or pack your digital shelf with eAudiobooks or eBooks. As always, reading continues to sustain and nourish us through these uncertain...

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12/22/2020 - 4:45pm

The winter solstice has arrived, and the night sky beckons. Cold, clear evenings bode well for constellation viewing -- Canis Major, Canis Minor, Gemini, Orion, and many more. In addition to the star-studded canopy, Jupiter and Saturn will pass each other closely this week in an especially vibrant display, viewable about an hour after sunset. This rare planetary conjunction hasn't happened since medieval times. 

If you're like many skywatchers, perhaps you also pine for...

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12/18/2020 - 9:45am

While many are sheltering in place and many Mechanics’ Institute virtual events are free to all during this time, a significant number of members have opted to delay renewing. We miss you!

 

We love to delight members with our much-utilized library "To-Go" service, virtual clas...

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