Blog | Page 7 | Mechanics' Institute

You are here


06/10/2019 - 10:00am

In the autumn of 1986 my mother called me. We typically spoke over the phone about once or twice a month during this time. During this call the subject quickly came around to the recent nuclear disaster in the Soviet Union. "Steven," my mother asked me, "what the hell happened at Chernobyl?" She asked me that question for a specific reason: my brother is the writer, but I am the historian. I studied Russian history for 2 years in the Ph.D. program at Columbia University before switching to it...

[read more]
06/01/2019 - 11:00am

James Tiptree, Jr. was the pseudonym of a woman named Alice Sheldon who wrote science fiction in the mid-20th century. She entered the field at a critical time in the development of the genre. Starting in the 19th century, the public school systems in the English speaking world greatly increased literacy, especially in the United States, and with that increase a demand for entertaining fiction. Publishers and writers took advantage of the popularity of exciting, sometimes lurid, stories for t...

[read more]
05/31/2019 - 1:12pm


Sarah Blake The guest book
Lucy Ives Loudermilk, or, The real poet, or, The origin of the world
Joanne Ramos The farm
Bev Thomas A good enough mother

Historical Fiction...

[read more]
05/30/2019 - 10:57am

The library has purchased a print copy of The Mueller Report : the final report of the Special Counsel into Donald Trump, Russia, and collusion; as issued by the Department of Justice. We realize that the political situation regarding the report and its findings is changing rapidly. Some redacted portions of the report in our print copy may be unredacted later. To help our members keep up, we also have added two electro...

[read more]
05/20/2019 - 10:00am

It’s always fun to read a book and recognize the ins and outs of the city depicted. This month a selection of SF-inspired fiction is on display on the second floor of the library at the end of the stacks (look for the PA-PR column). It’s a mix of SF classics, mysteries, and young adult fiction.   

Happy reading!

Little Brother by Cory Doctorow Fic Doctorow

The Maltese Falcon by Da...

[read more]
05/20/2019 - 9:44am

New Photo Display in Classroom 3A

Prior to 1860, the railroad network in the United States existed primarily east of the Missouri River.  Due to the lack of a rail network in the West, travel took from 4-6 months to make the trek from the Missouri River to California by covered wagon.

The Pacific Railroad Act was signed into law by President Abraham Lincoln on July 1, 1863 to grant federal aid to the Union Pacific Railroad Company and the Central Pacific Railroad...

[read more]
05/17/2019 - 10:04am

Daydreaming about your next vacation or wishing you could be transported to a new, different city? Well, for hassle-free travel, browse a selection of our audiobook collection on display on the second floor and get transported around the globe. Visit Central America, Rome, Jamaica, and more from the comfort of your home.

Happy listening!

The Lost City of the Monkey God: A True Story by Douglas Preston CD 972.85...

[read more]
05/16/2019 - 9:25am


Olga Wojtas Miss Blaine's prefect & the golden samovar

Historical Fiction
Lissa Evans Old baggage

Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror
Arwen Elys Dayton Stronger, faster & more beautiful

[read more]
05/14/2019 - 1:27pm

The second installment of Ed Herny’s ephemera collection from the California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894 (also known as the California Midwinter Fair) is currently featured in the 2nd floor archival display case.  This phase showcases trade cards, ribbons, tickets and passes, and embroidered silk handkerchiefs.  This part of the display will be on exhibit until June 26th.


[read more]