Who's Using the Frederick National Lab Scientific Library?

Written by Dr. Diana Haines
July/August 2012

Diana Haines

I personally have always loved spending time in libraries: the "No Yes" library (as a young child pronouncing Noyes as Noise was phonetically nonsensical); the mansion-turned- library in the garden district of New Orleans; the cool, slightly musty basement of the old stone library in Woods Hole, MA. Although each had their own ambience, they all shared the library "feel": quiet, inviting, and knowledge-packed.

Where would we be as a society, much less a research institute, without the library? Although not as grand (and definitely not as old) as the libraries of Alexandria, Pergamon or Ephesus, our FNLCR library efficiently organizes and makes readily accessible a much larger, and ever expanding, volume of literature.

As a veterinary pathologist (Pathology/Histotechnology Lab, SAIC) providing core support on numerous studies, I often need to research aspects of the Investigator’s areas of interest, particularly where those interests intersect with the physiology and pathology of genetically-engineered mice. Now that a majority of journals are available on-line through our library’s website, I actually regret having less frequent sojourns to our library. I do not miss, however, the laborious hours of photocopying which inevitably turned subtle grey tones of images into truly BLACK and white copies.

Most books, and some journals, however, are not available on-line, and all journal websites are not without occasional glitches. Enter the physical stacks and the helpful library staff, who rapidly respond to any inquiry. The myriad of classes our library offers on search engines and databases not only educates the new young minds, they also help some of us more senior staff keep up-to-date. I’ve also enjoyed the recent innovative additions, including the laptop librarian – bringing the library to us. Who would have thought?

Thank you Sue Wilson and the rest of the Scientific Library staff!