Tom Milligan: The Not So Quiet Librarian. Speakers Bureau Program.
What state fired the shot heard round the world - the library world, that is? Iowa! Who was the man that fired that shot? Forrest Spaulding. In 1938, Forrest Spaulding wrote the Library Bill of Rights, which was adopted by the American Library Council in 1938, and in Spaulding's own words "means as much today as it did yesterday and will tomorrow."
Spaulding served as director of the Des Moines Public Library from 1917 to 1919 and again from 1927 to 1952. His story, however, is bigger than Des Moines, bigger even than Iowa. A recognized leader in the library world, Spaulding's words and his life touched everyone who loves not just books, but freedom of expression.
This one man play about Spaulding, written by Cynthia Mercati, nationally known playwright, and performed by Tom Milligan, runs about 30 minutes and portrays Spaulding with the gentle, good humor, he was known for, as well as his devotion to the library and to civil rights. Spaulding was a very unquiet librarian and the play shows what good one man can do in the world.
Funded grant program of Humanities Iowa. Humanities Iowa is a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.