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All Their Ways are Helping Ways: Stories from the History of Madison Public Library

by Dr. Bob Kann


Madison Free Library 2nd floor interior - 206 North Carroll location

This was not a book I expected to write. The project came to me as a surprise, as did all of the support I received along the way.

The staff of the Madison Public Library did for me what they've done for patrons for one hundred and twenty-five years, provide competent, friendly assistance. Linda Olson, Ann Michalski, and Barb Dimick enthusiastically supported my efforts from start to finish. Ann Waidelich guided me through the library's archives and arranged an inspiring meeting with retired librarians and former board members. Tana Elias designed the web page for the stories and, along with Ann Waidelich, helped me to understand how graphics can enhance the printed word. Many other staff members answered the innumerable reference questions I gave them. Bill Schwab kindly shared his memories of the years his father, Bernard, served as the director of the library. Thank you all.

Special thanks to my editors, Mark Kann and Deborah Waxman. I am fortunate to have relatives who were willing to share their time and expertise to improve my writing. Mark raised broad conceptual questions and encouraged me to put more of my own commentary into the stories. Deborah dissected the stylistic and grammatical shortcomings of my earlier drafts. To the best of my capabilities, I followed their advice. Your wisdom and compliments are greatly appreciated.

Finally, thank you Caroline and Shayle for patiently tolerating the rollercoaster ride of moods that accompanied my struggles writing this book. You were there to share my excitement for the stories, and this sustained me through the highs and the lows.