Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Collection Development in California Indian Tribal Libraries


Peterson, E. (2004). Collection development in California Indian tribal libraries. Collection Building, 23(3), 129-132.https://doi.org/10.1108/01604950410544665 

Summary: This article bring attention to the issue of how tribal libraries are often not seen as “real” libraries and so they do not receive the support of many state resources and funds, which in turn affects their collection and ability to grow. The author shared her experience and tips on how she helped a California tribe develop and build up their library collection. After completing a needs assessment, Peterson, focused on developing a collection focused on resources specifically about that tribe and a general collection of Native American history to help create that sense of community in the library. She goes into further detail about the subject areas she purchased materials in, ranging from children’s books to activism and spirituality. She includes publishers, distributors, bibliographies, reference books, and online databases to name a few, that cater to Native American culture and history. She explained how she created a small “starter” collection and provided information on how to continue to grow the collection and aim to expand as long as their budget allows.

Evaluation: This was a great overview of how to approach tribal library collections and provided a great amount of resources for the Native American community and California tribes. It brings to front, the existences of tribal libraries and their struggles in getting funds to remain open to provide a space for community but also, the resources for the youth to grow into leaders. Tribal libraries should be views as public libraries and have the same access to resources as the rest of the public libraries do because they are working towards the same goal. Having a background in Native American studies, the topic of tribal libraries is interesting to me and it comes to no surprise that there is not much in the literature about tribal libraries or tribal library collection development.

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