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Vacation Blog Post: People of the Stacks #2 - Emma Elizabeth White

Emma Elizabeth White


In 1888 Emma Elizabeth White left her job as a teacher in Uxbridge and was hired by the Congregational Library to be the second assistant librarian. While very little about the Assistant Librarians is recorded, some details can be gleaned from the annual reports. After Miss White's first year of service, the Library Committee noted that she had "developed very desirable qualities and given good satisfaction." In her time at the library, she helped to compile an alphabetical listing of all past Association members (totaling 10,000), and made the transition from the first Congregational House on Somerset Street to the second (and current) Congregational House on Beacon Street. She also prepared, at separate times, catalogs of the Pratt collection and the library's collection of Bibles. She served as Assistant Librarian for 46 years before retiring in September of 1934.

The 1935 the Library Committee of the American Congregational Association acknowledged her retirement, saying:

"The most important event your Committee has to report at this time is the termination of Miss White's active connection with the Library, after forty-six years of service. She has given to it a lifetime of loyal devotion and has contributed very largely to the expanding usefulness of the work. As a committee we hereby record our deep appreciation of her genial friendliness, her kindly helpfulness and her quiet fidelity and extend to her our sincere thanks for all she has done for the institution that is dear to us all. We wish for her many years of well-earned rest and enjoyment and it is a great satisfaction to us that arrangements have been made by which she is to receive a generous retiring allowance."




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