Librarians Working Together to Dedicate Literary Landmark
The September 5 dedication of the Walt Whitman Birthplace in Huntington Station, NY as a Literary Landmark looked much like a library legislative event. Both librarians and elected officials gathered at the historic site to celebrate it becoming an United for Libraries Literary Landmark. The Empire State Center for the Book took the lead in nominating the site for the designation, along with the Lambda Literary Foundation (now Lambda Literary), the Suffolk County Library Association and the Suffolk School Library Media Association.
The crowd of more than 100 included a congressman (Steve Israel), a State Senator (Carl Marcellino) and four Assemblyman, including Assemblyman Fred Thiele who serves as the New York State Assembly Chairman of the Library and Education Technology Committee. The contingent of librarians was lead by Madelyn Haussner, President, Suffolk School Library Media Association and Jackie Narkiewicz, President, Suffolk County Library Association.
“Walt Whitman gave a young America her voice, and helped release us from the shame we felt for our sensual nature,” said S. Chris Shirley, president of the Lambda Literary Foundation. “We salute him today and congratulate the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association for preserving the home of America’s Shakespeare and having it designated as a literary landmark.”
The site was the fourth Literary Landmark that the Empire State Center for the Book has arranged. The other sites are Yorkville Community School, New York, N.Y. for author Bernard Waber, Windmill at Stony Brook, Southampton, N.Y. where Tennessee Williams lived and wrote and Diocesan House, Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, New York, N.Y. for author Madeleine L'Engle.
The Empire State Center for the Book is working with the Empire Friends Roundtable, the Youth Services