50 Years Ago, The Beatles and Their Haircuts Landed at JFK

Wikimedia Commons
The Beatles pre-America, back in '64.
The Beatles are back in New York City! Fifty years ago tomorrow (February 7), four lads from Liverpool, with shaggy brown hair and megawatt charm, arrived at John F. Kennedy Airport, where a swarm of crazed girls greeted them in mass hysteria. "Ladies and Gentlemen ... The Beatles!," which opens today and runs through May 10 at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Fab Four's arrival in the U.S. and delivers an entertaining history of Beatlemania and the influence the band had on music, fashion, art, literature, film, and politics.

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The New York Public Library Needs a Proofreader [UPDATE]

Categories: NYPL

Photo Credit: melanzane1013 via Compfight cc
The New York Public Library is the second largest library in the United States, and third largest in the world. It possesses over 53 million volumes, sees upward of 15 million visitors a year, and houses a Gutenberg Bible, a book that ushered in the dawn of mass media and widespread literacy. But even titans need spellcheck. A hawkeyed tipster pointed out an unfortunate error in a recent job posting at NYPL for a Creative Services Director: "This experienced marketing leader will direct all advertising, publications and graphics of The New York Pubic Library." Welcome to every copyeditor's worst nightmare.

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The New York Public Library Is Having a Fire Sale on Duplicate Records

Categories: Music, NYPL

Courtesy of NYPL
Space: 1999, the original TV soundtrack
This is your chance to replace your dad's Scritti Politti 7-inch you broke in 1994 (great album, lousy frisbee). The Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound has been collecting donated LPs for four decades. In that time they were bound to wind up with more than one copy of White Snake's Come An' Get It. To get rid of duplicates, and also to make some money, the archive--a part of the New York Public Library--is holding a vinyl sale this weekend. Some 22,000 LPs are up for grabs.

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The New York Public Library's Maps Project is a Time Machine for Your Neighborhood

Broadway in 1860, from NYPL archives
While public library systems across the country flounder in the face of declining tax revenue and dwindling readership, the New York Public Library is somehow managing to survive. Rather than run away from digitization, NYPL has embraced it, and has recently produced a series of projects which are helping make information more open to the public.

The library just finished archiving its collection of public domain atlases, more than 10,000 in all, and has built a website to make them accessible online. Now you can look through maps of the city going back, in some cases, to the 1700s, and find out what Lower Manhattan looked like in 1854 compared to now. If you're feeling generous or bored, you can also donate your time online to fix warped maps and add to the database.

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New York Public Library Will Pardon 140,000 Kids for Library Fines

The New York Public Library is taking pity on some 140,000 city kids who have kept their library books out too long and are currently barred from borrowing new reading material. They will be able to chip away at their bills a buck at a time, $1 with every 15 minutes of reading. This is because the library doesn't want children to be indentured servants, but instead, wants them to actually read. And if they have fines that they might be busted for, well, they are probably not going to do that. Seems reasonable.

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AIDS In Oral History - Looking Back at 30 Years of the Epidemic (VIDEO)

This past Pride Week has marked some amazing events, from passage of Marriage Equality in New York, to a President ducking that issue while visiting the city, to that same President marking National HIV Testing Day and preparing to host a White House Pride reception.

This Pride also marks the 30th anniversary of the AIDS epidemic, which has killed over 33 million people worldwide. Marking the occasion, the New York Public Library's Mid-town branch is hosting an event tonight called "AIDS in Oral History: Doctors and Activists Look Back on 30 Years of the Epidemic," featuring the work of two historians on this subject.

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