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Admin On December - 27 - 2013

World Library Pioneer- Melville Dewey

In world, Library development and library professionals knows the Father of Modern Librarianship is only one man i.e.  Melville Dewey.  Melville Louis Kossuth Dewey was born on December 10, 1851 to a poor family who lived in a small town in upper NewMelvil_Dewey

York state. As a young adult he advocated spelling reform; he changed his name from the usual “Melville” to “Melvil”, without redundant letters, and for a time changed his surname to “Dui”

He is best known for the decimal classification system that is used in most public and school libraries. Dewey invented the Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) system when he was 21 and working as a student assistant in the library of Amherst College. Dewey copyrighted the system in 1876. This system has proved to be enormously influential; though many American libraries have since adopted the classification scheme of the Library of Congress, Dewey’s system remains in widespread use. His work created a revolution in library science and set in motion a new era of librarianship. Melvil Dewey well deserves the title of “Father of Modern Librarianship.”

Dewey changed librarianship from a vocation to a modern profession. Dewey was a pioneer of American librarianship and an influential factor in the development of libraries in America in the beginning of the 20th century. He helped establish the American Library Association (ALA) in 1876; he was its secretary from 1876-1890 and its president for the 1890/1891 and 1892/1893 terms. He also co-founded and edited Library Journal. In addition, Dewey promoted library standards and formed a company to sell library supplies, which eventually became the Library Bureau company of today.

A pioneer in library education, Dewey became the librarian of Columbia College (now Columbia University) in New York City in 1883, and founded the world’s first library school there in 1887. In 1889, he became director of the New York State Library in Albany, a position he held until 1906.

Dewey was an early promoter of winter sports in Lake Placid and was active in arranging the 1932 Winter Olympics there. He also was a founder of the Lake Placid Club Education Foundation in 1922.

Melvil Dewey died after suffering a stroke on December 26, 1931 at age 80. Seven decades after his death, he is still primarily known for the Dewey Decimal Classification, the most widely used library classification scheme in the world.

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Categories: Library Science

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