Press enter after choosing selection
Graphic for events post


Nickels Arcade Celebrates 100 Years

Friday June 2, 2017: 9:00am to Thursday July 13, 2017
Downtown Library: Lower Level Display Cases

Graphic for events post

Blog Post

The Summer of Love Turns 50!

Tue, 05/30/2017 - 11:24am by amy

The Summer of Love’s foggy origins lay in the Bay area’s 1950s Beat culture, the merry pranksters’ 1964-66 acid tests, and politically disaffected Berkeley students. In January 1967, The Doors release their eponymous album in Los Angeles and the Human Be-In at Golden Gate Park promotes cultural decentralization, communal living, radical politics, and higher consciousness fueled by drug use. In February, Jefferson Airplane takes off with their breakout album, Surrealistic Pillow, and by May the Mamas and the Papas’ John Phillips writes “San Francisco (Be Sure To Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” whose Scott McKenzie cover will hit #4 on Billboard’s Hot 100 by July 1. As if all this wasn’t enough, the Beatles release Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band on June 1 and two weeks later The Jimi Hendrix Experience performs at the Monterey Pop Festival.

Meanwhile, in Michigan, the Detroit race riots at the end of July bring John Sinclair’s Trans-Love Energies commune (and future White Panthers) to Ann Arbor, and in August they stage a free concert by the Grateful Dead in Ann Arbor's West Park.

And this is how the summer of 1967 gave birth to the hippie!

Here are a few videos to help you make sense of all this hippie love:

Beatles Anthology
Berkeley in the Sixties
Complete Monterey Pop Festival
The Jimi Hendrix Experience live at Monterey

Graphic for events post

Blog Post

Happy Birthday Samuel Ting!

Fri, 01/27/2017 - 3:59pm by bengelty

Today marks the 81st birthday of American physicist and Nobel laureate Samuel C. C. Ting. Born to Chinese immigrant parents right here in Ann Arbor, Ting earned degrees in both mathematics and physics from the University of Michigan.

He went on to win the 1976 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work in the amazing field of subatomic particles. Ting then went on to propose and fight for the addition of the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS-02) to the International Space Station in 2011. The AMS-02 is used to observe and study cosmic rays.

In his Nobel Prize acceptance speech Samuel Ting emphasized the importance of experimental work:
“I hope that awarding the Nobel Prize to me will awaken the interest of students from the developing nations so that they will realize the importance of experimental work.”

The AADL has some great books about science experiments you can do at home, to help you explore the world of science:

Check out: Amazing Science Experiments by E. Richard Churchhill, for more than sixty simple physics experiments that can safely be done with materials around the house.

Or: The Usborne Big Book of Science Experiments, which provides instructions for simple experiments that introduce basic concepts in chemistry, biology, and other areas.

Our collection of Science Tools will help curious minds explore the world around them!

Graphic for events post


Rotary Club of Ann Arbor: Celebrating 100 Years

Tuesday January 17, 2017: 3:00pm to Monday February 27, 2017
Downtown Library: Lower Level Display Cases

Graphic for events post

Blog Post

Activist, Lawmaker, and Writer Tom Hayden Dies at 76

Mon, 10/24/2016 - 2:43pm by valerieclaires

We were saddened to hear of the passing of Tom Hayden. This well-known activist and lawmaker had Ann Arbor ties from his time at the University of Michigan and his involvement in the founding of the Students for a Democratic Society.

Recently, Tom Hayden appeared at the Ann Arbor District Library in 2014 to discuss the battle against climate change. A video recording of that event can be found here.

AADL’s Old News has several articles from the Ann Arbor News archives that mention or feature Tom Hayden, including this one from 1969 about an anti-Vietnam War protest and parade he was involved in.

Graphic for events post

Blog Post

Ypsilanti Murder Still Unsolved After 70 Years

Thu, 09/22/2016 - 7:50pm by oldnews

On March 8, 1935, the frozen body of seven-year-old Richard Streicher Jr. was found under a bridge in Island Park in Ypsilanti by another youngster, Buck Holt. The brutal murder remains unsolved to this day. Local law enforcement quickly developed a profile of the killer and the lurid headlines of follow-up articles left nothing to conjecture on the part of readers. The Mayor of Ypsilanti went so far as to warn parents to keep their children indoors with a "maniac" on the loose. Richard's parents and relatives were brought in for questioning and the Michigan State Police were called in by Governor Fitzgerald to assist in the investigation.

Lead after lead went dry, suspects were interrogated and released, and new clues failed to develop. In August, Circuit Court Judge George W. Sample took the unusual step of convening a one-man grand jury to air all the evidence thus far to put an end to the "intense feeling and suspicion within the community" regarding the investigation. The grand jury stretched to three weeks as local law enforcement officials were grilled and reluctant witnesses held in contempt but in November, 1937, proceedings were indefinitely suspended. Leads in 1938 and 1939 proved fruitless as well.

Although Ann Arbor News coverage of the Streicher case all but ended in 1939, interest in the case continued in the county. A 2007 article in Ypsilanti Gleanings asked readers for any information they might have on the case.

Recently, an obituary appeared on MLive announcing a formal graveside service and that funds had been raised to provide for a beautiful headstone for young Richard Streicher Jr.

Graphic for events post

Blog Post

Sneak Peek at Performance Network at its Dawn

Mon, 07/11/2016 - 1:15pm by oldnews

The Performance Network, formerly an Ann Arbor professional theater group, enters Old News in 1982 with the article Their corner of the world’s a stage. “Our immediate aim is to be studio or work space,” explained David Bernstein, one of Performance Network’s co-founders. For the first two years, Performance Network was a place for directors, playwrights, actors and stage crew to develop their professional skills. A unique feature was the “Works-in-Progress” series, stage readings of plays followed by a discussion with the playwright. Among them was Rachelle Urist, a reporter for the Ann Arbor News, who had her play, "Just Friends,” stage read and later developed into a full production. Opening their doors was the play, "We Won’t Pay, We Won’t Pay,” which heralded the era of Performance Network. Stay tuned for additional articles, photographs, programs, and more, from Performance Network's long history.

Graphic for events post

Blog Post

Summer Is Here And So Are The Fireworks

Thu, 06/30/2016 - 9:26am by oldnews

Image removed.

Independence Day, the Fourth of July, or July 4th, however you wish to refer to the nation’s official founding day, it is the one and only big summer holiday. It rings in the country’s separation from the British Empire (a sort of Brexit of our own), and, for some, the start of summer. With BBQ’s, picnics, fairs, parades, and fireworks, fireworks, fireworks being sold and shot off all around town, now is a great time to look back on our own history of Fourths’ gone by. There's no better place to see some great pictures as well as articles from the historic Ann Arbor News than the library’s very own Oldnews site. If you remember a guy who dressed up as a clown nurse or another who brought a skunk to the parade, you can see them on Oldnews.

Wonder what fireworks were available back in 1961? See them on display here. Remember the Buhr Park fireworks? Relive a moment in time from one of those events in 1963 or read the article about it. And of course there are plenty of parades. You can see the Ypsilanti High School's Girls Drum & Bugle Corps or the Boy Scouts, Troop 88 float in different Ypsilanti parades. But by far the favorite is the Greenbriar Subdivision kid’s parade. But if enjoying the beach is more your speed, Groome's Beach circa 1963 may give you ideas for celebrating the Fourth in a more relaxed manner.

Any way you celebrate, enjoy a safe and happy holiday!

Graphic for events post

Blog Post

The University of Michigan Zoo

Fri, 06/10/2016 - 5:46pm by oldnews


If you were in Ann Arbor between 1929 and 1962, you had the opportunity to visit the University of Michigan Zoo. On October 11, 1929, an article in the Michigan Daily said the zoo would open “in about three weeks” and would boast a weather vane by famed UM sculptor Carleton Angell. A December 11, 1929 Michigan Daily article reports animals moved in "last week". The tiny zoo enclosure was constructed behind the Alexander G. Ruthven Museums Building, what most of us think of as U of M's Natural History Museum. (The giant pumas that guard the front doors of the Natural History Museum were sculpted by Carleton Angell too!)

Inside today's museum is a memorial to the zoo which explains "...In 1929, a University of Michigan alumnus anonymously offered a collection of live native Michigan animals. It was the donor's hope that the animals could be enjoyed by children staying in the hospital then located across the street. A circular animal house and pond known as the "Museum Zoological Park" were constructed behind the Museums Building." Old news articles and photos show zoo residents like badgers, a bobcat, red foxes, skunks, otters, raccoons, several pairs of black bears throughout the years, and a wolverine named Biff. At some point a "reptile pit" was added, which included snakes and turtles.

In 1938, elaborate plans surfaced for a forty acre zoological garden to be located near the University of Michigan hospital. A WPA grant was "expected to provide the finances" for a wildlife utopia, where animals of the tiny U of M Zoo would be turned loose to live with no cages. The location of this dream zoo, which never came to fruition, seems to be the edge of what is now Nichols Arboretum.

Despite the popularity of the U of M Zoo, it was torn down in 1962 to make room for an addition to the Ruthven Museums Building. A few Ann Arbor City Council members, as well as many Ann Arbor townspeople, appealed to the University Board of Regents to save and/or relocate the beloved 30something year old zoo, but eventually the animals were relocated and the zoo became a memory. By today's zoological standards, the animals of Ann Arbor lived in fairly terrible, tiny, cramped quarters. The "Animal House", as it came to be called, never grew to be a wildlife utopia, but certainly provided countless Ann Arbor children and their families the opportunity to appreciate Michigan wildlife up close.

Graphic for events post

Blog Post

Memorial Days Of The Past

Sun, 05/29/2016 - 2:58pm by oldnews

Memorial Day Dad

Who doesn’t love a parade? And Memorial Day certainly is full of them. Ann Arbor is no exception either. Whether it is the Ann Arbor High Marching Band or Brownie Scouts or just groups of kids watching the parade, we have gathered some wonderful articles and photos. In addition to parades there are other commemorations for this holiday and for Armed Forces Day as celebrated in Ann Arbor. You can find them all here.