MARK TWAIN LIBRARY COLLECTIONS

Print Materials (all have three-week loan periods, except for new fiction & non-fiction)

Adult Fiction

  • New Fiction: fiction and mystery books acquired within the last six months
  • Fiction: older novels
  • Mystery: mystery and crime fiction
  • Book Club: multiple copies of selected titles read by Redding book groups
  • Large Print
  • Popular Paperbacks: paperback editions of popular fiction

Adult Nonfiction

  • New Nonfiction: nonfiction books acquired within the last six months
  • Nonfiction: older nonfiction
  • Travel: guides to various destinations
  • Reference: directories and indexes offering authoritative information on various subjects
  • Biography
  • Connecticut Shelf: books about Redding and Connecticut

Special Collections

Mark Twain Collection

This is comprised of two sections. The first is the collection of the original books given by Samuel Clemens (a.k.a. Mark Twain) to establish the first library in Redding. Only 300 titles remain from his original donation of about 3000 books, some of them with marginalia written in his hand. These books are not for loan. The second part of this collection contains over 150 books on or about Mark Twain, including biographies, essays, humor, notebooks, and literary criticisms. These books may be borrowed.

Massie Collection

Donated by Reginald Massie, a former Georgetown resident. It contains over 150 books about the Civil War, and about 300 books on art. All these books may be borrowed.

Hutchinson Collection

A collection of some 1,500 books representing the lifetime interests of the late Redding resident Hester LaGallienne Hutchinson, and given to the library by her husband, Robert, after her death. The collection consists of material on Eastern religions, beliefs and customs of ancient Egypt, and books on Islam, philosophy, yoga, theosophy, and the occult. Translations of sacred books are well represented. These titles may be used in the Library only.

Magazines (circulating, non-circulating, periodical databases, investment reports)

The library subscribes to more than 75 general-interest and special interest magazines; click here for a list. Current issues, kept in plastic jackets and displayed on shelves in the adult reading room, do not circulate. Past issues, stored immediately behind the display issues (and accessible by lifting up the display shelf) may be borrowed for one week. The library keeps back issues of weekly magazines for 3 to 6 months, and issues of monthly magazines for a year. Parenting magazines are on display in the parent's waiting area. (Children's magazines are kept in a wall rack to the left of the front door.) The library keeps five years of Consumer Reports behind the front desk, and also has a subscription to Consumer Reports' online site, which can be accessed from your home computer; please ask for it when you visit the library. Finally, the library has subscribed to National Geographic since 1910. Bound issues from that date on are available for browsing in the adult reading room.

Many magazine articles are also available online, through the websites of individual magazines and through periodical databases to which the Mark Twain Library subscribes. (see list here). These periodical databases offer the ability to search through multiple magazine archives for information on a specific subject and are an especially helpful tool in doing research.

The library has print and in some cases digital subscriptions to various specialized investment reports and a wide range of business publications. (list).

Newspapers (do not circulate)

The library has subscriptions to most local and many national newspapers (list). The newspapers are shelved in the adult reading room; the current edition is on display, with past editions stored behind the current one, and accessible by lifting up the display shelf. The library keeps up to one month of a daily newspaper's print editions, and up to three months of a newspaper published weekly. The library has a complete archive of issues of the Redding PILOT since it began publishing in 1966. It also provides access to past articles in the PILOT in two additional ways: digital copies of PILOT articles on CD, from 2003 on, and internet access to PILOT articles, also from 2003 on, through the Newsbank database. (Click here for access to Newsbank.). The library also has bound copies of the REDDING TIMES, the precursor to the Pilot; it was published from 1954 to 1966.

Almost all daily newspapers - worldwide - make their current editions available on the internet, for free, for 24 hours. Search for your desired newspaper by proper name through Google, or locate it in these newspaper directories (list). Some newspapers provide free access to articles in their past editions, though usually for a limited time.

In addition, the library's periodical database provide access to ICONN Newstand, which provides substantial access to the archives to six of the country's leading newspapers: click here for the list of the newspapers and the dates which can be accessed. The archives can be searched by individual newspaper or included as part of a subject search in the newspaper database.

Library users also have access to the historical archives of three major news sources. The New York Times grants free direct access to its archives from 1851 - 1980 (link); the Hartford Courant offers access to its entire archive from 1764-1922 through ICONN Newstand (link); and the Associated Press offers select access to its photographs from the mid-1800s to the present, also through ICONN Newstand.; and the Associated Press offers access to its photographs from the mid-1900s to the present, also through ICONN Newstand.

Audiovisual Materials

Audio books

The library's extensive collection of audio books includes titles in one or more of the following formats: audio CD, audiocassette, playaway and downloadable. Search the library's catalog under the tab "movies/music/audiobooks" for a complete listing of the titles available in each format.

The library has a growing collection of lectures on audio CD by The Teaching Company and other publishers. Language learning materials are available in CD and audiocassette formats, as well as in downloadable form.

Music CDs

The library has an extensive collection of music on compact discs, which may be borrowed for three weeks.

DVDs

The library circulates DVDs in the following genres, with various loan periods:

  • theatrical-release movies ("DVD" collection) feature-length movies from independent producers ("DVD" collection)
  • documentaries ("DVD in series" collection)
  • movies and miniseries broadcast on TV ("DVD in series" collection)
  • TV-show collections ("DVD in series" collection)
  • cultural broadcasts (opera, ballet, etc.) ("DVD in series" collection)
  • instructional and travel videos (shelved with nonfiction books)

Online information resources

A great deal of information is now available over the internet. There are two categories of online information: proprietary information sources to which access is limited to paid subscribers, and information to which access is free.

Listed here are the proprietary information resources that the library offers to its users; they include the databases the Library has chosen to subscribe to specifically for the benefit of its patrons, plus the databases Joel Barlow High School offers to its students and town residents, and the databases the Connecticut State Library makes available to state residents. To gain access to any of these three sets of databases, patrons must log in with their library barcodes.

There are also myriad sources of good online information sources available for free. Please click here for an extensive list of recommended websites.