Jump to Navigation

Kansas Association of School Librarians

WPA Library TopekaMs. Collection No. 121



The Kansas Association of School Librarians was organized in 1949. A History and Archives Committee has always been in existence, collecting materials for preservation. In 1978, the first donation of their papers was given to the Society, which they designated as their archive. Additional donations were made in 1979 and 1985. The collection consists of 11 boxes of papers, 1 box of cassette tapes and 21 scrapbooks. There are six series: History, Organizational Records, Presidents’ Books, KASL publications, Cassette tapes and Scrapbooks.

The collection consists of correspondence, meeting programs, and minutes, cassette tapes of meetings, scrapbooks, organizational publications and a master’s thesis of the history of the organization from 1949 to 1960. The collection contains published materials because the Society maintains the organization’s archives. There are no restrictions on the collection.


The Kansas Association of School Librarians (KASL) was organized in 1949 after school librarians had been meeting together informally during meetings of the Kansas State Teachers Association. The KASL was the thirteenth such state association in the nation. It affiliated with the Kansas State Teachers Association (forerunner of the Kansas - National Education Association) in 1949 and with the Kansas Library Association in 1950. The organization also cooperates with the State Department of Education, the American Library Association (and its division of the American Association of School Librarians) and the Kansas Council on Children and Youth.

Since 1949, the organization has been involved with organizing workshops for its members, hosting the William Allen White Book Award Dinners, lobbying for support of libraries, participating in National Library Week (1958-), formulating a Code of Ethics for School Librarians, improving standards for school libraries, improving accreditation criteria for school librarians, and publishing handbooks, bibliographies and a semiannual newsletter.

KASL depends on the KASL Council to keep the organization running smoothly. The council formulates and sets policies, transacts the business of the Association, approves the work of committees and plans the programs for its annual meeting. The council consists of the president, vice president (president-elect), secretary, treasurer, immediate past president, the district directors and the state school library media consultant serving as an advisory member without vote. Others who may attend council meetings without a vote are committee chairmen and presidents of affiliated organizations.

KASL is divided into six districts. The districts’ organization’s main function is to plan an annual fall workshop for each district. These are designed to bring smaller groups of school librarians together to learn from each other, unlike the much larger annual state meetings which bring in outside speakers. For more information on the organization of KASL, consult the KASL Guidelines found in box 11.

Some of the secondary school librarians began bringing their student assistants to meetings and workshops of KASL in the 1950s. In 1965, these students formed their own organization, the Kansas Library Assistants of Secondary Schools (KLASS). This organization’s membership fluctuated with student interest. The students invited authors to speak and held workshops on topics such as operating audiovisual and video equipment. Other purposes of the organization included recruiting future librarians to the profession (especially in the sixties and early seventies) and providing social activities for these students at their schools and at meetings of the association.

The members of KASL have been concerned with many issues and trends; two important concerns have been the professionalization of school librarians and the introduction and utilization of audiovisual materials and computers in the school library or “media center” and in the curriculum. Changes in attitudes influenced by the character of the times is evident. In the 1950s, KASL members expressed a fear that comic books would warp children’s minds, were eager to find patriotic books for their shelves and actively recruited of future school librarians. In the 1980s, KASL is championing intellectual freedom, creating awareness of stereotypes in children’s literature and is encouraging its members to be computer literate.

The school librarian is a member of two different professions: teaching and librarianship. Their allegiance is to both; however, the records of the KASL show that although the KASL was born out of the KSTA (later K-NEA), in later years they have begun to identify themselves as school librarians through their own organization. This almost led to a complete break with K-NEA in1973, when communication and cooperation between the two groups was poor, but they reaffirmed their relationship with the K-NEA and the teaching profession and decided continue the affiliation. In 1977, however, the K-NEA decided to temporarily suspend meetings and the KASL began joint conferences with the Kansas Association for Educational Communications and Technology (KAECT), soon joined also by KLA.

An umbrella organization for these three related groups was founded (the Kansas Council on Information Science). Conferences have also been held in conjunction with the KLA and the Mountain Plains Library Association.

Scope and Content

The collection covers the association from its beginnings (1949) to the present. Because there has always been a History and Archives Committee, coverage of those years is fairly equal, although in some series records are retained by KASL longer than in others. This committee has collected papers from the different committees of the KASL, put together scrapbooks of flyers and clippings for each year, collected papers from each president’s term of office, collected the “presidents’ books” (records each president kept while in office) and begun collecting cassette tape recordings of annual conventions and council meetings. Periodically, they add to the collection as the Kansas State Historical Society is their designated archive.

The records of the KASL portray the growth of a vocation struggling toward professionalization. They also shed light on women’s and men’s participation in a largely female-dominated profession. School librarians in Kansas have struggled to define their own identity, as well as the role of school libraries in the educational system as these libraries have evolved from neglected stacks of books to “media centers” which, at their best, provide students and teachers with literature, information and entertainment in the many varied forms available today. The most notable success of the group of people which make up the KASL may be represented by the Blue Valley Unified School District Library Media Services (under the direction of Ruth Bell), which was named the School Library Media Program of the year in 1981 by the Encyclopedia Britannica Educational Corporation and the American Association of School Librarians. (Materials documenting this award appear in the scrapbook for January 1981-December 1982.)

Contents List

Series Description

There are six series in this collection: History, Organizational Records, Presidents’ Books, KASL Publications, Cassette Tapes and Scrapbooks. A timeline describing the history of the organization from 1949 to 1974 was done for the 25 th anniversary of KASL is included in the collection.

The History Series consists of two histories of the KASL. Faye Riggs completed a master’s thesis (for her M.L.S. degree from Kansas State Teacher’s College at Emporia [now Emporia State University]) on the history of the KASL from 1949 through 1960. It is more documentary than interpretive. Appendices contain copies of publicity flyers and convention programs (much of which may also be found in the scrapbooks), although Appendix M contains short autobiographies of the founder of KASL and the first ten presidents. This history is a carbon copy of the typed manuscript and was originally in one folder. It has been transferred to several acid free folders for preservation purposes.

For the 25 th anniversary of KASL, Beatrice Paddock (the first president) compiled a history booklet, which covers the years 1949-1974. This lists activities and accomplishments of the organization year by year, office holders and prominent members of the organization.

The Organizational Records Series contains files which have been preserved as they originally appeared. These seem to be the files of the History and Archives Committee. They contain financial records, meeting programs and minutes, committee records and correspondence during the years 1953-1975. The series is divided into three subseries: General Organizational Records, KLASS organizational records and Presidents’ Files.

KLASS (Kansas Library Assistants of Secondary Schools) was organized in 1965 after librarians had been bringing their students assistants to KASL meetings since September 1952 for informal gatherings. KLASS provided the students with opportunities to meet authors, learn how to operate audiovisual equipment and socialize. Membership and enthusiasm fluctuated and in 1974, KASL and KLASS officers decided to temporarily suspend meetings. However, a KLASS handbook appears in the 1979-80 scrapbook, evidence that the organization may have been revived.

Another subseries is the Presidents’ Files. These contain correspondence, meeting programs, flyers and minutes and KASL publications. They are arranged chronologically, labeled with each president’s name and years in office. Generally, presidents served for 12 months, however in order to comply with K-NEA meeting schedules, some annual meetings were postponed during the 1970s and two presidents served for 18 months. Of special interest is the folder 15 in box 5 (Lois Adriance 1973-74: K-NEA). During the early seventies, communication broke down between KASL and K-NEA until in March 1973, the members of KASL voted to give up their affiliation with K-NEA. However, they discovered that their constitution required them to give members two weeks’ notice of such a vote. In November 1973, members voted again, deciding to retain affiliation with the teachers’ association.

The Presidents’ Books Series contains the records kept by the presidents during their terms of office. These include correspondence, meeting programs, flyers and minutes. There were originally in three ring notebooks, but have been transferred to folders and boxes for preservation. Most of the notebooks were transferred into two or three folders. The papers appear in their original order, with the papers in the front part of the notebook in the first folder, and those in the back part of the notebook in the second or third folder. Some of the material found in the presidents’ books duplicated that in the scrapbooks or presidents’ files.

Publications of the KASL appear in the series of that name. These include issues of the KASL Newsletter (begun in 1951), the KASL Guidelines (which explain procedures for committee chairmen) and the membership directories.

The Cassette Tape Series contains cassette tape sound recordings of KASL meetings in 1977 and 1978. They are irregularly labeled; some titles giving exactly what is on the tape and some only giving a date.

The scrapbooks contain photographs, meeting programs and flyers, newspaper and magazine clippings. There is also a timeline which was completed for KASL’s 25 th anniversary in 1974, which lists significant events and people in the organization’s history from 1949-1974.

More information on KASL may be found in the Society’s Library.

Nancy Garner
Lela Barnes Intern
August 1985

Box List

Box 1:
History Series
Riggs, Faye. “Kansas Association of School Librarians: A History of the Organization from 1949 to 1960.” Master’s thesis, Kansas State Teachers College, Emporia, July 1962.

Folder 1: Chapters I – IX
Folder 2: Chapters X – conclusion
Folder 3: Appendix A
Folder 4: Appendix B
Folder 5: Appendix C
Folder 6: Appendix D
Folder 7: Appendix E
Folder 8: Appendix F
Folder 9: Appendix G
Folder 10: Appendix H
Folder 11: Appendix I
Folder 12: Appendix J
Folder 13: Appendix K
Folder 14: Appendix L
Folder 15: Appendix M
  Contains short autobiographies of the founder and first ten presidents –
  most mention details of their childhood, education, and career and why
  they became school librarians.
  (Box 1 continued)
Folder 16: Paddock, Beatrice. KASL Silver Anniversary. Salina, KS:
  Arrow Printing Co., [1974].
  Organizational Records Series
  General Records
Box 2  
Folder 1: Budget, Treasurer’s (various years)
Folder 2: District Five and Six
  correspondence concerning workshops 1968, 1970-1971, 1977-1978.
Folder 3: Minutes
  1953-1963, 1966-1967. Contains a KASL district map (1 through 6)
Folder 4: William Allen White Award Dinner Guidelines
  revised March 1963
Folder 5: Workshops
  1953-1954, 1957-1963, 1966-1967
Folder 6: Professional Relations Committee
  1962, 1965-1966
Folder 7: Nominations
Folder 8; Secondary Projects (1 folder of 2)
  “Media Use by Kansas Teachers and Students” by Marjorie
  Sullivan and Jean Moore. Sponsored by the KASL and the
  Department of Librarianship of Kansas State Teachers’
  College, Emporia, 1972.
  1967 correspondence concerning “The Library in the School:
  Program, Policies and Procedures for the Library
  Functioning As An Instructional Materials Center”
  “More Library Skills Games” (1974)
Folder 9: “Been Searching High and Low For Library Skill Games” 1969
  “Librarians’ AV Guide” 1971
(Box 2 continued)  
Folder 9 (continued)  
  “Looking for Ideas? A Manual for Use in Training Student
  Library Assistants in Secondary Schools in Kansas” 1972
  “Holidays Through A-V” 1970
  “Media to be Used with Deaf Children” 1971
  Basic Book List for Kansas High School Librarians 1952
  Report of Project Teacher-Education to KASL Council
  Preliminary correspondence concerning “Media Use by Kansas
  Teachers and Students”
Box 3  
Folder 1: National Library Week
  [1965?], 1967-1969, 1970-1971
  “Local Organization Handbook for the National Library Week
  Program 1967”
Folder 2: Membership
  1958-1960, 1965
Folder 3: Kansas Council for Children and Youth
  Draft No. 3 of the Proposed Bylaws of the Kansas Council
  Children and Youth (n.d.)
Folder 4: Budget
  1951-52, 1955-56, 1960-61, 1965-66 – 1966-67
Folder 5: History & Archives
  Program for the 10th anniversary in 1959
  Notes concerning the History of KASL (1965)
Folder 6: Code of Ethics [n.d.]
Folder 7: Committee Appointments
  1959-1960, 1961-1962 – 1963-1964
Folder 8: Scholarship
  1959, 1960, 1967
Folder 9: Standards Committee
  1950s and 1960s
Folder 10: Scholarship Funds 1962-66
(Box 3 continued)  
Folder 11: Treasurer’s Records 1949-1951
Folder 12: William Allen White Book Award 1979-80
Folder 13: Savings Account Book Ruth Gagliardo Scholarship Fund
  Membership Book 1961-70
  Treasurer’s Book 1951-60
  Presidents’ Files
Box 4  
Folder 1: Ruth Hanson 1952-53
Folder 2: Margaret Oliver 1953-54
Folder 3: Margaret Oliver
  correspondence concerning the Memorial scholarship
  Founders’ Scholarship) 1971-72
Folder 4: Margaret Loman 1954-55
Folder 5: Ethelyn Flagg 1955-56
Folder 6: Lois Stapleford 1956-57
Folder 7: Faye Riggs 1957-58
Folder 8: Ailine Thomas 1958-59
Folder 9: Lucile Rogers 1959-60
Folder 10: Marguerite Schmitt 1960-61
Folder 11: Marilyn Miller 1961-62
Folder 12: Martha Stucky 1962-63
Folder 13: Lavina Trotter 1963-64
Folder 14: Helen Floyd 1964-65
(Box 4 continued)  
Folder 15: Carl Hempstead 1965-66
Folder 16: Virginia Fields 1966-67
Folder 17: Mary Frances Snyder 1967-68
Box 5  
Folder 1: Geneva Wheat 1968-69
Folder 2 Mike Prints 1969-70
Folder 3: Rubye Downs 1970-72
Folder 4: Rubye Downs 1970-72: Annual Meeting KASL Nov. 6, 1970
Folder 5: Rubye Downs 1970-72: Nov. 6, 1970 Hutchinson
Folder 6: Rubye Downs 1970-72: Dec. 5, 1970 Salina
Folder 7: Rubye Downs 1970-72: March 6, 1971 Salina
Folder 8: Rubye Downs 1970-72: Dec. 4, 1971 Salina
Folder 9: Rubye Downs 1970-72: March 23, 1972 Fort Hays
Folder 10: Myrna Bump 1972-73
Folder 11: Myrna Bump 1972-73: Annual meeting Nov. 1973
Folder 12: Myrna Bump 1972-73: Dec. 2, 1972 Manhattan
Folder 13: Lois Adriance 1973-74
Folder 14: Lois Adriance 1973-74: “File For Lois”
Folder 15: Lois Adriance 1973-74: Kansas National Education Association
  (correspondence, memos, minutes concerning the vote on
  affiliation with the K-NEA)
Folder 16: Lois Adriance 1973-74: Business Manager Berneking
Folder 17: Lois Adriance 1973-74: Secondary Project
(Box 5 continued)  
Folder 18: Lois Adriance 1973-74: Founders
  (in connection with the 25th anniversary of KASL, the
  founders of the organization were identified)
Folder 19: Crystal McNally 1974-75
Box 6  
  KLASS Student Assistants
Folder 1: KLASS Student Assistants
  meeting programs, handbooks (different editions), reports,
  constitution, correspondence 1960s and 1970s
Folder 2: KLASS
  correspondence, programs, meeting minutes, installation of
  officers 1970s
Folder 3: KLASS Officers 1973-1974
  also officer nominees for 1974-75
Folder 4: KLASS
  Handbook, constitution and bylaws (2 different editions,
  sample KLASS membership flyer, KLASS Library Lip vol. 1,
  no. 1 May 1973 and vol. 1, no. 2 March 1974, KLASS
  District II Newsletter Wyandotte High School Library,
  Kansas City, Kansas (n.d.), letter concerning KLASS
  workshops April 11, 1974.
Folder 5: KLASS outstanding Library Assistant Award
  eligibility and application procedure (n.d.)
Folder 6: In folders 15-17 are papers originally labeled “KLASS to be
  held 1 Year 1974”
  Reports, flyers, correspondence, State Treasurer’s book
  1964-1974, handbook, meeting programs, candidates for
  office, ballots, lists of authors to invite to meetings,
  chapter lists
Folder 7: membership flyers, constitution and bylaws (1974),
  correspondence Box 3 (con’t):
(Box 6 continued)  
Folder 8: letter Nov. 8, 1974 telling of KASL Executive council
  decision on Oct. 13, 1974 to temporarily suspend the
  KLASS constitution and activities on the state level
  bank statements 1969-74
  President’s Books Series
Folder 9: Labeled “Minutes and Other Records of the Kansas Association
  of School Librarians and of the Council of the Association
  from Dec. 2, 1961 to . . .” but actually covers Nov. 1961
  to 1965
Folder 10: Continuation of above
Box 7  
Folder 1: [President’s Book from 1966-68?]
Folder 2: Continuation of above
Folder 3: 1968-70
Folder 4: 1970-72
Folder 5: Continuation of above
Folder 6: Continuation of above
Box 8  
Folder 1: 1972-73
Folder 2: 1973-74
Folder 3: Continuation of above
Folder 4: 1974-1975
Folder 5: Continuation of above
Folder 6: 1975-76
Folder 7: Continuation of above
Box 9  
Folder 1: 1977-78 President’s Book KASL E. Louise Dial
Folder 2: Continuation of above
Folder 3: Continuation of above
Folder 4: “KASL 1978-79 President’s Programs – Letters E. Mona Alexander”
Folder 5: Continuation of above
Folder 6: Continuation of above
  Publications Series
Box 10  
Folder 1: KASL Newsletter Vol. No. 1 April 1951 – Vol. 2 No. 3
  Sept. 1952 (6 issues)
Folder 2: KASL Newsletter Vol. 3 No. 1 Feb. 1953 (photocopy)
Folder 3: KASL Newsletter Vol. 3 No. 2 May 1953 (photocopy)
Folder 4: photocopies of sections of missing issues: Oct. 1953,
  Oct. 1954, and May 1956
  KASL Newsletter 1970-1975, 1977-1982 (some missing issues - 22 issues here)
Box 11  
  Membership Directories 1952-53 – 1981-82 (30 directories)
  KASL Guidelines 1968, Jan. 1969, Jan. 1969 (working copy for 1973 revision),
  Nov. 1973, Nov. 1975, Jan. 1978, July 1979, March 1981 (7 copies0
  KASL Newsletter 1954-1969 (29 issues - some missing issues - see folder 4,
  box 10 for portions of these)
  Cassette Tape Series
Box 12  
  Four tapes of the KASL Convention November 1977
  KASL Council 11/4/77 “Tape 1”
  KASL Council plus beginning of membership breakfast
  Membership breakfast
  KASL Council meeting Nov. 6 Last luncheon
  Four tapes from 1977
  KASL Council Dec. 3, 1977 through treasurer’s report side 2:
  to election of Nominating committee
  Committee appointments
  not labeled
  Three tapes of the KASL Council Meeting March 4, 1978
  KASL Council Meeting
  side 1: unlabelled
  side 2: district director’s reports
  committee reports
  Unlabelled [sides 3 & 4]
  side 5: Intellectual Freedom report
  liason report
  Governor’s Task Force report
  side 6: Old Business
  KCIS report
  Four tapes of the KASL Convention Dec. 2-3, 1978
  KASL Council Meeting Emporia State University
  KASL Council
  labeled only “12/2-3/78”
  KASL membership luncheon ESU 12/2/78 Music entertainment
  Address: Alvin Morris Superintendent Wichita
  Scrapbook Series
  December 1949-October 1952
  (Scrapbook series continued)
  Supplementary 1949-1953
  November 1954-December 1956
  December 1956-October 1960
  October 1961-October 1963
  December 1963-October 1965
  November 1965-October 1967
  September 1967-November 1968
  December 1968-November 1969
  December 1969-December 1970
  January 1971-December 1972
  January 1973-[April 1974]
  September 1974-November 1975
  December 1975-January 1977
  February – December 1977
  January 1978-August 1979
  September 1979-December 1980
  January 1981-December 1982
  January 1983-June 1984
  July 1984-June 1985
  July 1985-June 1986