Tuesday, June 11, 2019

All-New 2019 Summer Reading Program now available

By Maria Sochor, Director, Tennessee Library for Accessible Books and Media

We are excited to introduce you to our all-new, totally reimagined 2019 Summer Reading Program! Like before, we have three distinct programs tailored for children, young adults, and adults.

Head over to https://sos.tn.gov/tsla/labm where you can listen in, download, and subscribe (via the free Stitcher app) to automatically receive future programs as they’re released. Topics run a wide gamut from supporting our friends and relatives who are on the autism spectrum, to practical tips for surviving a zombie apocalypse. It’s truly a Universe of Stories!

A few of the offerings available through the Library for Accessible Books and Media's Summer Reading Program.


New episodes will be released every Wednesday, for the next 10 weeks. Here’s where this gets really fun – because these programs are already recorded, you can use any of the released episodes at any time to host your own program for patrons in your library. Play an episode for your patrons, then have a discussion and maybe book-talk some related items from your collection (including the Tennessee Electronic Library!). You can also send the link out to our website – we would LOVE for you to share it on your social media.

We want as many people as possible to enjoy these portable programs, so we encourage you to spread the word far and wide! No need for someone to have a visual impairment to join the fun. This is for everyone.

We can’t wait for you to hear the amazing stories that our hard-working staff have created for you this year! Please listen in, share on social media, and let us know what you think. Happy listening!


The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Office of Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

100 years ago on this day...

Today we remember an important moment in our nation's history. #OnThisDay in 1919, a federal suffrage amendment was passed by the U.S. Congress and sent to each state for ratification. On August 18, 1920, Tennessee provided the 36th and final vote needed to ratify this important amendment to the U.S. Constitution granting women nationwide the right to vote.

"Women's suffrage ratification in the Tennessee Senate chamber" This photograph from the "Ratification Issue" of the Nashville Tennessean, Sunday morning, August 29, 1920, depicts the Senate chamber at the moment that the clerk counted the historic vote on women's suffrage. Women flood the gallery and floor as the clerk counts the votes. Young Senator Harry T. Burn from McMinn County cast the deciding vote for the 19th Amendment. With this vote, Tennessee became the 36th and deciding state to approve the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, granting women the right to vote.


Look for future posts on the Library and Archives social media channels chronicling the history of the women's suffrage movement during this centennial season of remembrance. In the meantime, we encourage you to view our "Women’s Suffrage in Tennessee" online collection at: https://teva.contentdm.oclc.org/customizations/global/pages/collections/suffrage/suffrage.html


The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Office of Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett

Library and Archives staff tour construction site of our new building...

Library and Archives staff members recently received a behind-the-scenes hard hat tour of our new building under construction near the Bicentennial Capitol Mall. We’re excited to see the progress that has been made thus far. It’s history in the making!


Library and Archives staff touring our facility included L to R: Gordon Belt (Public Services), Chuck Sherrill (State Librarian and Archivist), Bessie Davis (Regional Libraries), Jami Awalt (Preservation and Digitization), Myers Brown (Archival Technical Services), Renee Register (Library Technical Services), and Peter Heimbach (Director of Special Projects, General Services)








The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Office of Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett

Friday, May 17, 2019

State Library and Archives Celebrates Statehood Day with Original Constitutions and Special Lecture

Tennessee celebrates its 223 birthday Saturday, June 1! The Tennessee State Library and Archives will put all three of the state’s original constitutions on display to the public in commemoration of Statehood Day. The constitutions are typically protected in a vault, but all three versions will be in the Library and Archives’ lobby for viewing May 30 to June 1 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CDT.



As part of the celebration, the Library and Archives will also host a free lecture on Tennessee’s constitutional history. On June 1 the Honorable Judge Andy D. Bennett of the Tennessee Court of Appeals will present the history of each of Tennessee’s constitutions. Patrons can expect to learn details about the historical documents and what they meant for Tennesseans during that time in history.

"I'm thrilled the Library and Archives will again display our three state constitutions during the Statehood celebration, said Secretary of State Tre Hargett. "We're honored to have Judge Bennett join in the festivities for a lecture on the purpose of these documents, the impact they had on the earliest settlers of Tennessee and how they continue to influence state lawmaking today."

Before joining the Court of Appeals in 2007, Judge Bennett served in the Tennessee Attorney General’s office for 25 years, the last ten as Chief Deputy. He was a member of the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Bicentennial Foundation, 1993-1997, which put together the festivities for Tennessee’s Bicentennial celebration. Besides being a member of the Tennessee Bar Association, Judge Bennett is a past president and the current president-elect of the Tennessee Supreme Court Historical Society, and is the current president of the Tennessee State Library and Archives Friends organization. He has authored several legal and historical articles and received numerous awards during his distinguished career. Judge Bennett also helped create the Tennessee Judiciary Museum in 2012. He has had a long interest in the Tennessee Constitution, not only lecturing about it, but litigating about it as well.

The lecture will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. CDT Saturday, June 1, in the Library and Archives auditorium. The Library and Archives is located at 403 Seventh Ave. N., directly west of the Tennessee State Capitol in downtown Nashville. Free parking is available around the Library and Archives building.

Although the lecture is free and open to the public, registration is required due to seating limitations in the auditorium. To reserve seats, please visit https://tnstatehood2019.eventbrite.com.

Viewing the state constitutions is free. No reservation is required.


The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Office of Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett

Monday, April 22, 2019

Library and Archives Hosts Free Workshop on Civil War Research

The Civil War has touched the life of almost every U.S. citizen but connecting families with complete records can present challenges. On Saturday, May 4, the Tennessee State Library and Archives will host a free workshop entitled, “Cross Connections to the Civil War.”

Presenter J. Mark Lowe will demonstrate how to search and use the wide variety of records available through the Tennessee State Library and Archives – including records from the Grand Army of the Republic, United Confederate Veterans, United States Colored Troops, Confederate and Union Army pensions, Southern Claims Commission, court martials, newspaper accounts, unit histories, letters to governors and presidents, diaries and more. Participants can expect to leave with knowledge and tools to draw a more complete picture of their Civil War ancestor and family history.

J. Mark Lowe, CG, FUGA, is a certified genealogist who has been researching family history for more than 50 years. Lowe is a renowned author and lecturer specializing in original records and manuscripts throughout the South. He grew up in Tennessee but has extensive family roots in Kentucky. He has traveled both states and enjoys sharing his love of genealogy and the joy of research with others.

Lowe has served as president of the Association of Professional Genealogists and is past president of the Friends of the Tennessee State Library and Archives. His expertise has been featured on several genealogical television series including African American Lives 2 (PBS), Who Do You Think You Are? (TLC) and Follow Your Past (Travel).

The workshop will be held from 9:30 a.m to 11 a.m. CDT Saturday, May 4, in the Library and Archives auditorium. The Library and Archives is located at 403 Seventh Ave. N., directly west of the Tennessee State Capitol in downtown Nashville. Free parking is available around the Library and Archives building.

Although the workshop is free and open to the public, registration is required due to limited seating. To make a reservation, visit https://crossconnections.eventbrite.com.


The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Office of Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Meet the Staff - Debra Mattingly

Meet Debra Mattlingly. She is the Assistant Director with the Clinch River Regional Library.

How long have you worked here?

I’ve worked for the Clinch River Regional Library since January 2016. In the previous 37 years, I worked in business, academic and public libraries in Texas, Illinois, North Carolina, Colorado, Tennessee, Maryland and Florida. I love all types of libraries. I also really love Tennessee, so we returned when we had the chance 3.5 years ago.

What are some of the things you do as an Assistant Director? 

As an Assistant Director of one of the 9 regional libraries across the state, I think of my job as a librarian to librarians. I work with 33 libraries in 9 counties, primarily providing support and training to the staff in these libraries. I attend board meetings, prepare and present training, and encourage libraries to continue to improve their good work in their communities. I work on reports that libraries can use to advocate for more funds from their local funding bodies or that provide more ideas for them to use in their communities. I miss the day to day interaction with the general public from my previous positions, but I love what I am doing now.

What is your favorite part of your job?

Meeting and working with all the wonderful people in Tennessee libraries is the favorite part of my job. The library staffs in our 33 libraries and the other assistant directors across the state are fabulous colleagues with whom to work and from whom I am continually learning.



Do you have a favorite collection?

My favorite collection at the Library and Archives is the Library for Accessible Books and Media. What’s not to like in a free library program of recorded, large print, and braille materials that is available to all ages of residents of Tennessee who are not able to use standard print materials due to visual or physical disabilities? I encourage all of our libraries to become familiar with their services and share with their communities. I especially like the quarterly Adult Book Club and the children’s programs offered to eligible participants. Children are mailed the craft materials in advance so everyone can participate in a story and craft, no matter where they live in Tennessee.

What makes libraries and archives relevant to modern society?

Libraries and archives are one of the few places in our society which serves ALL ages, races, creeds, religions, political affiliation, and economic status. Everyone who abides by our rules and policies are welcome to enjoy free materials, programs, research assistance, internet access, or just a place to BE either alone or with others. Libraries offer materials in many formats to meet the educational and recreational needs to those in their communities, from birth until death.


The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Office of Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Beyond High School – Using TEL’s Testing & Education Reference Center to Practice for AP/CLEP and Career Tests

By Andrea Zielke

High school students: You may have already decided on what you are doing after graduation from high school, but there are a number of things that you can do now to get you off to a great start at college or your entry into the working world! The Tennessee Electronic Library has a number of free resources that can get you ready!

Most schools will give you credit for Advanced Placement (AP) classes and College-Level Examination Program (CLEP). If you want to do some extra practice in preparation for those exams, check Testing & Education Reference Center (TERC). Every credit earned through AP and CLEP scores can help to reduce the amount of general credits and can help to get you started on the classes in you want to take. Take some time to go through the practice tests so you know what to expect when you take the tests.




Through TERC, you can find two practice exams and study guides for 19 different AP exams.


  • Advanced Placement (AP) Biology 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Calculus AB 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Calculus BC 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Chemistry 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) English Language and Composition 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) English Literature and Composition 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) European History 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Human Geography 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Macroeconomics 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Microeconomics 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Physics 1 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Physics 2 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Physics C 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Psychology 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Spanish 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Statistics 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) U.S. Government and Politics 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) U.S. History 
  • Advanced Placement (AP) World History






For the CLEP exams, you can take four practice exams for each of the 30+ exams available:


  • CLEP American Government Practice Tests 
  • CLEP American Literature Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Analyzing and Interpreting Literature Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Biology Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Business Law Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Calculus Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Chemistry Practice Tests 
  • CLEP College Algebra Practice Tests 
  • CLEP College Composition Practice Tests 
  • CLEP College Mathematics Practice Tests 
  • CLEP English Literature Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Financial Accounting Practice Tests 
  • CLEP French Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Human Growth & Development Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Humanities Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Information Systems Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Introduction to Educational Psychology Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Introductory Psychology Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Introductory Sociology Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Natural Sciences Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Pre-Calculus Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Principles of Macroeconomics Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Principles of Management Practice 
  • CLEP Principles of Marketing Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Principles of Microeconomics Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Social Sciences and History Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Spanish Language Practice Tests 
  • CLEP U.S. History I Practice Tests 
  • CLEP U.S. History II Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Western Civilization I Practice Tests 
  • CLEP Western Civilization II Practice Tests





Beyond AP and CLEP assistance, there are e-books for the LSAT, GMA, GRE, HiSET, TOEFL and US Citizenship exams.

If you are going directly into working world, there are still a number of practice tests and e-books available that can help you start your career. This includes practice tests/ and e-books for the following professions: accountant/auditor, American Foreign Service officer, corrections officer, cosmetology, medical assisting, nursing, pharmacy technician, police officer, postal worker, military, civil service caseworker, court officer, firefighter, parole officer, teachers, probation officers, real estate, state trooper and U.S. Border Patrol.

To take a practice exam or read an e-book, you will need to sign up for a TERC account, which is free for all Tennesseans. Go to Testing & Education Reference Center on TEL to start practicing today!


The Tennessee State Library and Archives is a division of the Office of Tennessee Secretary of State Tre Hargett