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February 13, 1909

MEDICAL LIBRARIES: "Crito, I Owe a Cock to Æsculapius; Will You Remember to Pay the Debt?"—Socrates

Author Affiliations

President of the Dayton Public Library and Museum DAYTON, OHIO

JAMA. 1909;LII(7):528-529. doi:10.1001/jama.1909.25420330010002a

One of the serious problems which confronts the management of every library is the proper and equable apportioning of the book fund to the several departments. The problem is, of necessity, a flexible one and varies with the environment, the resources and the policy of the individual library. To-day I propose to discuss only one phase of the question, and that a narrow one.

Is it expedient to establish a medical department in a free library? By this I mean not the sporadic buying of a book on hygiene or domestic medicine, but the regular and methodical acquiring of standard works as liberally as the budget and the demand will justify.

In the larger cities or in medical centers, where doctors are many and medical societies are numerically and financially strong, experience has fully demonstrated that the needs of the profession will be better met by separate libraries. The correctness

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