Katherine HepburnMovie cameras often have found their way into libraries. To see a few cool images of Monroe, Hepburn, and some big-screen friends, click here.

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ShushThere are all sorts of ways in which librarians maintain order and calm in their institutions. Skills and shushing styles differ, based on circumstances. For our shushing area, click here.

ArtArtists of all kinds are inspired by libraries and books. Some of the results are cool. Some is just plain weird. So, click here.

Cool ButtonThe Salem coolness button is free, just ask for one. To request this nifty red trinket, simply click here.

There are all sorts of cool, strange and few entertaining parts of the web about librarians, teachers and reference. To prowl our list of online coolness, (or suggest one) click links.

Look it UpCataloguers everywhere know that some things are more difficult to classify than others. Here, our "way cool" stuff.

To read what librarians writing us say about the coolness of reference, click here.

Peter W. TobeyThe Director of Coolness is quite obviously partial to a particular variety of "cool" in his own attire. He is open-minded when judging "coolness" entries, though, and so it isn't necessary to adopt an Akroyd or Belushi look to win a "Reference is Cool" coffee mug.

When we first saw this photo we concluded Mr. Miller and Marilyn were celebrating in the reference section of a library. Turns out (we're told by the altogether informed, William J. Hughes) that this is actually a photo of their wedding in 1956. In Arthur Miller's lawyer's office. (Looks like the legal library to us.)

As everyone knows, reference is cool. In an effort to celebrate this fact, we started assembling proof (like the photo above). And invited folks to submit their own proofs. And then made a button to give away...

Request a Button

The button is free. Plus, getting one couldn't be simpler: just click here.

Tour the Coolness

Links in the boxes to the left will take you to all manner of stuff.

Submitting Proofs

Salem Press is inviting you to submit evidence that reference books, the people who use them, reference librarians and teachers are "cool." We are using the expression 'cool' to mean 'excellent' or 'first-class' not the sense of the word that implies merely 'acceptable' or 'satisfactory.' It is permissible, but not required, that the person, action, thing or event be relaxed - cool. But not chilly, please.

We by no means want proof of aloofness, or any other form of excessive self-control. Such coolness is unpleasant and, as John Stuart Blackie said in this regard, "An honest hater is often a better fellow than a cool friend." Sounds cold to us.

"Cool," as a positive epithet, was popularized by jazz musicians in the 1940s. It has had a very long life, atypical of most slang expressions. Similar words, like far-out, groovy, hep and tubular have (mostly) faded. But cool has staying power.

Submissions are being accepted by ptobey@salempress.com. They can be in the form of illustration or photograph, or written evidence of some non-visual coolness. Entries will be evaluated on a daily basis by a committee of sophisticated and discerning judges.

The Coveted Mug All entries will be acknowledged with an official "Reference is Cool" button, (pictured above). Periodically, and with a certain arbitrary, even whimsical irregularity, winners will be posted online and will receive the much-coveted Magill's "Reference is Very Cool" mug.

We will not return anything submitted. Submitting anything to us grants Salem Press the right to post it or its image on our website. Please don't send copyrighted material without permission.

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