|Librarian of Congress|
Seal of the Library of Congress
Flag of the Library of Congress
|Library of Congress|
|Appointer||The President |
with Senate advice and consent
|Term length||Ten years|
|Inaugural holder||John J. Beckley|
|Deputy||Deputy Librarian of Congress|
Level II of the Executive Schedule
The Librarian of Congress is the head of the Library of Congress, appointed by the President of the United States with the advice and consent of the United States Senate,for a term of ten years. The Librarian of Congress appoints the U.S. Poet Laureate and awards the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.
The Library of Congress (LOC) is the research library that officially serves the United States Congress and is the de facto national library of the United States. It is the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States. The Library is housed in three buildings on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.; it also maintains the National Audio-Visual Conservation Center in Culpeper, Virginia. The Library's functions are overseen by the Librarian of Congress, and its buildings are maintained by the Architect of the Capitol. The Library of Congress has claimed to be the largest library in the world. Its "collections are universal, not limited by subject, format, or national boundary, and include research materials from all parts of the world and in more than 450 languages."
The president of the United States (POTUS) is the head of state and head of government of the United States of America. The president directs the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces.
The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D.C.
The Librarian of Congress has broad responsibilities around copyright, extending to electronic resources and fair use provisions outlined in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The Librarian determines whether particular works are subject to DMCA prohibitions regarding technological access protection.On July 13, 2016, the US Senate confirmed Carla Hayden as the librarian by a vote of 74–18 and she was sworn in on September 14, 2016.
Copyright is a legal right, existing in many countries, that grants the creator of an original work exclusive rights to determine whether, and under what conditions, this original work may be used by others. This is usually only for a limited time. Copyright is one of two types of intellectual property rights, the other is industrial property rights. The exclusive rights are not absolute but limited by limitations and exceptions to copyright law, including fair use. A major limitation on copyright on ideas is that copyright protects only the original expression of ideas, and not the underlying ideas themselves.
Fair use is a doctrine in the law of the United States that permits limited use of copyrighted material without having to first acquire permission from the copyright holder. Fair use is one of the limitations to copyright intended to balance the interests of copyright holders with the public interest in the wider distribution and use of creative works by allowing as a defense to copyright infringement claims certain limited uses that might otherwise be considered infringement.
The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is a 1998 United States copyright law that implements two 1996 treaties of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). It criminalizes production and dissemination of technology, devices, or services intended to circumvent measures that control access to copyrighted works. It also criminalizes the act of circumventing an access control, whether or not there is actual infringement of copyright itself. In addition, the DMCA heightens the penalties for copyright infringement on the Internet. Passed on October 12, 1998, by a unanimous vote in the United States Senate and signed into law by President Bill Clinton on October 28, 1998, the DMCA amended Title 17 of the United States Code to extend the reach of copyright, while limiting the liability of the providers of online services for copyright infringement by their users.
On April 24, 1800, the 6th United States Congress passed an appropriations bill signed by President John Adams which created the Library of Congress.This law was to serve a "further provision for the removal and accommodation of the Government of the United States." The fifth section of the act specifically created the Library of Congress and designated some of its early capabilities. The act provided for "the acquisition of books for congressional use, a suitable place in the Capitol in which to house them, a joint committee to make rules for their selection, acquisition, and circulation," as well as an appropriation of $5,000 for the new library.
The Sixth United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, consisting of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met at Congress Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and in Washington, D.C. from March 4, 1799, to March 4, 1801, during the last two years of John Adams's presidency. It was the last Congress of the 18th century and the first to convene in the 19th. The apportionment of seats in House of Representatives was based on the First Census of the United States in 1790. Both chambers had a Federalist majority. This was the last Congress in which the Federalist Party controlled the presidency or either chamber of Congress.
John Adams was an American statesman, attorney, diplomat, writer, and Founding Father who served as the second president of the United States from 1797 to 1801. Before his presidency he was a leader of the American Revolution that achieved independence from Great Britain, and also served as the first vice president of the United States. Adams was a dedicated diarist and regularly corresponded with many important figures in early American history including his wife and adviser, Abigail, and his letters and other papers are an important source of historical information about the era.
In 1802, two years after the creation of the Library, President Thomas Jefferson approved a Congressional Act that created the Office of the Librarian and granted the President power of appointment over the new office. [ citation needed ] This same law gave the Librarian the sole power for making the institution's rules and appointing the Library's staff.Shortly thereafter, Jefferson appointed his former campaign manager John J. Beckley to serve as the first Librarian of Congress. It was not until 1897 that Congress was given the power to confirm the President's nominee.
Thomas Jefferson was an American statesman, diplomat, lawyer, architect, and Founding Father who served as the third president of the United States from 1801 to 1809. Previously, he had served as the second vice president of the United States from 1797 to 1801. The principal author of the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson was a proponent of democracy, republicanism, and individual rights motivating American colonists to break from the Kingdom of Great Britain and form a new nation; he produced formative documents and decisions at both the state and national level.
John James Beckley was an American political campaign manager and the first Librarian of the United States Congress, from 1802 to 1807. He is credited with being the first political campaign manager in the United States and for setting the standards for the First Party System.
From its creation until 2015, the post of the Librarian was not subject to term limits and allowed incumbents to maintain a lifetime appointment once confirmed.Most Librarians of Congress have served until death or retirement. There were only 13 Librarians of Congress in the more than two centuries from 1802 to 2015, and the Library "enjoyed a continuity of atmosphere and of policy that is rare in national institutions." In 2015, Congress passed and President Barack Obama signed into law the "Librarian of Congress Succession Modernization Act of 2015" which put a 10-year term limit on the position with an option for reappointment. The legislation was seen as a critique of Librarian James H. Billington's unwillingness to hire a permanent Chief Information Officer to effectively manage and update the Library's Information Technology.
Barack Hussein Obama II is an American attorney and politician who served as the 44th president of the United States from 2009 to 2017. A member of the Democratic Party, he was the first African American to be elected to the presidency. He previously served as a U.S. senator from Illinois from 2005 to 2008.
James Hadley Billington was a leading American academic and author who taught history at Harvard and Princeton before serving for 42 years as CEO of four federal cultural institutions. He served as the 13th Librarian of Congress after being nominated by President Ronald Reagan in 1987, and his appointment was approved unanimously by the U.S. Senate. He retired as Librarian on September 30, 2015.
There are no laws or regulations delineating qualifications for the office holder.The position of Librarian of Congress has been held by candidates of different backgrounds, interests, and talents, throughout its history. Politicians, businessmen, authors, poets, lawyers, and one professional librarian have served as the Librarian of Congress. However, at various times there have been proposals for requirements for the position. In 1945, Carl Vitz, then president of the American Library Association, wrote a letter to the President of the United States regarding the position of Librarian of Congress, which had recently become vacant. Vitz felt it necessary to recommend potential librarians. Vitz stated the position "requires a top-flight administrator, a statesman-like leader in the world of knowledge, and an expert in bringing together the materials of scholarship and organizing them for use—in short, a distinguished librarian." In 1989, Congressman Major Owens (D–NY) introduced a bill to set stricter requirements for who may be appointed. He argued appointed Librarians need to have specialized training; the bill did not become law.
A librarian is a person who works professionally in a library, providing access to information and sometimes social or technical programming to users. In addition, librarians provide instruction on information literacy.
Carl Peter Paul Vitz was an American librarian and author. He received a certificate from Western Reserve University Library School, a degree from Adelbert College and a bachelor's degree in library science from New York State Library School at New York State Normal College. He served as a library director for the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library (1922–1937), the Minneapolis Public Library (1937–1945) and the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County (1946–1955). He served as the president of the American Library Association from 1945–1946. During that time, Vitz wrote a letter to the President of the United States on behalf of the profession, addressing potential candidates for the vacant position of Librarian of Congress. In the letter, Vitz suggested that the position "requires a top-flight administrator, a statesman-like leader in the world of knowledge, and an expert in bringing together the materials of scholarship and organizing them for use—in short, a distinguished librarian". Over the course of his career, Vitz planned or consulted on more than sixty library projects involving construction, site selection and remodeling.
The American Library Association (ALA) is a nonprofit organization based in the United States that promotes libraries and library education internationally. It is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with more than 57,000 members.
|No.||Photo||Librarian||Years in Office||Appointed by|
|1||John J. Beckley||1802–1807||Thomas Jefferson|
|2||Patrick Magruder||1807–1815||Thomas Jefferson|
|3||George Watterston||1815–1829||James Madison|
|4||John Silva Meehan||1829–1861||Andrew Jackson|
|5||John Gould Stephenson||1861–1864||Abraham Lincoln|
|6||Ainsworth Rand Spofford||1864–1897||Abraham Lincoln|
|7||John Russell Young||1897–1899||William McKinley|
|8||Herbert Putnam||1899–1939||William McKinley|
|9||Archibald MacLeish||1939–1944||Franklin D. Roosevelt|
|10||Luther H. Evans||1945–1953||Harry S. Truman|
|11||Lawrence Quincy Mumford||1954–1974||Dwight D. Eisenhower|
|12||Daniel J. Boorstin||1975–1987||Gerald Ford|
|13||James H. Billington||1987–2015||Ronald Reagan|
|-||David S. Mao (Acting)||2015–2016||Barack Obama|
|14||Carla Hayden||2016–||Barack Obama|
The Congressional Research Service (CRS), known as Congress's think tank, is a public policy research arm of the United States Congress. As a legislative branch agency within the Library of Congress, CRS works primarily and directly for Members of Congress, their Committees and staff on a confidential, nonpartisan basis.
In the United States, a recess appointment is an appointment by the President of a federal official when the U.S. Senate is in recess. Under the U.S. Constitution's Appointments Clause, the president is empowered to nominate, and with the advice and consent (confirmation) of the United States Senate, make appointments to high-level policy-making positions in federal departments, agencies, boards, and commissions. A recess appointment under Article II, Section 2, Clause 3 of the Constitution is an alternative method of appointing officials that allows the filling of vacancies to maintain the continuity of administrative government through the temporary filling of offices during periods when the Senate is not in session.
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John Gould Stephenson was an American physician and soldier. He was the fifth Librarian of the United States Congress from 1861 to 1864. He was referred to as the "librarian of the Civil War era" because Stephenson's tenure of librarianship covered almost the entire length of the war.
The Fifty-first United States Congress, referred to by some critics as the Billion Dollar Congress, was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, consisting of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met in Washington, D.C., from March 4, 1889, to March 4, 1891, during the first two years of the administration of U.S. President Benjamin Harrison.
The National Film Preservation Act is the name of several federal laws relating to the identification, acquisition, storage, and dissemination of "films that are culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."
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The Copyright Act of 1976 is a United States copyright law and remains the primary basis of copyright law in the United States, as amended by several later enacted copyright provisions. The Act spells out the basic rights of copyright holders, codified the doctrine of "fair use," and for most new copyrights adopted a unitary term based on the date of the author's death rather than the prior scheme of fixed initial and renewal terms. It became Public Law number 94-553 on October 19, 1976 and went into effect on January 1, 1978.
The Register of Copyrights is the director of the United States Copyright Office within the Library of Congress, as provided by 17 U.S.C. § 701. The Office has been headed by a Register since 1897. The Register is appointed by, and responsible to, the Librarian of Congress.
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