Tallinna Keskraamatukogu - Page 279

‹ 279 › Aleksander Sibul’s Time at Tallinn Central Library 1920s and 1930s Aleksander Sibul began developing the library. His intention was the creation of a European library that would raise people’s educational standard and make books available to everyone. Under his leadership (1921–1950) Tallinn Central Library became Estonia’s central library. From here other Estonian libraries were directed and training courses for librarians were organized. In close consultation with other important library figures (Fr. Puksoo, R. Antik and others) the decision was made to unite the libraries in order to achieve better results. And so the Estonian Librarians Association was established and Sibul served as its head for many years. Together they fought among other things for country librarians to be paid a salary, for until then in many places teachers or district official worked without pay. The ERÜ (Estonian Librarians Association) prompted the organization in county towns of national courses in librarianship. In the 1920s Sibul formed a library network from four libraries, started publishing the magazine “Raamatukogu” (Library), which still appears as the magazine of the National Library of Estonia. At the end of the 1920s “Tallinna Keskraamatukogu Teated” (Tallinn Central Library News) started appearing. From 1929 until 1940 32 issues were published comprising 800 pages. The magazine appeared 4–6 times a year and systematically listed the literature that had arrived in the library in the 2–3 previous months. In 1926 Sibul published “The Librarian’s Handbook”. In 1928 at his prompting a section for music literature was added to The Tallinn Central Library, in 1933 the children’s library. One of Sibul’s greatest achievements was the Archive which was established to commemorate Estonian Book year (to mark the 400th anniversary of the printing of the first Estonian book). At the beginning of the 1920s, after the library moved from Nunne 2 to Estonia pst. 8, A. H. Tammsaare began visiting the library again. There he met Aleksander Sibul. They had both gone to school together at H. Treffner Gymnasium in Tartu and now they renewed their acquaintance. When the lending of books was introduced in 1923, Tammsaare became a frequent visitor. On arriving at the library Tammsaare always stepped into Sibul’s room. They talked about literature, politics, life and the world. Aleksander Sibul became a trusted figure and conversation partner in the writer’s life and through his knowl VFvR&