American Library Association - Library History Round Table (ALA-LHRT)

Library History Seminar XII (2010)

Request for Proposals

The ALA-LHRT is issuing this Request for Proposals for an institutional host for Library History Seminar XII to take place in the year 2010.

History & Overview

The Library History Seminar (LHS) was established in 1961 and has become the most prestigious international conference dedicated to the study of the history of librarianship. LHS takes place every five years. The Library of Congress (2000) and major research libraries and schools of library and information studies, most recently at the University of Illinois’ Allerton Institute, have been LHS hosts.  The conference often attracts over 100 scholars from across the United States and abroad. Most of these conferences have been published as a special issue of the journal Libraries and Culture and also in monograph form.


The Selection Process

The LHRT Executive Board is charged with selecting a site in the same year that the LHS is held. This allows time for the host to gather funding, co-sponsors, and complete a proposal. In order to facilitate that decision the LHRT Ad Hoc Committee on Library History Seminar XII created this request for proposal document to guide potential hosts.  The LHRT Executive Board will make the final decision at the ALA Annual Board meeting in June 2006. Executive Board members will select a site primarily based on written proposals received by the deadline.

The host institution finances the Library History Seminar using grants, gifts, internal budget allocations and registration fees. Previous conferences featured a limited number of scholarships for graduate students. The ALA-LHRT might also provide a small grant. It is imperative that proposals include information on budgeting the conference, and potential sources of funding to make the seminar possible.

LHRT decided at the 2002 Annual and Midwinter meetings to select the institutional host on factors besides the conference theme, so this section is optional. The Ad Hoc Committee recommends that hosts select a theme, but emphasizes that this is an important scholarly forum that should provide ample opportunities for historical research presentations on other aspects of library history in its widest scope, and encourage diversity of speakers in terms of geography, ethnicity, gender and subject specialty while also maintaining LHS’s high standards for historical research.

Please send your proposal by 1 May 2006 in electronic form (as either MS Word attachment or as plain e-mail text) to Andrew Wertheimer at  The document should be 2 to 5 pages long. Dr. Wertheimer will then send the proposals to Executive Board members. Please e-mail any questions to Dr. Wertheimer at the above e-mail address or call 808/ 956-3494.

Information on past Library History Seminars is available in Edward Goedeken’s “The Library Historian’s Field of Dreams: A Profile of the First Nine Seminars,” in Library History Research in America, edited by Andrew B. Wertheimer and Donald G. Davis, Jr. (Washington, DC: Center for the Book, 2000), 161-172, which also appeared in Libraries and Culture 35 (Winter 2000): 161-172.

The application should include the following information:

Proposal to Host Library History Seminar XII

Committee Chair:






Committee Members:

Institutional Sponsor:


Potential Co-sponsors:

Planned number of days:

Proposed dates:

Conference Location:

[Please provide specific details, including whether the conference facility would be a private or public space. How many meeting rooms will be available for the LHS and specify fees. Please also briefly address transportation issues relating to the location (i.e., what is the closest major airport and how does one get to/from there and the conference location).]


Please specify what hotel/ dormitory facilities are available within walking range of the conference location.

Budget & Institutional Support

This section will understandably be somewhat tentative, but the committee wants to see that the host will be able to arrange clerical support to take care of publicity and handle reservations. Please also propose an estimated registration budget, including registration fees. This section should include major expenses, including scholarships, honoraria, fees, etc.

The committee also encourages the host to look for internal/ external grants to support the seminar. The host will be responsible for securing these grants. Grants make it possible to keep registration fees affordable, and bring graduate students and keynote speakers. Please list possible sources of grants or other income you might approach in order to finance the seminar. You are also encouraged to include an outline of your grant request from LHRT.

Proposed Conference Theme and Proposed Keynote Speaker(s) (Optional)

Number of Potential Concurrent Programs (Suggested)

Proposed Timeline: