It is inevitable that in starting a library there should be some mistakes made; but with a trained librarian in charge, these mistakes will be fewer in number. For example, what does the novice know of classification? He realizes that the books, for convenience in use, must be grouped in classes. If he has had the use of a good library (as a college student would) he has some idea as to how the class divisions are made, and knows also that there must be some sort of notation for the classes. Necessity being the mother of invention, he contrives some plan for bringing together books on the same subject. But with the addition of books to the library and the demand which growth makes, he finds that constant changes have to be made in order to get books into their right places; and then some day he awakens to the fact that there is some perfectly well-known and adopted system of classification which will answer all his purposes, and be a great deal more satisfactory in its adaptability to the needs of his library than the one he has been struggling to evolve. Then he exclaims in despair: If I had only known of that at the beginning! He feels that the hours which he has spent in rearranging his books, taking them out of one class and putting them into another, although hours of such hard work, are in reality so many hours of wasted time. And he is right; for every minute spent in unnecessary work is so much lost time. Not only that, but it is unnecessary expense, and one of the most important things which a small library has to consider is economy.
Is it not of value to the library that its librarian should know how best to expend the money given him to use? that he should not have to regret hours of time lost over useless experiments? Surely if training teaches a librarian a wise expenditure of money and an economy of time, then training must be valuable.
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