Today, March 5, 1901 (Philippines):
Lieutenant General Arthur MacArthur, Jr.; the American Military Governor in the Philippines and father of the famous Gen Douglas MacArthur; formalized the acceptation of the American Circulating Library’s collection using the Philippine Commission through Act Number 96. Today is thus considered the birthday of both the National Library of the Philippines and the Philippine public library system.
Originally, the National Library was set up on, what is now known as, Quintin Paredes Street in Binondo. Something I found quite interesting was that this system also employed roving libraries to ensure customers from all over the islands had a chance to read a book.
Unfortunately, during the Battle (or Liberation) of Manila, mixed in with fires, bombs, and looters, Filipino history was lost forever. Prior to World War II, the national library contained over 730,000 texts and volumes, including some manuscripts by José Rizal and the original Philippine Declaration of Independence (dated June 12, 1898); however, at the end of the war, less than 37,000 remained. After the war, due to the generosity of the Spanish and United States governments, some of the rare artifacts that were lost were returned to the library.
As today marks the anniversary of this library system, everyone is encouraged to go to their local library and check out a book… as I love history, might I suggest starting there. Take a moment to learn something new while appreciating the long road and struggle your government has taken to grant you this opportunity.
Read more @ http://bit.ly/1q3C5N8