[Libs-Or] Choosing a free online library catalog

Barbara Fischer fish763 at hotmail.com
Fri Mar 8 12:17:01 PST 2019

Hi Jennifer (Emporia, co-hort),

I work at a small rural public library, and our library uses Koha. Koha is a great ILS system, that is solid and has good tools for staff. And the OPAC for patrons is complete and simplified for their use.

Have a good weekend,

Barbara Fischer
Waldport Public Library

From: Libs-Or <libs-or-bounces at listsmart.osl.state.or.us> on behalf of Diedre Conkling <diedre08 at gmail.com>
Sent: Thursday, March 7, 2019 12:55 PM
To: libs-or
Subject: Re: [Libs-Or] Choosing a free online library catalog

Koha is free,
https://koha-community.org/. I’m saying this knowing that it might be more difficult to setup than something like Librarything. If you’re up for it setting up Koha would give you a full and robust ILS.

On Thu, Mar 7, 2019 at 12:30 PM Jennifer Belle <jbelle at g.emporia.edu<mailto:jbelle at g.emporia.edu>> wrote:
Hello Library Community,

My name is Jennifer Belle and I am currently volunteering with an organization called the B-17 Alliance. It is located at McNary Field in Salem. The primary purpose of the organization is to fully restore a WWII era B-17 bomber called the Lacey Lady. It was purchase by a local named Art Lacey in 1947 and affixed above a gas station in Milwaukie, OR. The station passed on from Art to his daughter Punky Scott, and is now owned by her son Jayson Scott. The organization is directed by his wife Terry Scott.

For an interesting background story, here are two links to read more:

The B-17 Alliance Foundation consists of the restoration, museum, and library collection. The organization is based entirely on volunteer and community support, with no paid positions. Most volunteers are military veterans and most involved are over the age of 65. They all have amazing stories to share and the alliance is dedicated to video-recording as many stories as possible.

So, my contribution to the organization is assisting in the library. There are approximately 3500 library materials. They are primarily published books, but there are archival materials, DVD's, navigation, maintenance, magazines and serials, and the alliance collection of recorded stories. The person who previously put the library together and managed it was an ex-library director. She has since fallen ill and is now in an assist living facility. I received my Master in Library and Info Science nine months ago with a focus in Archival Studies. I volunteered to work at this facility to keep active in an archival setting and because my husband's family has a military aviation background. I knew they were looking for able volunteers and I believe the work they do is an important preservation and educational contribution.

The library collection catalog is currently constructed and stored in Excel spreadsheets and the content is in the process of being updated. The Alliance website, http://www.b17alliance.com/, is currently also being professionally updated with an emphasis on 'branding' to expand marketing and fundraising efforts. There is also an active Facebook page, where the B-17 Alliance currently has 10,077 likes and 9,968 followers. The goal for the library collection is to encourage public access and research use. We also wish to make the catalog searchable, shareable, and are striving to connect the catalog to the renovated website when finished shortly. The library collection and materials are not intended to be used outside the facility, so we have no need of circulation software, only a cataloging platform.

I have a few idea I am considering and, so, the purpose of the post is to invite the library community to share suggestions, experiences, and recommendations for online/cloud-based catalog programs. Here are the options I am currently aware of:
Seems to be most popular, but feels more like an informal library sharing and review site that may not be a fit for the specialized nature of our collection; only $25 for a lifetime membership for unlimited items is a bonus

Seems more geared towards small professional collections. The free service allows up to 5000 items, which fits our library. The pro option increases the items allowed to 100,000 and expands service functions to allow circulation features, which we currently don't need, for $99 per yr, plus a 25% nonprofit discount. The pro does include custom branding which is important to our org's image.

This service is an Integrated Library System, designed for professional libraries. It offers four package sizes, with a basic that is free, but only 2000 items, and the next size is 10,000 items and becomes ad-free, for a yearly cost of $139.

I would love and appreciate your input if you have time to respond. Thank you in advanced for taking the time.


Jennifer Belle

PS. If you know of anyone who would be interested in learning more about the B-17 Alliance, or wants to get involved, feel free to visit our website, Facebook, call, email, or stop by for a fun tour. The docents are very knowledgeable and passionate about their stories. We are especially trying to increase school field trips and have provided tours to school groups of all ages, as young as Pre-K, with great success. The Alliance is focus on sharing history and "Honoring the American Spirit".
Diedre Conkling
diedre08 at gmail.com<mailto:diedre08 at gmail.com>

“If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.”―Maya Angelou
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