Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Book Review: Holy Ground, Healing Water

By Dwight Hunter

Perhaps, this is a book too old for a review as it was published in 2010. However, the appealing thing about non-fiction books in electronic format within the library catalog is that if you stumble across an intriguing one, review it.

Well, this was certainly an intriguing one.

Holy Ground, Healing Water: Cultural Landscapes at Waconda Lake, Kansas was written by a cultural anthropologist, Donald Blakeslee. I was going to do what I normally do with non-fiction books: skim around and read the good parts. I ended up reading most of the book. The book appeals to learning about Native American history, Western expansion, economics, and spiritualism.

To be honest, I chose this book because of the subtitle: cultural landscapes at Waconda Lake, Kansas. I grew up knowing about Waconda Lake. My grandmother's house was just a few miles from the lake's shores. I remember being incredibly sad as a 10-year old boy upon first learning that a great spring, Waconda Spring, was buried by the waters of the new, man-made Waconda Lake.

It was this sadness, that curiosity of what was, that attracted me to this book subtitle. But I learned so much more; this book wasn't just about Waconda Spring and the lake bearing its name. The book was about the clash of cultures, about spirituality versus economic gain, about the ignorance of cultural identities. A person with critical thinking skills could extrapolate so much from this 2010 historical anthropology book.

The early chapters explored the history of Native American trails, that they were really a series of short trails connected together, and the early explorers from the French, the Spaniards, the Americans and their cultural interactions with Native American tribes.  I was wondering why all of this information and then saw the connection. Despite the warfare among tribes and despite the historical changes in culture, one thing remained constant: water flowing out of a cone-shaped rock 30 feet tall, and 30 feet in diameter, was so revered, so sacred, that no one tribe dared to fight near it.

It was called Kitzawitzuk and anglicized to Waconda. For the Native Americans, the cone-shaped spring was holy ground. By the 1950s, a great need for flood control was required. Floods had damaged property and towns downstream. Waconda Lake was created.

I recommend this book, if nothing else, to learn about a lost culture and the importance in remembering.

Friday, May 26, 2017

We're Hiring!

 State Community College Library is looking for a reference/instruction librarian. ​Preference will be given to someone with a background or experience with Nursing/Allied Health databases and resources. For more information and to apply, visit:

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Memorial Day, May 29, 2017

In observance of Memorial Day, the Kolwyck Library will be closed Saturday - Monday, May 27 - 29. 

Locally in Chattanooga, the annual Memorial Day Service at the Chattanooga National Cemetery will be on Monday, May 29, with the program beginning at 11 a.m. The guest speaker will be Phil Sumrall, Chaplin, American Legion Post 95, CMDR, USN (R).

Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the last Monday of May.  Formerly known as Decoration Day, it commemorates U.S. service members who died while in the military service.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Happy Retirement, Sandra!

Sandra Williford, KLIC's Nursing & Allied Health library liaison, worked her last day yesterday, May 16, at Chattanooga State. Sandra began as a library liaison for the business division and then became the liaison for nursing & allied health. She served on many college committees and taught many library instruction classes over the past two decades.

We gave Sandra a great retirement celebration on April 27th. The theme of the celebration was Camp Williford with a camping photo booth.

Enjoy some of the pictures from the retirement celebration Facebook album. Also included below are links to past blog posts.

We will miss you, Sandra!

Blog Post Links:
Sandra Williford - The Stars at KLIC: Journey Story of our Staff

Not So Frequently Asked Questions with Sandra Williford!