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Dec 02

From Nashville to the Kensington Stone: A Look Back at EGF History by Andrea Lorenz

Posted to Campbell Unclassified on December 2, 2022 at 10:37 AM by Genesis Gaule

Did you know that East Grand Forks was originally known as Nashville? It was named this after William C. Nash, fur trader and government mail carrier between Abercrombie and Pembina, in 1874. Nash was born in Pennsylvania, but came to the area in 1863. He built the first house (of a White man) at the fork of the Red and Red Lake Rivers, waiting for the flood of settlers he was sure was coming to buy land.* 

Before this, the land was inhabited by the Ojibwe people, who freely ranged across the areas that would become Manitoba, Minnesota, and North Dakota. In October of 1863, they signed the Treaty of Old Crossing under duress, ceding 11 million acres of Ojibwe domain to the United States Government.

Drawn map of Red River Valley (Lisbon, ND to Roseau, MN) featuring Old Crossing Treaty boundaries

Before the Ojibwe were established, there’s disputed evidence that a group of Norsemen visited the area in 1362. Three miles from Kensington, MN, Farmer Olaf Ohman and his two young sons found a nearly 200 pound stone inscribed with what appeared to be runic characters stating:

“8 Goths and 22 Norwegians on a journey of discovery from Vinland westward. We had a camp by 2 rocky islets one day’s journey north from this stone. We were out fishing one day. When we returned home we found 10 men red with blood and dead. AVM save us from evil. Have 10 men by the sea to look after our vessel 14 days’ journey from this island. Year 1362.” 

A photograph of the Kensington Stone

Supposedly at the command of Magnus Erickson, ruler of Norway and Sweden, a band of Vikings traveled across Hudson’s Bay, up the Nelson River, across Lake Winnipeg and then entering the Red River of the North until navigation became impractical (around where East Grand Forks now sits). After a march overland, 10 of the party were killed; the survivors then carved the stone, buried it and moved on to parts unknown.**

* The name was officially changed to East Grand Forks in 1883.

** Modern scholars believe the Kensington Stone to be a forgery, likely carved by immigrant farmers with expertise in stone cutting and the runic alphabet – a hoax created for entertainment during the long Minnesota winters.


Oct 21

Community Fall Fun & Safety by Robyn Benda

Posted to Campbell Unclassified on October 21, 2022 at 12:58 PM by Genesis Gaule

It’s that time of year, driving home I can see all the Halloween decorations in the front yards. Leaves blowing across the street and soon we will see kids running around in costumes on Halloween night. As a parent, I get excited and fearful for this event. Seeing my children helping each other getting ready with their costumes, make-up and then out the door for treat or treating. The joy of this annual family tradition, yet the worry of the surroundings, watching running excited children for candy, crossing streets without looking and cars in the dark. How do we keep this yearly tradition safe?

safe kids logoSafe Kids Grand Forks is an organization that brings together the expertise of individuals in our community and region who are committed to reducing childhood injuries. Safe Kids has Halloween safety tips and some great resources to help parents and kids reduce risk of injuries. For instance, did you know that carrying glow sticks or flashlights can help your trick or treating experience better, along with letting drivers see your little ones on the street. Some of these resources can help give you some simple creative and safe costume ideas. And good reminders, drive extra safe on Halloween night and to be sure your little trick or treaters are safely buckled when traveling. Find more tips on their website!

If that wasn’t enough, Safe kids has generously been handing out reflective strips for parents and kids. You can pick up a reflective strip and see Safe Kids Grand Forks display here at the East Grand Forks Campbell Library or call Safe Kids Grand Forks 701-780-1489 for more information.

The community has done a great job offering indoor or parking lot events. These are a great fun, safe alternative to “Door” trick or treating. The East Grand Forks Campbell Library will be handing out candy, giveaways, and library information at these two upcoming events:

Halloween Skate & Treat

Tuesday, October 25, 2022
5:00pm - 7:30pm
VFW Arena - East Grand Forks, MN

Entry is $7 and is presented by East Grand Forks Park & Recreation with all proceeds going to the EGF Food Shelf and Northern Lights Figure Skate Club. Wear your costume and bring your skates, as the arena will have concessions, contests, games and skating. Trick or treating will be handed out by our local businesses. Don’t have skates? No problem, skating rentals will be available when you pre-register for the event. You can pre-register and pay online or pay at the door. To can find out more details online or call 218-773-8000.

Haunted Heritage Village

Saturday, October 29, 2022
11:00am - 2:00 pm
Heritage Village - East Grand Forks, MN

Another great event to mark your calendar for is the Annual Haunted Heritage Village. This event is generally steered towards children pre-K to grade 3 but this is a family event, all are welcome. Activities include games, crafts, Dakota Science Center providing experiments, trick or treating, and concessions. This is a free event, but will be collecting canned goods and monetary donations for the local food cupboard.

We can’t wait to see all the creative Halloween costumes this week! Have a safe and fun Halloween!

Oct 07

Getting to Know You by Linnea Benton

Posted to Campbell Unclassified on October 7, 2022 at 3:47 PM by Genesis Gaule

Getting to Know You, Getting to Know All About You!

I can’t help it. I adore musicals. But I promise to not ACTUALLY serenade you. 

If you are new here, don’t worry. I’m still fairly new too. Approaching my one year anniversary with the East Grand Forks Campbell Library, in fact!  Has it really been that long?? So, as I look out at the coloring leaves, enjoying my pumpkin spice everything, my thoughts wander back over the past eleven months. 

Hands holding mug with marshmallows surrounded by small pumpkins, cinnamon, and fall leaves

We arrived at the tail end of October, 2021, from Okinawa, Japan, where I was the Technical Services Librarian for MCCS Okinawa, managing the collections of eleven Marine Corps libraries and reading rooms across Okinawa, mainland Japan, and in Korea. Every one of them unique, and serving different populations with varying interests and needs. Getting to know their collections and the populations they served was immensely interesting, and vital to successfully performing my duties. So, since becoming one of your librarians, I have made it a priority to get to know the library, the collection, and the community we serve.

For instance, did you know our library contains approximately 36,000 books, 4.3 per capita – far exceeding the national (2.2) and state (2.4) averages! 

storytime newsflashFamilies and children make up a significant portion of our service, with children’s materials consistently reaching 60% of our monthly circulation. We have already gone from one weekly story-time restarted last February, to two! If you have young children, please join our fabulous Ms. Andrea on Mondays and Thursdays at 10am! We are also working to make the virtual story-times she recorded during the pandemic available on our Niche Academy platform. All you need is your library card number!

Adults--clearly, many of you love your whodunits! Mysteries typically make up a whopping 28% of our adult fiction circulation!

And everyone love a NEW book, right? Approximately 25% of our NEW titles are checked out at any given time! To see what’s NEW in the library, you can check out our website's New Arrivals page, updated every two weeks.

We also have NON-book materials:

  • Check out any of over 100 pieces of artwork available to borrow.
  • Go exploring with one of our free Minnesota State Park Passes, a new program launched this past summer.
  • Try new recipe with our Library of Things! This collection will be growing to include other skill-building materials – check back regularly.
  • And for all our gamers out there, our nascent videogame collection has reached 24 titles, and already consistently accounts for over 20% of our audio-visual circulation. Watch for new titles, coming soon!

Meet Libby - your one tap reading app from your library Or check out our growing electronic collection via OverDrive and Libby! Download the Libby app to read or listen to books on your phone, tablet, or other electronic device. I regularly listen to books of Libby while driving or doing chores at home. We have over 2000 e-books and 450 e-audiobooks available, with new titles added every month.

Fuel Your Career: Petersons Test Career PrepI have also started identifying some needs in our collection. For example, when I first started we had very few current computer books. After six months of adding new titles, our circulation rate for this area has increased from 3% of monthly nonfiction circulation to 7%. We have also added online databases for areas with high annual turnover – car repair and maintenance with Chilton Library Online and school and career building with Peterson’s Test and Career Prep. Login with your library barcode to access these great resources.

What if we don’t have something? Just ask our staff to enter a request for you…we may be able to purchase it, or borrow it from another library (Inter-Library Loan, or ILL). We have completed over 200 requests so far this year!

I look forward to a new year with the East Grand Forks Campbell Library. There is so much here I haven’t even mentioned! I hope you’ll come in and get to know us, too!