Music, Fighting Spirit and Winning the Civil War

how an illinois music store helped win the civil war

Christian McWhirter, research historian at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, presents of fascinating program about the Chicago-based music publishing firm of Root & Cady.

During the American Civil War, the company rose quickly to become the most successful and influential in the nation, providing the Union with some of its most popular and meaningful patriotic anthems, such as “The Battle Cry of Freedom” and “Just Before the Battle, Mother” during the American Civil War (1861-1865).

Christian McWhirter is the author of Battle Hymns: The Power and Popularity of Music in the Civil War (University of North Carolina Press, 2012).

The free, hour-long program is opened to all ages.

Planning for college?

college planning

This workshop is for those persons who are  planning to attend a college or for those persons who know someone college bound.

Ryan Biniak and Ray Kozicki of the Foundation for Financial Education will discuss:

  • The MYTH of financial aid
  • Sources of money
  • Need-based vs. non need-based
  • College funding vs. financial aid
  • Advice
  • The reward

The free workshop is part of Money Smart Week.  No registration is needed but seating is limited.  The library information desk can be reached by phone  309-524-2470.

Robert Frost, Poetry and The Road Not Taken

Robert Frost in 1941Today is Robert Frost’s 145th birthday.

Regarded as one of greatest poets of the 20th century and winner of numerous awards, honors and accolades; including a Congressional Gold Medal, 4 Pulitzer Prizes and 31(!) nominations for the Nobel Prize for Literature, Robert Frost is a towering figure in literature and was (and is) the face of American poetry for many people. And yet…

When was the last time you read some of his poetry? Any poetry really?

Uh-huh. I thought so. With few exceptions, most of us don’t really do poetry. Even though those devoted to it go on and on about how beautiful, how powerful it can be, how it can convey a message much deeper than you’d think at first glance, most of us are just not into it. For us, poetry is the road not taken.

Of course we aren’t going down that road. It’s weird, with all the flowery language, symbolism, strange imagery, rhythms and meters, verses and lines. Plus, a lot of it doesn’t even rhyme!

… But…

I’ve heard readers and non-readers have very similar discussions about books… and when a reader is told by a non-reader that they don’t like books because they are too slow or because they are hard to follow or they are too wordy, the reader normally responds with something along the lines of, “Well, you just haven’t found the right book yet.”

Maybe we, those of us that don’t do poetry, are right and poetry is just too weird or too much effort, or maybe we just haven’t found the right poet yet.

In honor of Mr. Frost, this evening or later this week when you have a moment, why not stop by the library and browse the poetry section (2nd floor, non-fiction, call number 811) and take the path most of us have been avoiding. It could make all the difference.


String Quartet

The Marian Anderson String Quartet  (MASQ) creates new and diverse audiences for string quartet concerts.

In 1991, MASQ won the International Cleveland Quartet Competition, becoming the first African American ensemble in history to win this classical music competition. To highlight their achievement, MASQ  asked the renowned contralto, Marian Anderson, for permission to use her name as their own. Miss Anderson responded with heartfelt approval.

In 1993, the Marian Anderson String Quartet performed at Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center as part of the 52nd presidential inaugural celebration.  MASQ has given performances at the Da Camera Society, the San Luis Obispo Mozart Festival and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.

For more about MASQ, visit

Marian Anderson String Quartet made possible with support from Chamber Music America through its Residency Endowment Fund.

Thinking about retiring?

retirement program

Ryan Biniak and Ray Kozicki of the Foundation for Financial Education will conduct of a retirement planning seminar which will include:

  • How not to outlive your money
  • How taxes and inflation impact retirement
  • Exit strategies
  • Stretch IRAs
  • Long-term care considerations

The hour program is free and open to anyone. No registration is required but seating is limited.  The library information desk can be reached by phone 309-524-2470.

Prep for Intelligent Conversations at the library! A PATH APPEARS Book Discussion with Regina Haddock

a path appears

In preparation for WVIK’s Intelligent Conversations event featuring author Nicholas Kristof, Dress for Success Quad Cities Director, Regina Haddock, will facilitate a book discussion of Kristof’s book, A Path Appears:  Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity.

In addition to print and audio copies of the book being available from PrairieCat libraries, Moline Public Library patrons can check out an e copy of this title via Overdrive and access a corresponding e video via Hoopla!

Space is limited and registration is required.