Pritzker Military Museum & Library

Move from cataloging to curating for your users

Photo of people in Pritzker Military Museum & Library
Photo courtesy of Pritzker Military Museum & Library

"The savings for us have mostly been time savings. We've moved from cataloging to curating. Our focus has moved more to our patrons and guests."

Theresa Embrey
Chief Librarian, Pritzker Military Museum & Library

Pritzker Military Museum & Library began its transition to a new library management system at the same time it expanded its purpose and migrated all its content to a new website. "We wanted to, if at all possible, make the most of those transitions," explained Chief Librarian Theresa Embrey. "This was a major opportunity for us."

The transition from a library to a museum and library opened the staff up to focusing more on guests. The shift to WorldShare® Management Services gave them the extra time they needed to support additional user services. For example, library staff members saved significant time managing their interlibrary loans. "Having a system that is easy and moves between the catalog and WorldShare [Interlibrary Loan], that was huge for us," Theresa added.

"Because of the time we're saving with WorldShare Management Services, we're spending more time doing tours. We used to do a book club quarterly, but we're now doing it monthly. And we joined Wikipedia as a GLAM institution."

"We now have time to do more public-friendly activities," Theresa said. The Museum & Library contributes to Wikipedia with a group of galleries, libraries and museums (GLAM). "For the rare books, like Regulations for the Order [and Discipline] of the Troops, we're embedding our webpages into the Wikipedia catalog as references," Theresa explained. "We're putting VIAF® [Virtual International Authority File] numbers into Wikipedia and helping to build those connections between Wikipedia and WorldCat®."

To enhance their new website, a developer at Pritzker Military Museum & Library used the WorldCat API to gather data for the content management system. Each page on the site pulls metadata from the Library of Congress and FAST subject headings that are already embedded in the WorldCat records. Items searched for on the site appear as individual webpages that link to the WorldCat record. "It's very visual," Theresa explained. "People can get photos from our site, and it allows us to do more of that curation."

Theresa added, "We chose WorldShare Management Services because we thought about how best to support our users in the future. We looked at where the opportunities were, and we love having so much more time for customer service."

Services used by Pritzker Military Museum & Library

WorldShare Management Services

WorldShare Interlibrary Loan


Map showing location of Pritzker Military Museum & Library

Library at a glance

  • Maintains a collection of military history and military fiction materials with a focus on the Citizen Soldier
  • More than 50,000 books in the collection in 33 different languages, including more than 3,000 rare books
  • Collection includes a variety of items from diverse eras, including rare books, photographs, a Revolutionary War soldier's diary and a US flag from 1898

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