Posted by: Burlington Public Library (WA) | December 10, 2010

Happy Birthday, Melvil Dewey!

Who is Melvil Dewey? He was an American librarian and educator, and the inventor of the Dewey Decimal System of library classification—that (sometimes confusing) system that libraries use to classify their non-fiction collections.

In an attempt to demystify Dewey, we’ve created a display of non-fiction titles. There’s a bookmark in each book that tells you the “Dewey” section where you can find more books on the same subject.

Melvil Dewey was also a champion of spelling reform and a supporter of the metric system of measurement. Plus, he was a bit of a rebel. In 1887 he opened the world’s first library school, and against the opposition of many faculty members and most of the university board members, he included seventeen women in the first class of twenty students.

Here’s a link to a fun website all about Melvil and his system.


Melvil Dewey: December 10, 1851 - December 26, 1931


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