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THE PUBLIC LIBRARY.

OFFICIAL OPENING OF TíEW ADDI-

TIONS.

PRESIDENT OF TRUSTEES HONOURED.

Itt what lias been designated the Hackett Hall, as a graceful tribute to the work of the president of the trustees of the Public Library, Museum, and Art Gallery, His Ex- cellency the Governor (Sir Harry Barron) on Monday afternoon declared open to the public the handsome additions to the Lib- rary buildings, of which a full description ap- peared in Monday's issue of the "West Aus- tralian." The function was a brilliant suc- cess from every standpoint. As au educa- tive force, no institution in this State ap- peals more strongly to the. student thirsting for. knowledge or to the general public than the Library, and the best evidence of their close interest in it was the big attendance at yesterday's function. The beautifully designed hall was crowded. The proceed- ings lasted euly an hour, but they mark still another, and easily the most important, ' epoch in the history of this institution. His

Excellency the Governor was accompanied by Captain Lindsell. A.D.C., and occupied a* seat on the right of the chairman, Sir Winthrop Hackett, who presided by virtue of his position as president of the trustees of the- Library, Museum, and Art Gallery. Among the other trustees present were no- ticed the Lieut.-Governor (Sir Edward Stone), thc Acting Chief Justice (Mr. Justice McMil- lan) Bishop Riley, the President of the Legislative Council (Mr. Henry Briggs), JJr. Harvey, and MessrB. King, Haynes, and Burrows, tile visitors also including the Min- ister for Education (Mr. T. Walker), Lady Hackett, the Mayor of Perth (Mr. J. H. Prowse) and Mrs. Prowse, the Director of Education (Mr. C. P.- Andrews), the Rabbi (Rev. D. I. Freedman), Canon Marshall, Very Rev. Father Vcrling, the Rev, Father Lynch,, the Revs. F. E. Harry, and W. Corly Butler, and other representatives of diffe- rent denominational Churches, Mr. Jas. gowan, P.M., the Government Architect (Mr.

ïlson. Beasley), who .was responsible for the designing of the new building; the Public Librarian (Mr. J. S. Battye), to whom all the successes alluded to by the different speakers are largely due ; the Director of the Museum and Art Gallery (Mr. Bernard Woodward), the secretary of the Young Men's Christian Association (Mr. A. S. Wil- son) and others prominent in the. higher edu- cational movement. The Premier (Mr.'

Scaddan) and the Colonial Secretary (Mr. j Drew) sent apologies for their absence owing j to prior engagements, others unavoidably ab-

sent" including Sir Watter James and Mr. : 0. G. Morris, two of the trustees.

PRESIDENT'S INTRODUCTORY ,

REMARKS.

The President of the Trustees {Sir Win- throp Hackett) iii the course of his address said a period of something like 24 years bad elapsed since the first public Library was opened in Western Australia, and it was, with a modest equipment of about 1,500 volumes that they had embarked upon that great work. That was a year before re _ eponsible Government was proclaimed in Western'Australia-evidence surely that even then the people had awakened to a sense of their responsibilities; that a new and living spirit was being breathed into their endeavours, and that they under- stood the vital importance of having a uni- versity-educated people. (Hear, hear.) lt was not inopportune to take a peep into the past on such an interesting occasion. When they moved from tho small building

-the old Western Australian Bank on St. George's-fcerrace-into the basement of the building adjoining, they had 16,000 volumes. Since then they had steadily gone forward, although not to rapidly, perhaps, as they would desire, until to-day they had 107,000 volumes, of which 10,500 belonged to the travelling libraries, the remaining. 96,500 occupying places in the reference library. He might say that the volumes in thc tra- velling libraries passed all over'the State. It was the main hall of the Reference Lib- rary in which they were assembled that day, and they had only to glance around to en dorae his sentiment, that it was a work of which the people might justly feel proud. (Applause.) This State possessed a popula- tion of something like only 300,000 people, and with that they could link the happy fact that over 162,000 people had visited the Library last year, which showed a fair increase compared with the figures for the previous year. (Hear, hear.) With, the Min- ister for Education present, in the unavoid- able absence of the Colonial Treasurer, it was an opportune occasion to talk in fig- ures, and to ask Mr. Walker to impress clearly in his mind what he (Sir Winthrop fackctt) was about to say. (Laughter.) The

ublic Library needed very urgently

More Money and Additional Books

-à niatter which was more important still when they boro in mind the establishment of the University. He wished briefly to bring

before the notice of the Minister for Educa- tion -the handicap under which they labour- ed in this State compared with those who controlled -kindred institutions in other parts of the Commonwealth. To meet the necessities of the Public Library in this State they received the paltry sum of £3,500 a year, which was wholly insufficient to maints in the Library in a state of even moderate efficiency. Let him cite thc grants which were paid to similar institutions. in other parts of- the Commonwealth. The Public Library, Museum, and Art Gallery

of South Australia-a smaller institution than that in this State-received £8,000, in addition to which it possessed the income from £77,000 worth of endowments. The Public Library of New South Wales-the Library only-received from Parliament the sum of £10,000, of which £2,000 was a spe- cial endowment for the purchase of books. In this. State they were almost at a stand- still for the purchase of books, due in a measure to the extra expense incurred in connection with the additions to their build- ings. The Public Library, Museum, and Na- tional Gallery of .Victoria received £22,000, of which £11,000 was for Library purposes alone. Here in this State they were

Literally Starving on £3,500.

He earnestly hoped that the Minister for Education would, in his utterances that day, . give thean , some promise of brighter, things

financially so far as the Library was con . cerned. He felt honoured to have the op

Sortunity that day to request his Excellency

ie Governor to open the hall and to pre- sent to him,, on behalf of the trustees, a key as a souvenir of the occasion. (Loud applause.}

HIS EXCELLENCY'S SPEECH.

- Bis Excellency said that nothing afforded him greater pleasure than to be able'; "in his small way, to help on the great work associated, with the Public Library. An occasion suchas that made one wonder <wbat people did with- themselves-bow they pass- ed their time and how they had been able to progress-before they learned even- to read or to write. They had in this State * Library of which they should . feel proud. The American Ambassador in

London bad stated recently that the world must be ruled by the-people who spoke the language cf Shakespeare. Ono could also cite the popularity of Dickons among Americans. When the three Dutch

meu-of-war vessels were in Tasmanian waters, the-Commodore and two of his cap- tains told him that they read nothing but English books, which was only further evi-

dence of

The Influence of English Literature.

The Library, he understood, v.-as establish- ed originally as a permanent memorial of thc late Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee, and he was glad to observe that Sir Win-

throp Hackett was one of the originators of. the movement, and was still supporting very actively the great work which had been commenced so many years ago.

THE HACKETT HALL.

I The building was then declared open to

the public, and the tablet unveiled. This bore tho following words:-"The Hackett Hall. This hall, «anted in honour of tbs president, the Hon. Sir Winthrop Hackett, K.C.M.G., M.A., LL.D., M.L.C., was opened by His Excellency Sir Harry Barron, K.C.M.G., C.V.O., on August 18, 1913."

The performance of tlr.6 ceremony was re- ceived with enthusiastic applause.

THE MINISTER FOR EDUCATION.

The Minister for Education (MT. Walker), in moving a vote of thanks to His Excel- lency, said he was surprised ag well as gratified and proud to behold that magnifi- cent hall. (Applause.) He wanted Sir Winthrop Hackett lo remember that even if the Library in this State did not receive the same munificent assistance as that re-

ceived by kindred institutions in New South Wales and in other parts of the Common- wealth, it certainly made better use of what was granted to it than did the libraries in other parts of Australia. (Applause.) They were told by Sir Winthrop Hackett that the establishment, of the Public Library of this State commenced practically simul- taneously with thc inauguration of respon- sible Government. In those distant days tney were in hired lodgings, if he might use that expression, with only a limited num- ber of books, and even then books not per- haps of the most expensive kind. It seem- ed a far cry back to that time, but it was as a mere yesterday. In the. short space of time intervening they v had got this present magnificent edifice, in which, owing to the skill and genius of their local architects, they were now able to display their books to the best possible advantage. He could promise Sir Winthrop Hackett in a general way that Be would help him to «he utmost of his ability. But could they do it with permission of Parliament and tho public; could they keep pace with the eea? and enthusiasm of Sir Winthrop Hackett? (Laughter.) He sincerely believed that if they gave Sir Winthrop Hackett his way, they would have palaces adorning the City of Perth at every corner ; he Trould be

A Veritable Augustus,

transforming a city of clay and brick into one of marble. (Laughter.) But let the people be really grateful that Sir Winthrop Hackett and his colleagues on the Library had done so much in connection with it.

(Hear, hear.) The ceremony that day would,v he was sure, be one of the proudest in the recollection of His Excellency the Governor, for was it not a standing monument to the State's intelligence and activity and to the people's love of knowledge and of human advancement ? (Loud applause.)

BISHOP RILEY'S SUGGESTION.

In seconding, on behalf of the trustees, the vote of thanks to His Excellency, Bishop Riley said it was because they appreciated the work of Sir Winthrop Hackett that the trustees bad decided to name the main hall after that gentleman, who was most en- thusiastically interested in thc Library, and who, incidentally, had been one of their best and most generous contributors to the Museum. (Hear, hear.) The trustees thought that in naming, the hall after Sir Winthrop, as a recognition of his services, they would be encouraging others to throw

into such work the same zeal and enthusiasm

as their president had done. He could only say that if the Minister for Education was only as eloquent in Cabinet as he had been that afternoon, some good ought to result from his remarks. (Laughter.) They wanted an extra £500 this year for new books, for which these were many vacant spaces on the shelves. If Mr. Walker would .only use his eloquence on the Colonial Treasurer as he had used it on them that afternoon, be ought to have no difficulty in getting that eura. (Laughter.) They now-had a children's de- partment of thc Library, with the result that those who wanted to study an the Li- brary would be able to do so in peace. (Laughter.) His Excellency had made a sug festion in behalf of. the back blocks, but he

ad* better tell the people when he was moving through the country, that if they had no libraries it was their own fault, be- cause they sent out

Travelling Libraries to the Back Blocks.

They sent volumes as far away as Wyndham and Leonora, and if people did not get these facilities it was their own fault if they did not ask for them. Personally, he was not satisfied to have merely this fine State Refe- rence Library.

Thc vote of thanks to His Excellency was carried to the accompaniment cf enthusias- tic applause, Sir Winthrop Hackett taking the opportunity to introduce the Government Architect to His Excellency, who congratu- lated that gentleman upon the architecture of the new building. The building was then thrown open to inspection. It is pleasing to note that in the construction of the new building local manufacturers were not over- looked. The whole of the handsomely stamped metal linings, the ornamental friezes, the cornice mouldings, the massive brackets supporting the galleries, and other incidental effects were manufactured in Perth and fixed in position by the Wunder- lich Company, who are to be congratulated' upon such, en artistic achievement.

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