EXCEPT in two instances, the important recent appointments in public libraries have been by way of promotions of the principal assistants. In some of these cases the choice has been a good one, justified by the qualifications and experience of the candidate. There is something to be said for such advancements. A man who has been trained in a library can bring to its management a local experience of undeniable value. On the other hand, it is usually in library systems which have only a mediocre record that such appointments are made; and, unless the new men are quite exceptional, they bring no new ideas or methods to the service. A universal adoption of “ promotions from staff ” would soon mean universal stagnation. The practice should be advocated of throwing open appointments. The ratepayers are entitled to the services of the best available librarians; and library workers should not find avenues of progress definitely closed to them by home‐raised men. We look forward to the time when the promising librarian may hope to progress by graduated stages through assistantship to a small librarianship, then to a larger and finally to a really large office. Such is the ideal way.
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