November issue of American Libraries features “Great American Public Libraries” rankings

Contact: George Eberthart

(312) 280-4212

ALA News Release

For Immediate Release

November 2, 2000

November issue of
American Libraries features “Great American Public Libraries” rankings

American Libraries will publish another round of public library rankings, “Great American Public Libraries: HAPLR Ratings, 2000” by Thomas J. Hennen Jr., based on the latest data from the Federal-State Cooperative System (FSCS).

Ten libraries topping the list of 100 great American libraries are:

  • Denver Public Library
  • Santa Clara County Free Library, San Jose, Calif.
  • Naperville (Ill.) Public Libraries
  • Lower Merion Library System, Ardmore, Pa.
  • Washington-Centerville (Ohio) Public Library
  • Hays (Kan.) Public Library
  • Morris (Minn.) Public Library
  • Hagerstown (Ind.)–Jefferson Township Public Library
  • Hazel L. Meyer Memorial Library, De Smet, S.D.
  • Lynnville (Iowa) Public Library

A summary of Hennen’s American Public Library Ratings (HAPLR) appears in the November issue of
American Libraries. The ratings also are posted on the
American Libraries Web site.

FSCS statistical data such as cost per circulation, visits per capita and funding per capita is tabulated to produce the HAPLR index ratings. Although Hennen warns there is more to quality library service than the HAPLR index rankings, he says he hopes his work fills a need for library and information service accountability in much the same way listings of top-500 corporations do in business.

American Libraries Editor Leonard Kniffel said, “The Hennen rankings reward and validate the hard work librarians do to make their libraries central to the quality of life in their communities. I'm pleased to be able to present them in
American Libraries.”

Hennen may be reached at (262) 886-1625, and his Web site is located at
American Libraries is the magazine of the American Library Association and circulates to about 60,000 members and more than 3,000 institutional subscribers.