New American Scholars Arrive at the Memorial Library

The Second Air Division Memorial Library welcomes two new American Scholars!  Julie Pachico and Linda McCarthy are both PhD students at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, and will be working in the Memorial Library all year to provide services and support.

Julie grew up in Colombia, with an American father from California and an English mother from Cambridge. She lived in Portland, Oregon for six years, where she studied Latin American literature and worked in various after-school programs. In 2012 she moved to Norwich, where she is completing her PhD in Creative and Critical Writing. Some of her favorite American authors include Flannery O’Connor, Philip K. Dick and William Faulkner.

Linda was born in New York City, and has lived in various places throughout the United States including New York, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and San Diego, California.  She came to Norfolk two years ago and is currently studying Film, Television and Media at the University of East Anglia.  Her areas of interest include horror films, religious studies and popular culture.

halloween photo

Julie and Linda preparing the book display for Halloween–be sure to pop in and say hello!

Now for a few words on our most recent display…

Halloween History

Halloween is a popular holiday celebrated in many countries throughout the world, including the United States.  The word Halloween itself, meaning hallowed or holy evening, dates back to the 1700s and is of Christian origin.  The observance of Halloween is, in fact, based upon an ancient Christian festival known as All Hallows Eve, part of the three day festival,  Allhallowtide, which is dedicated to remembering and honouring saints, martyrs and all loved ones who have passed on.  Like many Christian traditions, many believe that Allhallowtide may have pagan origins, in this case the Gaelic festival of Samhain, which marked the end of the harvest season and the beginning of the darker times of winter.  Samhain was also believed to be a time when the boundaries between this world and the spiritual realm were at their weakest, and offerings of food and drink were left to please and in some cases appease those crossing over from the other side.

Today, in the United States, Halloween is celebrated with the carving of festive pumpkins into jack-o-lanterns, and with children dressing up in costumes representing both the frightening and the fun in the attempt to earn treats or dole out tricks.  Here at the Second Air Division Memorial Library, we have been preparing for this holiday by carving our own jack-o-lanterns, and organising a display of books that celebrate the mood of the season.  Drop in… if you dare….

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Top 5 Things to Do on Halloween

1) Create a costume out of old clothes found in the attic.
2) Carve a pumpkin into a ghoulish grinning ghost. Don’t forget to keep the seeds for roasting!
3) Host a fancy dress party with scrumptious scary snacks like blood soup with bones (tomato bisque with bread sticks).
4) Go trick or treating. Knock on a neighbor’s door, but only if they are displaying Halloween decorations of their own. You are never too old for sweeties after all!
5) Watch a scary movie, but remember to check the bulbs on your night light before turning in.

Carving pumpkins can be a messy job--be ready to get your hands dirty.

Carving pumpkins can be a messy job–be ready to get your hands dirty!

A creative design is also key--this one is based on Jack Skellington, from Tim Burton's classic film 'The Nightmare Before Christmas.'

An eye-catching design is also key–this one is based on Jack Skellington, from Tim Burton’s classic film ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas.’

Suggested Halloween Reads

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2 Comments

Filed under American Culture, Memorial Library

2 responses to “New American Scholars Arrive at the Memorial Library

  1. Fred Becchetti

    Welcome, Julie and Linda!
    You have taken on a very interesting assignment. I’m sure you will enjoy it, because the patrons of the Memorial Library are a very enthusiastic group.
    You will also discover that we ex-8th Air Force veterans of the Second Division are ardent friends of the Library, which we founded in order to keep
    in touch with the people of Norwich and strengthen our ties of friendship with them and with the English people in general.
    I flew 35 bombing missions out of the 445th Bomb Group at Tibenham against Nazi-held Europe in the summer of 1944 and survived. The kindness of the British people played an important part in my survival. I will always be grateful to them. We Americans should be grateful to the British people for the way they stood alone against Hitler and Goering and the German Luftwaffe during those early years of war before the U.S. and other countries came to their assistance. The free world owes the British a great debt for their courage during those terrible attacks by the Nazis. We should never forget what the lonely British did to save the world.
    I have sent several articles to the Memorial Library on my experience at tthe 445th Bomb Group in 1944. If you are interested, you might want to read the website that my radio operator Garl McHenry and I have posted on
    Google giving detailed information on our 1944 experience, including our 35 bombing missions. Go to Google and type “Fred Becchetti: His Life After the War.” and it will tell you perhaps more than you really want to know about our experience.
    I’m sure that you will enjoy your work at the Memorial Library. Do your best to inform the British about what a great country the U.S. is. I am
    from the state of New Mexico, so I hope you will include some information about that state, especially about the Native Americans in the state. The
    British have some strange ideas about the Native Americans which they
    have picked up from the western movies they have seen.
    Good luck!
    FRED BECCHETTI, fbecchetti@cox.net, in Annandale
    Virginia, far from New Mexico.

    P.S. I’m curious about Julie’s last name. Is her name Pachico or Pacheco?

    • Hello Fred how lovely to hear from you again. Julie’s last name is definitely Pachico. I’m sure that both Julie and Linda will be thrilled to read your welcome message, thank you for writing to them.

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