More on Robert S. Taylor Paper

January 31, 2006

Additional research about Robert Taylor:

Blurb from Library Journal, December 1984, Vol.109, Issue 20, page 220 “Former Dean Robert Taylor recruited Klaus Barbie.” Reports that in October 17th issue of the Syracuse Post Standard, the lead story was “Ex-SU Dean Recruited Klaus Barbie as U.S. Agent.” Comments that Robert Taylor said he didn’t know of Barbie’s past when he recommended him in 1947.

Ryan, Allan A. Jr. Klaus Barbie and the United States Government, The Report, with Documentary Appendix, to the Attorney General of the United States. Frederick, MD: University Publications of America, Inc., 1983.

General information from Ryan text:
Robert Taylor was part of the 66th Counter Intelligence Corps under European Command (EUCOM) stationed in Region IV (headquarters in Munich) in Memmingen. Since April 1946 Kurt Merk had been working for Taylor. On April 10, 1947, Merk told Taylor about Barbie. Taylor knew that Barbie was wanted in Operation Selection Board. Taylor did not notify Headquarters about Barbie. Checked with superior Lt. Col. Dale Garvey, Commanding Officer of Region IV. On April 14-15 decision made by Taylor and Garvey to use Barbie as an informant.

Taylor met with Barbie on or about April 18, 1947 and deal was made. Barbie impressed Taylor as “an honest man, both intellectually and personally, absolutely without nerves or fear. He is strongly anti-Communist and a Nazi idealist who believes that he and his beliefs were betrayed by the Nazis in power” (p.13). Barbie reported on French intelligence operations in U.S. zone of Germany, on activities of Romanian ethnic Germans, and on Soviet activities in U.S. zone. Use of Barbie not known to headquarters until two months later.

On May 22, 1947, Captain Frazier at CIC HQ asked for clarification of certain matters. Taylor for first time reported to CIC HQ that information came from Barbie not Merk. Taylor acknowledged that Barbie was to be arrested in Operation Selection Board, but requested he be allowed to retain freedom. Region IV forwarded Taylor’s report to CIC HQ on June 3, 1947 recommending Barbie be used as an asset. Appears as if request was ignored.

Taylor placed increasing reliance on Merk and Barbie. By summer of 1947, Merk had web of 48 to 52 informants in Germany and Eastern Europe. (all previous from page 13).

Web known as “Buro Petersen.” (page 14).

Agent Hahdu took over for Taylor in the spring of 1948 (page 18).

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Synopsis of Robert S. Taylor Article

January 27, 2006

Taylor, Robert S. “Reminiscing About the Future: Professional Education and the Information Environment,” in Library Journal, (September 15, 1979), 104(16), p1871(5). This is a thought provoking article about library and information science education in which Taylor asserts that “the future is what professional education is all about” (p.1871). In the article, Taylor argues that librarianship as a profession needs to distance itself from the physical library – a concept that seems quite simple (although controversial for many, I’m sure), but one that I still haven’t totally been able to wrap my mind around. I had a definite “Eureka” moment when reading this, I have to admit. The library is not the center of the information universe, but is only a piece – and not necessarily a central one. Taylor writes that “a failure to participate in the whole system will tend to isolate the library and the librarian even more than they currently are from the blooming, dymanic, changing world out there” (p.1872). I couldn’t agree more – and again, I’m amazed at the relevancy of this article today and it was written 27 years ago!!! Later in the article, Taylor point out that library systems are fine for what they are, but that they only exist in the library world. They are not systems with which the world at large are familiar. We, in libraries, should be thinking about the user and the questions they ask and the information needs that they posess rather than focusing on preserving established library traditions (p.1872). Taylor identifies several skills and attitudes that librarians could and should acquire if they were to “cut their umbilical cord to libraries and similar document-based systems” (p.1873). They could possess “an ability to organize data and information for people to use,” “an awareness of the totality of information resources and strategies in search for information,” “a sensitivity to use, uses, and users of information,” and “a strong tradition of service” (p.1973). Such attributes would help library and information science school graduates understand that systems must be designed by and for human beings. In terms of the future of professional education, Taylor identifies six subject ares of concern. First is the organization of information. He suggests that we need to organize information based on the “natural processes of information-seeking and knowledge utilization” (p.1873) rather than in traditional methods. The second area is the information environment which can be explained as the context of knowledge and how humans process information. Next is the area or information media which deals with media formats and the natural way in which information is organized. The systems and technologies area is the fourth area. In this area, Taylor is more concerned about the formal methods of design, analysis and evaluation of systems that are created by people, machines and information. The fifth area is reasearch methods which “is concerned with the education of critical consumers of research results and effective participants in the research process” (p.1874). Finally, the last subject area is management which is the area that binds all of the previous ones together. It is the area which is concerned with the identification and definition of information problems (p.1874). In conclusion, Taylor writes that “libraianship is too important a profession to be tied to the fate of a single institution” (p.1875). He suggests that the profession has several large problems with which it needs to deal: “better filters to withhold rather than supply information, better means for making information available, programs on information literacy, and maintenance of a human scale in information and knowledge transfer processes” (p.1875). Other references that I need to check: Taylor, Robert S., Manpower and Education Programs for Management, Research, and Professional Growth in Library and Information Services, report to the National Commission on LIbrary and Information Science, October 1974. Taylor, R.S., “Libraries, Librarians, and the Information Environment” (copyright 1979 by the author). Taylor, R.S., “Educational Breakaway,” American Libraries, June 1979, p.364-68.


Information on Robert Taylor Biographical Research Report

January 27, 2006

As I mentioned in my previous post, I am writing a biographical research report on Robert S. Taylor for my Foundations of Librarianship (ILS503) class. I will include journal-type entries to document my research.

Robert Saxton Taylor – born 1918.

Worked at both Lehigh University (as Librarian and Director of the Library Center and Professor of Language and Communications) and Syracuse University (as Professor and Dean).

Published in area of user studies – known for “value-added approach” to information services.

Awards – 1972 American Society for Information Science Best Information Science Book, was appointed Fulbright Lecturer in 1965.

Was president of American Society for Information Science in 1968

biographical information taken from http://www.unc.edu/~fazel/taylor.html – accessed on 1/27/06.


Classes Have Begun

January 27, 2006

The spring semester has started. I’ve been reading like mad this week to get myself into the spirit of things. So far, I’m fairly excited about both classes – a little bit more so for my Foundations of Librarianship class (ILS503). But this is only because Reference and Information Resources and Services (ILS504) focuses on professsional competences for a reference librarian – and I know that I do not want to be a reference librarian. Admittedly, it is an important class – and I know that I will learn a great deal (and that I need to learn the material). Also, ILS503 delves into a historical perspective of libraries and information services along with current trends and challenges (paraphrased from class syllabus). These are the type of issues that are of primary interest to me.

One thing that I am very excited about is an assignment to do a biographical research report on someone important to the field of librarianship. I was assigned Robert S. Taylor – whom I had never heard of before. However, I have been researching him for the past week and am thoroughly enjoying the project. His interest in information science and systems is right up my alley


I Added Another Class

January 15, 2006

Last week, I decided to take a second class this spring semester. SCSU added another section of ILS504 Reference and Information Resources and Services. – and I felt compelled to try and take two classes this semester. I’m a bit nervous about the amount of work – two classes and a full time job – but hopeful that the workload won’t be too much. I have ordered the one required text and the two recommended texts – and am hoping they come in before classes start on the 29th of January.

Meanwhile, I’m continuing to read the textbook for ILS503 class (Foundations of librarianship) – Richard E. Rubin’s Foundations of Library and Information Science (2nd Edition – Neal Schuman Publishers, 2004). Admittedly, it is slow going. I have been enjoying the quite of life after the holidays and away from school – and now need to get myself back into school mode.


I Passed My First Class

January 5, 2006

SCSU posted grades for the fall semester today online. I’m very happy to say that I passed my first class. Yeah! I now have 3 credits – only 33 more to go!!! I’m busy trying to get ready for my next class – ILS 503 Foundations of Librarianship. The class doesn’t start until January 29th, but I’m trying to get through the majority of the textbook before then.