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Honoring Our Past

An interesting “Toast to MLA” by M. Doreen E. Fraser appeared in the editorial section of the April 1970 issue of the Bulletin of the Medical Library Association. Two Canadians, Sir William Osler and Miss Margaret Charlton, were among the charter members who brought MLA into existence as an international association in 1898. Charlton was the association’s first secretary [1].

In 1967/68, a new effort began seeking to make Canada a part of MLA, and one of the items mentioned by Fraser was a statement of appreciation to the MLA members “who have advised, instructed, informed, encouraged, queried, cooperated, applauded, warned, supported, and assisted while a group of Canadian members, singly and in combination, have struggled to develop better collections, improve services, and obtain an operative base from which to launch a useful and practical national network of service across our 4,362 miles.”

She goes on to “to acknowledge publicly the great benefit derived from being a personal and an institutional member of the Medical Library Association. I therefore invite members of MLA wherever they live around this globe to respond in suitable fashion to my Toast-via-Print to the Medical Library Association. May it long continue to nurture its international activities and interests despite the hazards of great distances, regional variations, and financial stringencies.”


  1. Fraser MDE. A toast to MLA [editorial]. Bull Med Libr Assoc. 1970 Apr;58(2):196.

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