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With material drawn from hundreds of institutions and organizations, including both major international activist organizations and local, grassroots groups, the documents in the Archives of Human Sexuality and Identity: LGBTQ History and Culture since 1940 present important aspects of LGBTQ life in the second half of the twentieth century and beyond.

Advanced search options in this database allow you to search by keyword, document type, publication title, place of publication, subject, author / creator, entire document, manuscript number, document number, front matter – and variations of the searched terms.

Searches may be limited by content type (monographs, manuscripts, newspapers & periodicals, photographs).  Searches may limited by publication date, illustrated works, document type, publication title, language, collection and source library.




As of February 24, 2016, IndieFlix database has changed its name to InstantFlix: Powered by IndieFlix.

InstantFlix: Powered by IndieFlix brings engaging stories to movie lovers around the world.

  • Robust content: Enjoy over 7,000 high-quality shorts, features, documentaries, classic TV shows and Web series from 85 countries.
  • Film-festival hits: View films from major festivals all over the world, including Sundance, Cannes, Tribeca, and more!
  • The films you want: Sort by language, genre, or film length with easy-to-use filters.
  • Support for filmmakers: Contribute to films just by subscribing, because InstantFlix directly supports the filmmakers.
  • Anytime, anywhere access: Watch movies on any Internet-enabled computer, smartphone, or tablet with a Web browser! Also available on Roku, Xbox, and Apple TV.


ComicsPlus: Library Edition, powered by iVerse Media, brings unlimited access to thousands of digital graphic novels and comics to library patrons on any web-connected device.

  • Access through your web browser on any computer, tablet or smart phone with an internet connection
  • You can also view comics on your tablet or smart phone with Boopsie for Libraries*
  • Browse by Genre, Publisher, Comic, and instantly checkout your favorites
  • No holds or waiting – all comics are available whenever you want them

ComicsPlus includes 93 publishers with over 12,000 Comics.  Some of the popular comics include:  Lego Ninjago, Big Nate, Bone, and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.


If you already have a Zinio or Indieflix account, you can use the same login for ComicsPlus.


While visiting Illinois a few months ago, I had the privilege of watching the naturalization ceremony of 60 new citizens from 33 countries in the Old State Capitol Building in Springfield, in the very room where Abraham Lincoln gave his “a house divided” speech on on June 16, 1858, upon accepting the Illinois Republican Party’s nomination as that state’s United States senator.    The naturalization ceremony concluded with the presiding federal judge congratulating the new citizens who had chosen to become part of our nation, and a chorus of lawyers singing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” “America the Beautiful,” and the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”   There was not a dry eye in the chamber at the end of the ceremony.

My own father was a naturalized US citizen, born in Italy.  Given my own personal background, I’m pleased to announce that, as part of Alameda County Library’s subscription to Pronunciator, we now have full access to ProCitizen, a comprehensive citizenship preparation course that contains 100 videos, plus interactive drills and quizzes.

Links to free online resources and books, as well as CDs and DVDs from our catalog to help you with the process of becoming a citizen of the United States, are available through the Citizenship LibGuide.  Be sure to take advantage of these and all the databases provided to you as a member of the Alameda County Library System!



Now that we’re in the year 2016, many of us have made resolutions.  One of the best resolutions one can make is to maintain mental fitness.  Just as the body needs exercise, your mind requires  social and mental engagement for proper maintenance.  Activate your brain with fun activities.

Board and number games help stimulate your brain.  It’s no wonder that  Bingo is popular in retirement and nursing homes, as those who play the game experience fewer memory problems and have better hand-eye coordination than those who don’t.  Brain teasers like crossword puzzles, word searches, Rubik’s cubes, playing Scrabble® or chess are all great for keeping your mind in good working condition.

Stimulate your synapses  by undertaking new activities. Take up a new hobby or craft.  Take an online course.  Learn a new foreign language or brush up your skills in one you’ve nearly forgotten. Walk or drive a new way to work. Visit local museums and other attractions in the area using Discover and Go.  Learn to play an instrument like drums or piano, which requires performing different actions with your hands and feet.  Use your opposite hand to brush your teeth, eat, dial a telephone or move a computer mouse. This switch will force your brain to invent new pathways for  controlling physical movement.

Stimulate your senses!  Brush your teeth or get dressed while keeping your eyes closed – you are allowed to cheat and open your eyes to make sure you are putting on the right garments and that your outfit is color-coordinated!  Multi-tasking doesn’t have to be stressful – use several senses at the same time; for example, take a hike while listening to an audio book or music, or explore the texture of leaves and tree bark while listening to bird songs.



If you’ve been to the library in the past week, you will have seen books on holiday cooking on display by the public access terminals.

In addition to the books in the Alameda County Library collection, you can find recipes in the Food and Drink LibGuide online.

At times it seems that the holiday season entails putting on more weight.  However, that isn’t inevitable.   The Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions recommends the following if you wish to do yourself and your guests a favor and make heart-healthier meals:

  • Start with healthy appetizers, such as whole-grain crackers, cut vegetables, hummus, low-fat dressings or unsalted nuts.
  • Cut or eliminate salt from your recipes, flavoring with other seasonings instead. Make your own gravy, using low-sodium broth.
  • Make mashed potatoes with low-sodium chicken broth, roasted garlic and fat-free evaporated milk.
  • Use whole-wheat bread crumbs, onions and celery, dried fruit and less butter for healthier stuffing.
  • Bake your own desserts to avoid trans fats.

Ancestry.com (Library Edition) database has added more than 220 million searchable historical records from Mexico, including new birth, marriage, and death records dating back to the 1500s.  These records are now available on the Ancestry site, many of them important historical records never before available online.

These newly loaded records will help Mexican nationals and the estimated 34 million Mexican-Americans research their family history.  Note that civil registration births and civil registration deaths records for individual Mexican states can list names of parents and spouses as well as the names of the deceased.