Our latest is a guest post by LSU’s Kristopher Mecholsky, a crime fiction scholar who has published on Sherlock Holmes:

Some people are recognized by a single phrase (“Dr. Livingston, I presume”), others by a single name (Cher) or nickname (the Boss). Very few are identified by a simple silhouette. Sherlock-Silhouette2

And perhaps only one can be identified separately by each of these:

  • “Elementary, my dear Watson”
  • Sherlock
  • the Great Detective

And yet none of those were possible through Sir Arthur Conan Doyle alone:

  • he never wrote the phrase
  • the name was a secondary choice because his wife hated his first choice (Sherrinford Hope)
  • the nickname was externally given
  • the deerstalker hat and calabash pipe were contributed by an artist and an actor.

Sherlockiana is teeming with such facts, and they only get more interesting the deeper you search. Recently, Russell Mann, a retired professor of journalism at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, donated a collection of Sherlock Holmes fiction, scholarship, and memorabilia to the Hill Memorial Library at Louisiana State University. It is certainly one of the largest in the South. In its expanses are the roads to exploring the vast horizon that is Sherlock fandom, from information on the “Sacred Texts” (the original 56 stories and 4 novels Conan Doyle wrote) and its influential publication history to details about Victorian England that continue to enthrall readers; and from copies of the numerous pastiches and parodies that sought to explain or roast the Great Detective to the multi-media adaptations that sought to bring his wondrous world to greater life, there is no portion of the world of Sherlock Holmes that you have finished exploring and no portion this collection does not preview.

On January 24th, at 5:30 p.m. in the lecture hall of the Hill Memorial Library, I will lead a discussion to spot-light holdings in the Russell Mann Sherlock Holmes Research Collection by way of a history of Holmes in popular culture—then and now, here and abroad.

In our discussion, I hope to touch (at least briefly) on the elements that draw each of us to Sherlock Holmes. It might be Rathbone. It might be Brett. Cumberbatch? Perhaps it’s even (Jonny Lee) Miller or Downey, Jr. Personally, I’m a fan of Vasily Livanov, whose performance from Soviet-era Russia is so revered, he received an honorary MBE from the Queen in 2006 for the best non-British performance of Sherlock Holmes. It’s unlikely that you hold a candle for poor William Gillette, which is a shame since the famous turn-of-the-century heartthrob thespian wrote the first stage play of Sherlock Holmes (with Conan Doyle’s blessing and encouragement, likely inspiring him to keep publishing after the Great Hiatus) and introduced the calabash pipe into association with Holmes (though Holmes never smoked that kind in the stories).

On the other hand, perhaps what you love most about Holmes is not one of his screen adaptations. Perhaps you enjoy reading the Canon, preferring to settle yourself down in your armchair to revisit the cases yourself, contemplating Holmes’s methods and his Victorian/Edwardian world, in which case you might want to leaf through the original Beeton’s Christmas Annual that published the very first tale, A Study in Scarlet, or peruse either H. R. F. Keating’s or William S. Baring-Gould’s renowned “biographies,” Sherlock Holmes: The Man and His World and Sherlock Holmes of Baker Street.

Study Cover

Perhaps you’ve read and reread those stories and you are now eager to see Holmes in new light, with new cases, with fresh characterization. In that case, I would draw the attention of those with more conventional taste to Laurie R. King and Leslie S. Klinger’s fine edited collection of stories inspired by the Holmes Canon (In the Company of Sherlock Holmes) or to the forthcoming collection written by Lyndsay Faye (The Whole Art of Detection: Lost Mysteries of Sherlock Holmes); for those a little more daring, or maybe for the shy and newly initiated who only recently discovered Holmes, I would encourage a serious consideration of the surprisingly compelling and thoughtful comic Victorian Undead: Sherlock Holmes vs. Zombies! or the critically revisionist comic Watson & Holmes: A Study in Black.

Victorian Undead CoverWatson and Holmes Cover












Whatever brings you to Holmes is likely what has brought fans his way for more than a century since fandom has been inextricably entangled with Holmes since his first appearance. The world of Sherlock Holmes and his appreciation is gloriously overstuffed with fantastic theories, personal journeys, odd facts, new cases, new characters, old cases and old characters rewritten, adaptations, mashups, and more. The only real question is knowing where to start.

But the answer is very obvious. It’s elementary, my dear reader. Wherever you like.

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Recent faculty publications


Kelsey, Sigrid, ed. Fostering Student Success: Academic, Social, and Financial Initiatives, ALA Editions, 2022.


O’Neill, Brittany. “Do They Know It When They See It?: Natural Language Preferences of Undergraduate Students for Library Resources,” College & Undergraduate Libraries. Volume 28, Issue 2 (2021).

O’Neill, Brittany and Rebecca Kelley. “Delivering Bad News: Crisis Communication Methods in Academic Libraries,” College & Research Libraries, Volume 82, Issue 3 (May 2021).

Connel, Ruth Sara; Lisa C. Wallis; David Comeaux. “The Impact of COVID-19 on the Use of Academic Library Resources,” Information Technology and Libraries. Volume 40, Issue 2 (2021).

O’Neill, B. (2021).”Three-layer primary source dip: Introducing history students to primary source research through active learning.” In The teaching with primary sources cookbook, edited by J. M. Porterfield, 16-18. Association of College & Research Libraries, 2021.


Blessinger, Kelly and Dave Comeaux. “User Experience with a New Public Interface for an Integrated Library System,” Information Technology in Libraries. Volume 39, Issue 1.

Cramer, Jennifer A. “First, Do No Harm”: Tread Carefully Where Oral History, Trauma, and Current Crises Intersect,” The Oral History Review, 47:2 (2020): 203-213, DOI: 10.1080/00940798.2020.1793679

Diamond, Tom, ed. The Academic Librarian in the Digital Age: Essays on Changing Roles and Responsibilities. McFarland, 2020.

Kelley, Rebecca and Mitch Fontenot. “Serving our Student Veterans in Louisiana,” Louisiana Libraries. Volume 82, Issue 2 (Spring 2020).

Kuyper-Rushing, Lois.A Thematic Index of Works by Eugene Bozza, A-R Editions, 2020.

Lounsberry, Megan. “Troubleshooting electronic resources from an ILL perspective,” Technical Services Quarterly, Volume 37, Issue 3.

McDonald, Ebony. “2020 Regina Medal Recipient Christopher Paul Curtis,” Catholic Library World. 

Miles, John David.  “James Harrison and the Tensas Troubles of 1878,” Civil War Book Review: Volume 22, Issue 1 (Winter 2020).

Morgan, Randa Lopez. 2020. “Supporting Student Wellness and Success through the LSU Libraries Relaxation Room.Journal of Library Outreach and Engagement v. 1, no. 1: 104–115.


Batte, Elizabeth; David Dunaway; Emily Frank; Sarah Mazur; and Laurie Phillips. “LOUIS Membership with Open Textbook Network Brings Incentive for Faculty OER Advocacy on Campuses,” CODEX: Journal of the Louisiana Chapter of the ACRL. Volume 5, Issue 3 (Fall/Winter 2019).

Borchardt, Rachel; Polly Boruff-Jones; Sigrid Kelsey; and Jennifer Matthews, “A Proposed Framework for the Evaluation of Academic Librarian Scholarship” (2019). Proceedings of the Charleston Library Conference.

Comeaux, Dave;  Emily Frank; and Mike Waugh. “Supporting Student Success: E-books as Course Materials,” CODEX: Journal of the Louisiana Chapter of the ACRL. Volume 5, Issue 2 (Fall/Winter 2019).

Dunaway, David. “Bibliometrics for Faculty Evaluation: A Stastical Comparison of h-indexes Generated Using Google Scholar and Web of Science Data,” CODEX: Journal of the Louisiana Chapter of the ACRL. Volume 5, Issue 3 (Fall/Winter 2019).

Haber, Natalie, Melissa Cornwell, & Andrea Hebert. “This worksheet works: Making the DLS Standards work for you,” College & Research Libraries News. 

Hawk, Amanda K. “Implementing Standardized Statistical Measures and Metrics for Public Services in Archival Repositories and Special Collections Libraries,” Proceedings of the 2018 Library Assessment Conference, (Association of Research Libraries, 2019): 836-843.

Hebert, Andrea and Jodi Duet. “’I’m Really Confident I Can Find the Exact IKEA Pillow’: A Qualitative Look at the Search Self-Efficacy of Graduating MLIS Students,” Behavioral & Social Sciences Librarian.

Lounsberry, Megan. “No Textbooks Allowed! (Unless You’re a Graduate Student!): Louisiana State University Pilots an ILL Textbook Service. Journal of Interlibrary Loan, Document Delivery & Electronic Reserve, 28 (3/4): 61–73.

Miles, John David. “Colfax, Kate Grant, and the Domestication of Reconstruction’s Violence,” Civil War Book Review. Volume 21, Issue 2 (Spring 2019).

Miles, John David. “The Loyalty of West Point’s Graduates Debated,” Civil War Book Review. Volume 21, Issue 1 (Winter 2019).

Miller, Marty. “Curriculum, Departmental, and Faculty Mapping in the Visual Arts Department,” Art Documentation, Volume 38, Issue 1 (March 2019): 159-173.

Morgan, Randa L. “Libraries and Gardens: Growing Together.” Catholic Library World, Volume 90, Issue 1 (September 2019): 68.

O’Neill, Brittany; and  Allen LeBlanc. “Evaluating Trends in Instruction Scheduling Management: A Survey of Louisiana’s Academic Libraries,” CODEX: Journal of the Louisiana Chapter of the ACRL. Volume 5, Issue 2 (Fall/Winter 2019).

Russo, Michael, “The Moon Belongs to Everyone:  ResearchGate and Subscription Databases Compared.”  Louisiana Libraries. Volume 81, Issue 3, (Winter 2019).

Russo, Michael, “Information Literacy through Service Learning” in Library Collaborations and Community Partnerships: Enhancing Health and Quality of Life.  Fannie M. Cox, Henry R. Cunningham, and Vickie Hines-Martin, eds., 2019.

Simms, Sarah; Hayley Johnson. “Hidden in Plain Sight,” 64 Parishes (Magazine of the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities). Issue 4 (Summer 2019).

Simms, S., & Johnson, H. Subtle activism: Using the library exhibit as a social justice tool, Alexandria, Volume 29, Issue 1-2 (2019).

Ziegler, Scott; and Cara Key. “More Than a Pretty Interface: The Louisiana Digital Library as a Data Hub,” CODEX: Journal of the Louisiana Chapter of the ACRL. Volume 5, Issue 2 (Fall/Winter 2019).

Ziegler, S.L. “Digitization Selection Criteria as Anti-Racist Action,” Code4Lib Journal. Issue 45 (2019).

Ziegler, S.L. and Steve Martin. “A Hidden Gem Becomes a Fertile Mining Ground: Historic Prison Admission Books and Data-Driven Digital Projects,” The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography Volume 143, Issue 3 (October 2019): 363-373.


Hebert, Andrea. “Information Literacy Skills of First-Year Library and Information Science Graduate Students: An Exploratory Study,” Evidence Based Library and Information Practice Volume 13, Issue 3 (September 2018).

Miller, Marty. “Sacred vs. Profane in The Great War: A Neutral’s Indictment: Louis Raemaekers’s Use of Religious Imagery in Adoration of the Magi and Our Lady of Antwerp.” Catholic Library World, vol. 89, no. 1, Sept. 2018, pp. 20–32.

Rasmussen, Hans. “The Life and Death of Raquette in Nineteenth-Century New Orleans,” Sport History Review 49 (May 2018): 23-38.

Wilder, Stanley. “Delayed Retirements and the Youth Movement among ARL Library Professionals,” Research Library Issues, no. 295 (2018).

Wilder, Stanley. “Hiring and Staffing Trends in ARL Libraries,” Research Library Issues, no. 295 (2018).

Wilder, Stanley. “Selected Demographic Trends in the ARL Professional Population,” Research Library Issues, no. 295 (2018).

Ziegler, Scott; and Richard Shrake. “PAL: Toward a Recommendation System for Manuscripts,” Information Technology and Libraries, Vol. 37, No. 3 (2018).


Caminita, C.; Cook, M.; and Paster, A. (2017). Thirty years of preserving, discovering, and accessing U.S. agricultural information: Past progress and current challenges. Library Trends, 65(3), 293-315.

Dauterive, Sarah; John Bourgeois; and Sarah Simms. “How little is too little? An examination of information literacy instruction duration for freshmen.” Journal of Information Literacy, 11.1 (2017): 204-219.

Fontenot, Mitch; Emily Frank; and Andrea Hebert. “Going Where the Users Are: Three Variations on a Theme,” Louisiana Libraries, Fall 2017.

Hawk, Amanda K. “Highflying Crowdfunding: Creating a Successful Partnership with a Campus Donor,” Archival Outlook, July/August 2017: 12-13, 19.

Hebert, Andrea; and Marty Miller. (2017). Using FSA-OWI photographs to teach information and visual literacy. Louisiana Libraries, 79(3), 19–25.

Johnson, Hayley. “#NoDAPL: Social Media, Empowerment, and Civic Participation at Standing Rock,” Library Trends, Fall 2017.