Carl B. Roden

Carl B. Roden
Born 1870
Died October 25, 1956
Lake Zurich, Illinois
Occupation former Chief Librarian, Chicago Public Library
Nationality American

Carl Bismarck Roden (1870 - October 25, 1956)[1] is an American librarian and served as chief librarian of the Chicago Public Library from 1918 to 1950. A lifelong resident of Norwood Park, Illinois he began work as a library page in 1886.[2][3]

Under his leadership, the Chicago Public Library system doubled its reach in the community and tripled the number of books they offered. Circulation from branch libraries doubled and the community support for the Public Libraries increased four-fold.[4] During his tenure, Chicago Public Library's Board of Directors authorized the first intellectual freedom policy in an American public Library. The April 1936 action responded to challenges from community members of Russian and Polish descent regarding the collections provided by the Chicago Public Library's Foreign Language Department. [5]

Roden served as the President of the American Library Association from 1927 to 1928.[6]


See also


  1. U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2012.
  2. "About the Roden Branch". Chicago Public Library. Retrieved 8 February 2016.
  3. "Former Chicago Librarian Dies". Mt. Vernon Register-News. Mt. Vernon, ILL: October 26, 1956. p. 11.
  4. "CPL History". Chicago Public Library. Retrieved 8 February 2016.
  5. Latham, Joyce M. (2009). "Wheat and Chaff: Carl Roden, Abe Korman, and the Definitions of Intellectual Freedom in the Chicago Public Library" (PDF). Libraries & the Cultural Record. 44 (3): 279–298. Retrieved 8 February 2016.
  6. "ALA's Past Presidents". American Library Association. Retrieved 8 February 2016.
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