National Gallery, London

Credo Reference now includes high resolution images of the paintings found in the National Gallery, London. Students and library patrons will now be able to find the beautiful images of these national treasures whenever they search Credo Reference . In addition to the images, Credo will include the National Gallery Companion Guide, If the Paintings Could Talk… and the National Gallery Visitor’s Guide to complement the images and provide descriptive information about the artists and their works.  Credo has also licensed two Pocket Guides to enable researchers to further understand artistic themes:  Myths & Legends and Narrative.

The National Gallery images will be featured in all relevant searches in Credo.  Users will be able to follow their research into Credo’s other valuable reference content or visit the National Gallery website which feature a wealth of resources, from a virtual tour to explanation of artistic movements and a full glossary.

About The National Gallery, London
The National Gallery, London houses the national collection of Western European painting from the 13th to the 19th centuries. The Collection is on show 361 days a year, free of charge. The Gallery aims to study and care for the Collection, while encouraging the widest possible access to the pictures. It provides lectures, courses and workshops as well as research into the paintings and their preservation.  For further information visit:

J.D. Salinger 1919-2010

Shmoop Salutes J.D. Salinger (1919-2010)
                                                                       “I keep picturing all these little kids playing some game in this big field of rye and all. What I have to do, I have to catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff . I mean if they’re running and they don’t look where they’re going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them. That’s all I’d do all day. I’d just be the catcher in the rye and all. I know it’s crazy, but that’s the only thing I’d really like to be.”
The Catcher in the Rye Quotes
Generations of students and teachers have been forever changed by author J.D. Salinger and his acclaimed novel The Catcher in the Rye. Salinger, the reclusive author of Catcher and numerous other books and stories, has died, but his stories live on in the canon of great literature. We at Shmoop have always had reverence for Salinger – a man who broke the boundaries of literature and brought us one of the most sympathetic and complex young characters of all time, Holden Caulfield. Although Holden is Salinger’s best-known character, most of Salinger’s writing featured incredibly intelligent, sensitive, spiritual children or adults who had trouble functioning in the real world. Many would say that J.D. Salinger himself fit this description as well. Here at Shmoop, we continually find inspiration and revelation in Salinger’s work, and we salute him.Explore Salinger’s Work on Shmoop

Explore Salinger and his works in the Library Databases

Brain Teasers – Airports


Image “Airport diagram/sketch” from An Illustrated Dictionary of Aviation which can be found in the Virtual Library’s online resource Credo Reference.

This week’s brainteaser is about airports.

1. Name the main airport serving London, situated west of London.

2. There is an airport and flying doctor base near Alice Springs in which country?

3. What was the former name of Kennedy International Airport in New York?

4. What is the name of the Scottish airport 2 miles NNE of Ayr?

5. At which Ugandan airport in 1976 were most of the hostages rescued who had been held aboard an Air France plane?

6. What is the name of the airport which was upgraded in the 1950s as a second London airport?

7. What is the name of Chicago’s international airport?

8. “MAD” is the airport code for which airport?

9. At which airport just outside Paris did Charles Lindbergh land after his historic nonstop flight from New York in 1927?

10. Name the airport in E Newfoundland which became a major North American terminal for flights to Europe. Continue reading

The Last Great Race on Earth

The Iditarod Trail in Alaska began as a mail and supply route along coastal towns and interior mining camps, and was run entirely by dogsled. In the 1920s, sled teams gave way to airplanes, but the planes ultimately were no match for Alaska’s harsh weather.

During a deadly diphtheria outbreak in 1925, Alaska’s sled teams received worldwide press coverage when they created a “pony express” across the Iditarod Trail, delivering lifesaving serum to the residents of Nome. Gunnar Kasson and his legendary lead dog, Balto, ran the last leg, making it in time to save many lives.

In the late 1960s, Dorothy Page, a local historian and chairperson of the Wasila-Knik Centennial, was looking for a way to celebrate Alaska’s centennial year. She introduced the idea of a race across the Iditarod Trail to musher Joe Redington. Together they promoted the idea of a 1,000 plus mile race and in 1973, the first Iditarod, running from Anchorage to Nome, was completed by 22 sled teams from 14 countries. The following year, 44 mushers ran what has become known as the “Last Great Race on Earth.”



Download the 2010 Haiti Country Report from CultureGrams, available for open access for a limited time. Click here to get your PDF now with no obligation. CultureGrams helps researchers and students of all ages broaden their understanding of the world and its peoples.

CultureGrams is an online information resource designed for use by schools and universities, relief and humanitarian agencies, businesspeople, diplomats, and even government employees who travel abroad.

The World Edition includes 200+ country profiles (all U.N.-recognized countries). The Kids Edition, Provinces Edition, and a States Edition are also included, geared for upper elementary students. These added editions include kid-friendly profiles of 80+ countries, all 50 states (including Washington, D.C.), and all 13 Canadian provinces and territories.

CultureGrams goes beyond mere facts and figures to deliver an insider’s perspective on daily life and culture, including the history, customs, and lifestyles of the world’s people.

Country: Haiti
Download Full 2010 Report (PDF)

Did You Know?

  • Capital: Port-au-Prince
  • Map: Haiti Detail Map PDF
  • Population: 9,035,536
  • Area, sq. mi.: 10,714
  • Area, sq. km.: 27,750
  • Real GDP per capita: $1,155
  • Adult literacy rate: 60% (male); 64% (female)
  • Infant mortality rate: 60 per 1,000 births
  • Life expectancy: 59 (male); 63 (female)

Did You Know?

  1. Most Haitians are descendants of Black African slaves who came to the island in the 16th century.

  2. When entering a room or joining a group, a person is expected to physically greet each individual.

  3. Most people lack refrigeration and so shop daily for perishable foods.

Haiti’s Land & Climate

Haiti covers 10,714 square miles (27,750 square kilometers) of the island of Hispaniola, which it shares with the Dominican Republic. Just smaller than Maryland, Haiti is comprised of two peninsulas split by the Gulf of Gonave. The mountainous, nearly barren island of Gonave rests in the center of the gulf. Haiti’s portion of Hispaniola is significantly more mountainous than the rest of the island, with successive mountain chains running east to west on both peninsulas. The mountains are punctuated by hills and valleys, where most people live and work.

Haiti’s climate is warm and only mildly humid. Frost, snow, and ice do not form anywhere—even at the highest elevations. The average temperature in the mountains is 66F (19C), while at Port-au-Prince it is 81F (27C). Spring and autumn are rainy, whereas December through February and June through August are dry. July is the driest summer month. The hurricane season lasts from June to October.

Local Languages

Haitian Creole is the language of daily conversation. French is used in government and business. Only educated adults or secondary school students speak French.

Haitian Creole is a unique mixture of French and African languages. It is similar to Creole spoken on some other Caribbean islands, such as Guadeloupe and Martinique. Haitian Creole is traditionally an oral language, though it had a written form even in the 19th century. Use of written Creole began to spread after the 1940s with the introduction of adult literacy programs. People are increasingly interested in English, which is heard on television broadcasts from the United States. Also, because many Haitian families have a relative in the United States, English is used more often than in the past.


Haitians usually eat rice and beans every day, although a main meal usually also includes meat, salad, and a vegetable. Rice and corn are staple grains. Spicy foods are most popular. Piman zwazo (small hot pimentos) and garlic are often added to dishes.

Meat is marinated in sauces with ingredients such as sour orange juice, lemon juice, and hot peppers. Pork is the most commonly eaten meat, but Haitians also eat goat, chicken, guinea pig, and seafood (fish, shrimp, conch, crab, etc.). Meat-filled pastries are favorite snacks.

The Arts

Music and dancing are integral to everyday life. In cities, disco, reggae, and konpa (a contemporary version of big band music played in the United States during the 1940s) are popular. Meringue, a mixture of African rhythms and European music, is also popular. Urban residents enjoy a variety of North American music.

Haitian artists and sculptors are known for their unique images and striking colors. One popular art form is sculpture made from cut, pounded, and painted scrap metal. Tap-taps—brightly painted pickup trucks fitted with benches and covered tops—are both a means of transportation and traveling art. Many artists choose Haitian history or daily life for their subjects. Nature is also an important theme. Painted screens, papier-mache art, wood carvings, basketwork, pottery, and painted wooden boxes are prominent crafts.