Author Spotlight: Stacia Stein and Douglas W. Lind

AALL Publications Series, Author's Spotlight, Book Sale Breanne Callahan

Today we are featuring a guest post by Stacia Stein and Douglas W. Lind, authors of the 2021 Joseph L. Andrews Legal Literature Award Winner, The Leaven of Sympathy: A Bio-Bibliography of Frederick C. Hicks

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About the Authors


Stacia Stein


Stacia Stein is currently a Librarian at the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. She was introduced to Hicks by colleagues on her first day as Instructional Services Librarian at Yale Law School. Several years and jobs later, she still finds inspiration in the works of Fred Hicks. Stacia received a BA from DePaul University, a JD from DePaul University College of Law, and an MILS from the University of Illinois.


Douglas W. Lind


Douglas W. Lind is Director of the Library and Professor of Law at Southern Illinois University. He received a BA from Purdue University, a JD from Valparaiso University, and an MILS from the University of Michigan. Prior to his arrival at SIU in 2007, Professor Lind was the Head of Collections at Georgetown Law. His writing and research interests focus on the production and distribution of printed materials in the mid-19th and early 20th centuries. He is the recipient of the Joseph L. Andrews Bibliographic Award, a national award which recognizes significant contributions to legal biographical literature, for his two-volume reference work Lincoln’s Suspension of Habeas Corpus.

10 Q&A’s with the Authors of The Leaven of Sympathy


Co-authoring a Hicks bio-bibliography presented a lot of challenges; however, we believe that The Leaven of Sympathy is a better book because it had two authors with two different perspectives and a mutual admiration for Frederick Hicks. With this in mind, we thought it would be fun to present each other with a series of questions about the writing process and the evolution of The Leaven of Sympathy.

Douglas W. Lind and Stacia Stein

Lind
We both loved Hicks and it was too much work to do on my own.

Stein
Initially we came at the project with two different approaches. Doug had been interested in writing a comprehensive bibliography of Fred Hicks. I had read Hicks’ History of the Yale Law School and was interested in knowing more about the man who wrote about books and people with such reverence, respect, and kindness. Knowing of that shared interest in Hicks, my colleagues Mike Widener and Julie Krishnaswami introduced us and the book just came together. Okay, well not exactly.

Lind
Creating the bibliography took at least a year because we kept unearthing new publications of his.

Stein
I feel like we are still not done finding stuff. And in building the bibliography we made sure one of us read each of the 168 publications listed—at least to the extent they were available. It really felt like the best way to get to know Hicks.

Lind
We then spent about another year trying to uncover biographical details outside of Hicks’ own writing.

Stein
Part of our research process included combing through old New York phone books for addresses, running past the house he lived in New Haven, stalking his Hamden house on Zillow, combing through old phone books for addresses, and walking past his apartment in DC. It made me wonder about the line between research and stalking. And scholarship and obsession.

Lind
While researching we would fill each other in on our latest findings. We also spent a lot of time revising and editing after finishing our first complete draft.

Lind
You would think it would be challenging to work with someone. But in reality working with someone on a topic you both care about really made the process more enjoyable.

Stein
I agree.

Lind
But we do have different writing styles.

Stein
For sure. Or to use a phrase that Doug often (over)uses in his writing, it is not surprising.”

Lind
We divided the writing in half chronologically but wanted to make sure that we had a unified voice. This meant that we spent a lot of time editing each other’s annotations.

Stein
And un-editing each other’s edits and then re-editing. This may have caused a few grammar errors in the final edition. There was a lot of  back and forth with the editing and we never agreed who had the final word.

Lind
As a practical matter, although this book lists two authors, it could not have been written without a bunch of other people, including those at the Wellfleet Historical Society, and the librarians at Columbia and Yale, Colgate, and the AALL Archives.

Stein
And the librarians who researched and wrote about Hicks before us. We really were inspired by their work and hoped to build off of it and add something new to the dialog.

Lind
I am a list maker and Stacia is more of a story-teller. Our different approaches really made for a more readable whole.

Stein
And having a co-author made the discovery process so much more fun.

Lind
It records a complete bibliography of one of the founders of our profession and also reveals a lot about Hicks as a human being, presenting him in a way that no one has seen him before.

Stein
Hey! I thought the lasting importance was in our friendship.

Lind
But for Hicks, we never would have been friends.

Stein
In Men and Books Famous in the Law Hicks wrote “Bibliography would be a dry and uncongenial task if it were not for biography…But biography adds the leaven of sympathy which lightens for the book-lover the sad loaf of bibliography.” This captured what we were trying to do with the bio-bibliography.

Lind
We are the closest thing to a biographer that he will ever have.

Stein
In his writings, he left behind what he wanted people to find. We hope it is a fitting tribute.

Lind
Fred was quite the ladies’ man. He had three wives (two of whom were sisters) and a work wife who took care of him after retirement and to whom he left most of his estate. If you have more questions, read the book!

Stein
For me, it was surprising but in some ways also comforting to read in posthumous reminiscences that Hicks, although beloved, may have been considered by some to have been boring in the classroom.

Lind
He left Columbia on principle because they would not make him a member of the faculty. (See page 9.)

Stein
He was artistic. A musician and a photographer with a studio on Cape Cod. And wherever he lived, he made himself part of the community.

Lind
A large part of his early writings were not about librarianship, but international law. He had a master’s degree in political science and international law from Brown.

Stein
His writings on his travels really captured a side of him not usually seen in his more scholarly works.

Lind
And he was a great champion for women in the profession. The women around Hicks don’t get enough credit. (You should say that one, Stacia!)

Lind
For somebody who wrote a lot, there isn’t a ton of biographical information out there. Much is still unknown about his childhood years in Auburn. What was his relationship like with his family? The only clues we have are in his book dedications.

Stein
Although he was a painter and photographer, we didn’t find many photos of a personal nature. There has to be a box of personal photos somewhere. His postcard pictures are generally of buildings and landscapes. Except for the postcard entitled “Picking Cranberries” we don’t really see any people in the postcards that we’ve found. And why did Katherine Warren, his friend, heir, and colleague in cataloging, specifically leave that Hicks photo of a sand dune to the Wellfleet Historical Society?

Lind
We are working on building a comprehensive collection of his photographic images.

Stein
And writing Hicks noir fan fiction mystery novels!

Lind
It writes itself.

Stein
I think he would be
uncomfortable with how personal it is.

Lind
I think he would be happy with the comprehensiveness of the bibliography, but he may be uncomfortable with some of the personal elements of his life, such as his second wife’s suicide.

Stein
But then again they published her suicide note in The New York Times.

Lind
I wonder what he thought of that!

Stein
What a strange way to end our 10 questions. Can we add an 11th?

Overview of This Title


Filling a gap in the bibliographic and biographical literature of Frederick C. Hicks, The Leaven of Sympathy is an annotated bibliography of the works of the seminal law librarian. Drawing its title from Hicks’ beloved Men and Books Famous in the Law, this work provides the most thorough accounting of Hicks’ works to date, touching upon many aspects of the history of legal education, law (and general) library history, and Association history. It contains a full timeline of the life of Frederick C. Hicks, a robust biographical preface, which includes an excerpt from a little-known essay Hicks composed in his retirement, and nearly 160 entries organized chronologically and annotated with biographical references, footnotes, and cross-references.

There are also six appendices which highlight the work, personality, and artistry of the librarian-scholar, including never-before-published reminiscences from his colleagues, a list of photographs that Hicks sold to the Tichnor brothers for use as postcards, and a complete accounting of the courses taught by Hicks while at Yale Law School. To aid user access, name and subject indexes are also included.

The Leaven of Sympathy: A Bio-Bibliography of Frederick C. Hicks
AALL Publication Series No. 83
Authors:
Stacia Stein and Douglas W. Lind
Item #:
1006908
ISBN: 978-0-8377-4122-2
Pages: xix, 194p. (214p. total)
1 Volume, perfect bound…….$99.00 $89.00
Published: Getzville; William S. Hein & Co., Inc.; 2020

Promo Code: LINDSTEIN2022
Discount Expires: May 1, 2022

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