Pass It On

Tidbits and treats from the Sunnyvale Public Library Reference Division

What is an Upside Down Jellyfish? September 21, 2009

Who invented the sandwich?  sandwich2When was “under God” added to the Pledge of Allegiance?  Where can I donate used eyeglasses?  What is an upside down jellyfish? Can you tell me about a genealogy center on the Isle of Harris in the Hebrides in Scotland? How do legal systems differ in different countries?  What is the name of Michael Jackson’s skin disease?  What are the pieces that make up a mancala game?  These questions are just a few of the inquiries that recently came to the Reference Desk. 

The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America discusses the history of the sandwich, which is probably named for the fourth Earl of Sandwich, who helped to popularize it in the 1700’s in England.  Sandwich recipes were first published in American cookbooks in 1816. 

The expression, “under God” was added in 1954 by an act of Congress (Urban Legends Reference Web Pages.)

eyeglassesA list of places where eyeglasses can be recycled is linked from the City of Sunnyvale Home Page > Main Index >City Services > City Departments > Public Works > Solid Waste and Recycling > Recycling A-Z > Eyeglasses.  

An upside down jellyfish spends its time lying on its back on the bottom of a shallow lagoon, intertidal sandbank or mudflat around the Caribbean and the Indo-Pacific.  With its mouth lobes exposed to sunlight, it lives on the products of photosynthesis in its tissues instead of trapping prey in its tentacles. (Richard Ellis:  Encyclopedia of the Sea.) 

The Web site for the Seallam! Visitor Centre on the Isle of Harris in the Hebrides in Scotland describes the its genealogy and other services.

World Book Encyclopedia has basic information on different legal systems.

Vitiligo is the skin disease (a Library database, Newspaper Source Plus.)mancala5

Twelve small cups, 2 large cups, and 48 stones are the usual pieces of a mancala game. (Family Fun and Games and eHow.)

Reference Librarians enjoy helping you find the resources to investigate both large and small mysteries and to answer your questions.  If you would like help with your quest, stop by the Reference Desk today!


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