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Showing posts with label public libraries. Show all posts
Showing posts with label public libraries. Show all posts

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Celebrating Libraries

This is National Library Week, a time to focus on our public library systems and refresh our gratitude for the ways these libraries are available to us - quantities of collections for us to use for resource and enjoyment, free of charge.  A discussion this week about times that a library was important to us led to several remarks about checking out books weekly when we were children. Of course, for me and those near my age, there were no televisions, tablets, computers, or smart phones to provide information and entertainment. I read my stack of books quickly every week and was ready to go back to the cool quiet of the small library in Jacksonville, TX long before Mother was ready to drive me back!

Currently, many of our libraries also provide a wide selection of audio books which are vitally important to those whose vision no longer allows print reading.  These books also provide many hours of reading for those who have long commutes or travel.  www.audible.com is an incredible audio resource that allows building a personal audio library at minimal cost. Thousands now read e-books on a Kindle or tablet and can take a virtual library with them that is smaller than the size of a single book. E-books are also loaned from many public libraries along with devices on which they can be read.

 I sincerely hope we will continue to support and to utilize the wealth contained on the shelves of  material in our public libraries.Celebrate your local library this week by checking out a new book.  Take your children or grandchildren!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Public Libraries

I am both a patron and a champion of public libraries. We now live in a county that has a wonderful library system with state of the art technology. I can open my laptop and go to the library website, search for books, place them on hold, and go by to get them from a shelf, then check them out myself with computerized scanning. If a book that I want is already checked out, I can request that I be put in the queue and notified. If I wish, I can go to this spacious, sunlit library and curl up in a comfortable armchair in one of several cozy sitting areas to read or research material I don't want to take with me. I take my granddaughters to the younger readers' section of the library and enjoy their pleasure in choosing books as well as remembering how much our public library meant to me when I was their age.

                                          The University Branch Of George Memorial Library, located in Sugar Land, Texas

I don't have photographs of that childhood library, but it was located in Jacksonville's City Park, near the spot the little gazebo occupies in this old picture. The library has changed its location, but still serves Jacksonville's citizens as well as others in Cherokee County. My memory pictures always include the dark wood floors, the racks of wooden drawers which held the card catalogs where my fingers clicked indexed cards instead of computer keys, the kind librarian who helped me find books, the smell of old books and cleaning polish, and the hush. I loved the library but I spoke in whispers there. I am grateful for that little library that supported my love for reading, for my parents, who took me there, for books that took me places beyond my imagination. I now read e-books on my iPad, listen to audio books while I am driving, cooking, and cleaning, buy books in tempting bookstores and on Amazon, but I am forever glad there are still libraries.






A photo courtesy of the Cherokee County Historical Society shows Mrs. C. A (Minnie). Childs bending to lay the first stone for the Jacksonville Public Library in 1940.