…there’s an appeal to this bag and this bag’s story
â€œDid you know the [Boston Public Library] is Americaâ€™s only public library that is also a presidential library?â€ Bernie [Margolis] asked me on one of my first visits. â€œItâ€™s John Adamsâ€™s Presidential Library. David McCullough researched his John Adams here, and later became a trustee. And let me show you the Abbey Room, which is truly amazingâ€¦â€
It was on my first tour with Bernie that we came upon a pile of canvas bags down in the basement. I picked one up by its handles and saw that it was unusually deep, stenciled with â€œBoston Public Library,â€ and considerably worn.
â€œWeâ€™ve been using these bags for the past hundred years or so,â€ Bernie said. â€œThe reason theyâ€™re so deep is so the delivery man can carry the most number of books relatively comfortably as he shuttles them between our branch librariesâ€”from the truck, up and down stairs, that sort of thing.â€ Bernie picked up one bag in each hand. â€œItâ€™s best if you carry two at a time to balance yourself,â€ he advised.