I’m a firm believer of eating your own dog food. Meaning if you say stuff about libraries (and I do), then make sure you go to them as if going to them was your JOB (and I do). Don’t just go to the one library where your job is, though that helps.
Every year I make a list. Every year I reflect on that list. This year I went to forty-five libraries in nine states and one non-US country. Eighty-six library visits total. Many more different libraries than last year, but just a few more visits overall. With all this, I only added two new libraries to my Vermont 183 project even as I hand out awards to people who have been to over 190 libraries in Vermont!
Seven years in a row I’ve been keeping this up. Previous years: 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and some reviews from 2003
Libraries I went to more than once include.
- Kimball (VT) – my local and one of the best libraries in my opinion.
- Hartness (VT) – my local academic, bigger collection and longer hours but further away
- Westport (MA) – my summer local, don’t love it but do use it
- Tiverton (RI) – the library in the summer that I go to more often even if I can’t check out books
- Carney/Dartmouth (MA) – local academic, another great library, well-loved, well-used
- Harvard Law Library (MA) – where my fellowship is and where I can go work
- New Bedford (MA) – used to be a museum, I take guests here
- Hookset (NH) – here for work, twice, always enjoy it
Libraries I only went to once
- Gutman (Harvard) – part of an attempt to go to all Harvard’s libraries
- Winooski (VT) – doing some Passport work here
- Oak Lawn IL – stopped & checked email on our #WestOn20 trip
- Library of Congress (DC) – always a favorite
- Stowe Free (VT) – participated in a panel for their anniversary
- Newton (MA) – stopped to chill after a long ALA week
- URI/Carrothers (RI) – gave a talk, visited friends
- Claremont/Berkeley (CA) – hid out avoiding a kid birthday party
- Southworth/Dartmouth (MA) – great place to work, lovely art
- British Library (UK) – got to take my sister to this great place
- VT Law Library – MontP (VT) – a farewell to a colleague
- Lamont (Harvard) – so stoked to finally get in here!
- Aldrich/Barre (VT) – visiting a friend doing some visioning
- Belchertown (MA) – what a gem! stopped by on the way home from friends’
- MIT/Hayden (MA) – what a treat after Harvard’s closed system
- Ames/Easton (MA) – stopped in before a wedding next door
- Former War Library (DC) – this is basically IN THE WHITE HOUSE, omg
- Harold Johnson Library, Hampshire (MA) – my alma mater
- Montpelier (VT) – stopping in before seeing a friend
- Goddard (VT) – was on the radio!
- Brown/Northfield (VT) – passport wrap-up
- Cambridge/Central Branch (MA) – can’t even remember this visit but I am sure I liked it
- Boston Public (MA) – saw my friend Tom, got a cool tour
- Schlesinger/Harvard – saw my friend Jen, got a cool tour
- Lewisham (UK) – a great neighborhood library
- Watson Retreat Center (NY) – a funky special library
- Internet Archive (CA) – they say they are a library, so they are
- Girard (PA) – a round library, part of #WestOn20
- Caird Library (UK) – at the Naitonal Maritime Museum, not as friendly as I’d hoped
- Howe/Hanover (NH) – always a favorite
- MLK Branch (DC) – saw movies about black history and drank it in
- Weissman/Harvard – a rare open house, I was not allowed to take photos
- Cazenovia (NY) – a mummy!
- Manor House (UK) – a library having hard times but doing ok
- Fairfield/Millicent (MA) – another great library to take friends to
- BU (MA) – gave a talk, stuck around to see the basement
- Pollard/Lowell – a great old classic library
I’ve had an average of 80-ish visits per year for a few years now so I think that is my new normal. So a library every five days. A new library every eight days. Maybe when I hit ten years I’ll do a decade long wrap up. I wish this data was all in standard form….
I am very thankful my work takes me to all of these lovely places. Thanks to the librarians who graciously showed me around.
One thought on “2016 in libraries”
Thank you for posting. This inspires me to keep track of the libraries I visit during 2017. I also enjoy visiting libraries- I get ideas and feel refreshed walking into my own library.
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