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When I was about 9 I went and asked the librarian if I could work there in the summer, and she let me; I got to check books out to people with a fascinating machine that date-stamped the book card with a resounding "chung" sound that was very satisfying :)
How cool to have that certificate! I wonder if my mother has anything like that of mine. She was never one for saving things like that, but with 6 kids, she'd have a mess if she had!
My best childhood memory! I'm almost tempted to pray for that nun for starting all this.
The same Mrs. Edgar, though, stood up to the PTBs that decreed that Nancy Drew was not good literature and should be removed from the shelves. Mrs. Edgar and Nancy prevailed.
Our branch library was across a busy street, so I could not go there until I was about 8 years old. At that time, the Chicago Public Library had sections based on age, and our library cards were issued based on age. One could not check out any book that was in an older age group section. It never crossed my mind to even look. I still checked out the maximum number of books allowed for the three week period and went back every three weeks to get new books. I always had something to read.
Funny, we moved to the suburbs when I was about 12, and I don't remember a thing about how I got hold of books. I know I never stopped reading!
(Anyone else remember St. Gemma Gagliani? She died as a little girl, which made her perfect for a children's book. I can't believe I remember her name; when I searched on Google for the correct spelling I got a whole 4,900 hits, mostly in Italian. That's an obscure saint.)
Library branches were pretty far away, so until I was quite a bit older, we only went when Dad could drive us. I had the CPL age-restricted library card, too, although my mom could come in and give permission for me to check out "older" books.
When I was quite small (5,6,7?), I remember a bookmobile that stopped on our street. I loved the bookmobile :-) One day, I found a book I remembered just *loving* when I first read it, so I checked it out again. I was shocked when I could not duplicate the original reading experience. It was so...so...babyish. And thus I discovered the difference between grade levels.
My moment of epiphany was also on a bookmobile.
The school library was in a big corner room in the basement of the larger school building. I can actually remember the corner where my favorite mystery books were located. I was addicted to mysteries!
The public library where we lived during my childhood never seemed terribly inviting -- I can't say why, exactly. But it was better than the County Library there. That place felt totally cold and impersonal.
My worst library memory was when I was in grad school 3 1/2 hours from where I lived, and I let a library book go a bit overdue when my mom was in ICU in another state, and when I called to renew they said I had to actually COME IN to renew it because it was late! OOOOhhhh! (I howled, and explained the situation, and then they were kind enough to make an exception.)
I have so many Library Memories!! But my favorite one of all is the time my sister peed In The Library. She was so engrossed in a book that she did not want to put it down to go to the Little Girl's Room. I remember the dress she was wearing and how she cried and cried. :D
p.s. Oh! And guess what?! She's a real librarian now!! lmao