Friday, August 17, 2012

95. St. Paul, Riverview

A handsome Carnegie library, but I doubt that it has had a "river view" for decades. Sadly, handsome doesn't mean "acoustically suited to today's library users." Historic pictures on the wall show many children using the library, sitting quietly and reading. Twenty or so youngsters were appropriately busy today, and the room reverberated. An empty library would be quiet, but somehow not as satisfying. (But of course, I was only there for 15 minutes or so!)

People have long wanted libraries, and a lending library was started in 1905 in a drug store; the present building opened in 1917. It almost closed in 1981, but the large number of books loaned per capita saved it, and it entered the Registry of Historic Places in 1984.

The children's area has a small "market" for creative play and various signs with suggestions for parents to build knowlege and vocabulary. There is lots of Early Childhood and Family Education material available, along with the request "Please do not leave young children unattended."

Shelves create three "bays" at each end of the library, and each has a purpose: media, non-fiction, kids, and so forth. This afternoon, each area was being used by kids of different ages. It's one of the liveliest branches I've visited.

8/17/12, bus

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