I've seen this library called The Class of 1945 Library, The Friends of the Academy Library, The Louis Kahn Library, and The Library at Philips Exeter Academy. By any name, it is amazing. It is reputed to have the largest collection of any secondary school worldwide. My short walk through a couple of levels certainly won't do it justice, but I'll list a few things I noticed and include more pictures than usual in these posts. If this whets your appetite, go to www.exeter.edu/libraries for the full story.
The central area of the library is dominated by a large oval table, a Harkness table, named for a former teacher who taught his classes--no more than about 12 students, I believe--at tables like this. The same teaching method is used today. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harkness_table for pictures and more information. This central area also houses a very large card catalog, with a note that no additions have been made since July 1994; after that date, the catalog was computerized.
The library is built of a delightful combination of stone, wood, brick, and steel. Seniors have assigned study carrells built of wood, with locking compartments. [$50 if you fail to turn in your key at the end of the year!]
There was a display near the entrance describing a custom I really like: Senior Bookmarks. Seniors provide a list of about six books that they feel have been very important to them. Those books are listed on a very attractive book mark for each person, with a quotation at the top. The display included many of the books students have listed. Unfortunately, no bookmarks were available; as of noon today, they were two weeks late back from the printer...oops.
For more information, go to http://www.exeter.edu/libraries/553.aspx.
6/3/2013, car, with Mary and Victoria