Wednesday, May 13, 2015

318 Nashua (Iowa) Public Library

The primary reason I chose to visit this library is that I grew up in Nashua, New Hampshire, where I worked as a Page all through high school, and I couldn't resist visiting another Nashua! (For fun, search the blog for "Nashua" and you will find the building I worked in back in the 50s, and also the current Nashua (NH) library.

As I guessed when I saw it, the older part of this library is a Carnegie. That part of the building is usable, but seems to be used only for special purposes. (Also, it seems not to have had any changes to make it ADA accessible.) Older books are shelved there, some children's series books (Babysitter Club for example), and craft supplies suggest that one room is used for projects. A book sale is set up in a ground-level room.

I've been to well over 300 libraries now, and I continue to see things I haven't seen before. In this case, it's a card catalog. Not just the drawers, no, you can still see those in many places and being used for many purposes. No, in Nashua, IA, it's a working card catalog--see the picture below! Also, books have pockets and cards that are used for check-out.

The newer part of the library is entered at the ground level, to the left of the sign in the picture below. The Raymond and Rilla Berrier Childrens Library is to the right as you enter. It has a modest collection of books, but they (and the adult book as well) are in such good repair and are so neatly kept, I think the collection may look larger than it is! A sign makes it clear that anything not available here can be acquired through inter-library loan.

There is a centrally-located "living room" reading area with four easy chairs, a "coffee table," and two study tables. High on the wall are two glass-fronted cases housing the impressive Edward L. Schoenfeld International Bell Collection.

There are four public computers; on one I saw a screensaver that read "This Library Staff Is At Your Service." The staff I met certainly were friendly and ready to be helpful!

For more about the library visit them at

The sign at the street-level entrance

The older Carnegie building

Yes, it' a working card catalog!

A neat display suggesting that you "Chews" a good book.

The old circulation desk in the Carnegie building

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