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A Look Back: Library Finds

   January 5th, 2010

Unshelved comicAround now is when everyone is either reviewing the past year, or making their predictions or promises for the upcoming year. To vary that theme a little bit, I created a Library Finds flickr group and uploaded stuff collected by me and my staff in the library since I started working there.

What I've uploaded so far is just a fraction of what we've found. Mostly it is left-behind note paper, and it always amazes me what someone chose to write down, and then either left or forgot. Some of the most common things are:

  • call number and book/movie titles
  • quick math (but not so quick as to be easily worked out in your head)
  • urls (especially craigslist posts)
  • artwork and doodles
  • personal messages or notes to other people
  • signs warning people to stay away from their computer
  • lots of things obviously written by middle-school boys

I'm not uploading anything that seemed personally-identifiable: peoples' first and last names, phone numbers, email addresses, account login and passwords - and there were a frighteningly large number of these.

If you like Found objects, here are some related links. Also please add anything you find in your library to the flickr group - I'll keep adding more whenever I can.

I hope you enjoyed 2009, and that your 2010 is even better.

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6 Responses to “A Look Back: Library Finds”

  1. Anne Says:

    I love this. I’ve been collecting some things I find in books while I do weeding, and have some interesting things.

    It’s interesting to see the similarities of what people scribble o their little notes to selves and others.

  2. shushie Says:

    There used to be a community for found photos that I was always posting my found library gems to, but I’ve been in a photo drought for awhile and now I mostly find scrap paper notes like “get lightbulbs!”

  3. Danielle Says:

    Back in the day while I was employed as a page at my university library, I kept a similar collection of random notes and found photos. I may have to dig around and see if I can find any of those items at home this evening!

  4. Brian Herzog Says:

    I know – I wish I had kept stuff from previous libraries, too. And so far, I’ve only uploaded the scrap paper – we also find a lot of photos, cards (playing cards, Pokemon, etc), and all sorts of other stuff.

  5. Library Finds Group on Flickr | Librarian by Day Says:

    […] strange, some amusing and some that just make you scratch your head and wonder.  Brian Herzog of Swiss Army Librarian has created a Flickr group where we can share these little treasures with each other. Similar to […]

  6. Stephanie Willen Brown Says:

    awesome idea! When I get a moment, I’m going to take some pictures of the stuff in our Lost & Found – sunglasses, ID cards, even a toothbrush (tho’ we actually didn’t save that one).