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September 2009

Feature Articles




Unusual Collections & Hidden Treasurers in Libraries

State Librarian's Report

Exploring unique library collections is a fascinating adventure into our culture and history. From contemporary materials to ancient artifacts, libraries provide access to many unusual collections. The nature of the access varies according to the type and location of libraries, format of materials, digital equipment and storage capabilities.
The availability of resources within small cities and rural areas tends to drive the supply and demand of collections of tangible materials like equipment and toys. Preservation and storage sustainability allows some libraries to house rare and historically significant materials. Some unusual collections are creative solutions to community needs while others come about through community donations or end-of-life charitable trusts. 
The very nature of the State Library’s role as a federal and state depository yields some unique and unusual collections of government posters, pamphlets, audio and visual recordings, maps, and even a set of soil samples. Each quarter the State Library has on display a group of materials representing a theme, program, collection or library related service. One display included unusual formats of government documents. As you can see from the pictures below the titles and formats of these documents reflect the issues, linguistics and technology of their time.
 Click on thumbnails to view larger images
Thanks to digital archiving and preservation efforts, access is now possible through the internet to many rare, delicate, and non-circulating collections. The collections featured in this issue are as diverse as the libraries that hold them. We’ve included as many pictures as possible of these unique materials. You’ll also find links that can be added to the digital resources areas of library websites. If you have an unique collection that you would like to have added to the ‘Links to Unique Collections in Ohio Libraries’ page, please send an email to Marsha McDevitt-Stredney.
I hope that you enjoy this walk via our newsletter to view Ohio libraries’ unusual and versatile treasures. Perhaps this issue will inspire you to take an Ohio library visit road trip. I can guarantee that you will not be disappointed!

Jo Budler

A PDF version of headlines from The News is available for download.

The State Librarian's monthly updates are available on WebJunction Ohio.

A list of upcoming themes is available on the Contribute to the News page.