This year, the American Library Association's theme for National Library Week is Libraries Transform.
But to the true lover of books what inexhaustible delight there is in a fine library! When I was quite a child I had the privilege of visiting the libraries of some well known men. I remember how I went with Dr. Holmes from bookcase to bookcase, fingering the volumes and smelling that most beguiling of odors--old print and leather. Now and then he took down a volume and put it into my hands as if he loved it.I also visited the library of Mr. Laurence Hutton in New York and later at Princeton. His shelves were full of the treasures of many minds, and he was never so happy as when he showed his books to an appreciative visitor. A great many of these books were the gifts of distinguished writers who were his personal friends, and it was delightful to hear him read aloud the brilliant thoughts and happily worded autographs written in them. Truly there is no solitude for the mind of him who loves a book!
I had been sitting quietly in the library for half an hour. I turned to my teacher and said: 'Such a strange thing has happened! I have been far away all this time, and I haven't left the room.' 'What do you mean, Helen?' she said, surprised. 'Why,' I cried, 'I have been in Athens!'