Every time I unearth my keys from my handbag, I think of the Columbus Metropolitan Library.
My key fob depicts the Peter Pan statue in front of the Main Library. Unveiled on May 18, 1928, the statue is the centerpiece of a fountain in memory of George Peabody Munson, who died at the age of six. It was sculpted by May Elizabeth Cook, who worked as a designer for Roseville Pottery in Zanesville.
This unique keychain is just one of the special things I’ve bought at the Library Store.
Run by the Friends of the Library, the store features an enticing array of gift items for book-lovers. For years, I’ve come here to buy notecards, greeting cards, hand-crafted jewelry, museum reproduction items, bookmarks, bookplates, toys, local history titles and used books.
Located just inside the north entrance to the Main Library, this dimly lit, cozy nook offered a welcome lunchtime refuge on a busy work day. Think of The Bookworm (Der Bücherwurm), the 1850 Biedermeier oil painting by Carl Spitzweg of an elderly gentleman browsing bookshelves while perched on a library ladder, and that’s what the Library Store looked like to me.
On April 18, the Library Store closed temporarily for renovations until May 15. Recently, I stopped by to see the transformations that were made to this sweet little store.
When I opened the door, I gasped! It’s brighter and more welcoming, allowing more browsing room for those with strollers or wheelchairs. Streamlined display tables and lighting fixtures give the space an updated, modern feel. The patterned carpet resembles elegant marble flooring, while the dove-grey walls and cream fixtures bring the signature cover and title label of those elegant Persephone Books to mind.
Dozens of new merchandise items are just as appealing as before. I’m partial to the Card Catalog notecards from the Library of Congress, as well as the Travel Table, with its array of travel guides and luggage tags inspired by London Underground posters.
Several librarian-themed gifts will be arriving soon. But my keychain is still for sale.