In this feature article in today’s Chicago Trib (reprinted from the LA Times), reporter Martha Groves relates the growning interest in private, tiny libraries. A neighbor with books to spare, looking for a way to share them with the community will build a small hutch (think dollhouse size) and simply set out a few volumes on his or her porch or stoop. There’s often a sign saying, “Take a book or bring a book or both.”
Little Free Library was started in 2009 by Todd Bol of Hudson, Wisconsin, who decided that giving away books from his private collection would serve as a fitting tribute to his mother, a teacher. With the help of a community outreach expert, Bol was able to spread the concept. Now there are almost 18,000 library stewards as Bol calls them, who have registered their own Little Free Libraries in 45 states and dozens of countries. Each owner pays a $25 to the nonprofit organization to get a sign and a number, and to be on the locator map at http://www.littlefreelibrary.org/.