Tag Archives: Card Catalogs

File This Under Nostalgia: New Book Pays Tribute To The Library Card Catalog

“>If you do a Google search for “card catalog” it will likely return Pinterest-worthy images of antique furniture for sale — boxy, wooden cabinets with tiny drawers, great for storing knick-knacks, jewelry or art supplies.But before these cabinets held household objects, they held countless index cards — which, at the time, were the pathways to knowledge and information. A new book from the Library of Congress celebrates these catalogs as the analog ancestor of the search engine.” (via NPR)

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The Lost Art of Library Card Catalogues

“The array of systems, from that of the Library of Alexandria to those of monastic libraries to the French Cataloguing Code of 1791 (which used playing cards to record titles) is chronicled in an opening essay of The Card Catalog: Books, Cards, and Literary Treasures, a book that was officially published today by The Library of Congress.” (via Hyperallergic.com)

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Card catalog cabinets endure in some smaller libraries, find new uses elsewhere

“They are nearly extinct in their natural habitat. In the James Library & Center for the Arts in Norwell, one maintains its position at the end of a large bookcase near the center of the room, its counterpart sentry for an antique grandfather clock. In the Dyer Memorial Library in Abington, it has been relegated to the corner, left mostly untouched for the past decade. They are the wooden card catalog cabinets, once an essential component of town and school libraries. Now they are mostly relics of the past, repurposed in some cases to hold recipes, display Christmas cards, or stash canned goods.” (via The Boston Globe)

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One library’s unused card catalog becomes art

“Earlier in the summer (and recently noted at The Rumpus), the Recorder of Greenfield, Massachusetts wrote about a community college librarian who saved her library’s card catalog by transforming it. After lives in dark drawers, 128 of the cards—now marked by their corresponding authors—have been preserved as a permanent installation on the library’s walls.” (via MobyLives)

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Greenfield librarian turns catalog cards into art

“Once central to any quest to locate books within a library, the fate of card catalogs was sealed with the rise of the Internet and computer searches, relegating many of those index cards to the country’s basements, storage cabinets and trash bins. But on a wall in the corner of Greenfield Community College’s Nahman-Watson Library, 128 artifacts from the library’s card catalog hang preserved in a glass case – signed by the authors who penned the very books to which the cards once led.” (via AP)

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