With over 160 million number of items cataloged, from books to manuscripts, "Google" the Library of Congress and one might find that it said to be the largest library in the world. Yet, another impressive structure in England is now boasting a larger assortment of documents, magazines, journals, newspapers and more. The British Library in London is the largest library in the world with well over 170 million cataloged items on its premise, according to various reports. With an infinite supply of reading material, the British Library is a must-see location for its vast catalog of items. Here are 20 quick facts about the world's largest library.
And when their governments put money toward them, they even love to visit them. A 2012 report by the Institute of Museum and Library Services found that when investment in libraries drops, as it has in the US since 2009, usage typically falls with it. But the inverse was also true; the more public funds libraries receive, the more people tend to use them. Perhaps that's because a good library is more than a repository for books--it's a community resource. It may also explain the recent spate of high-design libraries (and bookstores) popping up around the globe.
Remember, ALOUD is just one part of an organization that is the primary supporter of numerous library programs. Now, more than ever, communities need the resources provided by public libraries. Rather than threatening to rescind donations or stop attending programs, we should wait to see what comes next and, in the meantime, continue to support the Los Angeles Public Library, whose free programs, resources and services reach millions of people in this city.
Last summer, in Berkeley, California, librarians pulled roughly forty thousand books off the shelves of the public library and carted them away. The library's director, Jeff Scott, announced that his staff had "deaccessioned" texts that weren't regularly checked out. But the protesters who gathered on the library's front steps to decry what became known as "Librarygate" preferred a different term: "purged." "Put a tourniquet on the hemorrhage," one of the protesters' signs declared. In response, Scott attempted to put his policy in perspective.