Moments that make Librarians smile


It’s not often that an Australian public library makes International news but I guess everyone loves a lost and found story.

122 years ago a first edition copy of Insectivorous Plants by Charles Darwin was borrowed from Camden School of Arts library. As with many library books, Insectivorous Plants didn’t make it back into the collection and was obviously presumed lost by generations of librarians.

Sometime in the 1950s the book ended up in the personal collection of a University of Sydney veterinarian whose recent retirement that meant that much of this collection ended up at the university library. From there it was a short trip back to Camden library, now a public library totally an estimates $35,000 overdue fine.

To the library this story was noteworthy to headline their amnesty starting next month. But something about this story wasn’t going to let it die. It was picked up one of the bigger Sydney papers which launched it internationally onto Fox News and Time magazine news site.

All library staff know of materials that have gone mysteriously missing. It’s nice to know that it’s not just library staff that celebrate in one of these items surprise return.

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