Last year, New York Public Library staffers discovered a lost treasure: Nearly 6400 old note cards containing 20th century librarians’ reviews of the children's books that filled the library’s stacks.
The review system was never intended for public consumption. Instead, it served as a tool for intra-office dialogue. "It was just a way for staff to say 'here's what I thought of this book,'” says Lynn Lobash, manager of Readers Services. “And then other staff could come and look at the book and see what their colleagues had thought and decide whether they want to use it in a story time, or for whatever it was.”
Archivists have since stashed the reviews away for safekeeping, but not before the library’s delightful Instagram feed shared some highlights. Here are our favorites.