Letters: Resurgent Libraries

Many listeners responded to the interview with Boyd County, Ky., Library Director Debbie Cosper about how the troubled economy is making libraries more popular.

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MELISSA BLOCK, host:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, I'm Melissa Block

MICHELE NORRIS, host:

And I'm Michele Norris. Now to your e-mails. We got the idea for one of yesterday's stories from listeners, so we shouldn't be surprised that many of you responded.

BLOCK: It was my interview with Debbie Cosper, a librarian in Ashland, Kentucky, about how the troubled economy is making libraries more popular.

Ms. DEBBIE COSPER (Librarian): Well, we're getting at a lot of people who say, I haven't used my card in a long time, can I still use it? And that's what's really neat, is to see people coming back.

BLOCK: One of those people is J.R. Craigmile(ph) of Kerhonkson, New York. He writes: I recently began going to the library again. On my first visit, I was expecting the librarian to remove and date-stamp the card on the inside cover, but instead she scanned the book and handed me a computer-generated receipt with a due date. I laughed and realized I had not checked out a book in quite some time. I now check out books quite regularly but must admit I kind of miss those dated, ink-smudged cards.

NORRIS: And Theresa Emory(ph), a listener from Texas, wrote in to offer another reason for the rise in library use. I enjoyed your story, she writes, although there's another factor you forgot. Since I was laid off in January, I've had a lot of time on my hands. I go through a new book almost every week.

We look forward to reading your comments on the air. You can send them to us by going to our Web site, npr.org.

BLOCK: And please, don't forget to tell us where you're from and how to pronounce your name.

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