Taking a tour of the library's hidden vault

It's where the treasures are kept
Posted at 10:01 AM, Jan 26, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-26 10:01:33-05

It's not part of the regular tour. The undisclosed location inside the Buffalo & Erie County Central Library is where the treasures are kept. It's called the "vault" but it's not dark and scary, in fact it is well lit and temperature controlled.

Rare Book Curator Amy Pickard is one of the few people allowed in here. Amy says "it's probably not wise to advertise where you keep your most valuable materials."

There are rare and collectible books housed in the vault, but the first thing Any showcases is "pre-book" material-clay tablets dating back to 2350-B.C. She says "they are not very exciting, more like business documents. One of the ancient, etched rocks is "a receipt for a large kid goat".

Also here in the vault is a handwritten page by Mark Twain from "Huck Finn", a fine example of from William Morris' Kelmscott Press, and pieces from Elbert Hubbard who's work was inspired by Morris. Inside this secret room are newly restored Audubon prints, Shakespeare Folio's and even a book once owned by Benjamin Franklin.

They treasures are locked up to keep them safe, but much of what they do around here is to to think of ways to share. According to Library Director Mary Jean Jakubowski-many of the materials are available to see and use on line in the library's catalog.  She points out "Our goal is to share with the world."

There is more information about the library's treasures at their website.