National Library Week 2020 has arrived at a difficult time for libraries across the U.S., many of which have been forced to close their doors in the face of the global pandemic. While we are feeling the loss of these spaces, we dedicate this week to celebrating libraries and the many ways they have inspired us.

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The Bookmobile

Storm Reyes was working full-time at a migrant work camp at age 8. She remembers the day a bookmobile arrived, and the world was suddenly at her fingertips.

The Temple of Knowledge

Ronald Clark’s father was custodian of a New York Public Library branch during a time when caretakers and their families lived on-premises. Ronald recalls how a childhood surrounded by books expanded his horizons.

 

Shazina the Super Librarian

Brooklyn Public Library serves an incredibly broad community of over 2.5 million people. Richelet Jean and his young daughter Abigail give thanks to local librarian Hasina Islam for igniting Abigail’s love of reading.

Eyes on the Stars

Ronald E. McNair was a physicist aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger when it exploded seconds after takeoff. His brother remembers how Ronald spent his life challenging societal norms, starting when he was nine years old at the Lake City Public Library.

 

A Love Story in 10,000 Books

Alagappa Rammohan has amassed enough books over the course of his life to fill a small library. He shares with his daughter, Paru Venkat, his love for the written word.

The Treasures of Mrs. Grady’s Library

Judge Olly Neal recounts how a book cover — and a little nudge from two helpful librarians — turned him around academically and changed the course of his life.

 

In this national moment of uncertainty, conversations like these are crucial to help us feel connected. Have a meaningful conversation with a loved one through StoryCorps Connect, a free platform that enables you to record a StoryCorps interview remotely using video conference technology. Learn more at StoryCorpsConnect.org.