A Tale of Two Libraries

How is it possible, one might ask, that a citizen of a city, having lived in that particular city almost his entire life, and being an avid reader almost that long, could have been completely unaware of two libraries in that city?

Well, the answer for one of the libraries, at least, is easy. The Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library is brand new, not set to open until November. It definitely sounds like something I want to be a part of, however. They have a book club meeting later this month (at 11:30 a.m. on a WEEKDAY(!)) to discuss the Vonnegut book, Slapstick. I purchased it yesterday at “Full-Price Books” er, I mean “Borders,” and plan to read and participate. I’m about 90 pages in already and enjoying it. I’ll report back after the meeting (8/26).

Below: The Emelie building – home of the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library

The answer for why I was unaware of the second library is, well, unknown. It’s the Indiana State Library (as opposed to the Marion County Public Library, which is the one that, along with its branches, I grew up with). It’s located in downtown Indianapolis, just across the street from the State Capitol building. I became aware of it while having breakfast Saturday morning with one of the fellow members of my book club, and she mentioned that she had visited there for a work-related excursion and was just as surprised as I was about its existence. After our breakfast, I visited the State Library – and walked by the site of the new Kurt Vonnegut library which, amazingly, is only two blocks away, to check it out.

The Indiana State Library:

It’s a very nice building, in grand style. While not having huge piles of books to loan out as the MCPL does, it does allow members to acquire a library card and check out materials. It is seemingly a major resource for genealogical research too. It also has desks and reading areas which I can envision myself making use of in the future. (I occasionally will spend a Saturday morning at the central branch of the MCPL reading and/or working on my laptop; now I have another option when I want to get out of the house and away from the tv and other distractions.




  1. Rachael said,

    August 9, 2010 at 8:55 am

    Thank you for visiting the Indiana State Library! Be sure to check out our free programs open to the public:


  2. stentorpub said,

    August 9, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    Thanks for much for sharing this link and for visiting my blog. I will probably be stopping in for the Heinrich Schliemann talk/presentation next Wednesday. Very excited to hear of this!



  3. Dale Barthauer said,

    August 9, 2010 at 6:47 pm

    I was aware of the Indiana State Library, I just didn’t know it was open to the general public. Although, by definition are gov’t run libraries open to the public?


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