One of the oldest existing bookmarks dates to 6th century AD. Made of ornamental leather and lined with vellum, it was attached by a leather strap to the cover of a Coptic codex found in Egpyt. The codex is housed at the Chester Beatty museum in Dublin, Ireland, though it’s too fragile to keep on display.
While some people still use leather bookmarks, others have become more creative in modern times. Read on to learn some of the surprising “bookmarks” our library staff have unearthed on the job.
Of sentimental value
From the home office
“If it’s something we can obviously return like an ID card, we will,” says Brittany DeShazo, on-call page at Hillsboro Public Library. Depending on the item, library staff will leave notes in the lost and found area in case patrons come looking. However, not everything is easily returnable and in some cases the owners may not even want the bookmark back.
From the bathroom
Notes written to library staff
“We get a lot of notes from patrons to us,” says Christine Sorensen, senior library assistant at West Slope Library. “All feedback is welcome, whatever the passion level."
Here are examples of what the notes say:
If you need a conventional bookmark, just ask a librarian. And if you enjoyed this blog post, sign up for the WCCLS newsletter.
Photos courtesy of Brittany DeShazo and Christine Sorensen.