Wednesday, January 14, 2015

An Ephemera Haul at the Library

If you've visited my blog a few times, you might recognize my penchant for found objects, thrifted finds, and ephemera. I've openly admitted my tendency to pick up items from the ground. I have a long list of posts under the tag thrift scores. With my new art journal obsession, I've more and more discovered the value of ephemera.

Shoot, before I was art journaling, I couldn't resist the pull of old papers. This particular compulsion swept over me completely as I was leaving the Fairhope Public Library the other day. Right in the lobby (outside the doors to the library and the book store) they have a couple of carts labeled "FREE BOOKS".

In addition to books, there are usually a few stacks of magazines and other paper materials. I always stop and take a gander at what's up for grabs. This week, I discovered a stack of ephemera and the price was so right. . .free!! I flipped through the stack hurriedly and saw that it was mostly maps. I scooped up the whole pile, balanced them on top of my library books, and precariously made my way to the car.

At home, I did a little more thorough sorting to discover a plethora of maps from National Geographic.

These seem to be dated from the 1960s-1980s and cover a variety of subjects: birds, space, water, and regions.

In addition to the NG maps, there were a few even older maps. On the outside of some of them are handwritten descriptions with a date. The earliest is dated 1906.

Lastly, there were also travel guides, old pamphlets, and road maps.

As with all the ephemera I tend to drag home, I have no idea exactly what I'll do with these treasures. However, I'm so glad I've given them a new home for the time being. Does your library or local bookstore have a free cart? What have you saved from the landfill?

14 comments:

  1. I have to admit that before I opened your post I had to look up ephemera :) I have never heard that word before! Then I opened your post and you graciously supplied the definition~ very cool! You are going to have great fun with the treasure trove of maps you found! Create away!
    Jenna

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    1. Jenna, I remember the first time I read the word too. From that point on, I've been smitten with the term. It makes all the paper mess I have all over the place sound a little more fancy! Ha.

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  2. Awesome stuff! I'll need to check out my local library. Out of curiosity (since I've started becoming a collector, myself!) -- how do you store and organize all these bits and pieces?

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    1. Megan, I'll admit that my organization of it isn't that great. I have a small bookshelf that's mostly paper (scrapbook paper, blank cards, vintage greeting cards, thrifted photos, scraps, notebooks, doodles, whatever.) I have a few baskets, shoe boxes, office in-boxes, file folders, etc. shoved onto this shelf to separate some of it, but some of the newer stuff is actually in a stack on the floor for the time being. All my thrifted books are on another bookshelf (with some other craft supplies) in a closet. It's chaos around here!! ;)

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  3. What treasures you found! I'm right there with you loving found and free items...I just made a trip to our local library today where they are having their winter book sale upstairs. Each book was a quarter each. I brought home as many as I could hold in my arms! Enjoyed the post!
    Judy

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  4. What a treasure! I love maps. I bet you'll find some wonderful project on Pinterest! I can't wait to see what you do with them.

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    1. Kim, I just like paper. My house has become somewhat of a fire hazard due to all my collecting! One day I'll find a way to use it all. Of course, by then I will have collected more!

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    1. I know! I was totally stoked. Of course, I felt like I was doing something wrong as I hauled all this out of the library. I kept looking over my shoulder to make sure no one was going to stop me. Lol.

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  6. Lucky you! Our library is so small but they do get rid of some paperback books but that' about all. I can't wait to see what you do with your haul.

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  7. I love the maps! What a great haul you discovered. I can see all sorts of things with maps and mod podge,

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  8. MAPS!!! Of course the first thing I think of is "What are they worth?" A lot of people have good luck selling maps. I'm going to start checking the free cart! What a great score!

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    1. Lorraine, I don't even consider the worth. The dated ones will be treasured for a while but the NG ones are likely to end up in art journals. I love the free carts. I can't leave the library without giving it a quick once-over. Maybe I shouldn't be revealing my secrets ;) Ha!

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  9. What a great score! Yet another reason to make a trek to the library -- maybe I'll luck into a discovery one tenth as cool as yours. Can't wait to see all the delights you create with these treasures.

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