Blogger Emily Mroczek-Bayci

Library Cards Around the USA #librarylove

I love library cards. They may be one of my favorite aspects about libraries and that’s saying a lot. I appreciate the the fun designs, the smooth plastic-y feeling and everything that they represent: access, a right to read and a place to be. So, when I saw an idea rolling around Facebook about people collecting library cards for displays- I could not pass up the opportunity to start my own collection.

The finalized library card display with 88 cards spelling out R-E-A-D and a backsplash of cards.

I reached out to librarians on Facebook, in person, and through e-mail/ contact forms to see how many library cards I could come up with. The results were overwhelmingly awesome and I love mail, so this made everything even more fun.

I thought this collection could be a cool way to connect with libraries and librarians. I reached out in library Facebook groups and e-mailed libraries to request their cards. So many people were willing to mail me beautiful library cards. Some libraries even sent me as many as five different cards from their system. It was really cool getting personal notes and memorabilia from so many different libraries. This project really shows how helpful librarians are! Some people gave me their library cards from cities they used to live in.

I ended up with 88 cards from 39 states and 45 different libraries. I still need to cross: Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, and Vermont off the list.

I loved receiving letters and shout outs from library workers around the country and of course, looking at all the amazing card designs. I noticed a few different “library card trends” so let’s take a look:

 Sleek and Professional

These cards are smooth, classic and get the point across!

Toledo Lucas County Public Library, Hennepin County Library, Allen County Public Library, Lawrence Public Library, Mercer County Library System, Skokie Public Library, Denver Public Library, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Santa Clara County Library District

 

 

 

 

 

Colorful and Fun Library CardsColorful and Fun

This may have been my favorite category, because they are all so pretty. I especially loved the “guinea pig” photograph on Middle County’s card. That was the only card I saw with photographs, which does seem fun and personal.

Allen County Public Library, Hennepin County Library, Middle County Public Library, King County Library System, Laramie County Library.

 

 

 

 

 

Geographically Appropriate

I loved seeing the cards that represented the regional identities of the libraries. The jazz player in New Orleans, the cowboy in Scottsdale, the flower form Hawaii. It makes these library cards a form of postcard from the region.

Scottsdale Public Library, DC Public Library, New Orleans Public Library, Hawaii State Public Library System, Sublette County Libraries.

 

 

 

 

 

Real-life Photographs

Pictures of buildings- historic or current, or people enjoying library services can be a good way to showcase a library.

Camden Public Library, Columbiana Public Library, Camden Public Library, Madison Valley Public Library

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cards that have fun sayings like "Read, I love my library and I Read Past my bedtime."

#LibraryLove

Library cards that love libraries. It doesn’t get much more wholesome than that. My favorite is “I Read Past My Bedtime,” because it’s so relatable!

Boston Public Library, Buffalo & Erie County Public Library System, St. Louis County Library, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Hennepin County Library

 

 

 

Fun Animals

This was hands down my favorite category. I mean owls, dogs, horses, a snail reading a book, AND A PARROT! And of course the ever-legendary Bigfoot.

King County Library System (three), Johnson County Library (three), St. Louis County Library, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Sweetwater Libraries,  Scottsdale Public Library

 

 

 

Fancy Artwork

I’m not sure who made the art on these various cards (maybe there wasn’t room to sign the bottom), but they are all so beautiful!

San Francisco Public Library, Westhampton Free Library, Kansas City Public Library

I hope you enjoyed my new collection half as much as I do. If you have a cool card to share, let me know and we can continue to spread the #librarylove! September marks Library Card Sign Up Month, so it’s time to get ready!

6 comments

  1. Samantha

    I’m in Nevada and would like to send you one of our brand new cards. First time we’ve had a logo & first time we have had our own library cards! No more Nevada state cards for us.

    Is there an address I can send one too?

    1. Emily Mroczek (Bayci)

      Hi Samantha, yes that would be awesome- you can send one to Emily Mroczek (Bayci) at Naperville Boulevard Library 2035 S. Naper Blvd. Naperville, IL 60565

    2. Melanie Presler

      Hi Samantha. My name is Melanie Presler and I am the Adult Services Manager for a small library in Amherst OH. I just saw this idea in my email. I love it! If possible, could I have one of your cards? This is my very first request, so I look forward to hearing from you! My email is mpresler@amherstpubliclibrary.org. The rest of my contact info follows:

      221 Spring Street
      Amherst OH 44001
      (440) 988-4230

      Thank you,
      Melanie

  2. Angie Soetebier-McDonnell

    How fun! Thank you for sharing. Loved spotting “our” Library card under “sleek and professional” (St. Charles City County Library.) Our county borders St. Louis County, Lincoln, Franklin, and Warren counties.

  3. Angela

    Hi Emily! We are from Western Michigan and I will discuss with our director on if it is ok with her to send you one of our new cards. I have copied your mailing address from above. This is a really fun idea! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Florence Ratched

    huge fan, huge ups. I recently did a tour of California and got library cards in all counties and municpalities that would allow me. I chose the sleek professional looks in order to differentiate. If I had one or two I would go for a fun festive design, but juggling some 55 cards, I cant be bothered. Someone sent me this link and I’m glad they did. You oh great poster, rock!

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