Summer Memories

I am a subscriber to the Chicago Tribune’s Printer’s Row and receive my copy every Sunday. I look forward to it. A recent article, “Rahm’s Readers”, caught my eye. This was a summer book club sponsored by the Chicago Public Library and heartily endorsed by the mayor. I imagine most libraries have the same program…a children’s summer reading club.

This brought back some very pleasant memories. Although born in Chicago I grew up in northwest Indiana, the city of Whiting to be exact. A typical industrial town bordered by Lever Brothers soap factory, Standard Oil Refinery and Union Carbide Chemical. Whiting still is a no nonsense type of town.

The one oasis of culture was our local library. Once I was able to get a library card it was my second home. A library card is a ticket to let you explore new worlds…..

I read two book s a day, showed up bright and early when the door opened. I gave the librarian a recap of the book and whether I liked it or not, then checked out two more. It was great. My mother was skeptical at first, but then decided this project would keep me busy all summer. At the end of the summer I read the most books, of course, and won a small pennant with my name on it.

The Whiting Library is still there, almost as I remember it. Until recently, I did not realize that this was a Carnegie library. And, as an architecture buff, I applaud the fact that the city of Whiting did not demolish it but has kept the building.

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