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…….Yes! They share a ‘storied past’ celebrating books!

Colorful books by sharonsalu.wordpress.com

Colorful books by sharonsalu.wordpress.com

Books make me delirious. I love reading them, being surrounded by them and acquiring more of them. Lucky for me, it’s a socially acceptable addiction!

pendant by Moon Garden

Pendant by Moon Garden

Reminds me of that famous quote oft attributed to songwriter Zappa: So many books. So little time. How true!

I love the whimsical illustration Edward Gorey created for this quote and other odes to book. It expresses the spirit perfectly!

Gorey’s modest home in Yarmouth Port, MA, on Cape Cod is open to the public, and a necessary pilgrimage for any Gorey fan!  http://www.edwardgoreyhouse.com

Edward Gorey

Edward Gorey

As for Presidents John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, they somehow did find the time to read so many books they fashioned extensive libraries.

I was fascinated to learn that Thomas Jefferson sold his legacy library of 6,487 volumes to the Library of Congress in1815. His books replaced the ones burned by the Brits when they toasted the capital during the War of 1812!  http://www.monticello.org Pretty cool to establish the foundation for your country’s premier library!

But Jefferson wasn’t the only presidential bibliophile. His colleague and fellow president, John Adams (with whom he had an on-again -off-again friendship), amassed a legacy library of 3,000 books.

Stone Library at Peace Field, by Charles E. Patterson

Stone Library at Peace Field, by Charles E. Patterson

His collection eventually grew into more than 12,000 volumes when three more generations contributed their books to the shelves: his son John Quincy (also a president), grand-son and great-grandson. http://www.nps.gov/adam/index.htm

2,700 of John Adams’s books were eventually donated to the magnificent Boston Public Library, a.k.a. BPL. http://www.bpl.org/research/special/collections.htm

The remaining can be found in the gorgeous, member-only Boston Athenaeum, as well as other Massachusetts institutions. http://www.bostonathenaeum.org

I own about 250 books, so I have some catching up to do!

Edward Gorey

Edward Corey

Lovely quote by President John Adams’s great-grandson, Henry Adams as he toiled on his book History of the United States, writing to friend John Hay (a famous and distinguished statesman to four presidents), “I write history as though it were serious, five hours a day; and when my hand and head get tired, I step out in the rose-beds and watch my favorite roses…”

Adams library, garden and home. Tracymar.smugmug.com

Adams library on left, garden and home Peacefield. Tracymar.smugmug.com

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