I will risk sounding like a fuddy-duddy here, but I’m not afraid!
My library recently celebrated a landmark anniversary. We put together a special history display but sadly it did not contain any old books because most were burned in the fire the building suffered in the 1950s.
By some strange miracle, someone donated two books from our original library (pre fire) to another local library. The librarian promptly returned them to us and we put them right in our display. What timing! What a strange mystery! Who had the books all this time? How did they end up out of our town? Because this person never returned the books, he or she inadvertently saved them from the fire so we could have them today. This is so RARE and interesting!
It is so nice to visit libraries or museums to look at artifacts behind glass. They are parts of history which have been preserved by generations of smart people who knew the value of such items and wished them to be preserved for the future. It is mind blowing to stand at a case and observe an item which belonged to those from generations before. Items survive war, auctions and family battles to sit in a building where all can observe them. How rare. I like the feeling of having to stand quietly, observe and item and think about where is has been and who was kind enough to care for it all this time.
This makes me think a lot about this next generation of ours. Have they any artifacts? Their history is completely online. Will their history consist of tablets with scrolling photographs? I certainly hope not. Hopefully they will continue the tradition of caring for special museum pieces. Someone better tell them and educate them now!