Birds, Bees, and the Library
"The Lawrence Public Library is where my best friend, Janice, and I learned about the "birds and the bees." When we were six or seven years old, we started asking questions about where babies come from. Our mothers, who were longtime college friends,decided that it was time that we knew this information and checked a book out at the library called “Being Born.” It used illustrations of cows to depict how babies form in a mother.
The two families shared the library book and our mothers flipped a coin to determine who got the book first. My mother read it to me one chapter at a time. When it was at our house, my mother would hide the book during the day out of concern that I might read it on my own.
It was a regular outing for mothers to take their children to the Carnegie Library at 9th and Vermont Streets. I remember that there were two light posts with globes on them at the corners of the main desk. You could not talk while you were there and even had to whisper when you asked a question. Yet it was a wonderful place that so many people in the community used and enjoyed."
Library story shared by Nancy Helmstadter of Lawrence.
Photo: From left, Janice Monteith and Nancy Helmstadter in 1936.
More library stories
Share your library story
Libraries are full of stories -- and not just the ones found in books! As part of the New Stories campaign, we'd like to hear from you. The Library Foundation is collecting stories about the role that the Library has played in your life. Share your library story here.
"That one was so much fun!"
Estelle Bass reviews and returns her books
to the Lawrence Public Library
Questions? Please contact the Library Foundation