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Which president sold $25,000 worth of books to Congress and helped start the Library of Congress?

November 14th, 2007  |  Published in Libraries and Exhibits  |  3 Comments

Does anyone know why fifty people have come to my blog after Googling some variation on this question? I suspect it's a bunch of lazy students. If that's the case, I suggest thinking just a tiny bit before typing your question into Google. Let's see. Who could possibly have the answer. Hmm. This is very tough. I wonder if some place like the history page on the Library of Congress website would have the answer. Or you could look up Library of Congress on wikipedia, which copies most of the LC history page verbatim. The thing is, the reason it's hard to find the answer is that the question is wrong. Congress bought a 6,487-book library from an ex-president for $23,950. You can read all about it in the September/October 2007 issue of Fine Books & Collections magazine, but you have to actually get a copy. A lot of good stuff isn't free on the net. 


  1. John Overholt says:

    November 14th, 2007at 6:27 am(#)

    I say you should put Chester A. Arthur in the title of this post and teach these students a valuable lesson about the importance of information resources other than Google.

  2. sarahsbooks says:

    November 14th, 2007at 10:39 am(#)

    Two reasons folks ended up at my blog: the first one googled “poem” and “Tintin Abbey” (I do love Tintin – Wordsworth not so much) and the second googled “how do you tell a woman you love her” – and I think I could write a novel about each of those searches…

  3. jgodsey says:

    November 14th, 2007at 5:38 pm(#)

    what i remember about the story was that he was dead broke and needed the money and jacked the price. i am loathe to actually research the issue, because i like my story better than anything i’d find.

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