Campbell Library currently features an exhibit on the role of books and libraries during World War 1 and World War 2. This carefully curated exhibit is the work of Cynthia Holland and is the result of hours of research into library support of soldiers during two terrible conflicts.
Why examine this period of history? This exhibit chronicles the changes to literacy, education, and publishing resulting from libraries’ work to support soldiers in the field. One example that we can all identify with is paperbacks. Until the creation of Armed Services Editions, paperbacks designed to fit into uniform pockets, books were expensive investments and only available hardbound. 122 million books were published in this format.
Another example is education. Reading these paperback books changed the lives of young men who had never considered attending college. A new generation of learners emerged from each war and altered American society forever.
The exhibit also highlights a local connection to wartime literacy: Millville Public Library was recognized for collecting and donating books for the soldier.
Stop by the first floor of Campbell Library to learn more about the impacts of libraries during the 20thCentury.