Volume L, November 2021
Your Monthly News & Updates
Mystery @ Lanier
Robert S. Abbott signed his 1887 Bible in 1890. The leather-bound book is a 1611 St. James Version published by Oxford at the University Press. So far, Robert’s identity and how his Bible came to be in the Lanier “crypt” are unknown.

“Crypt” is the staff nickname for the dim rooms behind the doors in the LeDuc Room in the Library’s lower level. Few people come to the musty combination of a full basement with concrete flooring and half basement crawl spaces of dirt. Shadows darken quickly with distance from the door. Visits here are usually in response to heating and water problems.

Thanks to funds from the Margaret Howe bequest, a moisture barrier and dehumidifier have been recently installed. Surprisingly, an installer found a plastic-wrapped package in the dirt behind a half wall of cinder block. Jenny Purtill, Executive Director, opened it carefully, revealing Abbott’s book. No one on the staff knew of him.
As a further puzzle, a hand-written notecard, inserted between pages, read: “Dear Don, Since no law library would be complete without the greatest book of law, of love and life in the world I am giving you this one for your library. With love and all good wishes for a happy birthday Mother”

As of today, nothing more is known of Don and Mother.

Jenny and the staff wonder when the book had been left. If the wrapping is Low-density Polyethylene, it had to be after 1935. If the plastic is Polyvinyl Chloride, the date would be after 1953.

Perhaps members can solve the mystery. The book will be on display at the Library. LOOK FOR A STATUS UPDATE IN THE NEXT NEWSLETTER.
Building Update
Work continues on building and ground improvements. In addition to the work done to eliminate water intrusion in the basement and improve the humidity levels in the LeDuc Room, we engaged painters to scrape and repaint the metal railings outside the building.
An arborist visited to assess the trees on the grounds in October. The large oak tree on the Melrose side of the building currently has bacterial leaf scorch, but the rest of the tree is healthy. Hopefully, it should make a full recovery in the coming months. Please come by to check out the improvements!
Support @ Lanier
Smiling for Lanier
We now have 42 members who have designated the library as their charity of choice with Amazon Smile, and the pennies are mounting! Help us to reach our goal of 50 Smile contributors!

Here is the direct link to the library on AmazonSmile:
Membership renewal
Is your membership about to expire? No need to come in to the library, just visit the library website by clicking on: https://thelanierlibrary.org/membership/online-membership-form/ and renew online.
November is a month to focus on gratitude, and the library board and staff are very grateful for our members whose ongoing support helps Lanier remain a vibrant part of the community. Later this month we begin our Annual Fund Drive, and we hope we can count on your support again. Watch for further information about ways you can help us claim a Challenge Gift from members of the library board.
2021 Lanier Library Book of the Month
Reading Challenge
Our November reading challenge invites you to read a classic that you have never read before. For the English majors among us, that might prove a challenge, but perhaps there is a newer classic that rose to fame after your classroom days. Ask at the desk if you need assistance finding one that could become your new favorite.

If you are behind in the reading challenge, take advantage of cooler temperatures and curl up with a good book that will help you meet the challenge.

You can pick up a 2021 Lanier Library BOM Reading Challenge book log at the library, or download it here:


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We're still unsure of the prizes, but you can count on a prize for each group this time. You will earn one ticket with your name on it for each monthly challenge accomplished and be entered into the drawing to be held on January 31, 2022. Since we got a late start, the challenge will run from February 2021 through January 2022.
Books @ Lanier
BOOK LOVERS Meets November 6th @ 10 am
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Book Lovers will meet in the library Saturday, November 6th at 10 am. All are welcome. The only requirement is a love of reading, and a desire to discover more books to love!


NONFICTION BOOK CLUB Meets November 14th @ 1:30 pm
The Nonfiction Book Club will meet outside at Greene Corner Park on November 14th at 1:30 pm. If it rains, they will meet inside the library. Please bring a chair to the outdoor meeting.

The November nonfiction book club title is Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge by Edward Wilson. This title is available in print in our library or Polk County Libraries, but not on hoopla.

The Nonfiction Book Club is taking a break in December. Please check back next month for information on their next selection.
And here are the links to our October orders and acquisitions. Feel free to contact the library to put your name on the hold list for any you would like to read. You can call us or log in through the catalog on the website using your library card number for ID and PIN. And, as always, let us know if there is a book or DVD you think would enhance the collection.

November Book Review
Watership Down
By Richard Adams

I somehow missed getting around to reading the highly controversial and acclaimed novel, Watership Down, when it was published in 1972. I also apparently missed the subsequent movie and television versions as well as the sequel. Thankfully, a friend told me it was her favorite book and convinced me to read it.

Adams made up this delightful (and sociologically insightful) story for his daughters about the adventures of a small group of rabbits that escape the destruction of their warren and go off on a perilous adventure to establish a new home on the hill of Watership Down, which is an actual place in England. Similar to the charm of Wind in the Willows, the animals appear to have human characteristics. What’s different though is that, although they have their own culture and language with a belief system based on a unique mythology, they still live as rabbits in the wild do.

Drawing from epic storylines of old, the plot has the characters struggle with tyranny to find freedom as they overcome incredible physical odds in a Rambo-esque fashion that is bound to satisfy the needs of any adventure-thirsty reader. The well-defined characters embody a variety of familiar human traits found in most group dynamics. The main characters range from Fiver, the smallest buck rabbit who is a seer; his brother Hazel, the unassuming protagonist who convinces the other rabbits to follow through on Fiver’s warning to leave their warren and escape impending danger; to Bigwig, the strongest and bravest rabbit of the group who, trained to be a fighter, learns to show compassion and eventually help to defeat the evil antagonist, General Woundwort, who had successfully built a rabbit warren “empire” only to become a controlling, vindictive potentate in the process.

It is no wonder that Adams won the 1972 Carnegie Medal from the Library Association, for best children's book by a British subject. He also won the annual Guardian Children's Fiction Prize and, in 1977, the inaugural California Young Reader Medal in the Young Adult category. In The Big Read, a 2003 survey of the British public, it was voted the forty-second greatest book of all time. Given today’s political climate, it is also an insightful look at human nature and how people react differently when confronted with change and crisis.


Review by Robin A. Edgar
Programs @ Lanier
When you come, please bring your mask. If you forget one, complimentary masks will be available. We plan to record programs for those who prefer not to attend in person. Recorded programs will be available on the library website.

Masks are strongly recommended at all times in the library. Thank you for helping us keep everyone safe during this recent surge of Covid cases.
Robin A. Edgar: The Day Morris Quit
Saturday, November 13th at 10:30 am
At the next Programs @ Lanier, nationally known journalist Robin A. Edgar will report the facts of Morris’s history in Tryon and read her imaginative account of the day the fabled horse quit and sat down to jam downtown traffic. After years of pulling a cart around town, Morris feels unwanted and replaced with the increase of cars and trucks.

It’s a tale Robin had told many times as an oral storyteller and mime before writing it down in her children’s book The Day Morris Quit. Local illustrator, the late Ron Mosseller, envisioned the story with whimsy and heart in the style known to many from his work in Tryon: An Artist’s and Writer’s Sketchbook.
The book’s theme and soul are based in Robin’s experience as a love and forgiveness workshop facilitator for the Fetzer Institute, and as a life and business coach. She is also the author of In My Mother’s Kitchen: An Introduction to the Healing Power of Reminiscence. Robin says that she wrote the Morris story as “inspiration to help children build self-esteem. A little boy redeems the sad horse with the power of friendship and becomes a town hero.”

Copies sold quickly when published in 2015 with the royalties going to the Tryon Historical Museum. A sequel is in the works: The Day Morris Went to School.
LAST MONTH'S PROGRAMS & EVENTS
Around & Around
with Sherlock
On October 12, Dr. Corinne F. Gerwe shared with us the story of her journey to mystery writing, the connection she feels with Sherlock Holmes author Arthur Conan Doyle, and the opening of the Mountain Page Theater in Saluda.

After her engaging talk, participants were treated to a sneak preview of the theater’s upcoming Saturday Night Classic Radio Series performance of A Scandal in Bohemia. Audience members must wait until the performance airs on the stage in late 2021 or early 2022 to find out the resolution of Doyle’s mystery. In the meantime, please consider attending upcoming performances at Mountain Page Theater.

Find out more by following them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/groups/792646134782145. 
Members @ Lanier
Lanier Library Wednesday volunteers Ann Sellers and Eilene Morgan sporting their Ache Around the Lake swag.

Have you done something fun or special? Been on a memorable vacation? Send in a photo and brief description for our new "Members @ Lanier" section of the monthly newsletter.

Pets @ Lanier
Lanier Library welcomes all library-friendly dogs,
but asks that they remain on leash at all times.

"Riot"
with
Dog Mom
Barbara Smith
Displays @ Lanier
Sandra's November Shelf Display: Our next display is: Enjoy a Book By A Celebrity For Our December Reading Challenge.

As always, Sandra's book displays are designed to be dismantled. And if you have a favorite book, be sure to share it with us to add to the display.
Our November Display
The November display case at Lanier features sweetgrass baskets made in the Charleston, SC area. Sweetgrass baskets were brought by enslaved West Africans in the late 1700s. The display features different styles of baskets that serve multiple purposes.
We showcased the Hub City Press
in Spartanburg in our
October display case. 
Poem of the Month
The Lanier Library Poetry Committee is pleased to introduce a poem of the month program. Each month we will be posting a different poem that we hope will inspire you. The poem will be in the monthly newsletter and posted at the library. Please let us know what you think of each month's selection.
A Song of the Future

BY SIDNEY LANIER

  Sail fast, sail fast,
  Ark of my hopes, Ark of my dreams;
  Sweep lordly o'er the drowned Past,
  Fly glittering through the sun's strange beams;
  Sail fast, sail fast.
  Breaths of new buds from off some drying lea
  With news about the Future scent the sea:
  My brain is beating like the heart of Haste:
  I'll loose me a bird upon this Present waste;
  Go, trembling song,
  And stay not long; oh, stay not long:
  Thou'rt only a gray and sober dove,
  But thine eye is faith and thy wing is love.

(Baltimore, 1878)

Lanier Library | 828-859-9535| thelanierlibrary@gmail.com