« 16757 Juliana | Main | StoryCorps in Vermont »

Friday, August 04, 2006

The John Woodruff Simpson Memorial Library

Dscf6100_1Q: Why should you get in your car and drive to the North East Kingdom to see this tiny little library in the middle of nowhere?

A: Because where else in Vermont can you see an ostrich egg, a blackened monkey skull, an eyeless jaggedy jawed pirhana, a complete bible that fits in the palm of your hand, and a fan from "Biskra, a city in an oasis in the desert of Sahara?"

Dscf6162_1Actually, those are exactly the kind of things you'd find at the fabulous Fairbanks Museum in St. Johnsbury, but the John Woodruff Simpson Memorial Library is so much more intimate. And it was founded by Jean Walker Simpson, a wise and feisty woman would ride around Craftsbury Common in her horse-drawn chariot on Old Home Day, while wearing a Roman toga.

Dscf6211I got to spend a morning last week visiting the library and getting a tour. My story on the experience is out this week. I highly recommend taking a day trip to East Craftsbury to see this place. I definitely plan to return.

August 4, 2006 at 08:42 AM in Real VT | Permalink


I am related to those Simpsons, via my great-grandmother who was a Simpson and lived in Craftsbury. That is one of my favorite all-time libraries. There is lots of great stuff about the Simpsons, and about Craftsbury, in the UVM special collections library.

Posted by: jessamyn | Aug 5, 2006 11:30:47 AM

Hey Jessamyn! Yeah, I found your post about the library on your blog and on flickr. I asked the librarian and her friend if they knew you, and they remembered your visit fondly.

Thanks for the tip about Special Collections. Interesting.

Posted by: cresmer | Aug 5, 2006 1:58:59 PM

I was doing a search as I have heard of Katherine Seney Simpson and I was Katherine "Kate" Seney as well before I got married. I have to visit this library for sure!

Posted by: Kate Seney Burch | Aug 8, 2006 11:47:03 AM

The comments to this entry are closed.