Sunday, April 14, 2019

Hooray for the Bookmobile and its Creator--Mary Lemist Titcomb!

National Library Week officially ended yesterday, but let's keep celebrating, shall we? A friend recommended this marvelous book, an excellent read any time. A step back in history, a tribute to the woman who started the first bookmobile in the U.S., and a reminder of how far we've come, this picture book biography of Mary Lemist Titcomb is great for all ages. 

The theme throughout is stated clearly on the first page--"Mary never gave up." One of Mary's sayings was "The happy person is the person who does something." And so, she did! In a time when women had little power or influence, she faced obstacles galore, but made her dream a reality that became a beloved institution. 

The book's finely focused details are enhanced by historic photos and images of documents. The book concludes with photos of "Washington County Bookmobiles Through the Years." 

The Author's Note adds more layers to this interesting story. Sharlee Glenn found Titcomb's unmarked grave and raised money for a marker for Titcomb and her sister, Lydia.

I have to think that Mary would be happy that Sharlee "did something" about the something that Mary did. 

Our library still runs a robust bookmobile route. If you have bookmobile memories, please leave them in the comments.


  1. Mobile libraries changes lives, all around the world! I wrote a book called MY LIBRARIAN IS A CAMEL to share stories of book mobiles in Kenya, Mongolia, Finland and many more.

  2. You are so right, Margriet! Around the world, people have found surprising ways to bring books to people! See more about Margriet's book here:

  3. We have both books at our library. Mary on Horseback by Rosemary Wells is another favorite about a woman who pioneered nursing service to mountain people. And have you read That Book Woman by Heather Henson?
    Growing up in small town SD without a library (except at school), having a bookmobile helped us have reading material during the summer and I needed that!

    1. Fantastic, Lynette! Not familiar with either of the books you mention. Glad you appreciated the bookmobile that came to your town!

  4. I just ordered this book - sounds like such a fun read! As a child with access only to a very small library, the bookmobile was such a blessing. I can still remember walking in, the way it smelled and feeling such a sense of hope and joy. I guess I have Mary to thank for this wonderful experience!

  5. I guess so, Bernal! So glad you could have that experience! Happy reading, and thanks for stopping by.