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Albany Library Taking Donations Again – Elevator Returns to Duty

With the elevator back in service after several weeks on the disabled list, the Albany Library is accepting book donations again.

The heavy lifting at the Albany Library is handled by the elevator, which forced a halt in accepting book donations when it went on sick leave for several weeks until restored to service on Dec. 6, 2013. Photo credit: Charles Burress, Dec. 11, 2013
The heavy lifting at the Albany Library is handled by the elevator, which forced a halt in accepting book donations when it went on sick leave for several weeks until restored to service on Dec. 6, 2013. Photo credit: Charles Burress, Dec. 11, 2013
The workhorse of the Albany Library – the long-ailing elevator – has been repaired, which means people can donate books again.

"Our elevator's fixed," said Marsha Skinner, the relieved president of the Friends of the Albany Library, which supports the library through sales of donated books.

"We can accept donations again," Skinner said as she wheeled a cartload of books from the main floor to the rejuvenated elevator for transport to the basement storage room. 

"It's been out service since before our sale in September," she said. The repair was completed on Dec. 6, she said.

Moving books without an elevator at the Albany Library can be a daunting task, especially for the book sales organized by the Friends. Those with strong backs and arms may not balk at carrying one or two boxes of books up or down 26 steps, but how about 160 boxes, not to mention tables and other needed materials?

The November sale managed the feat with paid movers and a lot of help from Albany High and Albany Middle School students. They managed so well, in fact, that the total $5,095.59 in sales for the day far surpassed the previous, elevator-assisted November 2012 sales mark of $4,377.65, Skinner said.

The Friends and the library also have ongoing sales of books online and in a special bookcase and cart across the from the circulation desk.

Though the types of books that people donate and buy may shift over time – with mysteries and popular female authors in ascendancy these days – the demand for old-fashioned, printed-on-paper books hasn't faltered, Skinner said.

"We're still seeing sales," she said. "They want a paperback they can take on the plane. They want gifts they can give for Christmas." And perennially popular kids' books remain in demand, she said.

The next book sale will be held in March.

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