March 27th, 2012

An Extensive Library

What books are worth having, keeping, collecting? Richard Macksey has amassed an unusually large collection and it expresses and defines who he is, to his core.

Inside Richard Macksey’s house, books are literally everywhere. They stretch from floor to ceiling, filling the house and spilling into the garage. For over half a century, Macksey has inspired his students at Johns Hopkins, stirring in them a love of literature and the arts. Comprising more than 70,000 books, a large collection of manuscripts, and some art works all worth an estimated $4 million, Macksey has bequeathed his entire collection to the Johns Hopkins Sheridan Libraries.”

I, on the other hand, am working on keeping less. Unless I can put my hands on anything and everything, a physical library loses its utility. And moving books is no fun. So, I’m in pursuit of the fine balance of having what I need available to accomplish my goals, research and projects vs. knowing where and how to get the information if I don’t “own” it.

But I love his library (and what he’s done with it), regardless.