It is said the first great library of the Western World was in Alexandria, Egypt, then the capital of the Ptolemaic empire. But part of it went up in flames thanks to a dockyard fire when Julius Caesar was being Caesar trying to burn Egypt’s ships. There were between 100,000 and 500,000 scrolls gathered from throughout the world at the Alexandria library.
The idea behind libraries was to gather and protect knowledge, mathematics, charts, anything and everything that would help man. Not really any fiction writers back in those days.
The first American library was at Harvard College in 1638, but the first public library opened in 1698 in Charleston, South Carolina. Benjamin Franklin, America’s Man of all Seasons, opened the Library Company in Philadelphia in 1731. There was even a children’s library in Salisbury Connecticut, opening in 1803. Libraries were created by clubs or by private individuals, but not until 18333 in Peterborough, New Hampshire, did a city vote for public funds to create a public library. And of course Andrew Carnegie libraries are everywhere, at least in the state I live.
But in the new e-world of e-books what is next for libraries? At some time in the future, someone will develop a huge cloud to store e-books where e-writers can donate their books to be borrowed by e-readers. There may have to be clouds within clouds as there will be millions of e-books, so perhaps a cloud for each of the non-fictional categories now found in libraries and clouds for all fictional categories.
Od course if you do not return a book the cloud librarian will send a virus to your device and ruin your day.
But the day is coming where there will be e-libraries, after all what is Netflix and Hulu Plus, but TV and movie libraries. Even with the speed of todays technology I doubt I will be around to see it happen, but until then we have Amazon where you can find books.
My Amazon page: http://www.amazon.com/Terry-Nelson/e/B00EEVHN38