Occupy Wall Street Needs Help Reclaiming Their Library

After a bit of a run-around yesterday preceded by early rumors that the 5,000-some books in the Occupy Wall Street People's Library had been tossed in dumpsters and destroyed, the Mayor's Office tweeted that the books (and other possessions removed from Zuccotti Park during the eviction) were safely ensconced at the Sanitation garage at 650 57th Street. We spoke to Mandy Henk, one of the People's librarians, who told us that they need help reclaiming their stuff. She says, "We got word yesterday when people went down that we could pick up stuff today, so six of us have gone down to get stuff. We need people with cars, though, to help us move our library."

She also provided a list of what the library is missing:

• Between 2,000 and 4,000 books (we'll know if it looks right when we see it), this includes five boxes of "Reference" materials many of which were autographed by the authors;
• Our custom made "OWS library stamps;"
• 5 (4?) laptop computers;
• Our wifi device;
• miscellaneous paper supplies;
• A round portable table;
• a rectangular portable table;
• 6 metal shelves (five of which had been set up in two pieces);
• three sets of wooden drawers;
• a periodicals spinning rack;
• Approximately 60 plastic tubs/bins of varying sizes (most small, but several big);
• archival materials;
• posters (including many original posters created by OWS participants);
• two lamps;
• four solar lights;
• 7 (or so) chairs;
• a wooden dinner table;
• periodicals/newspapers/zines (not counted in our book total);
• our awesome tent [donated by Patti Smith];
• signage;
• personal belongings of librarians

She says, "It's still a draft that we are working on, but it does give an idea of how much stuff is involved in even the simplest of libraries." [ed: and it's just a sampling of the vast amount of stuff collected from Zuccotti yesterday.]

She continues, "I would also add, we still missing one librarian. A young man named Scales is still in the system awaiting release. We'd like him back too."

Presumably he is not waiting at 57th Street. Henk says, however, "the police have been very helpful so far."

Update from Henk: "it looks like we are missing two librarians -- Scales and Charlie. No word yet on their release."

Update 2, from Henk:
"Bloomberg lied. From people on the ground, 'There are only about 25 boxes of books; many of the books are destroyed. Laptops here but destroyed. Can't find tent or shelves. Or rubber stamps.' Sigh. We could use some cars in the next hour or two."

Update 3: Jocelyn Silver, who's at the Sanitation Garage, reports that 11 protesters are there now and 23 have been in all day. "It's super quiet," she says.

If you'd like to help, get in touch via the People's Library website.

[JDoll / @thisisjendoll]

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