Sometimes the bookmarks I find while sorting used books are reminders. They remind me of other times and viewpoints, or of books and authors I’ve not yet read.
This bookmark about The United Way reminds me that the charity organization once used a more overtly Christian religious appeal than it does presently. “Share your blessings,” it reminds us all in red at the bottom. The text reads:
Mark him much blessed who scorns no other,
to whom each stranger is a brother,
for he walks in the steps of Him above
and lives in the warmth of His great love.
And this bookmark featuring the author Maya Angelou reminds me that I’ve never read any of her books. So many books, so little time.
When sorting the used books that come into Crux, I often find bookmarks advertising bookshops — most of these bookshops are now closed sadly. I want to visit them, but cannot. Here are two I’d like to see.
James Thin of Edinburgh specialized in religion and theology and claimed one of the largest stocks of books in Britain. Oh to be able to browse in this shop! A little digging produces the fact that the flagship bookshop is now Blackwell’s, Edinburgh. Apparently Muriel Sparks wrote her novels on notebooks from Thin’s. Who knew that a bookmark would have so much interesting history behind it?
I can’t find as much information about Diversity Antiques and Collectibles, Inc. of Halifax, N.S., though it appears that Mr. McGee is no longer in business. I’ve never been to Halifax, but I’d like to go — there seem to be a lot of interesting second-hand bookshops in the area. Why else would you want to go to Halifax?
Here’s a bookmark found in a batch of used books at Crux:
It is pretty. And sort of upside down. This bookmark has the tassel dangling from the bottom instead of hanging off the top. I’m not sure how that is meant to work. Maybe the bookmark is meant for a small book so the tassel hangs below the book to mark the page? Maybe it is meant for a prayerbook. Maybe it actually me that is upside down.
One of the many bookmarks that come into Crux in used books people sell us is featured on The Backlist. More bookmarks, and other bits and pieces found in used books, will be featured here in this blog in the Seen & Heard category. Watch for it!