Coloradan introduces first Little Free Library to South Pole
This means that there are small free libraries on every continent.
COLORADO, USA – The South Pole received from Coloradan Dr. Russell Schnell a knowledge gift in the form of a small free library that stores novels, science fiction books, equipment manuals and more for Antarctic workers.
This comes from a press release from the Little Free Library, a nonprofit that registers and promotes book sharing boxes.
This installation means that there are now small free libraries on all seven continents.
For Schnell, atmospheric scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and woodworker from Hobby, this was his 37th installation on the fifth continent.
He said he could have 11 more free small libraries around the world once the COVID-19 pandemic wears off.
“I think the Little Free Library is such a generally great and easy-to-understand concept that there should be libraries every few square kilometers in populated areas,” Schnell said.
At NOAA’s Atmospheric Research Observatory, those looking for reading material can now find Schell’s Little Free Library.
“Books with photos of colorful trees, warm deserts, water, beaches, wheat fields as well as animals and birds are popular at the South Pole,” said Schnell. “Everything else is white for hundreds of kilometers in all directions.”
Access to books is an essential task for Schell because of his upbringing.
“As a kid, I never had access to books,” he said. “I bought books whenever I could later in life. Our daughter was asked on a school questionnaire once when she was eight years old how many books were in her house. She said about 1,000. The teacher thought that answer was fantastic. It wasn’t our daughter. ” far away.”
Schnell has expanded to more than 100,000 small free libraries worldwide in all 50 states and now on all seven continents.
“We are thrilled to have such an enthusiastic attorney as Dr. Schnell,” said Greig Metzger, Executive Director of Little Free Library. “It is an honor to be part of his travels and now through his efforts to have a small free library in the South Pole.
Those who wish to get involved in starting their own small free library to bring books to underserved communities can visit their website for more information.
When building the small libraries, Schells said he took pride in using recycled materials in addition to the screws and bolts he said.
“It takes me a few weeks or more to build it,” said Schells. “But then I’ll give them away for free and even install them for free.”
The 40-60 pound structure should last for many years, he said.
Schell said he would continue to build free small libraries to expand people’s access to books around the world, hoping one day to place them on seven continents himself.
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