Monday, January 10, 2011

Bookplates of the Los Angeles Public Library

I recently added The Bookplates of the Los Angeles Public Library by Joan L. West (Los Angeles Library Association, 1971) to my library history book collection. It is a very attractive 29 page book printed by Richard J. Hoffman in a limited edition of 500 copies.  The bookplate shown here is tipped into the front of the book.  Other bookplates are depicted as illustrations.  West writes: "Yet bookplates are more than an ownership declaration or an art form.  They are avenues into the self-mage of the user.  Institutional bookplates, if viewed in succession, can provide one with a history of the institution as interpreted from the symbolism of the bookplates.  The history of the Los Angeles Public Library can be interpreted in just that way."  The Los Angeles Library Association, a subscription library that was the predecessor of the Los Angeles Public Library, was founded in 1872 and this book, published in 1971, was a nice way to help celebrate the library's centennial.  Unfortunately, there's not much about the history of the library on its website.

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