Thursday, September 22, 2022

A little gem

Stanley - Thursday

This week I'm heading out of town for several book events - as one does when there's a new book to be revealed to the world. 

I have just returned from Cumberland, Wisconsin, which is about an hour and three quarters drive north east of Minneapolis. It is the first time I've been there, and I certainly hope it is not the last. I gave a talk about A Deadly Covenant at the Thomas St. Angelo Public Library, which had been recommended to me by a member of my book critique group, Barbara Deese.

Without her recommendation it is unlikely I would have known about it.

Cumberland has a population of approximately 2,200 people and is often called the Island Town because it is set on an island in the middle of a series of lakes in Western Wisconsin in the middle of farm country. As an aside, Wisconsin is known for cheese, beer, and dodgy politicians.

Cumberland. few decades ago

Cumberland Opera House

I didn't know what to expect as I drove up to the library. All my contacts had been enthusiastic and professional. But a library in a town with such a small population? 

I was very pleasantly surprised. The library was gorgeous. The original building was erected in 1906 with a grant from Andrew Carnegie, a man who needs no introduction. Recently a new addition was built to house the expanding library, funder largely by a half-million dollar grant from the Thomas St. Angelo Foundation. 

Thomas St. Angelo was a state representative of the Republican Party. When he died, he wanted much of his money to go to educating people. Hence the gift to the library.

My event was lively with plenty of question, mainly about Bushmen. I had brought my Bushman hunting artefacts to show off, since Bushman play a big role in our latest book.

This is one of the wonderful aspects about rural America, and indeed about rural areas in many countries - there are gems to be found. And the Thomas St. Angelo Public Library is one of them. Tomorrow I head farther north to the Spooner Public Library, Wisconsin, another gem in rural Wisconsin.

What makes these gems even more endearing is that both libraries have patrons who are big Kubu fans.


1 comment:

  1. Fabulous. Don't you often find that small comunities are very supportive of events? And Cumberland, ancient place in Englandshire, is famous for its sausage!