CILIPS Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland
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#Library5 Day 3

We all know that libraries provide access to a wealth of books and information. However, libraries also have a lot of really interesting and one-off items in their collections. The theme of Day 3, then, was Unusual Item where library staff shared some of the more obscure objects and books in their libraries.

  • University of Stirling Information Services shared a very Scottish Unusual Item – a giant Tunnocks Teacake! This is held in the University’s archives and was used in the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony.
  • Libraries hold all sorts of items…how about these police hats and crime scene tape found in Shetland Library?
  • Edinburgh Napier has a piece of barbed wire from the battlefield of the Somme – truly a piece of history available for viewing in a Scottish library.
  • This has to be one of our favourite items shared…a Reading Throne!!
  • Common amongst library worker…a mystery to library patrons! Who works with one of these on a daily basis? The staff at West College libraries do.
  • Jelly anyone? Glasgow Caledonian University can help you make the perfect batch!
  • vase owned by poet and filmmaker Margaret Tait held by the Scottish Poetry Library.
  • Reference Services at National Library of Scotland shared a number of Unusual Items. These included a top and trousers from the 2014 Commonwealth Games, bath books, a Gaelic car radiator badge, and a cat treat baking set!
  • One of the earliest adapted PC keyboards for visually impaired library users was shared by Culture NL. Chris Wilson from Culture NL shared his own unusual item…a Yoda head without a body!
  • City of Glasgow College Information Assistant, Shahnila, shared an interesting book by David Roberts called ‘Suffragette: The Battle for Equality’.
  • 1979 Argos Catalogue is held in the stacks of the National Library of Scotland and isn’t it so amazing that you can see the gold key that was used to ceremonially open the iconic George IV Bridge building in the 50s?!
  • And finally, perhaps the winner for most Unusual Item goes to the Advocates Library who shared that they had a real Egyptian Mummy in their stacks from 1748 to 1958!! You can read more about that here.