Tuesday, January 30, 2007

The Brautigan Library in Burlington, Vermont

Awesome! Gonna make my friend V-Ron take me there someday!

Unusual library may get new chapter

By Kevin O'Kelly, Globe Correspondent | September 27, 2004

BURLINGTON, Vt. -- The 325 works in the Brautigan Library are diverse, to say the least, ranging from the short-story collection "Sterling Silver Cockroaches" to the economic treatise "Three Essays Advocating the Abolition of Money" to the poetry collection "A Shoebox to Hold the Unknown." But they all have one thing in common: They've never been published. From 1990 to 1996, the Brautigan Library accepted manuscripts from all over the world, as long as the authors paid binding costs. Housed in the Fletcher Free Library in downtown Burlington, the collection exists as a memorial to the work of counterculture author and '60s icon Richard Brautigan, whose novel "The Abortion" takes place largely in a library that collects only unpublished works. Brautigan's novels have devoted fans, and so does the library he inspired.

"It still amazes me how many people I'll find here," says Fletcher codirector Amber Collins. "People are fascinated by the idea that books shouldn't be regulated by the fact that you have to have a publisher."

Visitors peruse the collection, look at the Brautigan memorabilia, or just savor the offbeat nature of the place. In accordance with the library's bylaws, none of the chairs match. Instead of using the Library of Congress or Dewey Decimal systems, the Brautigan's trustees opted to organize the collection according to the "Mayonnaise System," in homage to Brautigan's novel "Trout Fishing in America," which ends with the word "mayonnaise." The Mayonnaise System is quite simple: Books are organized in categories such as "Love," "the Future," "Adventure," and "All the Rest."


inkcloudempress said...

So, this means they have that book on growing flowers by candlelight, right? Tulips do all right.

Anonymous said...

Would you please save the picture of Richard Brautigan and place it on your own webspace? The picture is called from my server each time somebody reads this page, more than 300 times. You've taken the picture without asking, that's unpolite, but ok, people are like that nowadays. But I don't really like it that use my server as "your webspace for your pictures".

Carolyn B said...

I just found about this library, while cruising the internet. And it is right around the corner from me.
What a terrific idea. I shall have to let others know about this library. Richard Brautigan was an author I read in the 1970's. Carolyn Bates, Burlington, Vt

peter said...

Brautigan was baptized as a Roman Catholic and was raised in the Pacific northwest. His parents were divorced before he was born and his mother Mary Lou would remarry three times. He grew up with his mother, his step-fathers and other siblings. He had two half-sisters named Barbara Titland Sandra Jean Porterfield and a half-brother named William David Folston, Jr, born on December 19, 1950.
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Gomez said...

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Clark County Historical Museum said...

Last year the Brautigan Library moved across the country to Vancouver, Washington. The Library is now housed in the Clark County Historical Museum in that city and the new website for the Library can be found at http://thebrautiganlibrary.org.