Thursday, November 30, 2006

120-Year-Old Book Club at Home in Riverside by Joseph Ruzich

Catching up with my newspapers after the holiday, I found "120-Year-Old Book Club at Home in Riverside" by Joseph Ruzich in section 2, page 12 in the November 24, 2006 issue of the Chicago Tribune. The three-column article tells about the group that formed in 1886 and has been meeting in homes in and around Riverside, Illinois ever since. It started as the Ladies Literary Club of Riverside and changed to its current name in 1890. In its history the group has had as many as 32 and as few as 11 members. It now has 15, who meet on the first and third Thursday of the month.

The club does not follow standard book club procedures. Instead of having everyone read one book, everyone reads different books and reports on them. At a recent meeting most of the books discussed were nonfiction. The club also has a history of making charitable donations to causes, such as the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906.

The article reports that the club's minutes have been preserved in "lovely" handwriting at the Riverside Historical Museum. I wonder how many books have been read by members in 120 years. The number must be enormous.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

A few months ago I heard (from a patron) of this kind of book club - where everyone reads a different book and then tells all the others about it. This patron loved that she heard about so many new (to her) books. Every month she would come in to the library with a new list of books for me to find for her.