History of the Little Free Library

In its most basic form, a Little Free Library is a box full of books where anyone may stop by and pick up a book and bring back another book to share. It's a  neighbourhood book exchange. It’s a place where neighbours share their favourite books.

In 2009, Tod Bol decided to build a model schoolhouse as a tribute to his mother, a former school teacher who loved to read. He built it from recycled materials, filled it with books and placed it in his front garden in Wisconsin, USA with a sign that read ‘Little Free Library.’

Tod Bol's 1st little library
He made more little houses and gave them to family and friends and the idea for a global network of Little Free Libraries was born.

The most often quoted benefits of Little Free Libraries
  • People meet more neighbours and passers-by than they have in years.
  • They often spend time getting to know people as well as books.
  • They value the free-wheeling exchange of books, especially because they are often surprised by the variety and quality of the collections.
  • They like giving as much as –or perhaps even more than—taking books.
  •  Little Free Libraries are likely to have a positive influence on community quality of life and social capital.
  • Small, local business owners report that Little Free Libraries help them attract and keep customers.
  • Children, youth and adults of all ages and backgrounds can share in the give and take. People of widely diverse socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds participate in this grassroots effort.
You can find out more about the Little Free Library here .

This is linked up at Read With Me


  1. Hey I like this... if we had these around, reading could be encouraged even more ... of course we have the library but it isn't convenient as it is a major distance from my house and I would have to make sure I could get the books back on time... this sounds better to me and I have lots of books I could donate... really neat idea xox

  2. The Mother says - What a charming and lovely idea. A wonderful way to read different authors and meeting people at the same time. Had a little lump in my throat when I read this as such a wonderful idea. #readwithme

  3. I love thid idea, a great way to get people reading more, real books seem to be phased out so much due to the digital age. thanks for sharing with #readwithme x

  4. Little libraries are so friendly and accessible. I had never heard the history so thanks this is an interesting read.


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