Looking to buy a vintage library card catalog? Craigslist, Etsy, eBay and flea markets are all great places to look. For those searching right now, here are over 20 library catalogs currently for sale on Craigslist and Etsy. Happy hunting!
If you’re in the Austin area, Julie is selling a 30-drawer card catalog: 33″ x 38″ and 47″ tall, and two pull out shelves per side. She shares: “It was in use in the UT library for a while, so it has the normal chips, wear and tear that come with age and college students. I also have a few drawers full of the cards that came with it if those are of interest to anyone.” The photos are of a duplicate card catalog she’s currently using. If you’re interested, you can contact Julie through her original Craigslist ad, or if you post that you’re interested, I will email you directly with her email address.
Barbara is trying to sell 2 library card catalogs in Western Pennsylvania. One is a 60-drawer and the other is a 30-drawer. These are from a university library and are mid 1950s. She has all the brass rods that held the cards in place but they aren’t all showing in the photographs as they’re using the card catalogs to store other items. She says they’re in pretty good shape. If you’re interested, please contact Barbara directly at email@example.com
If you’ve been looking to buy a library card catalog, you’re not alone. Card catalogs are all the rage these days, used in shops and homes both for pure decoration and for serious organizing (I’ve seen them hold everything from craft materials to tools to wine bottles). And really, who wouldn’t want a little piece of library?
But where to find them? There’s the rub. I’ve scoured eBay and Craigslist for library catalogs with some luck, but often they’re bought up quickly. One alternative I’ve discovered is avid card catalog collector, Barry Muchnick. Muchnick is a private collector specializing in turn-of-the-century office furniture with lots of tiny drawers. His collection of card catalogs (and other furniture pieces with small drawers) has grown too large to house, so he’s offloading many of them. Almost all his pieces are antique quartersawn golden oak, with one mahogany and a few hard rock maple.
All the pieces pictured below are for sale by Muchnick. You can contact him at 315Whitney@gmail.com if you’re interested if buying any of these card catalogs — mention you saw them at Curled Up With A Book. Also, if you’re looking to buy a card catalog in another style, it’s worth emailing him to see if he has additional stock matching your tastes. Happy hunting!
*UPDATE 1/6/2012: If you have a library card catalog for sale, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll try to post about your items.*
**UPDATE 5/26/2012: I will post updates to my Facebook page when I hear of new card catalogs for sale. Here’s the page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Curled-Up-With-a-Book/289758557081
I love this nifty card catalog generator on Blyberg.net, which lets you make your own library catalog cards. Just fill in the Call Number, Title, Card Text, and other “scribbles,” then click “Make It!” and presto, you’ve got your own cards.
For a little while now I’ve been looking for an old library card catalog. My quest has largely been disappointing in its results (probably because I don’t want to spend too much on it), but the other day I got a bit of inspiration to keep looking, via this design*sponge spotlight on Matthew Fairbanks. Fairbanks is a Brooklyn-based furniture artist who created this lovely card catalog writing desk.
I went hunting for some other nice card catalog shots and found lots of good ones, rekindling my hope that there’s a card catolog out there for me somewhere…