Emily Reiher

What I do at the library: Under the direction of the Curator of Special Collections, I’m responsible for the day-to-day archival operations of Special Collections, including collections care. As Archivist, I help provide in person and online access to the Special Collections of the Oak Park Public Library and its community partners, including The Ernest Hemingway Foundation of Oak Park Archives.

How I turn outward in my everyday work: Answering reference questions, giving tours, and teaching about primary sources and collections care are some of the most rewarding aspects of working in Special Collections. We frequently partner with local organizations such as Oak Park Elementary School District 97, to collaborate on programming, exhibits, and other projects.  We also partner with the Illinois Digital Archives, Digital Public Library of America, and Chicago Collections to make our collections available online. For more information on Special Collections turning outward, check out our Hacking Hemingway: Cracking the Code to the Vault grant project or contact Leigh Tarullo, Curator of Special Collections for information on visiting Special Collections.  

My favorite "hidden library gem:" Every day there is something new to discover in Special Collections! Right know I’m enjoying our newly restored Grand Army of the Republic Volumes and learning more about the Philander Barclay Photograph Collection, which you can follow on Twitter.

My favorite thing about Oak Park: The people. There is such a genuine interest in local history and a strong spirit of volunteerism. 

What I’m reading, listening to, and watching now: I’ve been reading Keigo Higashino’s detective novels. I can’t wait for more of his works to be translated into English! I usually listen to humor or memoirs on my commute, like David Sedaris or Bossypants by Tina Fey. Lately, I’ve been rewatching my three favorite shows: Mad Men, Breaking Bad, and Arrested Development. I’m also a big fan of The Big Bang Theory.

(June 2015; updated December 2016)

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