A large print book
A large print book

The Library has recently expanded its offering of large-print books, thanks to the Anne R. Ferguson Large Print Book Fund, a generous endowment given to the capital fund by Eric Ferguson.

With the help of this gift, the number of volumes in the large-print collection has more than tripled.

"Patrons saw the difference almost immediately," said Sally Ijams, head of Knowledge & Learning Services at the Library.

"We went at it with the intent of adding depth to the collection. Before we had some good titles, but not everything by a long shot," Ijams said. "And this also allowed us to replace worn copies of popular books, like our Agatha Christies, which are perennially popular."

Large-print versions of some of the Library's most popular books, such as Steve Jobs, by Walter Isaacson and Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks  are now available.

In addition to increasing the size of the collection, the Library has added new technology to serve readers with vision impairments, and the Knowledge & Learning Services staff recently made large-print books more accessible to patrons in other ways. 

"The books have also been moved to more accessible shelving on the second floor, instead of on the lower shelving in the non-fiction area," said Darien Library Chief Administrative Officer Alan Gray. In addition, the newest parts of the collection have been put on display on Main Street, making the large-print titles more accessible to everyone, Gray said. 

The gift was an important one for the Library and patrons, said Library Director Louise Berry.

"Large-print titles are so expensive to purchase that a lot of people don't buy them on their own, and therefore users of that collection rely even more heavily on access to a library collection," Berry said. "And because Mr. Ferguson's gift was made as an endowment, it will continue to benefit our users who need that format forever."