April 23rd, 2014

Happy 100th Birthday, Wrigley Field!

In honor of 100 years, we thought we’d share a lesser known fact about Wrigley:

Back in 1944, there was a ski-jumping event held in Wrigley, with a ramp in the upper deck and the jumpers landing in the area around second base.

Flugtag’s got nothin on The Friendly Confines!

Here’s to the next 100 years!

April 16th, 2014

Captain Underpants Crowned The American Library Association’s “Most Challenged Book” of 2013

From A.V. Club:

The American Library Association has released its annual list of the “most challenged” books in schools and public libraries.

For the second time since 2012, the list was topped by Dav Pilkey’s children’s book series The Adventures Of Captain Underpants, the story of two fourth-graders who use their imaginations to create a comic-book about a superhero, whose disregard for pants is as flagrant as the book’s use of language like “pee-pee, poopy, and wedgie.”

Some parents have reportedly deemed the book as unsuitable for its intended age group of ages 7 to 10, fearing they are far too young for a frank, mature discussion of pee-pee and poopy. 

Click here for the “Top 10 Challenged Books of 2013.”

April 2nd, 2014

Harvard Discovers Three Of Its Library Books Are Bound In Human Flesh

From Roadtrippers:

A few years ago, three separate books were discovered in Harvard University’s library that had particularly strange-looking leather covers. Upon further inspection, it was discovered that the smooth binding was actually human flesh… in one case, skin harvested from a man who was flayed alive.

As it turns out, the practice of using human skin to bind books was actually pretty popular during the 17th century. It’s referred to as Anthropodermic bibliopegy and proved pretty common when it came to anatomical textbooks. Medical professionals would often use the flesh of cadavers they’d dissected during their research.

One of the books includes an inscription in purple cursive:

"The bynding of this booke is all that remains of my dear friende Jonas Wright, who was flayed alive by the Wavuma on the Fourth Day of August, 1632. King Mbesa did give me the book, it being one of poore Jonas chiefe possessions, together with ample of his skin to bynd it. Requiescat in pace."

April 1st, 2014

CPL Rings The Bell!

Last fall our Maker Lab earned us a Social Innovator Award and yesterday the good folks at NASDAQ welcomed us to ring the closing bell as one of those Chicago Innovation Award winners! Thanks to our Chicago Public Library Foundation and Institute of Museum and Library Services for supporting our work at the Maker Lab!

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