*The first in a series of entries highlighting Hidden LPL Treasures (AKA little-known services we offer and features of our library that we think are pretty great!).
Everyone knows that libraries are time capsules. For all the technology we harness in order to propel ourselves into the future, we take just as much care in preserving our past. In a library, you can look to your left and find a Nook, look to your right and see a book on Socratic philosophy published in 1965. The past and the present, side by side. Perhaps the greatest symbol of our connection to the past is our microfilm collection and the microfilm reader we have available to the public in the Media Department.
Our storage area houses hundreds of microfilm reels. This collection is an invaluable research tool, whether for academic, professional, or personal purposes. We carry the usual suspects (Newsday and The New York Times) and the unusual, more obscure suspects (Journal of Experimental Psychology and Mental Hygiene). We are especially proud of our collection of local newspapers, including The Long Island Star Journal, The Levittown Eagle, and The Levittown Tribune. In fact, we are one of only two libraries to carry The Long Island Daily Press (the other being the Archives at the Queens Library). With many current periodicals restricting online access to their archives, microfilm is often a convenient option for those looking to delve into the past.
The LPL’s microfilm reader is available for use in the Media Department during library hours. No appointment is necessary and we do not reserve the microfilm reader. There is a charge of .10¢ per page when making copies. Staff members are always ready and eager to load the reel and show you how to use the machine. Don’t feel intimidated; it’s as simple as holding down a button. For a complete listing of our periodicals, including our microfilm holdings, please consult our periodical list or give us a call at 516-731-5728.
Maybe you are trying to track down your great-grandmother’s obituary. Maybe you are looking for that long forgotten photo of the free throw you shot as a member of a local JV team in 1968. Maybe you are simply curious about the moon landing, the price of milk in 1958, D-Day or the American Civil War (that’s right, the American Civil War; we carry The New York Times dating back to 1851. Our collection of The London Times goes back even further: 1785).
Any trip to the past can begin at the Levittown Public Library.