Spotted on a street in Northcote, this is a ‘little free library.’ It’s a model building full of books and magazines that are free to borrow. Sat on (or rather by) the garden fence of someone’s home in the Melbourne suburb, the little free library had a range of old books inside as well as a few more recent ones and some magazines too.
The little free library isn’t unique though. In fact, it’s part of a wider project started in the USA in 2009 to promote literacy and the love of reading by building free book exchanges worldwide. I’ve actually come across them before in Colorado and California.
The project itself dates back to 2009 when Todd Bol of Hudson, Wisconsin, built a model of a one-room schoolhouse as a tribute to his mother who was a teacher who loved to read. He filled the model with books and put it on a post in his front yard with a sign saying ‘free books.’ His neighbors and friends loved the idea so Todd built several more and gave them away on the understanding that they too would be filled with free books.
The project grew from there after others got involved, and according to the Little Free Library website there are now over 36,000 Little Free Library book exchanges around the world.