The Sprawl Library

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The Sprawl Library is a private library in Columbus, Ohio dedicated to the preservation and study of materials related to Fantasy, Science Fiction, and other types of Speculative Fiction.

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History

The Sprawl Library was created by Mowgli in 2012. In the same year he acquired both a collection of approximately 15,000 books and a collection of roughly 5,000 pulp magazines. It became clear that both these collections could not be housed at home, so the first home of the library was a small office on West 5th Avenue, a year later followed by a larger office on West 5th Avenue (in the same building).

In continuing to grow the collection, it became clear that a successive set of larger offices wasn't going to be a workable solution. Starting in late 2013 a search for a property that would last was conducted, and in late 2014 a warehouse was found on Goodale Boulevard which might allow for a decent amount of future growth. In late December of 2014, the library purchased the warehouse and proceeded to move there in January of 2015.

With the warehouse came a small side office building, which at the time was mainly a printer's building with a dance collective in the garage. In late 2015 the printers cleared out, and in mid-February of 2016 the dance collective moved out of the garage. This left an approximately 4000 square foot building needing some serious reconstruction to become a partial library and reading room.

With the deconstruction of the main office spaces in early 2016, a two year construction period began on the office building (1199) during which Mowgli learned much about the construction business. Finally in early 2018 the handicapped restroom was completed, the code inspections were cleared, and the certificate of occupancy was issued.

All the furniture currently in the library was either purchased used (either at auction or sale) or picked up off the side of the road. A general preference of wood over metal exists, but in the end there is still metal shelving in use in the non-fiction section of the library.

Mission

The goal of the Sprawl Library is to collect and preserve not only old published works but in addition the ephemera which went with attending conventions and being part of the speculative fiction fan base in days past. Works are not limited to speculative fiction, as the library also seeks to preserve (and sometimes play) old role playing and tabletop/board games and old computer and technical resources.

As part of preservation, a goal of the library is to digitize and preserve the works in their original forms where possible, and to allow local access to these digitized and physical resources. Due to copyright restrictions, the digital forms of works may only be used or accessed at the library itself.

Friends Of The Sprawl Library

The following have either greatly assisted in forming or maintaining the library, sold or donated substantial materials to the library, or helped in any number of other ways.

Honored Friends We Fondly Remember

  Thomas Hauser    Dr. Dieter Assor    Lawrence C. "Larry" Smith  
    1949 - 2015     1932 - 2011       1946 - 2017

Friends

 Sally Kobee  Cabot & Catherine Dison  James Smith 
 Glenn Cook  The Estate of James Ludwig III  James Landis, Jr. 
 Robert & Juanita Coulson  "Doctor" Bob & Melanie Gilbert  Jennifer Driver 
 Hydy Cates  Allisha Fox  Maryanne Rose Papke 
 Richard Hopkins-Lutz  Andrew K. Weaver  George Bauman (Acorn Bookshop) 


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