Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Tribute to a Patron: Kenneth Badger Hurd, Jr.

If it weren't for great patrons and great supporters of this wonderful institution, the Birmingham Public Library, our jobs as librarians would mean little. In Birmingham, we have the opportunity to serve a very loyal community. One of Central's great patrons passed away on Saturday, July 9, 2011.

Kenneth Badger Hurd, Jr. came to us from New York and he visited our Central Library several times a week for the last several years. In fact, he agreed to speak in our digital annual report from 2009. You will find him beginning at the :30 mark here:

His support and humor and weekly visits meant so much to us. And he was a man worth knowing. He lived a celebrated life. He attended high school with Truman Capote in Greenwich, Connecticut, and studied poetry under Robert Frost at Dartmouth. Realizing that he would not be able to support his family on a poet's salary, he went straight to Madison Avenue and worked for years as an Ad Man (think Mad Men) in the 1950s of NYC.

We're grateful that we could meet him and get to know him. And we're grateful for all the patrons like Mr. Hurd, who make our jobs worthwhile.

You may read his obituary here. We would like to thank the family for thinking of BPL during this difficult time, and to thank them for sharing Ken Hurd with us.

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