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Denton North Branch Library’s Collection Of Forgotten Book Marks

Explore the fascinating discoveries received in returned books over the last year

In a corner of the North Branch of the Denton Public Library lies an intriguing array of treasures — a medley of curiosities salvaged from the pages of returned books. Among them, a New Year card, a 2022 student admission ticket to the State Fair of Texas and an array of other intriguing artifacts to mark one’s place. The collection is as diverse as it is unexpected.

Jason Mims, the library's circulation supervisor, oversees this curious display. In a video uploaded to the city of Denton Youtube channel, Mims gestures toward the assortment with a mix of amusement and curiosity. "These items are the fascinating discoveries that we have received in returned books over the last year," says Mims, pointing out the random bookmarks and occasional oddities like a sock tucked into the pages of a paperback novel.

What started as a lighthearted project soon evolved into a mission to reunite lost possessions with their rightful owners. "The more postcards and personal photos that we started to see, it then kind of took on this different mission of, ‘Let's see how many of these items we can save for the people that are probably going to want them back,’" says Mims.

The initiative gained unexpected momentum after a modest social media announcement. "We put it out to little to no fanfare and then posted something on our social media channels about it and suddenly we were inundated with requests and conversations about this," says Mims

Visitors now flock to the library to reclaim their forgotten treasures — a multiplication flash card, a Hawaiian Island brochure, a Wizard of Oz trading card, among other eclectic finds.

As the collection grows, so does the call for participation. "If you recognize something that belongs to you, we urge you to stop by and reclaim it," says Mims towards the end of the video.  “If you see something that you think looks cool and maybe you know who the owner is, come by and claim it and get it back to them."

To see the full video and items collected, visit the city of Denton’s YouTube channel. 

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