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My Bookish New York {1}

March 14, 2012

 This past weekend I went with a couple friends on the New York Public Library Tour.

Well, sort of. We didn’t actually stay for the entire tour because we were really hungry and had seen what we really wanted to see and the tour was free so we didn’t feel guilty for leaving, so we left.

However, the places and things we did see got me to thinking about all of the amazingly bookish things New York has to offer. And there are a lot of them. From the library itself to all of the actual, physical publishing houses to the bar Jack Kerouac frequented, there is an incredible literary history in New York. So I figure that since I live here, I might as well share all of the goods with y’all!
First up is the exhibit my friends and I headed to the NYPL—which I think is one of the most gorgeous buildings in the city— to see the stuffed animals that a) inspired Winnie the Pooh, and b) actually belonged to Christopher Robin.

Yeah, they’re a little beat up, but let’s face it, these suckers are OLD.

A.A. Milne bought the stuffed animals from Harrod’s as a gift for his son, Christopher Robin. Then, he became inspired by the actual toys to write the Winnie the Pooh stories. So after they were written and published and beloved by all, Christopher Robin gave the original stuffed animals to Dutton, the American publisher of the stories. According to the NYPL docent—who was an adorable man with a bowtie—Dutton used to take the animals around to schools so kids could play with them. Then a little later on, Penguin, the publishing house that now owns Dutton, donated the famed stuffed animals to the main branch of the library.

So now Pooh Bear and Piglet and Eeyore (who actually has a pin in his tail!) and Tigger and Kanga and a random otter-looking thing with a string of pearls (I guess that’s Rabbit’s stand in?) live in the children’s section. They have their own little room that you walk into, and the walls surrounding the glass case are decorated with the map illustrations from the original books.

My friends and I definitely squealed and reminisced and quoted the poems and took tons of pictures while we were in the room with the inspirations for the Winnie the Pooh characters. Because we are awesome.

And head’s up, if there’s any-bookish-thing YOU would like to see that is New York-based, feel free to let me know!

If you are interested in going on a NYPL Tour, click here for more information.

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