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Feeling nostalgic? Read about things we used to love

By Paul Birkhead
Rowan Public Library
Have you ever found yourself getting nostalgic about some thing or some place? You’re not alone.
The feeling of wanting to connect to our past is universal and, although it seems to manifest itself more as we age, even younger folks are not immune to its effect.
Sometimes just learning about things from a time before your own can be fun. Rowan Public Library has several books that are sure to give you an understanding, if not an appreciation of, things past.
“Roadside Relics: America’s Abandoned Automobiles,” by Will Shiers, is one of those books whose cover art will send you thumbing through its pages. On the front of this particular book is a photograph of an abandoned 1961 Plymouth whose best days are clearly past. Maybe it strikes a chord that something, once brand-new and treasured, could end up seemingly unloved and forgotten.
Divided into chapters by manufacturer, “Roadside Relics” is a superb collection of more than 250 photographs of classic automobiles that have fallen by the wayside. In a course of 10 years, the author traveled through 49 states tracking down treasures from the golden age of America’s automobile industry. You don’t have to be a car lover to realize that they “don’t make them like that anymore.”
Sometimes things aren’t appreciated until they’re gone. “Our Vanishing Americana: A North Carolina Portrait,” by Mike Lassiter, showcases a way of life in our state that has been gradually disappearing. Not so long ago, towns throughout North Carolina were self-sustaining communities with their own personalities. Nowadays, with franchises moving in and muscling out the local businesses, we are losing much of what makes each town unique.
Each chapter in “Our Vanishing Americana” explores a type of business that once thrived in every locale in North Carolina. Beautiful photographs of hardware stores, barber shops, groceries, movie theaters, pharmacies and restaurants abound. While it’s interesting to see how Rowan County is represented throughout the book, what can be more exciting is discovering places you’ve never known about.
Antiques and collectibles are what make some people nostalgic. The library has several resources that can help you identify and price everything from toys and dolls to plates and jewelry.
If you’re new to the world of antiques or want to obtain a broader knowledge of the subject, “Treasures in Your Attic” is the book for you. Joe Rosson and Lelaine Fendelman, hosts of the popular PBS television show of the same name, have put together this informative guide.
In the book they take you room by room in a typical house and tell you which items are of value to collectors. You never know what great treasures might be hiding there, or on the shelves of your library.
Holiday closing: Rowan Public Library headquarters and all branches will be closed Monday for Memorial Day.
Tuesday movies: May is Doris Day Movie Month. Come to headquarters at 6:30 p.m. Free refreshments will be served. Tuesday, “Calamity Jane.”
June computer classes: Headquarters ó Computer Survival Tips, Monday, June 2, 7 p.m.; Creating Web Pages, Thursday, June 5, 1:30 p.m.; Audio Books and NetLibrary, Monday, June 9, 7 p.m.; Microsoft Publisher Part 1, Thursday, June 12, 1:30 p.m.; Introduction to Windows, Monday, June 16, 7 p.m.; Microsoft Publisher Part 2, Thursday, June 19, 1:30 p.m.. South ó Google Class, Monday, June 9, 7 p.m.
Displays: Headquarters ó Price High School by Eleanor Qadirah; South ó Build-a-Bear by Diane Brideson.Children’s programs: Registration has begun for this year’s Summer Reading Program, “Catch the Reading Bug!” at headquarters and East and South branches. Kickoff is Saturday, June 14, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Literacy: Call the Rowan County Literacy Council at 704-216-8266 for more information on teaching or receiving literacy tutoring for English speakers or for those for whom English is a second language.
Web site: For a listing of all library programs at all library locations, www.rowanpubliclibrary .org.

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