The bookmobile was old school, long live the Mobile Library!

by Mira Geffner

This week, I was part of a lucky group of students from the SJSU School of Library & Information Science. The staff of the Mountain View Mobile Library was generous enough to show us their vehicle, inside and out, and spend a couple of hours showing us all the back-of-house organization that makes it go. This vehicle moves more than 150 items (books, DVDs.VHS, & music) each hour of service, 8 hours of service each week.

Mobile Library
Introducing ... the Mountain View (CA) Mobile Library (ta da). The Mountain View library started its bookmobile service in 1964. Almost 50 years later, mobile library staff offer all regular library services out of the van, including story time and issuing new library cards.
Library cardholders can request books through the library catalog. These books and media are waiting to be delivered to readers at the Google campus, two mobile home parks and a retirement community in the city of Mountain View. The mobile library keeps a regular schedule of weekly or bi-weekly stops, and partners with corporations like Google to provide and expand service. The Mountain View public library is free and open—residents of any city can get a library card.
Check out is inside the van, just make sure you return your books to the Mobile Library when they're due!

Thanks a million to the friendly folks at the Mountain View Mobile Library for sharing their time and expertise with us. And thanks to SJSU ALASC for organizing the event!


Mira is a SLIS student. She is interested in taxonomy, virtual reference, patient health information, and the neverending hunt for reliable answers. She lives, reads, and hikes in the San Francisco Bay Area. This post was originally posted on Mira’s blog, Books ‘n Sticks.