Field Trip: UECo U Series 3: The Charleston Library Society

The UECo University continues its offsite ‘Lunch & Learn’ series at the Charleston Library Society. The institution is the oldest subscription library in the South, founded in 1748, and acts as a cornerstone of intellectual and cultural life in downtown Charleston. We had the opportunity to take an exclusive tour of Dorothy the Bookbinder's Bindery and Archival Lab led by Brien Beidler. At 22, Beidler specializes in rebinding, restoration, and conservation of paper, cloth and leather bound books and is the Society’s youngest bookbinder. He was recently featured in Southern Living’s The Bee’s Knees.

In this series we learned that craftsmanship goes beyond the bench as Beidler instructed our students on how a book is put together by hand as well as viewed a 3-D “flow chart” consisting of books in various stages of being bound.