Home » September 2018 » Books to Benefit Donates Finnish Collection to Finlandia University

Books to Benefit Donates Finnish Collection to Finlandia University

Finnish BookBooks to Benefit, a local nonprofit organization that collects and sells books to support local literacy programs, has donated seven rare works in Finnish to Finlandia University in Hancock, Michigan.

Finlandia, a liberal arts college in Michigan’s northernmost city, was founded in 1896 by Finnish immigrants and is the only institution of higher learning in North America founded by Finns.  It hosts a Finnish American Historical Archive and the Finnish American Heritage Center that promotes Finnish American identity and history. The University is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

The books ranged in subject, though many concerned the socialist and communist movements in America in the 1920s, including a work referred to as the Communist Primer or ABCs of Communism.  Another recorded the minutes of the American Finnish Socialist Order meeting in Hancock, MI, in 1909 and included a photograph of the attendees.  A scarce work was a 1926 Finnish translation of a Jehovah Witness track; another was subtitled “Gender Guidelines on the Gender Issue to Solve,” published in Helsinki in 1910.

“One of our volunteers frequently comments, ‘I have never seen anything like this. Every kind of book comes through here!’” shared President Jackie Langhoff. “With the help of Google Translate, volunteers Ginny Schmult and Mary Ryder enthusiastically spent several hours researching these books, trying to decipher what we had and who might want them. Using her extensive academic network, Dr. Ryder reaches out to colleagues to place rare treasures with scholarly libraries, offering ready access to these works. These scholarly libraries often donate monies to support Books to Benefit.”

In addition to raising monies for literacy, Books to Benefit has placed rare books in 15 academic libraries, presidential libraries, and museums throughout the country.  The next sale of books will be November 1-4 at the organization’s location, 360 Wylie Drive, Suite 700 in Normal.  More information about the sale can be found at www.Books2Benefit.com,on Facebook at www.fb.com/Books2BenefitBloomington, or by phone at (309) 531-8320. Drop boxes for donating books are located at the Wylie Drive site, at Wesley United Methodist Church in Bloomington, and at the YWCA in Bloomington.  Books may also be delivered in person at Wylie Drive on Wednesdays or Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

To learn more about Books to Benefit, visit www.Books2Benefit.com or phone (309) 531-8320.

Books to Benefit is a local 501(C)(3) nonprofit organization passionately working to support literacy. The proceeds of its semiannual book sales benefit STAR Adult Literacy and YouthBuild McLean County’s literacy programs, provide financial support for the Books to Benefit Community Service Scholarship Award at Heartland Community College, encourage volunteerism through community service, and assure that works of scholarly importance and/or unusual publication history or content find appropriate homes offering ready access to these works.