[Dorothy] Reeder, who has the perfect name for a librarian, was the director of the American Library in Paris from 1937-1941. During the German occupation, the Nazi’s kept the library open but banned Jewish members from entering the building. This fearless librarian and her staff defied the occupying Nazis by creating an underground book-lending service to Jewish members. It was a dangerous activity, and one staff member was shot by the Gestapo. In 1941, Reeder and the rest of library staff were forced out of the city. After her departure, First Vice-President Countess Clara Longworth (standing in the doorway in the photo above) kept the library open throughout the war.
Originally posted on militaryhistorynow.com.
NAPOLEON BONAPARTE was a voracious reader. He had a personal librarian, he always travelled with books, and he took a great interest in constructing the ultimate portable library to accompany him on his military campaigns. Napoleon’s taste in books was primarily classical. He had some lifelong favourite authors, including Plutarch, Homer and Ossian. But what else did he like to read?
Napoleon’s love of books
According to his classmate (and later secretary) Louis Bourrienne, Napoleon read avidly from an early age. Whenever they had free time at the military school at Brienne:
[Napoleon] would run to the library, where he read with great eagerness books of history, particularly Polybius and Plutarch. He also especially liked Arrian, but had little taste for Quintus Curtius. (1)
At the École Militaire in Paris and as a young artillery officer, Napoleon continued to read classical scholars, as well as more recent French and Italian authors. He also read a number of English works in translation. An idea of his favourites might be judged by what he chose to bring with him during a…