The Library at Gerber/Hart is the first thing most of our patrons experience: shelves upon shelves of books representing every topic and genre – from medical textbooks to celebrity biographies, romance novels to literary fiction, children’s books for all ages, and of course a whole lot of history. The one thing all 25,000 (or so) books have in common is that they’re all written by, and/or about, the LGBTQ+ experience – making Gerber/Hart the largest circulating library of queer material in Chicago and the Midwest.
But did you know that all of these books have been donated? As a small non-profit operating outside of the city library system or an academic institution, Gerber/Hart does not have an acquisition budget to buy books. Everything on our shelves has been donated by our amazing patrons and supporters. And they’re free to check out, for anyone age 13 and up!
This Giving Tuesday, we’re asking you to help fill our bookshelves! Despite the efforts of those trying to ban LGBTQ+ literature across the country, there are more queer books being published than ever before, and we want to have them in stock for anyone who visits our library.
These are the ways you can help:
* Visit our shopping list registry at bookshop.org, and buy us a book or two! Choose from a list of books, put together by our amazing volunteers, that we do not already own. These books will be shipped directly to Gerber/Hart. As an added bonus, a portion of the proceeds from these sales will go to our friends at Women & Children First bookstore in Andersonville.
* Prefer to shop in-person? We invite you to visit some of our favorite Chicagoland bookstores over the Black Friday/ Small Business Saturday weekend! Pick up a book for Gerber/Hart while you’re there, and bring it in the next time you visit us. Here are some local bookstores we love (linked to their websites):
|Unabridged Bookstore (Lakeview)
|Women & Children First (Andersonville)
|The Book Cellar (Lincoln Square)
|The Understudy (Andersonville)
|Three Avenues Bookshop (West Lakeview)
|Bookends and Beginnings (Evanston)
|Semicolon Books (River West)
|57th Street Books (Hyde Park)
|Seminary Co-op (Hyde Park)
|Open Books (Logan Square)
* Make a financial contribution to Gerber/Hart. You can choose a specific giving level for Giving Tuesday, or donate whatever you like. Any amount you give will help Gerber/Hart preserve and share the stories of our LGBTQ+ communities with all of our patrons.
Giving Tuesday Suggested Support Levels:
$25: Cost of a new book
$50: Cost of two new books
$100: Cost of four new books
$250: Cost of a half-shelf of new books
$500: Cost of a full shelf of new books
Or enter any amount you choose in the form below.
Thank you for your support on this Giving Tuesday, and always!