Posted by: florencepubliclibrary | April 25, 2008

Don’t know what to read? Try TexShare and ILL.

Rural libraries like ours can be wonderful places.  They tend to be more personal than the big city libraries.  But what happens when you’ve read everything you can possibly read in our little library?  (Yes, it has happened before, we rural libraries tend to be a bit on the small side.)   Aside from making suggestions to the librarian for titles you would like added to our shelves, you can also get the books you’re interested in by using two unique services offered by the Florence Public Library through the Texas State Library & Archives Commission.

Apply for a TexShare card.  TexShare cards are available to patrons who wish to check out books at other libraries in Texas.  The only requirements are 1.) to have a Florence Public Library card for at least three months, and 2.) to not have any outstanding overdue books or fines.  Once the library fines are paid, however, the patron may apply for the TexShare card.  Each card is good for 1 year, and is renewable as long as the patron continues a good borrowing record.

Having a TexShare card gives you access to participating libraries all over Texas.  Georgetown, Temple, Austin, certain universities and many more.  (A statewide listing is available online at texshare.edu and at the Florence library.)  The TexShare card also allows users access to the online TexShare Database, available at http://www.tsl.state.tx.us/texshare/pl/.  This database provides a large amount of information at your fingertips, perfect for researching.  When you apply for your card, just ask your librarian for the username and password for the TexShare database, and you’ll be on your way.

Ask your librarian about Interlibrary Loan (ILL).  Interlibrary Loan is a service that allows patrons access to different books not normally available at their home library.  This service is available to patrons who are in good standing and do not have any outstanding overdue books or fines.  The ILL service allows you to borrow books from other libraries, without traveling to that respective library.  The books are sent via mail to your home library, and are available in 1-2 weeks from the day you make your request.  The ILL service does not apply to newly published books within the past year.  This is where having a TexShare card is valuable.  If we don’t have a new title that you’d like to read, you can always go to a nearby TexShare participating library that does. Both TexShare and ILL services are revokable if a patron does not adhere to the borrowing policy or does not pay for overdue or lost items.

These are both free and valuable resources for you!

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