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Catalogue service interruption: Due to an upgrade, the catalogue will be unavailable from 9pm AEST on Wednesday, 3 September until 10am AEST Thursday, 4 September. We apologise for any inconvenience.

La Trobe Reading Room event: A traditional Chinese drum performance will be held in the La Trobe Reading Room on Thursday 4 September, from 6pm until 6.10pm. More information

Catalogue service interruption & La Trobe Reading Room event
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Ken Pound collection

In 1994, the Library acquired a large private collection of children's books, the Ken Pound Collection, which greatly increased the significance of our holdings of Australian and New Zealand children’s books.

Ken Pound began collecting during the 1970s at fairs and markets and by 1994 had amassed 25,000 children’s books.

He collected all forms of literature for a child readership, independent of perceptions of worthiness. This collection contains many children's books not usually held by libraries or even listed in national bibliographies, including:

  • ephemeral material and advertising booklets, which often humorously reflect aspects of social history
  • variant editions of books such as Dot and the kangaroo, which reveal the comprehensive nature of this collection and changing perceptions of readership
  • John Mystery books; John Mystery was the pseudonym of Lester Sinclair (1894–1974), who published children's books between the late 1930s and early 1950s.

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