Art of Games

Swashbuckling days gone by — Conway library lands gift with a point

Swashbuckling days gone by -- Conway library lands gift with a point
Written by Noah Roy

The Faulkner County Library gets lots of donations — old books, cassettes, swords, VHS tapes.

Hang on. Swords?

Well, a sword.

Last week, included in a donation of books, board games and other items left at the library’s Conway branch, was a box containing a sword and scabbard.

“There was a lot of odd stuff,” says John McGraw, Faulkner County Library director. “But the focus immediately shifted to this enormous, long, silk box with gold and black details and inside was this replica sword. It’s a gorgeous thing to look at; a lovely objet d’art, you might say.”

The donor did not leave his or her name when dropping off the items, says McGraw, who has been library director since 2015. With a blade about 2 feet long, the sword “is the most unusual thing we’ve gotten in quite some time ,” he says.

The library sells many of the donated books during its Friends of the Library sales each fall and spring. The next sale on the calendar, the first big one since the fall of 2019, is tentatively set for April 16, McGraw says.

The board games that showed up with the sword will be put to good use.

“There were a ton of those, and they were in great shape,” McGraw says. “We’re going to use those in programs for children.”

He mentions the library’s urban gardening program, seed library and programming for children, teens and adults.

“There are lots of forms of literacy. It’s not just reading a book, it could be growing your own food or learning to code.”

And just think of the possibilities for a mighty sword!

“We joked that it could be our tool library,” says McGraw, whose sense of humor is clearly evident as we chat. “If you need a screwdriver, we’ve got a sword. If you need a hammer, we’ve got a sword.”

Actually the sword is gone, scooped up by a library worker who paid the going rate for library-sale books — 50 cents per pound — for it.

“One of the benefits of working at the library is that you see the donations before anyone else does,” McGraw notes, adding that he didn’t know how much the sword weighed.

Now the sword has a happy home.

“I hope so,” says McGraw. “Otherwise we’ll be reading about it in the Police Beat. Actually, that employee called in sick today. I was hoping it wasn’t a sword-related injury because that would probably mean more paperwork for me, but I understand it’s just a regular sick day.”


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Noah Roy

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