Librarian rescues tree stump and transforms it into a Little Free Library in Idaho

A large stump of a cottonwood tree has found new life as a little library in Idaho.

Librarian and former bookbinder Sharalee Armitage Howard took it upon herself to rescue a cottonwood tree – which at more than 110 years of age had long surpassed a cottonwood tree’s average lifespan of 40-50 years. Huge branches of the tree had been felling for years onto the sidewalk and street, which had also deemed the tree a hazard.

Instead of being dug up and destroyed, Sharalee Armitage Howard decided that the large tree stump would be better used to create a “Little Tree Library”.

The stump was carved out from the inside, topped with a roof, and installed with a bookshelf and soft-lighting to create a homely interior.

The exterior includes stone steps, a glass door, and exterior lighting that provides a warm and welcoming glow. Extra touches come in the form of dental moulding above the door, which is actually little, titled, wooden books.

Sharalee Armitage Howard, who works as a librarian at the Coeur d’Alene Public Library in Idaho, has now become the proud founder of Idaho’s very own Little Free Library, where people can take a book and leave a book at their leisure.

Little Free Library is a nonprofit that fosters a love of reading and community by encouraging book exchanges. There are more than 75,000 registered Little Free Libraries in 88 countries around the world, each with their own unique character.

The Little Tree Library is expected to be completed by the Spring. On her Facebook page, Sharalee Armitage Howard said “…this tree won’t look amazing until Spring when I can plant groundcover and cheerful perennials around it, touch up the paint, and fine-tune the trimwork.”

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief @rosamedea


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