The spectre of closure that haunted Kitty Curry in 1914 regularly preyed on the minds of the CFLB's librarians and Board of Management for most of the independent years of the library's existence.
The following historical account of the CFLB relies heavily on the modest archive that survives.
(18) After its creation, the CFLB too would benefit from this postal privilege.
When the CFLB came into being in late 1906, it was the first library of its kind in Canada to exist separately from a school.
In the view of the CFLB's founding librarian, Edgar Bertram (Bert) Freel Robinson, the amelioration of the conditions of the blind depended "upon the formation of associations of the intelligent blind themselves." (25) He esteemed, in particular, the UK-based British and Foreign Blind Association (BFBA), (26) and advocated that similar initiatives be undertaken by the blind in Canada.
(27) Prior to the formation of the CFLB, he also produced two periodicals: in the mid-1890S, Gleams of Light, a bulletin issued in New York Point; and, beginning about 1905, The Quest, a quarterly print journal about the blind, which may have been issued under the auspices of the "Associated Blind." (28)
While Ontario, and particularly Toronto, dominated the CFLB's membership throughout the 1906 to 1918 period, by the time of the merger the library did have members throughout the country.
In another report penned by Swift in 1930, he recalled that readers in Newfoundland had approached the CFLB as early as 1913 to request access to the library's holdings.
The CFLB's collection included embossed books, periodicals and music.
Even the circulating library at the OSB showed the latter tendency, if the description of one CFLB member was accurate: "Of course, there is the circulating Library at the Blind Institute [in Brantford], but most of its readings are in the educational line, and would not be much pleasure to those outside the school." (109) The CFLB had some works associated with children (e.g., Grimm's Fairy Tales), but its general range of books included biography, fiction, history, poetry, religion, science, travel, and reference for adult readers.
The CFLB archives indicate that catalogues of the library's holdings were regularly produced, but none is preserved in the archives.
The Colombo Fort Land & Building (CFLB
) witnessed selling despite a subdivision announcement.