SHE SPOKE VOLUMES

AN EMBATTLED LIBRARY OF CONGRESS COPES WITH A WHISTLE BLOWER'S ACCOUNT OF LOST AND MUTILATED BOOKS

It is a beat that should be relatively serene, even awe inspiring. But for the past four years, when she patrolled the 530 miles of book-lined corridors at the Library of Congress in Washington, library police detective Deborah Maceda grew increasingly disturbed by the evidence of crime run amuck. She found razor blades--perhaps for slicing pages out of books--in books and under shelves. During one eight-day period alone, she says, she discovered 33 mutilated books, including a rare 18th century anatomy folio. Other volumes had simply vanished.

In the spring of 1992, Maceda began reporting the loss and damage. She peppered...

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