May 21, 2022

Minnesota: “Books Defaced With Anti-Semitic Writing at West St. Paul Library”

From The Star-Tribune:

Steven Lehman checked out a book on Holocaust denial from the Wentworth Library in West St. Paul and found the words “[Expletive] the Holocult” scrawled across the title page.

At the librarian’s desk, Lehman learned this wasn’t the first time someone had defaced a book about the Holocaust at the library in Dakota County.

“I was shocked and suddenly felt how close these thoughts and feelings are around us,” Lehman said.

In fact, the library has a recurring problem with offensive writing in Holocaust-oriented books, said Murray Wilson, Wentworth Library’s branch manager.


Wilson said no one knows whether the offensive messages are being written while materials are at the library or after they are checked out. Out of 200,000 items checked out annually at Wentworth, only about 100 are damaged or defaced in some way, including highlighting or other writing.

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About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.