21. You might find things hidden inside the Strand’s used books

If you buy a used book at the Strand, you might be lucky enough to find an object or note hidden within its pages by the book’s original owner. Over the years, the Strand’s staff has noticed this happening, with a manager telling AMNY, “We used to have buyers here who saved all of it and would hide it behind the books behind the desk, and when we moved our buying desk we found mounds of stuff.”

If you have the time, it’s fun to browse used books at the Strand and see what precious objects and notes they hold, from personal poems to press releases, offering a window into the life of the book’s previous owner.

This article was written with additional help from Untapped Cities writer Laurie Gwen Shapiro.

Next, read 36 of NYC’s Best Independent Specialty Bookstores and 4th Avenue: The History of NYC’s Lost “Book Row”.