9. Patti Smith worked at the Strand—and didn’t enjoy it

Given Patti Smith’s legacy in New York City, it’s perhaps unsurprising that she found her way to a clerk job at the Strand not long after her career at Scribner’s bookstore, which ended in 1972. What is surprising, however, is that Smith didn’t enjoy her time at the Strand. In an interview with New York Magazine, she explained, “I didn’t like it. I worked in the basement, and it wasn’t very friendly. Scribner’s, though, was beautiful. People there took being book clerks seriously.”

Speaking of famous literary employees, author Mary Gaitskill also worked at the Strand as a clerk during her time, along with poet Thomas Elias Weatherly, Robin Crutchfield, and other literary luminaries.