Over the years I bought, read a number of books on Asia, mostly Japan; had much more than I had imagined when I went through all of them yesterday.
Why? Well I am/was thinking about donating them the son's soon to be college's library in what I see now as a naive attempt to add something to the library which might fuel greater student interest in Japan. I initially contacted the school librarian.
Now the State of Ohio, and perhaps other states as well, has a system in place (OhioLINK its called) in which a student in one school can borrow a book from another university's library. Cool system and efficient as smaller schools (such as son's school) can defer to larger schools (who have more space and $$$$$$$$) for keeping large collections. So in this regard I was told I needed to check each of the titles I have against OhioLINK to see if any copies exist/how many copies exist, which would then determine what books the school would accept.
So I plowed through it all yesterday and saw that most of the books I have, one school or another has a copy of. But what really impressed me was the collection of books on Japan the Ohio State University seems to have. In every search I did from a book I have written in the very early 1900's on the Russo-Japanese War, a 1920ish book on Chinese etiquette, and a more contemporary book of an English translation of Ainu poetry, Ohio State's library has it. Was very impressed.
So what this means is given what I've been told, there are very few books the school will accept.
Now what I have isn't that extensive or special, but after this exercise, I realize that I would much rather have what I have donated/kept as a whole as I see it as much more useful in that state instead of piecemeal in a state-wide system. Understand and can appreciate the benefits of a system like OhioLINK, but again, it seems better for a student to have a book on the stacks right in front of him/her that out there on a database.
I think my mistake was going directly to the library bureaucracy who has their own interests in mind instead of making contact with say the dept. /professor in charge of Asian history at son's school.
So what am I going to do next? Get back with the librarian to tell him what I found, but make a pitch for keeping the collection I have intact.