During the summer of 2008, Mingei raised money to open a library in one of the carving villages we buy from in southern Mexico.  La Union Tejalapan is a farming community about a 45 minute drive north of Oaxaca City.  The carvers there make delightful, whimsical carvings  which we have enjoyed buying and selling for years.  We worked with the Oaxaca-based organization Libros Para Pueblos, planned a fundraiser with the generous duo of storyteller and author Carmen Deedee and folk musician and author John McCutcheon.  The Georgia Center for the Book, housed in the Decatur Library around the corner from our store, graciously offered space for the event.  That night in July 2008, we raised enough money in donations to open the doors of the library and maintain it for one year.

In order to provide ongoing support for the library, we commission carved figures with books from the artisans of La Union.  Each time one of these “reading figures” sell, we send 20% to Libros Para Pueblos, earmarked for the La Union library.

The figures range in price from $35 to $250.  Please contact us if you are interested!

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2 Responses to “The library in La Union”


  1. 1 Pat Landreth Keller
    March 10, 2010 at 1:03 pm

    What a wonderful idea–the library at La Union!
    Last summer I purchased a reading mermaid from you and love it. We’ve collected Oaxacan carvings for years and were happy to find you. We’re especially happy to know they you are continuing to help with the library you established.

    How can we help in addition to buying your reading carvings?

    • 2 mingeiworld
      March 10, 2010 at 1:16 pm

      Hi Pat. I’m glad you found us, too! The library project has been very rewarding. We collect direct donations for Libros Para Pueblos and also invite you to check out their website at librosparapueblos.com. Our project has been such a success that we have built up quite a surplus in the fund for the La Union library and are looking at other ways we can support reading in that community with some of the funds. This year, we may begin buying reading figures from other villages to aid their libraries as well. Stay tuned!

      We plan a September trip, as usual, to Mexico. Remember that we can take custom orders for carvings, too!


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