Posted on February 17, 2021 at 12:26 PM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

We missed this online hoax, but perhaps you saw it — and no matter what, it’s good to know what misinformation is floating around in case you’re called upon to dispel it.

The myth in question: that Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library (which houses and is digitizing that amazing Frederick Douglass collection) has a firefighting system that saves books at the expense of human lives.

This is not true.

A 2010 Yale Daily News article explained, and the library’s current communications director has once again reiterated, that the library has a system that will release fire suppressant gases into the book stacks — while leaving enough oxygen in the air for humans to safely breathe (presumably as they’re evacuating).

If the science behind this — or the myth around it — intrigues you, head to Literary Hub for more on the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library’s fire safety measures

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Categories: Today in Books

Tagged As: Libraries, Literary Hub

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