Librarian Taylor Baugher is Passionate About Free and Open Access to Information

Taylor Baugher stands in front of a Little Free Library. Taylor Baugher's Little Free Library additions to Google Maps have been viewed more than 4.7 million times.

Taylor Baugher, Learning Services Librarian at Bridgewater since 2020, is passionate about free and open access to information. Whether it’s open access to research and course materials for faculty and students or public access to books and other resources, she believes that everyone should be able to obtain the published resources they need. She currently serves on the Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA) consortium’s Open and Affordable Course Content Committee.

In the Google Maps app, select “contribute” and then “add place.” Once you’ve selected that, you can input information about your particular Little Free Library.

One of her favorite pastimes is documenting the location of various Little Free Libraries (small book enclosures in front of businesses or in people’s yards, filled with free books for people to borrow or contribute) on Google Maps, which began in response to the closure of public libraries at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. On her daily walks she notes each Little Free Library she passes and includes a photo, description and location on the public mapping platform. As of March 1, 2023, the Little Free Libraries she’s added to Google Maps have been viewed 4.7 million times. The 62 locations are in five states and Washington, D.C. The town of Bridgewater accounts for seven of her additions—a pretty high number for a small town!

By Olivia Shifflett