Learning That Makes a Difference

A full, bright, yellow moon shone in a clear sky when Ray and I arrived in Boucherville, Quebec, last night. Our agenda for the next seven days is all about Pierre Boucher, but our agenda for the first leg of our journey was three days, three visits. I’ve written about the first two; the third visit was with my dear high school friends, Mike and Judy on Monday.

We loved our visit with Mike and Judy. We lived close enough to them for Ray to get to know them, too, when we were engaged and newly-married. Though we have seen them occasionally through the years, this was our first visit to their home in the Allegheny Mountains of upstate New York, since they moved there 37 years ago for Mike to work as an engineer. It was wonderful.

We left Mike and Judy’s yesterday morning and headed north. We decided to spend a good part of the day off of the Interstate on the highways and byways. It really wouldn’t have made the trip a lot longer if we hadn’t found so many fascinating places in this part of the country where we had never been before.

As we drove between the Seneca and Cayuga finger lakes, we went through the little town of Ovid. When an 1845 courthouse caught my eye, we decided to stop for a picture (imagine that!). When we walked back to the courthouse, to our surprise we found three buildings, instead of one. The townspeople of Ovid call them the Three Bears.

Papa Bear was the courthouse; Mama Bear was the library; Baby Bear was the Town Hall.

At one time, Papa Bear was the courthouse, Mama Bear was the library, and Baby Bear was the Town Hall.

Another building I noticed in town was the Edith B. Ford Library.


“Who was Edith Ford?” I wondered. As we walked back to the car, I began to notice details of the library’s exterior. Near the front door was unusual tile work.


To the right of the entrance were two stained glass windows, one honoring William Shakespeare and Homer and one honoring Leonardo DaVinci and Albert Einstein. Above the entrance was chiseled:

"The most powerful weapon of ignorance, the diffusion of printed matter." Tolstoy

“The most powerful weapon of ignorance, the diffusion of printed matter.” — Tolstoy

We were intrigued and drawn inside. Inside we saw that there were several stained glass windows. A few of them are pictured below.

Mozart and Newton

Socrates and Thomas Jefferson

DaVinci and Einstein

Leonardo DaVinci and Albert Einstein

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Isaac Newton

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Isaac Newton

And there was more tile work. Here is a small sample.


One of the librarians told us about Edith B. Ford, the local woman for whom the library was named, and explained that a Hungarian immigrant had served as the architect. She said that they have photos of people moving the books from Mama Bear to this library which opened in 1961.

Behind the circulation desk was another tribute to learning. This one was not tile or stained glass; it was a wall of wood with the names of learned individuals. In the center of this wall were words from the wisest man of the ancient world, King Solomon, words inspired by our Father God.

Wisdom is the principal thing. Therefore get wisdom and with all they getting, get understanding. Proverbs 4:7

Wisdom is the principal thing. Therefore get wisdom and with all thy getting, get understanding. Proverbs 4:7 KJV

Learning makes the most difference in the life of an individual and in his or her impact in the world when it is accompanied by wisdom and understanding.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
Proverbs 9:10



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One thought on “Learning That Makes a Difference

  1. I’m impressed that they’ve left the Bible verse up on display! In a local town (Knoxville) some woman complained about a Bible verse at the sheriff’s office and the city took it down. It just takes 1 person who insists on wearing their feelings on their sleeve to tear something down that has been in place for years.