There have been more than 600 books written with more than 80 million copies sold since Nancy Drew was introduced to readers in 1930. But do you know about the special connection the intrepid and trailblazing young detective has with Toledo, Ohio? Original Nancy Drew ghostwriter Mildred A. Wirt Benson (1905-2002) called the Glass City home for over six decades. Under the pen name Carolyn Keene, Benson wrote 23 of the first 30 Nancy Drew mysteries between 1930-1953, including the first book in the series. In addition to her Nancy Drew books, Benson wrote other children’s books under various pseudonyms and was a journalist at the Toledo Blade from 1944 to 2002.

An opportunity to further highlight the impact of Nancy Drew and Benson’s contributions presented itself during the 2019 renovation of Main Library. Jennifer Fisher, The Nancy Drew Sleuths fan club founder and president and a well-known Nancy Drew collector, author, and consultant, donated her personal collection of Nancy Drew books and memorabilia — over 5,000 objects — to the Toledo Library to be displayed, researched, and enjoyed by visitors of all ages. 

Thanks in part to Fisher’s generosity, the Toledo Lucas County Public Library now holds the largest public collection of Nancy Drew books and memorabilia in the United States. With the 2019 renovation, the collection has a dedicated space within the Saloff Children’s Library at Main Library.

View the largest part of collection at Main Library during open hours:

  • M-Th: 9 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.
  • F-Sa: 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.