Letter From a Prisoner

A letter like this makes it all seem worthwhile. This is from a prisoner at a multi-security prison in New Hampshire. We sent him 3 building books. (We have a long-standing policy of sending free books to any inmates that request them.)

I apologize for the delay in responding to your last letter. It’s just that you left me in a state of shock, so all I can say is: THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

It is easy to become dehumanized in this place. After a while we all buy into the rhetoric about how useless we are, So when someone comes along and does something that reminds us that we are still human and worth something (if only in the hearts of a few), it can be disorienting.

Thank you for disorienting me!

I have finished with all three books, and they have now been donated to our library. I have an entire composition book full of notes and designs based on these books.With the present status of my case, I have no idea when I am getting out. However, when I do get out, I will have a plan, and your books will have been a significant contributor to that plan. Who knows, maybe I’ll build something that will eventually appear in one of your future books.

Anyway thank you! Not only for helping me, but for creating a ray of hope for others in this place.

Shalom aleichem,

JZ

About Lloyd Kahn

Lloyd Kahn started building his own home in the early '60s and went on to publish books showing homeowners how they could build their own homes with their own hands. He got his start in publishing by working as the shelter editor of the Whole Earth Catalog with Stewart Brand in the late '60s. He has since authored six highly-graphic books on homemade building, all of which are interrelated. The books, "The Shelter Library Of Building Books," include Shelter, Shelter II (1978), Home Work (2004), Builders of the Pacific Coast (2008), Tiny Homes (2012), and Tiny Homes on the Move (2014). Lloyd operates from Northern California studio built of recycled lumber, set in the midst of a vegetable garden, and hooked into the world via five Mac computers. You can check out videos (one with over 450,000 views) on Lloyd by doing a search on YouTube:

One Response to Letter From a Prisoner

  1. Excellent of you to send books in these situations..

    Excellent of this gentleman to make a point of thanking you in writing and sharing them with the Library, so others may benefit.

    Have always thought your books convey much more than building skills…..such as…Life skills and attitude and perseverance…(all good to pass on)

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