TIME

Carla Hayden

The Librarian of Congress, who oversees a collection of 162 million pieces, talks about Abraham Lincoln, overdue books and what she’s reading right now

What’s significant about your new appointment? Being the first female and the first African American means that the legacy of the 14 Librarians of Congress will include diversity—and also a female in a female-dominated profession.

What’s your favorite item in the collections? One is the life mask of Abraham Lincoln. My family’s from Illinois, and in fact

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