The rumors traveled urgently from Haiti: Beyond all the death and wreckage, one of the nation's greatest exports -- its cultural scholarship -- was buried that awful afternoon in January.

The three largest heritage libraries and the National Archives -- keepers of much of Haiti's complicated, heroic, rich story -- were reportedly lost to the random nature of earthquakes.

Within days of the Jan. 12 disaster, a university staffer 750 miles away worked frantically to deliver better news: the buildings were shaken but still standing; their precious rare books, manuscripts, newspapers and brochures had been spared. And the people who spend day after day caring for the collections were all safe.

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