I love this picture. And that's what the person who shared it called it: Prehistoric Googling.
In the Olden Days, before computers, we librarians answered patrons' reference questions from books, The Readers Guide to Periodical Literature, microfiche/form, the many index volumes of the New York Times, numerous encyclopedias-- you name it. But it always in a book or on microfilm.
Google hadn't been invented.
My favorite card catalog story is about a cataloger I worked with during my early career, a five-year stint at a public library.
That's what my friend did and that's what she liked: cataloging books.
If there was absolutely no one else available, occasionally, she'd be called to work the Reference Desk.
When she needed to file cards at the big wooden catalog in the middle of the library, she would perch her handbag across her arm and stare intently at the cards. As if she were just another patron, checking for a book.
She was brilliant, but she did not want to be bothered answering some pesky reference question.
Those were the days.