Strength of Materials was developed at MIT, to be a textbook.
This distinguished introductory text is popular at engineering schools around the world. It also serves as a refresher and reference for professionals.
In addition to coverage of customary elementary subjects (tension, torsion, bending, etc.), Strength of Materials features advanced material on engineering methods and applications, plus 350 problems and answers. 1949 edition.
I keep this book to help design projects that I am working on, as well as to teach myself engeneering concepts. But beside that normal use, I keep it so that people more trained than me may have it available in the event of a large scale disaster.
I look at reference books like Strength of Materials the same way I look at surgical supplies stored away. I am not the one that will use it, but that does not mean that the person using my stored goods won’t use it to help me.
This is not an easy book to read, but that does not mean that it is not valuable. But, it is an introductory text, so it is not beyond the abilities of any individual that is willing to take the time to think about what they are reading.