Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Bonne Terre Memorial Library, Bonne Terre, MO


The library as it looked 1940-1950.

A current view of the library.

The Bonne Terre Memorial Library is said to be one of the five oldest libraries in Missouri. In 1867 or shortly thereafter J. Wyman Jones, president of St. Joseph Lead Company, and Dr. Charles B. Parsons, mining superintendent, brought civilization to Bonne Terre by contributing their books for a library and having boxes of books shipped from other directors and stockholders in New York.

When J. Wyman Jones died in 1904 his son, Dwight A. Jones, succeeded him as president of the St. Joseph Lead Company. In his father's memory, Dwight Jones contributed funds to erect the now-historic library building. It was built of Bedford Limestone and placed in a park-like setting enclosed by a low stone wall. The fireplace mantel in the Reading Room is a massive piece of oak supported on oak columns with marble facing and a brick hearth. In 1907 Mrs. Dwight A. Jones presented a clock, handmade in England in the late 1700's, to the library. The clock still stands in the entrance, and keeps fairly accurate time. [http://www.bonneterre.net/library.htm]

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