Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Carnegie Library, Frankfort, Indiana

[LIB0146]

The Frankfort Community Public Library originated as a subscription library in 1884. Initially, the library began as a collection of books in a back room of some law offices at the court house. Then the collection was moved to the Council Chamber only to be moved once more to the High School building. The library stayed at the High School building for five years under the direction of superintendent of schools, Edwin S. Monroe. In 1905, Superintendent Monroe wrote a letter to Andrew Carnegie. Andrew Carnegie was a self-made man who made a fortune in the steel industry. He was known for his philanthropy and for his fervent advocacy of libraries. True to his reputation, he responded to Monroe with a donation of $24,000 towards the building of a new library. (Adjusted for inflation, $24,000 in 1905 is equivalent to $461,449.70 today.) Along with the support of Frankfort tax money, the library finally got its permanent home in 1906 at the corner of Clinton and Columbia Streets. [Thanks to the Frankfort Community Library]

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Friday, December 18, 2009

1976 Hamlin Memorial Library, Paris Hill, Paris, Maine

[LIB0059]

This thick-walled stone building built in 1828 as the Oxford County Jail is now used as a library. With the exception of the removal of the cells and changes in the roof, the building is in its original form. [From the back of the card]

The vacant jail building was purchased by Dr. Augustus C. Hamlin, nephew of Hon. Hannibal H. Hamlin (Vice President of the United States during Lincoln's first term). In the 1960's the domed roof was replaced by one closer to the original design. A new second floor and interior staircase was added, and shelving installed on the first floor. The building now houses a small public circulating library , a modest research facility, and a museum collection relating to local, state, and national history. [Thanks to the Hamlin Memorial Library & Museum]

1976 Library, Natick, MA

[LIB0058]

In perpetual memory of Mary Ann Morse, born June 16, 1825 - June 30, 1862. She gave her whole estate to establish this library for the use and benefit of all the inhabitants of her native town. [From the back of the card]

Monday, December 14, 2009

Libraries are Fun Bag

Librarians will enjoy this colorful design with the words Libraries are Fun!

Great for carrying groceries, books or just about anything else, this 100% cotton jumbo tote has a squared off bottom and extra long natural web handles. Dimensions: 20"w x14.5"h x4.5"d.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

1908 Public Library, Tipton, Indiana

[LIB2598]

In the fall of the year 1900 the first definite plans were made in the city of Tipton for the establishment of a free public library. The educational and pleasurable effects of such an institution were realized, and the strong need of the advantages perceived in the life of the city. At this time the schools were beginning to be improved to a great extent, and in connection with this the need was felt perhaps stronger than in any other way. It was at a meeting of the Literary and Suffrage Club that the plans were first made. The new library law went into effect the following year, and Tipton was ready at once to take advantage of it. The city was the first in the state of Indiana to organize under this new law. Early in the spring of 1901 the library association opened the library to the public in the court house. A book "shower" was held and more than five hundred volumes were donated, many of them being valuable. The library was supported by voluntary contributions. The officers were the same as they are in 1914. [History of Tipton County, available from Google Books]

1910 Public Library, Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin

[LIB2597]

1940 Public Library, Elwood, Indiana

[LIB2596]

Construction on the new library began in 1903, the same year the natural gas supply was depleted and Elwood's gas boom ended. In July 1903, Mrs. Saylor was instructed to make an appeal to Mr. Carnegie for an extra $5,000 to complete the building and furnishings. In August, she reported Mr. Carnegie had agreed to the extra money provided that the city council would increase the annual tax levy to $3,000. The council approved, making the total cost of $30,000 for the city's fine, new library. [Thanks to the Elwood Public Library]

1906 Public Library, Melrose, Massachusetts

[LIB2595]

Reading Room, Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington DC

[LIB2594]

Now this is a reading room!

1911 Public Library, Rock Island, Illinois

[LIB2593]

The building now in use, at 401-19th Street, was completed and opened in 1903. It was first called “Rock Island’s Temple of Literature.” Much of its funding came from the donations of two contemporary Rock Island businessmen, Frederick Denkmann and Frederick Weyerhaeuser, his brother-in-law, who would later become giants in the American lumber business. [Thanks to the Rock Island Public Library]

Public Library, Waupun, Wisconsin

[LIB2592]

The Waupun Library Association survived until 1904 when the City of Waupun established the Waupun Public Library, making the Waupun Public Library one of only three public libraries in the state of Wisconsin that can trace a continuous line back to the city's library association (the other two libraries in this category are the Milwaukee and Madison public libraries). It was in that year that construction began on the Waupun Public Library building.


Library service continued in this building until 1968, when construction was completed and opening ceremonies conducted on the current library building. In 1998, an addition to the current building was completed to increase the amount of space for the growing collection. (The Carnegie building is now home to the Waupun Heritage Museum.) [Thanks to the Waupun Public Library!]

1919 Public Library, Nebraska City, NE

[LIB2591]

Due to conflicting reports it is difficult to discern just when and where the first literary association was formed in Nebraska City. The Young Men’s Literary Association was organized in November of 1867 and the following year consolidated with the Nebraska City Mercantile Library Association.

In 1869, fourteen pioneer women formed the Round Table Club. In the summer of 1881 the women took possession of the library of the Young Men’s Library Association. This woman’s group was incorporated in 1882 as the Ladies Library Association and they started to raise money for a library.

At this time J. W. Steinhart, a cashier of the Otoe County Bank had an opportunity to visit with Joy Morton son of J. Sterling Morton in his Chicago Office. Mr. Steinhart told Mr. Morton about the struggles the women in Nebraska City were having in getting a library started. Mr. Morton proposed to Mr. Steinhart, that if he could dispose of an old building located on Central Avenue across from the old hotel, he could use the money to start a library fund. Mr. Steinhart had no luck in selling the property. Mr. Morton responded by offering to build a suitable building for his hometown if they would furnish and grade a lot, and equip the building. The public responded to the challenge by raising $1450.00 to obtain the 1 1/2 lots that the building now stands on and $1500.00 for the equipment and fixtures. [Thanks to the Morton-James Public Library]

Friday, December 11, 2009

Thumb National Bank, Bay City, Michigan Waymark


Waymarking has many listings for libraries throughout the United States. This entry for Thumb National Bank relates the history of the building that began as a Carnegie Library. Thankfully, respect has been paid to the renovations and the character of the original building seems for the most part to have been preserved. Additional photos and reading can be found in the Waymark entry, here.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Another one biting the dust?

I have chronicled a number of Carnegie libraries that have been demolished. Another one scheduled for demolition is located in Orillia, Ontario, Canada. Read additional stories:
Orillia (Ont.) Public Library Finally on the Move
Library's future on agenda