Library’s History

History of North Madison County Public Library System

The Formation of the First Library in Elwood

The Elwood Public Library had its beginnings in October, 1898, in a committee whose members were: Dr. H. M. Brown, Mrs. D. G. Evans, Mrs. A. D. Moffett, Rev. L. C. Howe and Rev. George Chandler. They were appointed by Mr. J. T. Alexander of Greensburg, Indiana to select a book list for a small, private, subscription library, owned by the International Library Association. That library was maintained by Mr. Alexander in a building located at the northwest corner of South B and Anderson Streets, then known as the Fitzwilliams Building.

During their meeting, in room no. 1, a committee member, Mrs. Alonzo D. Moffett, suggested the possibility of establishing a free, public library. It was decided to have the present librarian, Mrs. Eva Gilmore, send postal cards to twenty persons, inviting them to meet with the committee in the library room to decide the feasibility of this plan. The persons who responded – George Haynes, W. S. James, A. H. McKenzie, H. F. Willkie and Mrs. H. F. Willkie – agreed to meet and discuss this idea.

At a time when buggies and hitching posts for horses were planted up and down Main and Anderson Streets, they agreed to meet November 26, 1898 in the tiny library room. It was at that meeting the decision was made to solicit subscriptions at $10 a share, toward a fund of $1,000, for a new library.

Of particular interest to historians, Mrs. Hester Alverson Moffett and her husband, Alonzo Moffett operated the former weekly Free Press, the Daily Labor Record and the Elwood Daily Record from 1893 to 1919 when the newspaper was sold to D. W. Callahan. Mrs. Moffett is given credit for the founding of the Elwood Public Library. Through her editorials she stressed the need for public rather than private facilities. She helped found the Women’s Press Club in 1913. After her husband died she moved to California and continued her work with libraries in San Diego and Los Angeles. She died in Laguna Beach on August 27, 1935. She was nominated by Jan Connors, editor of the Elwood Publishing Company, and was inducted, posthumously, into the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame on April 15, 1989.

To Elevate and Refine Our Cosmopolitan Population

The Elwood Daily Record published this editorial on December 12, 1898: “A PUBLIC LIBRARY: The effort on the part of a few of our citizens to open the way for the establishment of a public library is note worthy. They, themselves, have books in their homes for their own and their children’s benefit, but they remember that there are hundreds of young men and women in the city who have no means of culture and entertainment. It is for them that they take valuable time from business to devote to the work of opening a free library and reading room.

Those to whom the committee appeals for subscriptions should consider the gain to the elevating resources of the city, which such a place of resort would afford, before they refuse to contribute to it. Debasing deficiencies abound all over the city. Places of questionable repute assignment may while away his idle hours.

A free library and reading room provided with standard books and correct literature under the control of the city would furnish a place where young men who live in boarding houses and have no planned associations might pass an idle hour without risk to his person. Other cities smaller than Elwood and less able to bear the expence, have libraries in successful operation. Elwood is in the lead in a business way and it is time we began to come up with our sister cities in public enterprises situated to elevate and refine our cosmopolitan population.”

Among the many subscribers and contributors were most of the leading professional and business men of Elwood, a number of lodges and trade unions, Sunday School classes and the children of the public schools. Some of the earlier responses were from: George Haynes, W. S. James, Glass Workers Union #50, H. F. Willkie, Mrs. Henriette Willkie, D. G. Evans, W. T. Wiley, A. H. McKenzie, Mary E. Cox, Elks Lodge #368, K of P Lodge #166, S. F. Downs, Henry Jordan, Class No. 16 of the Methodist Sunday School represented by W. H. Evans, Carpenters Union represented by A. O. Briggs, Typographical Union represented by D. W. Underwood, T. F. Fitzgibbons, Dr. H. M. Brown, Allen B. Wilson, Dr. J. H. Millikan, Mrs. Mary Banfield, Dr. F. L. Saylor, Mrs. Anna Saylor, W. H. Jones, Tourist Club, D. S. Green, E. E. Green, James Hefferman, Frank Simmons, James Davis, Will Hupp, T. W. Miles, Ira Kidwell, J. D. Mason, W.G. Curtis, A. D. Moffett, F. M. Harbit, C. C. Henze, H. D. Seymour, David Kessler, Luther Douge, Women’s Club, G. V. Newcomer, James L. Peed, Jacob Loomis, C. M. Greenlee, J. A. Hunter, Mrs. John Rodefer, Phillip Hamm, T. F. Hamack, H. P. Nivison, W. H. Smith, Jr., Stoneman & Co., Charles Cox, Clerk’s Union and No. 16 Public Schools.

By January 10, 1899, sufficient funds having been obtained to insure fulfillment of the plan, a mass meeting was held in the Odd Fellows Hall and a temporary organization was chosen with F. N. Simmons as chairman and Mrs. Henriette Willkie as secretary. H. F. Willkie, a lawyer, was authorized to draft articles of incorporation and secure a charter. When the charter was obtained, a permanent board of fifteen directors was elected for one year on January 25, 1899, in the Odd Fellows Hall. They, in turn, on February 14, 1899, elected the following officers: A. H. McKenzie, president; W. H. Evans, vice-president; Mrs. Henriette Willkie, secretary; and W. S. James, treasurer.

They all immediately began the work of establishing the library. The Alexander library of 515 books plus the purchase of 635 new books was the foundation of the new library. On March 21, 1899 Mrs. Eva Gilmore was elected temporary librarian. The first rule made was: “Resolved that…all residents of Elwood and all members of the association be entitled to receive books on proper identification of a resident householder known to the librarian”. Mrs. F. L. (Anna) Saylor and Mrs. P. T. O’Brien began cataloguing and preparing the books for circulation. On May 3, 1899, with 1,150 books and 12 magazines, the library was opened to the public in a small room of the O’Brien building at 1414 Main Street. the building also housed the French Steam & Dye Works.

The library was turned over to the city in June 1899, and was supported by taxes levied by the city council. The first library report for the eight months of the year 1899 was given by T. F. Fitzgibbons, chairman of the library committee, and was published in the local newspaper. There were 956 readers, a book stock of 1,267 and circulation was at 10,315. The most popular fiction authors were: Mrs. Wister, Caroline Hentz, Rose N. Carey, E. P. Roe and George Sheldon. The most popular juvenile books were the Elsie, Henty, Alcott and Pansy books. They subscribed to 10 magazines, 3 daily and 3 weekly newspapers.

By spring of the year 1900, Elwood’s population had grown, tremendously, from a mere 400 in 1883 to just under 16,000. A new room was opened for the library in the newly built city hall. By fall that same year, the move was completed.

The board of directors, wanting to have a trained librarian, hired Miss Nellie Fatout, a graduate of DePauw University and the New York Library School. In August, 1901, she was appointed to succeed Mrs. Gilmore. Under her direction, the library began fulfilling the expectations of it founders and became an educational factor in the community. As patronage continued to increase, demands increased in proportion and they quickly outgrew their allotted space. Wise heads began to cast about for relief.

Mr. Carnegie Answers Plea For Help

On August 27, 1901, Miss Fatout assisted Mr. Frank L. Saylor, secretary of the library association, in composing a letter to Mr. Andrew Carnegie, asking for his help in establishing a building fund. This letter reads as follows:
Elwood, Ind. Aug. 27, 1901
Mrs. Andrew Carnegie
Skibo Castle, Scotland

My Dear Sir,

In behalf of the Board of Directors of the Elwood Library Association, I beg to present to you some facts concerning our library, its past history and its present condition in order to solicit your interest in our behalf, if you deem us worthy of such, after you have heard our situation.

In January 1899, some public-spirited citizens called three mass meetings for the purpose of establishing a public library. These meetings resulted in a general canvas for subscriptions and money. When we had $1200 we fitted up an old store room, bought some eight or nine hundred volumes, classified and catalogued them and on May 1, ’99 opened our library to the public. On account of local prejudice to an out of town librarian, we were compelled to hire a librarian who had never been inside of a library. Every step we took was with difficulty. Finally, the city council came to our rescue, levied a tax of four mills on the dollar, and gave us the use of a small room in the new city building. By means of entertainments, private donations of books and money, we have at present 2700 volumes on our shelves. Through persistent effort we have secured the services of a trained librarian.

Public interest is coming so rapidly that in a few months our quarters will be wholly inadequate and as we have no wealthy citizens who can furnish us a building, we are writing to ask if your generosity can help us to secure one. As you doubtless know, Elwood has a population of almost 13,000 made up chiefly of workmen in the various glass factories and American Tin Plate mills. Hundreds of these men are here in boarding houses, away from home and family and to these especially, this library with its reading room is a great benefit. After six o’clock all stores are…”

The letter ends there as, unfortunately, the last page is missing.

The response from Mr. Carnegie is from his first letter, dated Oct. 4,’01:
Mrs. Frank L. Saylor, Elwood, Ind.
Skibo Castle, Ardgay, N. B.


Yours of the 27th Aug. recd. Mr. Carnegie will provide twenty five thousand dollars for a free public library building for Elwood, if the town will furnish a suitable site and pledge itself to support the library at cost of not less that twenty five hundred dollars a year. Respectfully, Jas. Bertram, P. Secy”

Local historians may wish to know that, later, in a June, 1918 issue of the Elwood Call-Leader, an article reported that Mrs. Anna Saylor (Mrs. Frank L. Saylor), became a candidate for office in the general assembly of the California legislature, for the 41st district at Berkeley, California.

The city council agreed to the annual pledge of $2500 in support and found a fine building site just down the street from the city hall at East Church and Wayne streets. The streets are now known to us as North A and 16th streets. According to the warranty deed, dated April 17, 1902, the council paid $3,000 for Lot #7 in Block #1 of the original town plat of Quincy, now city of Elwood, from the heirs of William H. Smith.

The first important donation to the library was $1,000 given by the American Tin Plate Company in 1901. In 1903, an endowment fund of $500 by Mrs. Hannah B. Leeds created the support of the Men’s Room in the library. Mr. Warner M. Leeds donated $25 annually, in memory of his mother, for the purchase of reference books. A gift of $100 by G. G. Reed was made in 1905.

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.

Andrew Carnegie Building-“A Marvel of Beauty”

The newspaper headlines read “A Marvel of Beauty”. “The building is an impressive example of the Carnegie libraries in its Neo-classical Revival design. The main floor has two brick fireplaces with oak mantles and brick chimneys visible to the ceilings. Mosaic tiling decorates the flooring in front of both. Large iron bookcases are located behind the octagonal oak circulation desk. This area is framed by two wooden arches. There are six oak columns topped with ionic capitals. The vaulted ceiling has ornamental plaster cornice work, completing each area. The center ceiling directly behind the circulation desk contains a deep rectangular opening with the decorative plaster cornice molding and a skylight. Dozens of beautiful chandeliers are found all over the building. The furniture is all rich and massive, solid oak.On June 1, 1904, the new building was dedicated and a grand opening ceremony held. The library board consisted of : C. W. Bennett, president, Mrs. John Rodefer, Mrs. Frank Saylor, J. A. Hunter, Mrs. Alonzo Moffett and John H. Elliott. Nellie B. Fatout was librarian and Clare Lynch, her assistant.

To the right of the circulation desk is the main reading room with accommodations for a hundred people. To the left is the children’s reading room, of the same size, with juvenile books arranged in stacks around the wall. The west side of the building houses administrative offices and staff work rooms. The cataloguing room is connected to the unpacking room below by a book lift.

In the west side of the basement is an auditorium that will seat almost three hundred people comfortably. A reading and smoking room for men is prepared where the daily papers will be on file. Games of chess and checkers will be available. In the northeast corner is a model club room with an unusual decorative iron fireplace and will doubtless be rented by the various literary clubs of the city for meetings.”

Dedication and Reception Attended by Hundreds

Dedication ceremonies were held in the Methodist Church at 7:30. After an invocation by Rev. Neal, Mr. C. M. Greenlee, on behalf of the building committee, turned the library over to Mayor Smith, who, in turn, resigned control of it to the library board, represented by C. W. Bennett, who accepted the trust. Then followed the address by Dr. W. L. Bryan, president of Indiana University, speaking on faith in education. In closing, the benediction was given by Rev. Howe.

At 9:30 followed the public reception at the library building. It continued for an hour and a half during which time hundreds of visitors expressed their appreciation of the excellent work done by those who had the library in charge.

At times, for half dozen years or longer, the way seemed so dark and uninviting that ultimate success seemed impossible. But the loyal men and women who had the real interests of the institution at heart never faltered and, in the midst of adversity, brought victory to their side by persistent effort. It was their ‘gladsome’ hour.

In 1906, the Library of Congress referred the people of Boston, Massachusetts, to the plans of the Elwood Public Library, since it was “nearly ideal”. That same year the Indiana Library School students visited the library to see the grand building and to have the Elwood methods explained. Also in 1906, two members of the Frankfort library board came in order to study the building.

The year 1909 saw library privileges extended to all residents of Pipecreek township and a small branch was opened in Friend’s Store in Frankton in July that same year. In 1910, Miss Mary Baker, librarian, instituted the first ‘traveling libraries’ to the township schools and the Frankton branch was moved to a new location. A station was established at Dundee and a typewriter was purchased for the main library. When Miss Henriette Scranton became the librarian in October, 1912, she addressed six different adult groups in the interests of the library.

The number of volumes grew to over 5,000 in 1913. But by 1915, the statistics for the library were: 12,519 volumes, 97 magazines and 10 newspapers. A total circulation of 47,157 books for Elwood and the township, which included the branches at Dundee, Frankton and the township schools.

The Willkie family, prominent Elwood citizens, was involved with the development of the library from the beginning. Wendell L. Willkie’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Herman Willkie, were both lawyers. They were on the first board of trustees and Wendell’s mother was the first permanent secretary of the board in 1899. In 1917, Wendell himself was on the board. He married the librarian, a Miss Edith Wilk and his brother, Robert, married an assistant librarian.

During World War I, with Miss McMullen as librarian, books and money were collected for the war work. The Red Cross’ surgical dressing class was given permission to use a basement room three nights a week and the French relief class was allowed to install motors for sewing machines in March 1918.

In 1920, the library reorganized and conformed to state laws that said the library board shall consist of nine members – two appointed by the Mayor, two by the school board, three by the Circuit Judge, and two by the Township Trustee.

Nineteen hundred and twenty-three brought real expansion under librarian Miss Bertram French. She put the Frankton branch on a firm basis by renting a two room building on Church Street, across from the Post Office, for its 500 volumes and securing Miss Vivian Witmer as librarian there, under her management. A businessman, Mr. Pyle, of the Urmston Grain Company, saw to the building repairs and new furnishings. All would be ready in December.

Her work with children was outstanding. She not only arranged for a story hour at the library, but she also had story hour at the playgrounds during the summer. She instructed the children of grades 3 to 6 in the care of books and began a summer Vacation Reading Contest in the summer of 1925. Her book fund was inadequate her second year, so two sororities in town gave $103.25 for additional books.Miss French made a survey of the schools and established four new stations in town. A small library was opened at Martz’ Grocery Store at 9th and Main Streets in February 1924, to accommodate children and adult patrons in the west part of Elwood. The second station, opened to reach patrons in the southern part of the city, was at the Lehr Grocery on South J Street. Small branches were also opened in four rural schools: Red Corner, Brannock, Cale, and South Elwood. They contained about 35 volumes each and were changed every six weeks.

Miss French held the first library district meeting ever held in Elwood on April 2, 1925.

The changes in the interior by repainting the dingy walls and all new electric lighting fixtures installed by Neal and Reveal proved most attractive to patrons. The Draper Company, of Spiceland, supplied new window shades. The re-opening on September 25, 1923, was colorful with potted plants and autumn flowers lavishly used in the rooms. Miss French and her assistants, Miss Bessie Rose and Miss Lois Henze, extended a cordial welcome to all callers.

A continuous musical program, under the direction of Mrs. Henry Naumann, was given and the following young ladies served punch to the visitors: Mary Burdwell Davis, Jane Harting, Helen Dunlap, Venita Kelly, Margaret Zahn and Ruby McKee. The library board joined in the welcome. Its members at the time were: Sheridan Clyde, president; Mrs. W. Z. King, Mrs. O. A. Armfield, R. T. Boston, Dr. H. M. Brown, J. A. Nuding, F. P. Behymer, Miss Mary Cox, and Miss Margaret Dickerson.

In 1926, shortly after the death of their mother, Mrs. Georgia Chapin, of East Main Street in this city, a curio collection was donated by the Chapin brothers, former residents. Collected by their father, it contained samples of ore from many countries, rock formations, sea shells, Indian relics and numerous other articles, including some very old newspaper copies.

February 1926, brought an exhibit of 35 paintings by Leota Williams Loop, a former Elwood resident. One of her paintings is on display in the new library building today. Prominent display space has been assigned to paintings by T. C. Steele, noted Indiana artist. His “Autumn Sunset” was purchased January 4, 1927 out of the Leeds endowment fund at a cost of $300. That same year, an exhibit of paintings by well-known Brown County artists was held the last week of February.

Many district meetings of the library association were held in the Carnegie building over the years, as well as cultural events. A four act play entitled “Little Women” from the story by Louisa May Alcott, was presented by the library staff at the high school auditorium, during the week of November 13, 1927.

By 1927, the circulation had increased to 64, 589 with 48% being juvenile material. The stock was numbered at 12, 462 volumes, 2, 919 of which were juvenile books. Also maintained were 76 magazines and 8 newspapers.

25th Anniversary Observed

A daylong schedule of events took place beginning at 2:30 on Sunday afternoon, June 9, 1929 for the library’s 25th anniversary. There was piano music, singing quartets, violins, pageant contests, library history presentations and speeches. The principal address was by Mr. Louis Bailey, state librarian, considered one of the finest orators in Indiana.

At the time of the 25 year observance, the circulation report was at 82, 773. The number of volumes had grown to 14, 905. Miss Lucille Genevieve Snow, of Logansport, assumed her duties as new library director on September 3, 1929. That year, some furniture was repainted and a new floor covering provided.

“The Millyard” painting, by J. Otis Adams, 1895, was approved for purchase at a cost of $150 in February, 1930 and paid for by the Leeds fund. This fine work hangs in the south hallway of the new building.

On November 15, 1930, Mr. Pierre Haynes donated 75 books from his own library, in memory of his father, one of the first trustees.

In 1930, the library board members were: Sheridan Clyde, president; Howard Horn, Dr. H. M. Brown, Margaret Dickerson, Mrs. W. Z. King, Mrs. O. A. Armfield, Edgar Dickey, Miss Mary Cox and Waldo Canaday.

In 1931, the Elwood Historical Society was given the use of a small room in the basement for keeping objects of historical interest.

50th Anniversary Observed

An Elwood Call-Leader article of April 30, 1949 reads: “In observance of the 50th anniversary of the Elwood Public Library the trustees and staff will hold an open house Tuesday night, May 3, 1949. A program consisting of a book review by Mrs. Overton Sacksteder, Jr., will be given. Refreshments will also be served. Although open for the program, no book exchanges will take place during the evening hours”.

Various improvements and changes occurred in the Carnegie building over the years. In the 1950’s, the north entrance was altered and the door replaced. The basement was renovated, new lighting was installed and the children’s reading room was moved downstairs. The only major alterations to the building have been the replacement of the front doors and the front steps, circa 1966. The cement steps were replaced with granite and instead of ascending in front, the steps rise to the entrance from both the north and south.

Carnegie Building with New Steps

It was in April 1968, the Elwood Kiwanis Club planted several trees in front of the library to enhance the appearance of the entrance. The sweet gum Maple trees were purchased at Foland’s Nursery by the club’s agriculture and conservation committee whose members were: Water Allen, Robert Carter, C. Forrest, Leo Jarrett and Weldon Shickley.

The year 1975 saw the main floor carpeted and the furniture rearranged. The skylight in the ceiling’s center on the main floor was boarded up. That same year, a new furnace was added at a cost of $18, 000.

On June 16, 1975 a flagpole was installed was installed on the lawn. Congressman Phillip Sharp, an Elwood native, presented a flag in memory of his mother, Florence Sharp, a former member of the library board. This flag was flown over the nation’s Capital in Washington, D. C. Esther Hunt, library director and Michael Kennedy, president of the library board, accepted this gift for the library.

75th Anniversary Observed

In honor of the library’s 75th anniversary, an open house was held on Sunday afternoon, July 1, 1979. Then Elwood mayor, Lynn G. Chase, proclaimed that day “Elwood Public Library Day” to encourage the citizens to celebrate seventy-five years of progress in the current building and to participate in its programs.

1985 brought the opening of a new library in Summitville. The North Madison County Public Library System was now serving five townships with the Elwood, Frankton, and Summitville branches.

Early in 1993, disputes began on the possibility of constructing new facilities at Elwood, Frankton, and Summitville. Wiring problems and lack of space were the main arguments for a new Elwood library. Built to house 20,000 volumes in 1903, the Carnegie building had become obsolete with the 1994 circulation report expected to surpass 100,000 and the current stock over 40,000 books. That figure did not include audio/visual tapes and equipment, such as copiers, fax machines, computer terminals, microfilm reader-printers and other new technological fixtures and services.

On October 10, 1994, the library board received plans for a new Elwood library to be built at a cost of $2.3 million. This figure was scaled down from the $3.5 million plan to construct new libraries at each of the branches.

The next year, in October, 1995, after overcoming many obstacles, holding several debates and public hearings, permission was given to build. Architect Joel Blum, of InterDesign Group of Indianapolis, announced the acceptance of a $2,118,000 bid from M.D. Rowe Construction Company and construction was to begin immediately. The groundbreaking ceremony was held on November 1, 1995 on the present site at 1600 Main Street, across from the Elwood City Hall and the Carnegie Library Building.

Although the Frankton branch was not to have a new library constructed, they moved into a new building in January 1996, at 111 Sigler Street in downtown Frankton. Learn more about the history of the Frankton Community Library. The newly expanded and renovated Ralph E. Hazelbaker Library at Summitville was rededicated in August 1997. Learn more about the history of the Ralph E. Hazelbaker Library.

While the new Elwood building was being completed in 1996, an announcement was made for the sale of commemorative ‘memorial’ bricks. These bricks, with individual engravings, would be placed in a patio plaza area located outside the building on the east side. Also, citizens were invited to bring items and/or memories to share. These would be endorsed in a time capsule and sealed in a wall in the building.

On Sunday, January 12, 1997, the new Elwood Public Library opened with a formal dedication and open house. In spite of bitterly cold temperatures outside, over 300 persons attended the standing-room only opening ceremony. Library director, Kathi Wittkamper, spoke during the ceremony and introduced the staff.

Ms. Sue Grubbs, harpist, provided music as individuals enjoyed browsing throughout the new building. It featured large, round wooden pillars with matching tables and furnishings. Burgundy, hunter green and navy blue highlighted the decor.

The library board members who, at that time, saw their efforts at last realized were: Linda Sizelove, president; Beverly Austin, Jerry Kaiser, Pamela Bohlander, Barbara Abernathy, Brenda Carey, and Sharon Pace.

The state of the art building showed public access computer terminals for locating books, computer work stations, a children’s room and young adult section. Space was also provided for a story time room, an Indiana room with Elwood and Indiana history and genealogy material, a large selection of audio/visual tapes and a community meeting room. All were new features.

By the end of the second full month in operation, March 1997, Kathi Wittkamper, the present library director, stated approximately 10,000 persons had visited the new facility. For the year 1997, the patron count totaled 94, 484!

A new permanent sign on the south lawn was unveiled in February 1998. In October 1998, the new facility had been open for twenty-two months. From 300 to 500 persons were using the library each day. New technology, such as Internet access and other computer programs, had been installed.

100th Anniversary Observed

The one hundred years of service “Centennial Celebration” of the Elwood Public Library was held on Saturday, October 17, 1998. This celebration is a tribute to those persons who had the foresight one hundred years ago to begin a public library and fought against formidable odds to obtain our public library.

History of Frankton Community Library

In 1985 John Drum, the director of the Elwood Public Library recieved a grant to open branch libraries that would serve five townships. The grant was for two years. At the end of those two years the libraries would become tax supported if they were successful. The Frankton Community Library opened their doors in Dec. 1985 with approximately 2000 books. The first location was shared with the General Merchandise Store for ten years.

Frankton Community Library shared with the General Merchandise Store

Eventually, more space was needed and in 1995 the library board purchased the building at 111 East Sigler Street. Half of the building was then occupied by National City Bank. This building offered more square footage, but was quickly outgrown as well. In 2005 the library board purchased some land at 201 East Sigler Street and plans are underway to build a 5,000 sq. ft. facility. Tentatively, completion of the building is set for February of 2006.

New Frankton Facility-Expected February 2006

Ralph E. Hazelbaker Library

The Ralph E. Hazelbaker Library started out as the Summitville Community Library in December of 1985. It was located in a storefront building on Main Street Summitville.

In I995 its current location was purchased and the small 1700 sq. ft. building was remodeled. At this time the Community Library was renamed the Ralph E. Hazelbaker Library, after a prominent Summitville philanthropist.

In 1997 more remodeling and advancement took place, adding not only more square footage, but additional technology and resources.

Current Ralph E. Hazelbaker Library location