#ReadingMyLibrary Challenge – Weekly Update April 4th

As part of the #ReadingMyLibrary challenge, there are optional weekly update posts. This week’s topic is to talk a little about your library. Unfortunately I haven’t yet been able to finish any books for the challenge, this weekend is a busy church weekend for me. I hope to read two books in the next week though and I should have a lot more free time after April 15th (I’m an accountant during the day). Also as a side note if anyone is still interested in signing up, there is still time! You can sign up here until April 15th.

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The Terryville Public Library is one of my absolute favorite places. Terryville is a relatively small town, pretty much just a blip on the map, but I think our library has a great selection of books and very good resources as well. I was fortunate enough to work at the library when I was in high school and I loved every minute of it. I have always loved reading so working at the library was a perfect fit for me. Stacking the shelves introduced me to a great number of books of all kinds.

When I went away to college, my home library was too far away to go to as regularly as I would like. So I began going to different libraries in the area to see what kind of book selections they had available. This taught me about my great love for not only my home base but all libraries. I love going to new libraries and exploring the different book selections and seeing all the different set-ups. There was one library up near school that I used to study at a lot. It had huge windows so there was a lot of natural light and they left out puzzles on the tables that people could do. It was this library that made me realize that libraries are hubs of the community. They are used not only for finding a book to read but are used for a great variety of resources and social outlets.Tville lib 2

Getting back to my home base library, Terryville Library has a personal connection for me. When I was younger, my mother pointed out a portrait hanging in the library stairwell and told me that one of our relatives had been the head librarian at this library. Her name was Dorothy B. Wilcox, and she is my great-great aunt (there may be more or less greats in here, not exactly sure on the number of greats). Below are her portrait and a brief history of the Terryville Public Library, in which she is mentioned.

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From the Terryville Public library Website:

History of the Terryville Public Library 1895 – 2015

The beginning of the Terryville Library dates back to 1839, during the Presidency of Martin Van Buren, when thirty citizens of the Town of Plymouth organized a private subscription library. The records of the Terryville Lyceum Library show that it flourished for twenty years. Shortly after the Civil War, interest dwindled. In 1891 the record ends. At that time, a group of far-sighted townspeople were determined that Terryville should have a free library. Miss Gertrude Ells was appointed librarian at 25 dollars a year and the Terryville Free Public Library was born. Shortly afterward , the Lyceum Library donated all of its books to the new library. The collection was housed in the court room in the town hall. In 1922, when the Terryville Public Library opened the door of the new colonial building, the head librarian was still Miss Gertrude Ells, who had as her assistant Mrs. Dorothy Wilcox. Miss Ells was succeeded in 1926 by Miss M. Gertrude Fenn, whose ancestors had been original subscribers of the Lyceum Library. Mrs. Nelly Baldwin was librarian from 1931 to 1938, succeeded by Mrs. Dorothy Wilcox. Mrs. Wilcox retired in 1964 after forty-two years of service and was succeeded by Mrs. John Cox, whose father James Murphy, was a member of the 1895 committee as well as the library building committee. She resigned in 1970 and was succeeded by Georgiana Miloenson who served until 1972. Mrs. Joyce Reid took office in 1972. The book collection in 1922 was roughly five thousand and is now numbered twenty thousand. In 1975 an addition was added to the present library and dedicated on February 22, 1976. This addition provided over 8,000 square feet to the to the original library. Between 1978 and 2006 there were four head librarians; Barbara Brown, Sandra Miranda,  Frances Rice and  Sharon LaCourse. Lynn White was appointed Director of the Terryville Public Library in January 2007. Portions were adapted from Plymouth, Connecticut 1776-1976 by J. Francis Ryan.