History of the Maynard Public Library

The Maynard Public Library is an important component of the town of of Maynard. It was first opened on April 4,1881 by Joseph Reed and his wife Mary. They were able to get an appropriation of $1,000 from the town to purchase a supply of books. The library was located in a school in a room in the Acton Street School, which is about where Jarmo's is located now. The Reed's cared for the library until 1884. In 1885 the library was moved to the Riverside Cooperative building (now Knights of Columbus). Sarah Nyman was appointed Librarian. She held that position for 41 years.

In July of 1918 the library was moved to the second floor of the Naylor building (on Nason Street). In 1929 Mary Moynihan replaced Mrs. Nyman until 1942. In 1942 Olive Morgan took the job of librarian, her assistant was Inez Lester. In 1953 the sudden death of Olive Morgan left the board of Trustees a vacancy to fill. Edith H. Carbone resigned from the board in order to place her name on a list of applicants. She was then pleased to learn she got the position. In 1960 they voted to establish a committee for the building of the Municiple Building. Also during the same year at a Special Town Meeting, money was appropriated to construct a combined Town Building and library. The amount of money given was $329,000.

To move the books, they used lots of liquor cartons, staff people filling them at one end and high school students carrying them to a station wagon, then on to the new building where more volunteers placed them on shelves. Over 10,000 books were moved this way.

On July 25, 1962 the library was dedicated along with the Town Building. The library had and still has many things to offer, such as Story Hour, publicized Memorial Gift Books, several special evening programs, film strips and films for children, library pages, photocopy machine, classroom visits, and as many new activities as staff, money, and time would permit. In 1973 Pearl Sprigg was appointed Librarian, and was the architect on the expansion of the library. Ill health forced her to resign 5 years later. Kay Weiner was then librarian, but ill health also caused her to resign. Elizabeth Drake was appointed librarian in March. As the saying goes, "We've come a long way."

Based upon a historical retrospective of the Maynard Public Library by Edith H. Carbone.

M.P. and E.M.

  Copyright , WAVM, Maynard Massachusetts.
This page was revised on: November 27, 2000