Monday, January 26, 2015

Our Home Library

No, I'm not doing a post about all the books in my house, although I should.  My son once joked I had a better selection than some booksales. Well, I think it was a joke.

Rather, I decided to blog about one of our local libraries.

Have you ever thought about how libraries are named?

My favorite library name of all time may be that of a library in a small town near Ithaca, New York.  It is called the Ulysses Philomathic Library (Philomathic means "love of learning").

But "Your Home Library" in Johnson City, New York is my second favorite.

Who wouldn't like to go to their home library?

Well, um, me.

We all take local buildings and institutions for granted.  After all, they are there, we pass them every day, and we take them for granted.  And I do pass this building five days a week, sometimes six.

We have several local libraries within a few miles radius of where I live.  As a result, I hadn't been in this library, which is the one nearest to my home, in many years.  I am a frequent visitor to the library near to where I work, in Binghamton, but had neglected my own home library.

Shame on me!

Saturday, I decided to change that.

This building was built partly in 1885 and partially in 1920.  It's a small library, but full of local history.  When you enter, in fact, there is a small display of local history - a portrait, newspaper clippings, and other memorabilia.

There is evidence of an earlier era wherever you turn in the small rooms.  It is not an easy library to use, I'll admit.  The Binghamton library (built in 2000) is modern and spacious.  But this building has character.  And fireplaces.

Here's another one of the fireplaces.

And one more view of the building.

Local public libraries face many challenges today.  Their funds are constantly being cut.  People are loathe to vote in the tax increases they need to survive.  But these libraries are, increasingly, so much more than a place where you can walk in with a card and walk out with one or more books to read.  They provide internet access, wi-fi,  computers for those who don't own one, job hunting services, e books, CDs and DVDs, magazines, free tax preparation done by volunteers, free databases, and so much more. One of our local libraries even features yoga classes on Fridays.

What is your local library worth to you? 

Do you use your local library? 


  1. What a beautiful library it is - I also love books and libraries - and my husband and I each have 3 bookshelves of our little libraries at home - creative post!

    1. I decided that I needed to make my support of libraries public. After all, as a child, I wanted to be a librarian. Enjoy your home library!

  2. We visit our local library quite often, especially since they have such a great selection of pre-teen books for my girls. Plus I can't pass up their bi-annual book sale!

    1. When my son was young, I found children's librarians are a great, untapped resource.I love library booksales, too. Ithaca, New York (about an hour from me) has one of the largest ones in the country, and I go almost every year.

  3. Replies
    1. Ours has the local historian's office in the building, but I had not thought of using its genealogical resources.


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