Sunday, October 28, 2012
Partner: Effingham Public Library
Effingham Public Library is located at 30 Town House Road, in a section of the town historically known as Drake’s Corner. Effingham is a small, rural community with a population of around 1400, surrounded by the towns of Freedom, Ossipee and Wakefield, NH, and Parsonsfield, ME. The mission of the Effingham Public Library to provide a center for the community that promotes education, leisure and creative pursuits by providing a means to access information and resources. “In the early 1800's, inhabitants of Effingham on Lord's Hill pooled their resources and started a library. Books could be borrowed and were to be returned the first Monday in September, December, March and June. In the 1860s a library was kept in the home of Josiah Dearborn. “Books in these libraries were primarily non-fiction, serious books, which were popular in those years, such as history, essays, commentaries, and the like. “In the town meeting of March, 1893, it was voted to have a town library and $30.00 was raised to start it. The state library had offered to help if some conditions were met and this offer was accepted.... A board of trustees was set up, consisting of twelve members; John L. Demeritt, R.M. Fulton, John M. Drake, James M. Leavitt, John P. Glidden, James M. Champion, J.N. Marston, O.J. Avery, Josephus L. Drake, Cyrus P.Keay, Charles L. Miles, and Francisco Barker.... What was ... the recitation room of the Charitable Masonic Institute was papered and painted, fitted with shelves, and adapted for the library. “Dr. Albert N. Gould was the first librarian. He served until his death about 1916.... The library has grown over the years. The report for 1896 showed 761 volumes....” (Source; "Tales of Effingham,", by Lawrence P. Hall, 1988, Freedom, NH From that modest beginning, the Effingham Public Library has expanded to fill the entire first floor of the historic Masonic building, and boasts a collection of over 11,000 items. The Board of Trustees now consists of five members. The library has a paid staff of three, assisted by a team of energetic and dedicated volunteers, and is open 24 hours per week.