Linton Public Library History
The Linton Public Library (formerly the Margaret Cooper Public Library) has been part of the Linton community almost from the founding of our town. In 1902, a small library of seventy-five donated books was established in the upstairs of Wolford’s Department Store, on the SE corner of Main and Vincennes Streets.
Lilian Wolford, President of the Bayview Literary Club, was the force behind establishing a public library in Linton. Other board members included David Terhune, Dr. C. T. Sherwood, Mrs. B. A. Rose, Mrs. Joe Moss and Job Freeman.
In January of 1902, a letter and petition with twenty-four names was sent to Andrew Carnegie asking for a library for the town of Linton. The letter stated, “boys and girls are not able to attend school because they must work to help their families,” but they had “free time in the evenings which could be spent at the public library instead of various places of vice and amusement”.
On December 24, 1907, a letter granted $15,000 to the town of Linton to build a public library. Mr. and Mrs. Moss donated the property on the NE corner of 1st Street and East Vincennes in memory of their parents. The Patton and Miller Architectural firm was commissioned by recommendation of the Indiana Library Commission Secretary, who later became Executive Director of the American Library Association. The building looks basically as it did in 1908. It is one of only 19 Carnegie libraries built in the Tudor style. The Library cornerstone was laid June 2, 1908. At that time, it was known as the “Linton Public Library.” Later it was renamed the “Margaret Cooper Public Library” in recognition of the longest serving past Librarian.
In 2007, a new building was erected at 95 SE First Street on property purchased from the Linton Chamber of Commerce. On July 14, 2007, volunteers arrived at the Carnegie building and moved all materials to the new building (1 block south) in just 3 hours by forming a truck brigade. An open house was held on August 14, 2007 to greet over 300 visitors. In September 2008, the Carnegie building was donated to the Carnegie Heritage & Arts Center of Greene County, a not-for-profit agency formed to preserve the historic building as well as to promote the community’s heritage and the arts of Greene County.
The 1910 annual report listed the library as being open 54 hours per week. The collection consisted of 2, 147 books and 27 periodicals. Past Librarians have included: Grace Burton (1908-1909), Zeta Carr (1909-1910), Maggie McGauhy (1910-1919), Adria Humphreys
(1919-1925), Margaret Cooper (1925-1983), Emily Cooper Bunyan (1983-1986), Susanne Robb (1986-1992), Jill Wilkes (1993-1995), Ann Wright-Gainey (1997-1999) and Shelley Williams
(2000-present). The current new library consists of a children’s section, a Young Adult section, the Indiana Resource Area, a wireless lab, the adult section (including reference and fiction), a careers section, a literacy section, an area for periodicals and newspapers, computer areas, video/DVD and book-on-tape/CD sections, employee offices with a workroom, a program room, a tutoring/study room and an area for the Friends of the Library, all on one floor. It is governed by a seven-member Board of Trustees who are appointed by diverse agencies and has a paid Director with ten paid staff members. The immediate service area is Linton and Stockton Township, but patrons come from all over Greene County. The Library works with many local agencies to provide free access to diverse information and enrichment programs for its patrons.
Linton Public Library Mission Statement
The mission of the Linton Public Library is to provide the community with a center for information, education, entertainment and cultural enrichment.
Linton Public Library’s Vision
The vision of the Linton Public Library is to serve our community as a source for independent learning and reference materials, to provide popular materials for entertainment and to provide a center for community activities, especially in times of economic uncertainty.
Library Service Area
The library district covers 36.72 square miles serving a population of 8722 based upon the 2000 Census population count. This compromises Stockton Township in Greene County, Indiana.
We offer reciprocal library cards to anyone who has a current library card at an institution with which we have an agreement; this includes the libraries in Greene County: Jasonville Public Library, Worthington-Jefferson Township Public Library, and Bloomfield-Eastern Greene County Public Library.
For those who are in an unserved area, (including Cass, Fairplay, Grant, Smith, Stafford, Washington, and most of Wright Townships in Greene County) we offer library cards for $35 per year (as of February 1, 2010).