Thursday, September 20, 2007
Friends of the Farmington Library's 60th Anniversary Bash
1946-1947: In the Beginning
In November 1946, having learned that the endowment was no longer sufficient to cover the operating budget of the library, the Trustees of the Farmington Village Green & Library Association
appointed a special Public Relations Committee. Its functions were to publicize library services and conduct a financial campaign.
The original members of the committee were:
Lydia Hewes, Chairman
Sally Smith, Secretary
Mrs. Walter Wilson
This group solicited 750 First District families by a letter in
December, followed by another one in January 1947. Anyone who responded with a contribution was designated as a “Friend of the Village Library”. There were 477 individuals from 119 families who became the first “Friends”. Memberships were $1, $5, $10, and
25 cents for children. The committee received $1545 from the first appeal, then another $1486 from the second letter. With that money, they balanced the budget, built the outside fire escape stairway, and fixed up the basement.
The committee sponsored its first public program in January 1947, a lecture by Mabel Hurlburt on “Old Farmington Houses”, with colored slides, held at the Porter Memorial. They also decided to hold annual open houses at the Village Library, each one to have a popular theme. The first one was March 1, 1947, and featured exhibits on “Old and New” in books, travel, and occupations.
There was also a newsletter, untitled, edited by Lydia Hewes, and published in May 1947. A contest was held to name future
issues; and when the second one appeared in October, it was called “Book Ends”, the name it still bears.
The Entire History of the Farmington Friends will soon be posted on the Friends web page. This history was compiled and written by Betty Coykendall