History of the Library
The New Lexington library had its beginning in 1888, as a village library sponsored by the village council. A number of pioneer library boosters persuaded the village council to furnish a room rent free, and to appropriate a small sum of money annually for its maintenance. For the first three years, books were donated and the library board sponsored several annual lectures and entertainment courses, the proceeds of which were used for books. Early librarians were local women who served without compensation, keeping the library open several afternoons during the week.
Years later, on December 24, 1935, at the home of Mrs. H.F. Minshull, a group of individuals, as appointed by Mayor A. W. Wolfe, “met and effected an organization.” Those appointed included Mrs. A.N. Kishler, Mrs. H.F. Minshull, Miss Bertha Drury, Mr. N.P. Blatt, Mr. John A. Ward, and Mr. Emerson Wagner. N.P. Blatt held the office of President, and Bertha Drury was Secretary. During that first documented meeting, the group discussed changing the New Lexington Public Library into a county project in order to share funds provided for library support. This committee (or board) officially noted in board minutes taken on March 11, 1937, that they would be…”known in the future as the Perry County Public Library Board.” Margaret Kelly was the acting librarian.
The location of the library remained in a room of the village hall until July, 1938, when the Board selected the William McClellan residence on Jackson Street as the new location for the New Lexington Library. The property was leased from Elizabeth McClellan. The library remained there for many years. On March 1, 1938, the library board agreed to accept the proposal for county wide library service and stated that branches would be established in “Somerset and other villages.” The benefit of doing so was that the library would be eligible for intangible tax support and some grant money from the state. Branches were soon established in Somerset and Crooksville. Later the Thornville Branch was opened to the public and it was dedicated in 1939. By 1940 Perry County also had branches in Corning, Junction City, and Shawnee.
In addition to branches, nine stations were established in small communities all over the county. The Hemlock station was established June of 1939. School collections were also maintained, and by 1944 there were collections in 9 buildings.
WPA (Works Progress Administration) certified workers were among those working at the libraries during this time period. Upon resigning his position as Library Board President in January 1941, Superintendant N.P. Blatt stated, “The WPA has also played an important part in the growth of the library program in Perry County, in that the salaries of the trained librarian and most of the other workers have been paid from funds allocated for this project.” Blatt also credited Miss Mildred Sandoe, State Librarian, and John Paskell, Sr., County Representative, who Blatt explained, “…has been interested in the library over a period of years and has helped financially by promoting a measure every two years in the state legislature which provided state aid for libraries throughout Ohio.”
Following Blatt’s resignation and the resignation of another Board member (Mrs. A.N. Kishler) in 1941, Mayor Birkimer appointed two individuals to the Board of Trustees, Mrs. Pauline Bennett and M.J. Lennon. Mrs. Gladys Minshull became the President of the Board, and remained in that position until Mrs. Pauline Bennett was elected Board President in January 1944. In addition, Mr. M.J. Lennon held the office of Vice President, Mrs. Florence Folk was Secretary, Mr. O.E. Hearing was Treasurer, and Miss Dorothy H. Hellen was the librarian.
In February 1942, the Somerset Friends of the Library was established. Although other Friends groups have come together for short periods of time throughout the history of the library, the Somerset Friends has both maintained a constant presence and given support to the library. It is still an active group today (2013). Friends groups have also been noted in New Lexington and Junction City. Efforts of all the individuals involved in these groups have made a major impact on the success of the library overall, and continue to be met with overwhelming gratitude.
On August 29, 1947 the Library Board requested, in the form of a resolution, that the Village Council of New Lexington acting under Ohio General Code Section 7643-1a (now Ohio Revised Code 3375.20) allow the formation of a county library district. On September 8, 1947, the Council of the Village made a motion to do just that, and the New Lexington Public Library became the Perry County District Library. With the adoption of this new “county set up,” additional board members were added by way of appointment by the County Commissioners and the County Common Pleas Court Judge. The new seven-member board included: Gladys Minshull, Emerson C. Wagner, Florence Folk, Pauline Bennett, Mary L. Deaver, Laura B. Hugley, and Bertha Levion. Mrs. Bennett continued to hold the office of President.
At one point (1954 through 1955) the Board explored the idea of purchasing the McClellan property, but later (July 1960) a lease for the room in the Masonic Building on Main Street in New Lexington was approved by the Board. It was decided this property would be used as the New Lexington Library.
As a cooperative effort to provide good library service throughout the area, the Perry County District Library Board decided (after approval from the county prosecutor) that effective July 1, 1961 fifteen dollars per month would be allocated to John McIntire Muskingum County Library to be applied to the rent for the Roseville Library. This agreement continued until October of 1995.
In January 1963, the Board of Trustees decided to contract services for a Library Supervisor (later re-named the Supervising Manager). Mrs. Shirley J. Sippola, director of the State Library Service Center of Caldwell would be the acting director, providing 8 hours of service to the Perry County District Library each week. This agreement remained in place until March 1964, when Sippola resigned and the position was filled by Miss Jane Thomas. Miss Thomas was employed under the same contract through the State Library Service Center of Caldwell.
In 1964, Board minutes document that, in addition to books and periodicals, 16mm films were available for schools and clubs, while 8 mm films were available for children. In 1965, the first signs of library collaboration were documented, as Miss Thomas worked out an agreement with the Caldwell Public Library, the State Bookmobile, and the Martins Ferry Public Library, whereby Perry County District Library would exchange books with them.
Mrs. Howells filled the role of consulting librarian from the State Library Service Center from the spring of 1965 to July 30, 1966, after which Miss Jane Thomas returned in October of that same year. During her October report to the board, it was noted that records could be borrowed from the Service Center in Caldwell to be used at branch libraries.
In September 1968, Mr. Ray Mulhern was welcomed as the new Supervising Manager from the State Library Service Center.
In August 1969, Perry County District Library got its first photo copier at the New Lexington Library, and in October of that same year, talking book machines became available to the patrons of Perry County.
The Board made a resolution in March 1970 to participate in an Area Library Service Organization (ALSO). Newly appointed trustee, Gwen Young, along with Mr. Mulhern, were appointed as representatives for the purpose of developing an area plan. This would later be known as Southeastern Ohio Library Organization (SOLO). In July 1970, the Board made the resolution to be a member of SOLO. Perry County had the distinction of being a member of the first ALSO established in the state of Ohio. Gwen Young was elected by the Board to be the trustee to serve on the Board of the Southeast Ohio Library Organization.
In 1971, bookmobile service was again addressed as a possibility, but this time through SOLO. In June 1972, the Board voted to contract with the State Library of Ohio Southeastern Ohio Service Center in Caldwell for bookmobile service during the summer months. In September of 1972, Mr. Ward Murray, who was in charge of the service, reported on the success of the service and stated that a “PeeWee” truck from the Center was also operating throughout the county providing new material to the branches. Summer bookmobile services continued until provisions were made through monies awarded by the County Commissioners from the Revenue Sharing funds to allow for extended bookmobile service in September 1974. Bookmobile stops included: Mount Perry, Chalfants, Glenford, Rehoboth, Coverhill, Saltillo, Moxahala, Rendville, Drakes, Rt. 155 (Miller H.S.), Hemlock, and Bristol. By 1976 the Revenue Sharing funds were no longer available, but the Board found alternative monies to continue the service. Additional stops were added years later.
In the spring of 1973, the Board made a resolution that the library would recognize the holder of a valid borrower’s card of any other public library in any adjacent county or any library affiliated with the Perry County District Library within the organizational structure of SOLO. During that same time period they sponsored the reproduction of Martzolff’s History of Perry County (a book that had been out of print and out of copyright for several years).
After months of discussion, the Board made a motion that a levy in the amount of .6 mills be submitted to the voters of the district at the November election. Gwen Young was nominated to head the Levy Committee. It was stated that with the money, library branches would be able to stay open and some would be updated. On November 4, 1975 the levy was passed. Barbara Mooney (appointed to the Board in 1972) stated, “The total budget for the library was around $60,000 before the levy passed, and after the levy the budget doubled.” In addition to stabilizing the financial situation of the library, Mr. Mulhern and the Board also decided that it was time to hire a county librarian. On April 23, 1976, Mrs. Rebecca Phillips Olson was hired as the County Librarian (a position that in later years would be known as Library Director). After resuming her duties on June 1, 1976, it was no longer necessary for the library to contract a supervising manager from the State Library Service Center in Caldwell. Olson continued in this position until July 1978. This levy was put on the ballot again in 1979 for renewal.
In the midst of this activity, in 1977 the Somerset Branch was moved from its location on North Columbus Street to Public Square.
The Board hired Ms. Carol Huge to be the new County Librarian as of September 1, 1978. She stayed on until January 1980. Paula Davis, who was the acting children’s librarian, was chosen as the new head librarian upon Huge’s resignation. In November, the head librarian’s position was filled by Sheila Glowacki.
By the 1980’s it was very evident to the Board that in order to provide the highest quality library service to patrons, a new location with room to grow would be necessary for New Lexington, as well as some of the branch libraries. In January of 1981 a building fund (separate from the general fund) was established by the Board of Trustees with a $1000 donation from the Mooney family.
In July 1982, Sheila Glowacki applied for a grant to purchase the first computers for the library. By March 1983, two Apple IIE computers were available for use, but only to those who had been trained and deemed eligible to use them.
After much searching and contemplation of options available, the Board resolved to purchase approximately 1 acre of property from Pike Development Company, Inc. in December 1982. The property was located near Carroll Street (Lincoln Park Drive). In January of 1983, Mark Denny, of Midwest Engineering, was hired project planning purposes, during this same meeting it was decided that a bond levy would be placed on the June ballot that year. The Board met with great opposition to the property purchase, as it would move the library from Main Street. In the months to follow, many suggestions for alternate sites were brought up, and it was decided to table the bond levy until the November 1983 election. The Board was also looking at alternative locations for the Shawnee and Junction City Branches.
In July 1983, the Board passed a resolution to place a bond levy on the ballot for the purpose of constructing, equipping and furnishing a main library building and branches, and acquiring real estate for library purposes. This levy failed. So, in January 1984, another resolution was passed by the Board to go back on the ballot in May 1984 for the same purpose. This motion proposed a .6 mill renewal plus an increase of 1.7 mills for five years. This too was voted down. Once again, the Board pushed forward in hopes of securing monies for a new building. In November 1984, the library was once again on the ballot. This time with a renewal of .6 mill and an additional 14 mill; however, this, too, was rejected by Perry County voters.
Sheila Glowacki resigned her position in November 1984. Ruth Sullivan, who was hired in January 1981 as a Library Technical Assistant and later became the Clerk/Treasurer of the library, was the acting director of the library until the position was filled by Jeff Mellott in April 1985. Mellott started his position in June of that year. This was the first documented time that the position was entitled Director, instead of County (or Head) Librarian.
In May 1985, the Library was once again on the ballot. This time for a renewal of .6 mill. The Board called on the area mayors and town representatives for assistance. This renewal was a success.
Barbara Mooney, then Vice President of the Board of Trustees and Board member since January 1972, says she remembers this time period very clearly… “The Board was desperate to find a good location for a new library that the public would approve of.” She and her husband, Dan Mooney, drove around town looking at spots that might work. They talked with Dr. Ball and knew his property, along with the Saffell property next to it, would be a perfect spot. Unfortunately, he passed away before an agreement was made. After his death, the Board went into a land contract with Mrs. Bonnie Ball in 1984, and later (July 1987) became the owners of the property. However, while in the planning stages for a new building, the leased property (Masonic Building on Main Street) offered insufficient space and additional office space was secured at 108 South Main Street.
In March 1986, a land contract was signed for the Dane Gordon property in Junction City. In September 1987 a deed had been prepared and the Board approved a motion to purchase the building. A group of forty-two volunteers were approved to do preliminary work on the property, and later workers were contracted to finish the necessary improvements prior to the library moving in. The project was very long and drawn out due to issues with the sewage system.
In November1987, three Apple IIGS computers were purchased. Crooksville, Thornville, and Somerset Branches each received one.
In May 1988, Jeff Mellott resigned his position as Director. At that same Board meeting, interviews for architects to oversee the New Lexington Building project were held. Mark Denny, who had played such a vital role in the entire planning process, was the architect chosen for the job. Ruth Sullivan was once again made interim director until a new director was chosen. Later, in July 1988, the Board made resolutions that the new building would be located on South Jackson Street, that the Saffell property would be purchased with LSCA Title II Grant money (if awarded), and that Mark Denny would be the architect for the new building project. Jeff Mellott was hired as a consultant to write the grant.
In the summer of 1988, the New Lexington Fire Department burned down the Ball House in preparation for the building project.
In September 1988, the Board appointed Michael Wantz as the new Director of the Library. In November 1988, Mike reported that SEO (in Caldwell)… “had great potential for regional cooperation automation.” This would later prove to be a great asset to the library services we continue to offer today.
In November 1988, the Board moved forward with the purchase of the Saffell property, even though the announcement of grant awards was not until December of that year. Later the grant was approved, and financially the library was in line with the plan for the new library project.
A celebration was held in February 1989 commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Thornville Branch Library. It was noted that in the history of that branch, only 4 librarians had served there. Also, in February 1989, it was decided that the Crooksville Branch would move to a larger location, which was a property to be leased from Mr. Gary Zinn. The move took place several months later after a renovation by the owner. At that time, work was still being done on the Junction City property, and there were negotiations in progress for improved locations in Corning and Shawnee. The Somerset location was also being evaluated for improvements.
In June 1989, it was decided that fax service would be available to the public at a basic cost of $2.50 plus $0.25 per page. This price remains the same today (2013). 1989 also marked the year of air conditioning being installed in the new Junction City property, as well as Thornville, Corning, and Shawnee.
In 1990 many exciting changes took place. In January, the public was invited to an open house for the new Junction City Branch. The library opened a credit card account for the first time. On February 21, a ground-breaking ceremony was held at the property on Jackson Street for the new New Lexington library. Renovations were finally completed on the Zinn property in Crooksville, and the Crooksville National Honor Society assisted in the move in March 1990. An open house was held on April 29. Answering machines were installed in all library locations in April of that year. In May, the Board made a resolution to automate the library system by participating in the State Library of Ohio’s Southeastern Ohio Regional Automation Project. And the Village of Somerset worked with the library staff and Friends of Somerset Library group to allow enough additional space for a children’s room to be added to the library. By the end of the year, the wheels were in motion for both the New Lexington and the Somerset projects.
By 1991, all library locations were offering fax service. Staff members were being trained on the new automation system, and the new building in New Lexington had both database lines and a security system installed in preparation for the grand opening. The Corning Branch Library found a new home in St. Bernard’s Convent, while finishing touches were being completed on the other locations.
It was then time to celebrate all the changes that had taken place. On July 11, 1991 the New Lexington Library opened its doors to the public. The new building and location, which the Board worked tirelessly on for nearly 10 years, was finally a reality. Boasting a 12,000 square feet structure equipped for an automated circulation system, space dedicated for a children’s room and the MacGahan Genealogy Room, and a parking lot with 50 parking spaces, this was certainly a state of the art facility and would mark a new era in library services for Perry County. Many organizations and volunteers joined forces with the staff, to assist with over 50,000 items to move from Main Street to Jackson Street. Those included were volunteers from Ohio Army National Guard, the New Lexington Jaycees, Girl Scouts, the Police Department, the Green Thumb, the Board of Elections, the Juvenile Court Probation Office, the Sherriff’s Department, the State Library of Ohio, the New Lexington Volunteer Fire Department, and countless other individuals. The American-Bulgarian Foundation donated money to purchase showcases to house the MacGahan display, which is still located in the lower level of the library today. A two-day open house event was held at the New Lexington library on September 14-15, 1991. The event drew in many visitors and was definitely an historical event for not only the library but the entire county. Additionally, an open house for the Somerset Branch was held on September 29, 1991, and Corning celebrated their new location on October 26, 1991.
During this monumental year, the library Board members were Pauline Bennett (President), Barbara Mooney (Vice President), Patricia Vigue (Secretary), Elinore Tucker, John Winnenberg, Gwen Young, and Larry Roberts. These individuals, along with Michael Wantz (Director), Ruth Sullivan (Clerk/Treasurer), and Mark Denny (Architect) put countless hours into making the library system a progressive, service oriented resource center and cultural hub for the county.
In May 1992, Pauline Bennett resigned from the Board of Trustees after more than 50 years of service to the library, 48 of which were served as President of the Board. Her portrait is prominently displayed in the lobby of the New Lexington library in honor of her dedication and service. Years later (October 4, 1996), she was inducted into the Ohio Library Trustees Hall of Fame.
Following Bennett’s resignation, Barbara Mooney became the fourth President of the Board of Perry County District Library. She had been serving as Vice President since 1974 and had been appointed as a Trustee in 1972. Accompanying her as officers were Carla Sherlock, Vice President and Trustee since June 1992, and Pat Vigue, Secretary and Trustee since February 1982.
In 1993, a new location for the Shawnee Branch had been agreed upon. The Branch would move into a space in the old Tecumseh Theatre building after renovations were complete. By 1994, the branch had moved and a celebration was held on June 25. Later, in October 1994, the lot that had been purchased on Lincoln Park Drive in 1982 was sold for $20,500.
Once the main library in New Lexington was automated, the branches were brought up one-by-one. Thornville went on-line in 1994 and the rest of the branches followed as installations were completed. By September 1995 the Ohio Public Library Information Network (OPLIN) had been very busy laying groundwork to link all 250 libraries, public schools, and Ohio Link Universities together. In March 1996, the OPLIN T-1 line was installed. It would eventually replace lines to branches.
By January 1996, all locations except Junction City Branch were sending and receiving books via the SEO Delivery System (then known as Pony). Junction City Branch soon followed, and the resource sharing that so many of our patrons have come to rely on was implemented and is now a Statewide Delivery System with close to 90 library systems participating (more than 200 physical library locations statewide).
In October 1997, the Board decided to rent 103 Public Square in Somerset for a new location for the Somerset Branch, and by December the new location was open to the public.
1998 was a landmark year for the Thornville patrons of Perry County District Library, as the Board resolved to purchase a property located at 99 East Columbus Street in Thornville for a new library. A year later, July 1999, Phillip Markwood and Associates was chosen as the architect for this project, along with a major renovation project for Junction City Branch. The design left the front of the original house, but attached a very modern all-glass addition to the rear of the original structure to create a stunning entrance to the library. The entire community was involved in the move and celebration for this new library. On May 29, 2001, the “Book Brigade,” formed by the children of the Thornville Elementary, lined the street from the old library location on Main Street to the new location and passed books to help with the move. The event made both local and Columbus news broadcasts and was featured in several newspapers. A week-long open house event was held September 23-29, 2001. The kick-off featured a Mayor’s Proclamation & Ribbon Cutting with live music and guest speaker Judge Luann Cooperrider. In addition, prize giveaways, crafts, a Tea & Talk book discussion, Teen Day, and a special local author visit by Barbara Crandell was held. In appreciation of all their hard work in helping with the move, the library also invited all the Thornville Elementary children in for a private Kid’s Program with The Turtle Lady (Nancy Lockard). Today, this branch continues to grow and offer services to a large number of patrons. A space redesign will be completed in August 2013, to allow for an updated computer area, additional patron seating, and additional shelving to house a growing collection of books and other materials.
In July 2000, the Crooksville Branch moved directly across Main Street to its current location. After a redesign in 2012, the Branch now offers 8 public computer/Internet terminals, a more open design, and spaces for adults, teens and children, and a small meeting room space in the rear of the building. By the end of summer 2013, additional shelving will be added to accommodate the growth of the collection and variety of materials offered at this location.
In 2001, Perry County District Library was part of the Digital Shoebox Project, which developed an on-line collection of historical photos from places throughout the state of Ohio. The digital shoebox collection is still available for use today.
In March 2001, the library was awarded a Gates Grant for $113,256.00, which allowed the purchase of 29 new computers to be placed throughout the library system for use by patrons. This much needed upgrade in computer hardware and software helped in bridging the digital divide in Perry County.
On April 17, 2002, the Board of Trustees decided to go into a 15-year lease agreement on the property currently occupied by the Somerset Branch with the understanding that the landlord, Bob Muetzel, would complete a major renovation to meet the needs of the library. Steve Shinn, of Phillip Markwood and Associates, was hired to be the architect for this renovation. Shinn also continued work on the Junction City plans during this time period, but the project itself was put on hold due to the work being done in other locations.
While renovations were underway in Somerset, a State Library Bookmobile was a permanent fixture in the Somerset Square. It provided library service throughout the project.
In October 2002, the Board closed on the purchase of a property in Corning. This property (formerly a restaurant located next to John’s Place on State Route 13) allowed for more open space and shelving, while creating a more accessible location. Minor renovations were completed prior to the opening of this building, and an open house was held on September 10 of that year. The library remains there today.
After many years of service, the State Library of Ohio discontinued contracted bookmobile services, and all bookmobile services in Perry County ended in December 2002.
Somerset renovations were completed and the branch was opened back up by the end of 2002. The open house was held in March 2003, with local author, Michael J. Rosen, and child book character, The Cat in the Hat, in attendance. This branch remains one of the most utilized in the system. Due to growth, a redesign was necessary in 2012, which allowed for additional shelving, an upgraded computer area, and additional seating for those using laptop computers.
In October 2003, it was time to proceed with the Junction City project. Lepi Enterprises, Inc. was chosen to be the contractor for this project in December 2006. The building had to be completely closed down for the major renovation phase in 2007. A grand re-opening was held on June 6, 2007, just in time to kick-off the summer reading programs. A ribbon cutting ceremony was lead by local board member and secretary, Pat Vigue, and a proclamation was read by County Commissioner and local resident, Ed Keister. The entire community turned out for the event, and it was stated that… “the library was the best thing that happened to Junction City.” It was certainly another proud moment in the history of the library. Due to the growth of services and use, the Board agreed to a redesign and update for the building to be completed in August 2013.
The purpose of the Perry County District Library is to meet the cultural, educational, informational and recreational needs of the residents of Perry County. In October 2006, the Board of Trustees adopted a new mission statement, “Explore, Educate, Enjoy!”
On May 31, 2007, Mike Wantz retired his position as Director, with the understanding that he would return after two months as the Executive Director of the library. In his absence, Melissa Marolt (hired in March 1998 as PR/Marketing Coordinator and later Youth Services Coordinator as well) was made interim director of the library. Upon Mike’s return, Melissa then became Director Designee, overseeing the main library and continuing duties as PR/Marketing and Youth Services Coordinator. Mike was in charge of all branch matters and the overall workings of the library system. Later, in 2009, Mike fully retired from the library system, and the Board named Marolt the new Director.
After drastic cuts in funding in the summer of 2009, the Board of Trustees voted to close the Shawnee Branch Library. Factors that were looked at in the determination of this closure included the cost per circulation, the population of the county as compared to the location of library services provided, and the overall use of the branch. The library still holds a presence in the community by offering programs throughout the year in various locations, like churches, the park, and the Tecumseh Commons. Staffing was reduced in all locations as well. In order to survive the major cutbacks in state funding, the Board recognized the urgency to go back to the voters of Perry County and ask for help in the form of a 1.0 mill levy. The initial paperwork was spearheaded by Board Secretary Pat Vigue along with Board President Barbara Mooney, Board Vice President Carla Sherlock, and Board Trustees Larry Roberts, Bill Dunlap, Lucinda Yinger and Bob Frame. The Board, Marolt, and an outstanding political action committee (PAC), headed by Sara Winters, put together a “Love Your Library” campaign that drew outstanding response from the public. Countless hours of campaigning by volunteers, staff and board members made the campaign a success. The following year, once levy money was being received, the Board was able to once again look to the future optimistically. However, frugal spending and careful planning would continue to be a priority. To date, Ruth Sullivan (Fiscal Officer), Melissa Marolt (Director), and the Board of Trustees constantly monitor the budget, and make decisions based on the needs of the people of Perry County.
In 2011, the library was in dire need of a computer equipment upgrade, due to major issues and the age of the equipment being used. It was decided to go with a virtual system. In August, the process began, along with a switch to a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone system.
On May 25, 2012, Board President Barbara Mooney signed the final documents on a property in Somerset, located at 117 West Main Street. This property, formerly the Northside Pharmacy owned by Genesis, became available after a new pharmacy was built across the street. Immediately after receiving the keys to the building on May 29, the staff, with the assistance of Headley Construction, Zanesville Glass, and Cleanway, prepared to open the building for use as the Somerset Library Annex (a site for programming and meeting space). The following Tuesday morning, the first summer reading story time was held there. Although the property will eventually be torn down and replaced with a new branch library, it is fully functional as an annex to date. The time frame for this construction project includes a planning phase to begin in 2014, with completion to be targeted for the summer of 2017. Until that time, the Somerset Branch will remain at 103 Public Square.
After many years of requesting services, the people of the Glenford area welcomed back bookmobile service in the fall of 2012. This service was contracted through the Licking County Library and continues to thrive.
Today, materials circulate among the main library, the five Perry County District Library branches, and the SEO (now Serving Every Ohioan) Consortium Libraries. The collection of each branch reflects to some extent the special character and interests of the community it serves within the limits set by budget, space and staff. Interlibrary loan is used to secure specialized materials which are beyond the scope of the collection. The public library collection supplements other library collections, especially those in the schools of Perry County. Thus the people of Perry County are fully served. The newest items being offered are eBooks, eAudio, and eVideo, which can be downloaded from the library website. The Perry County District Library has a presence on the Internet through a website (www.pcdl.org), Facebook and Pintrest.
The Perry County District Library subscribes to the Library Bill of Rights adopted by the Council of the American Library Association in June 1967; the Freedom to Read Statement prepared by the Westchester conference of the American Library Association and the American Book Publishers Council in May 1953, revised 1972; and the Freedom to View Statement endorsed by the Council of the American Library Association in January 1990.
As of 2013, the members of the Board of Trustees are President Barbara Mooney (Trustee since January 1972), Vice President Carla Sherlock (Trustee since June 1992), Secretary Pat Vigue (Trustee since February 1982), Larry Roberts (Trustee since August 1983), Bill Dunlap (Trustee since September 1999), Lucinda Yinger (Trustee since June 2000), and Bob Frame (Trustee since October 2000).
The mission of the library remains, “Explore, Educate, Enjoy!”