Main Library, Michigan Street Entrance
|Location||325 N Michigan St, Toledo, Ohio 43604|
|Branches||Main Library and 20 branches|
|Access and use|
Founded in December 1838, it was Ohio's first public library created with tax money. The Ohio General Assembly granted a charter to the Young Men's Association of Toledo for a "lyceum and public library." In 1864, Republican members broke off from the Young Men's Association Library and formed the Toledo Library Association. In 1867, the two groups merged. In 1873, a free public library was organized by an act of the Ohio Legislature. On May 26, City Council passed a resolution creating The Toledo Public Library. Mrs. Anna B. Carpenter was selected as the first Librarian of the Toledo Public Library. On November 3, 1873, the Toledo Public Library opened for its first day of operation on the second floor of the King Block, a commercial building on the northeast corner of Madison Avenue and Summit Street.
In 1875, Miss Lucy Stevens succeeded Mrs. Carpenter as Librarian. In 1884, Stevens retired and was replaced by Mrs. Frances Jermain.
In 1890, Edward O. Fallis designed a new Main Library in early Norman and Byzantine style. Built on the corner of Madison and Ontario Streets, it opened on June 23, 1890. An addition was built in 1914.
In 1902, Jermain retired and was replaced by Willis Fuller Sewall. He left in 1914 and was replaced by Herbert S. Hirschberg.
In 1916, the Andrew Carnegie Fund offered $125,000 to build five branches on sites to be provided by city. Those branches were the David R. Locke Branch, opened on December 5, 1917; Eliza M. Kent Branch, on December 11, 1917 (fire destroyed the original building in 1974); the Anna C. Mott Branch, on January 3, 1918; Frances D. Jermain Branch, on January 7, 1918; and the South Branch, on January 16, 1918.
In 1923, Carl Vitz took over as Librarian. He was succeeded in 1937 by Russell Schunk, on whose watch the current Toledo Lucas County Main Library was built. It is on land that was the former home of the Toledo Central High School. The building was designed by the architectural firm of Hahn and Hayes and opened on September 5, 1940. The interior of the building was modeled after the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland. The exterior was modeled on that of Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. The one of the interesting features of the building are the vitrolite murals in the Central Court and the Children's Library.
On November 1, 1945, Herbert M. Sewell was named Librarian, taking over for Mr. Vitz; 10 years later, he was succeeded by Robert D. Franklin who stayed as Librarian until the merging of the 3 library systems.
The current system was created in 1970 by the merger of the Toledo Public, Lucas County (established in 1918), and Sylvania Public (established in 1927) libraries. Lewis Naylor was named Director of the combined libraries. Ardath Danforth was named to replace him in 1977. She would leave in 1985, replaced that same year by current Director, Clyde Scoles.
In 2001, the Main Library was restored and added 100,000 square feet (9,300 m2) to an Art Deco facility.
The Lucas County Library opened in 1918 at the location that is now known as the Maumee Branch of the Toledo Lucas County Publilc Library system. Emilie Meuser was the first Director of the Lucas County Library. She was replaced by Dorothy Strouse who served in that role from 1929-1970 when the library systems merged. In 1937 the Lucas County Library system expanded to include bookmobile service for the first time in the county.
The Sylvania Public Library was established as a separate entity from the Lucas County Library in 1926 with Amy M. Ramsey as Director. Marie Huff replaced her in 1931 and served as Director until 1943 when Lillian Miller Carroll took over. Janet Boucher became Director in 1950 and was replaced in 1956 by Helen Consear who served as until the systems merged.
Toledo Lucas County Public Library (TLCPL) contains reference materials, including books, DVDs, and CDs. It also contains special collections such as photographs, genealogical and local history resource materials, periodicals, family histories, obituaries, court records, and archives from the Toledo Blade.
TLCPL also hosts special programs, such as its Holiday Concert series in December, the Summer Brown Bag Concert series which debuted in 1984, and the very popular Authors! series which started in 1994.
- Images in Time
- Digital Collections
- eMedia: The library offers Overdrive, RBdigital, Flipster, and many more online subscriptions.
The Main Library is located at 325 North Michigan Street in downtown Toledo, the Main Library has several departments, Audio-Visual, Business Technology, Children's Library, Humanities, Local History and Genealogy, and the Technology Center.. The Children's Library at Main Library also houses a creativity lab.
The Main Library also houses the award winning Rogowski-Kaptur Labor History Room. Named for Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur's mother this room won the John Sessions Memorial Award from the American Library Association in 2014. The Library also houses The Blade Rare Book Room. Both of these rooms are located in the Local History and Genealogy Department.
The library system currently has 20 branches and four Outreach Services vehicles: Birmingham Branch (opened in 1920), Heatherdowns Branch (opened 1968), Holland Branch (opened 1984), Kent Branch (which also houses the Art Tatum African-American Resource Center, opened in 1917), King Road Branch (opened 2016), Lagrange Branch (opened 1934), Locke Branch (opened in 1917), Maumee Branch (former location of the Lucas County Library which opened in 1937), Mott Branch (opened in 1918, Oregon Branch (opened 1965), Outreach Services, Point Place Branch (opened 1938), Reynolds Corners Branch (opened 1958), Sanger Branch (opened 1950), South Branch (opened in 1918), Sylvania Branch (opened at its original location in 1926, opened at its current location in 1958, while still a separate entity from the Toledo Public and Lucas County Libraries), Toledo Heights Branch (opened 1935), Washington Branch (opened 1928), Waterville Branch (opened 1964), and West Toledo Branch (opened in 1923).
- "2016 Ohio Public Library Statistics - State Library of Ohio". Ohio.gov. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
- "Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, Page S-28" (PDF). ToledoLibrary.org. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
- Noel, David (2001). Information Revolution. Donning Company Publishers.
- First Annual Report, p. 282
- Hibbs, Jack Eugene, A History of the Toledo Lucas County Public Library, 1873-1964 (dissertation)
- Noel, David (2001). Information Revolution. Donning Company.
- Anthony, Sister Mary (1942). Survey of the Toledo Public Library 1838-1942. Ohio State University.
- Toledo.com "Toledo Lucas County Public Libraries"
- "U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts selected: Lucas County, Ohio". www.Census.gov. Retrieved July 20, 2017.
- "TLCPL - Images in Time". images2.toledolibrary.org. Retrieved 2018-07-17.
- "Toledo Lucas County Public Library". www.ohiomemory.org.
- "eMedia - Toledo Lucas County Public Library". www.toledolibrary.org.
- "Locations - Main Library - Toledo Lucas County Public Library". www.ToledoLibrary.org. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
- "Main Library - Creativity Lab - Toledo Lucas County Public Library". www.ToledoLibrary.org. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
- "Locations - Toledo Lucas County Public Library". www.ToledoLibrary.org. Retrieved December 7, 2017.