Services: Book lending, Free computer use and wifi, Fax, Copy, Genealogy, Educational programs, and Heartland Library System sharing.
he Coulterville Women’s Club was organized October 16, 1935 with 12 Charter Members. The first meeting place was located on the second floor of the Kroger building, at the corner of Grant and Fourth Streets. The building was owned by Mrs. Armstrong, a member of the club.
The first civic project of the club would be a public library. The members began collecting books. They advertised, begged and placing a market basket over their arm, walked the streets of the village asking for books. Mr. Snyder, owner of the lumberyard, along with volunteers, built book shelves. The members carried the books up the stairs and prepared the meeting room as a library.
The library was opened to the public, January 18, 196 with 300 donated books, plus 50 on loan from the State Library. The library was opened Saturday afternoons only. The first librarian was Mrs. Olive Womack who was paid 50 cents an afternoon. With the increase of patrons, hours were extended to several afternoons a week. Mrs. Harry Wilson was elected to help, free of charge, but she had the privilege of reading the books.
The library stayed at this location for several years. Following the death of Mrs. Armstrong the building was sold. The new owner charged the club rent, so the ladies decided to move. They moved books, shelves, chairs and even a piano! After two more moves, they settled in the White Building.
The library was operated by the club until they presented it to the Village. Taxpayers then approved a referendum for a free tax supported public library, with an elected Library Board of Directors. The Kimball building, located at the corner of Grant and Fourth Streets, was purchased, where the library is permanently located today.
Because of the foresight, generosity and dedication of the ladies of the Coulterville Women’s Club, the Village has enjoyed and benefited from a public library since 1936.
The library provides many services for the community, including Fax, copy and computer services, records, maps, books etc. Reading programs and summer reading programs are also provided.
(An unedited version of this article can be found in the book, “Recipes and Remembrances” by Betty Gimber and the late Virginia Vancil.)