The History of Genesee County, MI
Chapter XX
Flint Public Library

Online Edition by Holice, Deb & Clayton



Wheels and the printing press have made the world more neighborly. That cosmopolitan Scot, Mr. Carnegie, who has taken the whole country under his wing, made it possible in 1905 for Flint to erect a steel-framed house for its books. It is constructed of stone, in style suggestive of the Greek, on the corner of Clifford and East Kearsley streets. The interior furnishings are handsome and a good collection of photographs ornament the walls. Perhaps the greatest treasure contained in the library is one of the original volumes of Audubon's "Birds of America," now priceless. This volume, together with three descriptive volumes, was a gift to the Ladies' Library Association in 1876 from Hon. William L. Bancroft, of port Huron. On the second floor of the building is housed the museum of the Genesee county historical society, thus forming a valuable adjunct to the available literature concerning this locality. The work of the head librarian, Mrs. Lena Caldwell, extending over a period of thirty years, cannot be over-estimated.

Four deposit libraries have been placed indifferent sections during the past year, collections of books being send from the public library to the Dort school, the Fairview school, Hurley hospital and the Marvel Carburetor company and it is planned to establish five or six more of these libraries during the coming year. In view of the fact that the present public library is inadequate for the needs of the city, land has been purchased adjoining the building on the east, and large wings will soon be added to make room for the rapidly increasing number of volumes.

The annual report for the year closing July 1, 1916, shows a circulation for the year of 67,965 volumes and 8,m226 persons enrolled on the card system. There are 17,376 volumes in the library, 1,745 of which were added during the year just ended. The board of education in 1914 set aside a room to be known as the "Genesee County Historical Room and Museum." It has developed into a very valuable collection of pioneer and pre-historic relics and specimens. The Silas Collins collection, the gift of Silas Collins, of Grand Blanc, is one of the best in the country.


History of Genesee County, Michigan, Her People, Industries and Institutions
by Edwin O. Wood, LL.D, President Michigan Historical Commission, 1916

Transcribed by Holice B. Young

HTML by Deb

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