History of the Minersville Public Library
The Free Public Library was established in 1934 (in conjunction with the
Community Center) through the efforts of the Minersville Welfare Association with
financial aid from the Federal Government, through the Educational and Recreational
Division of the re-employment services during the Roosevelt Administration. The
Lytle Store was secured after much effort by Welfare Board members, headed by Marjorie
In 1939, the Lytle Store building was bought by Isaacs for a factory. The Library
moved to Third Street School building. Mrs. Doolin was the librarian in charge.
W.P.A. was phased out in 1941 and the library was closed. In the spring of 1944,
a group of high school girls initiated a move to open the library. They asked Mrs.
Murphy, then high school librarian, to act as an advisor and with permission of
the school board, cleaned the books and opened the library in November of 1944.
The Minersville Youth Center opened in 1945 and supplied the library with heat and
lights. The Minersville School Board gave $25.00 a month to help with supplies.
The Lion's Club, Woman's Club and Lionettes all contributed regularly to the upkeep.
The Lionettes held a yearly fashion show with the proceeds going to the library.
From 1944 until 1975, all librarians and aides were volunteers.
The Lion's Club rescued the library when the Youth Center closed its doors in 1971.
Under the direction of Stan Snyder, a library board was formed, consisting of representatives
from the service clubs and the clergy of Minersville.
This board formed the Minersville Library Association, Inc. and received its charter,
January 17, 1972. Annual fund drives were held to pay for the upkeep of the library.
In March 1974, the Minersville School Distict turned the building over to the Borough
and stopped funding the library. The board faced many problems at this time, with
lack of a reliable heating system and funds to keep the library open on a regular
Mrs. Lillian Sheriff was hired through the SCAM Program in 1975. In 1976, the Minersville
Library became a member of the County Library System, which provided county and
federal revenue sharing funds.
As with any federally funded program, in 1980 SCAM dropped Mrs. Sheriff from their
payroll. The Library Association was faced with funding her salary. Don Shandri
formed the concerned dozen and raised $500 each and challenged the public to match
this money. Several times the library was threatened to close its doors permanently,
due to lack of money to properly maintain the library; however, the public, businesses
and clubs always came through with enough money for one more year.
In 1993, the present librarian was hired on a full-time basis. In that same year,
Melvin Jenkins' will provided $100,000 for a new library building.