Carrollton Public Library
One North Folger Street
Carrollton, MO 64633
In 1938, a group of 14 women had a vision for the Town of Carrollton; the vision was to provide a public library for the community. Those women were the charter members of the Forum Club and had as their motto, "Not for ourselves, but for others." One Saturday morning, at the sound of the fire siren, the women went door to door and collected books and $1.00 subscriptions. This was the beginning of the Carrollton Public Library. The library was first located in the lower level of the Florence Hotel. Volunteers managed the library until 1952.
Now, the Carrollton Public Library is located on the northwest corner of the historic square of downtown Carrollton. The 12,880 square feet building occupies the lot that was the site of the 1883 Florence Hotel. The state of the art library blends cosmetically with the 100-year-old buildings located around the square. Due to the generosity of over 600 benefactors, the $906,000.00 building was constructed entirely with donated money. The building was completed in seven months with the grand opening held in March, 2004. Fast forward to late 2007, the ladies of the Forum Club asked to relocated their monthly meetings in the lower level of the library. With welcoming arms, the Library Board agreed to this making it a full circle from the Florence Hotel original site that is now where the Carrollton Public Library stands today.
The library is a political entity of the Town of Carrollton. Our library district is the boundaries of the city limits while our state aid is based upon the city population of 3,784 residents (2010 census records). The Town Council and mayor appoint a board of nine volunteers to hire the library director and set policies. Town of Carrollton ordinances and Missouri State Statutes govern the library. The Missouri State Library, a division of the Secretary of State's office, gives direction and guidance to the library. The Carrollton Public Library applies for many grants through the Missouri State Library. The library board and director meet at least once a month, more often when necessary, to conduct library business. The city's collector collects the library tax and the city disperses the tax revenue to the library. The tax revenue is deposited into the general operating account; a portion of the money is invested until it is needed for operations. All revenues and expenditures are viewed and approved by the board. The Library's annual budget is $135,000 and 80% of that figures is generated from the city property tax revenue. The library tax is .2840 per every $100 of assessed valuation for the taxing year of 2011. The donations, memorials, fines, room rentals and general good will of our community keeps the library open 7 days a week.
Our library houses a collection of over 30,000 books, 80 magazines and periodicals, seven newspaper subscriptions, and audio books on compact disc. We are developing our collection of audio CD and large print books due to the wonderful donations and gift monies received from wonderful patrons over the years. Over 50,000 materials are circulated annually and an average of 125 people visit the library daily.
Our library has an extensive genealogy section complete with newspapers and census on microfilm, cemetery and obituary records, marriage records, individual family histories and county histories. The Carroll County Genealogical Association holds their bi-monthly meetings at the library and houses their genealogical collection in the library. The library also houses the original Carroll County probate records from the 1830's to 1900's.
The Missouri Research and Education Network (MOREnet) provides the library's discounted internet access through the REAL Project. A high speed T-1 line connects six patron computers, all staff computers, a computer training lab, two servers, and a videoconference center to the internet. The computer-training lab and the videoconference center were partially funded by two Missouri State Library grants.
In addition to the high-speed computers, the library offers many other services to the patrons of the community. The library is open seven days a week for our patrons' convenience. It is open until 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday nights. Interlibrary loans (ILL) are offered to patrons who need or want books that are not in this library's collection. In August, 2009, the State Library introduced a free courier service between libraries statewide. With this courier service that stops by our library twice each week, we can offer shorter wait times for your ILL books to be in your hands. The ILL books may be borrowed from other libraries at no cost to our patrons. CPL also offers a quiet, comfortable reading area for those patrons who wish to spend time reading and browsing a newspaper or magazine in our facility.
The children's library is separate from the main library. Children may read, talk, play, or color and not worry about disturbing other patrons. Student library cards are issued, at no cost, to students ages 4 to 18 who reside in Carroll County and need materials for school reading and research projects or a connection to the Internet. Children's programs include the state-wide summer reading program, holiday programs and a story time held on the third Wednesday of each month, sponsored by the local Kiwanis Club. Our business partner, a Carrollton Elementary school 4th grade class enjoys our reading in their classroom, along with a craft project and of course, treats. We participate readily in the Carrollton Elementary Schools read-a-thons throughout the school year by providing books for adults to read to the classes and providing a staff member to read as well in the classrooms.
After the huge success with our After School programming, sponsored by Bank 21 that is directed to 5th & 6th graders, we decided to revamp our Young Adult or Teen Section of the library to give them a space of their own. In our after school programming, we have lessons that correspond to the curriculum calendar from the school. Lessons range from writing the Egyptian's hieroglyphics to making ice cream to Math Bing-o to life skills in the kitchen.
Another outreach for our Young Adults is our Children's/Young Adult Librarian, Kasey Walden's BOOKTALKS. Started in 2007, this outreach entails ordering multiple copies of a title and Kasey presents highlights of the several books to generate their interest in reading at county wide schools. The focus is on reading and keeping the students, teens especially, involved whether for AR points or for recreational reading. Kasey's progress continues in her endeavors as she has developed programming for the elementary grades as well for outreach services. This has been well received by all outlying schools, even Tina, Bosworth, Hale & Stet have started Book Clubs because of this service to our community.
One of our main goals is to keep children reading during the summer months. Our library offers programs to enrich the state-wide summer reading program with a Magician and Wings of Love Bird Show, that all relate to the summer's theme. For 2012 the theme is "Dream Big-Read" for children and "Own the Night" for Young Adults, leading us to having more events scheduled during the evenings and more family focused. The Library receives grant money from the Pamida Foundation for our summer reading programming. In addition, we will endeavor with the Arts Council of Carroll County to bring the Missouri Arts Council's performers to our area year round.
Adult programs have been conducted in partnership with the University of Missouri Extension and Osher Life Long Learning utilitizing the Video Conferencing Room and our Technology Lab. Parmen Green, MU Extension agent teaches computer programs like Quickbooks or Excel to non-traditional students. He also hosts the video conferences with topics from summer gardening to estate planning. An ongoing adult service at the library is the teaching of GED Adult education classes in the lower level. Kathy Brockmeier is the instructor and she provides this service as an outreach for State Fair Community College in Sedalia. Classes are held Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday mornings of each week, except holidays since August, 2009.
I enjoy providing bookmobile services to the residents of Jefferson Park Apartments and Austin Home residents each Monday. Kasey visits Carroll House and Life Care residents on Thursday and provide materials to them. In addition, traveling educational exhibits are hosted by the library. The board and staff of the library are excited about the artist's display and "Art Talks" art exhibit that the library holds each month featuring a local artist. Both young and old artists will have a forum to talk, display and feature their work in conjunction with the Arts Council.
My staff is awesome, from years of experience to the friendly appeal bridging over to the one who always has a smile to the staff of volunteers to my right hand, we work together to make new ideas into reality. Judy's focus in an adult book club, holding computing classes and ordering nonfiction and adult fiction titles. Kasey's brainstorm is the T3 Reading Club and outreach to daycare providers and preschools in our area with expanded services to schools with her storytimes. Leslynn devotion to great customer service and making sure each patron has a book in their hand when they leave marks the level of service the library offers. Leslynn is also the Summer Reading Program Facilitator. Mary and Stephanie round out the team with their knowledge and skills they offer the patrons on weekends and Wednesday evenings. They make the library run smoothly and their share my passion for the library. The board and staff of the Carrollton Public Library invites everyone to take advantage of the many free programs and services offered at the library. If you have questions or comments, please contact me at 660-542-0183 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, as we are here to serve you and to be the cornerstone of our community.
Sue Lightfoot, Director