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Library History

Read how this library was established and how it has evolved to become such an important part of our community.


            The Anthon Public Library began as a project of the Women’s Club in 1903.  Benefits given to raise funds for it included a Fourth of July celebration, a village far, bake sales, dances, card parties, and the compilation and sale of the first “Tried and True” Cookbook.  Anthon gratefully remembers the efforts of early board members who acted as librarians for more than 30 years.

            In 1953, when the library became wholly tax supported, it was given to the town of Anthon to be housed in the new Town Hall.  During the thirty years from 1953 to 1983, the collection of materials more than doubled and annual circulation increased from 4388 to 19,855.  Gifts and memorials helped to expand services; monthly loans from Woodbury County Library since 1967 are a vital addition.  Near the end of 1983 the Town Council gave permission to add the former jail space to the library.  A wall was removed, more shelves were added, and the library was redecorated.  This was accomplished with a grant of $2400 from AAL of the Midway Lutheran Church, Town Council assistance, and with gifts.

            In the fall of 2004, Mr. Richard Hamann approached the City Council with his desire to build and furnish a new library for the city of Anthon.  In October, land was purchased east of the Medical Clinic and ground was broken that fall.  In the spring of 2005, construction began.

            The library is now 2,478 square feet and is handicap-accessible throughout as well as the meeting room.  The expanded facility officially opened to the public on October 17, 2005.  This wonderful new facility would not be possible if it were not for the unselfish generosity of Mr. & Mrs. Richard Hamann.

            The library is home to a growing selection of fiction and non-fiction for adults and children, videos, DVDs, audiocassettes (adult & children), CDs, periodicals, and four Apple computers.  Programs and Services still offered include Children’s Summer Reading Program, Children’s Story Hour, Children’s Treasure Chest of Reading, rotating collection from the Woodbury County Library & Decorah Public Library, access to statewide collections through the Northwest Regional Library (interlibrary loan), adult book discussion group, a copy machine, and a Gift and Memorial Trust Fund.

This resource is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by State Library of Iowa.