A Brief History of the Franklin Square Public Library


November 1937:  Initiated by members of the Monroe Street School PTA, the Franklin Square Free Library Association is formed.

January 31, 1938:  The library opens in the basement of Monroe Street School.  The library is open 6 hours a week and staffed entirely by volunteers.

June 16, 1939:  Franklin Square Public Library is granted a charter by New York State as a School District Library.

August 1, 1939:  The library hires its first librarian.

August 1945:  The Franklin Square Public Library moves from its location in Monroe Street School to a storefront at 8 New Hyde Park Road.  Library hours are increased to 44 hours per week.

Early 1950s:  The library outgrows its New Hyde Park Road location.  The idea of purchasing land and building a new structure for the library is considered by the Library Board.

November 1953:  The community votes for a library building to be constructed.  Several marshy lots are purchased on Lincoln Road as the future site of the Franklin Square Public Library.

1956:  Ground is broken for the new building.

1957:  The new building on Lincoln Road is completed and dedicated.

1964:  The library celebrates its 25th anniversary.  A small meeting room addition is built.

March 6, 1973:  A vote to expand the library is defeated.

1974:  Renovations to accommodate the handicapped are completed.

1994:  Interior renovations are completed to prepare the building for computers and other new services.

January 1996:  WIth the hope of expanding the library, the Library Board purchases two adjacent houses north of the existing building.

October 1996:  The Library Board proposes an expansion which would double the size of the original library.

November 13, 1996:  Put to a vote, the expansion project is rejected by community voters concerned about its price and the impact a larger library would have on the local parking situation.

December 1, 1998:  A second more modest expansion project is voted upon. This time the vote passes overwhelmingly.

June 9, 2000:  Ground is broken for the expanded Franklin Square Library.  The project’s architect is Schaardt & Fullan, de Silva Architects and the project manager is Edwin S. Tweedy, Inc.  With only a few exceptions, the Library remains open throughout the construction process.

October 6, 2002:  The expanded and updated library is re-dedicated.

2007:  The Franklin Square Public Library celebrates its 50th anniversary at its Lincoln Road location.

2011:  A remodeling of the Library’s front door is completed making the building more energy efficient and handicapped accessible.  (click here to view images from the renovation)

For more information regarding the history of Franklin Square and its library, see the book: A History of Franklin Square and Environs: The Way It Was by Paul D. Van Wie (available to borrow or purchase at the Franklin Square Library).