200th anniversary

12 3, 2019

America in 1819: The Era of Good Feelings

By |2019-12-03T06:00:25-05:00December 3, 2019|

As part of our 200th anniversary – yes, we look spectacular for our age – our resident historian Dr. John Foster revisited America in 1819 and what is now known as “The Era of Good Feelings.”

Discover the (relatively) tranquil intermezzo between the War of 1812 and Andrew Jackson’s presidency, and see how President James Monroe’s disposition reflected that of the nation’s.

In addition to being a reference librarian, Foster has a doctorate degree in history. He has taught history at both high school and college levels. Previously, he has led series on the Battles of World War II, US Presidents of the 20th Century, and the Revolutionary War at our library.

His next talk will revisit France in 1793 during a special program that we’re hosting at 10 a.m. on Dec. 3, at the Concord Township Community Center—7671 Auburn Road, Concord Township.

In 1793, the French Revolution – which had started as a fight for human rights and justice – descended into a nightmare. Our local historian, Dr. John Foster, will talk about how a fight for Enlightenment and democracy became a civil war in which former friends and allies turned on each other with terrifying consequences

This talk is a sequel to a program Foster led earlier this year on the origin of the French Revolution. You can watch it now on our YouTube channel.

This special program is free to attend and open to all. People can register by calling the Concord Township Community Center at (440) 639-4650.

08 5, 2019

An anniversary gift from a pair of talented friends

By |2019-08-05T06:00:28-04:00August 5, 2019|

"Story Hour" by Sharon Kovach and Diane Wantz

“Story Hour” by Sharon Kovach and Diane Wantz

You may have noticed the gorgeous new quilt hanging in our Main Branch.

Story Hour was a gift to Mentor Public Library for our 200th anniversary. Sharon Kovach designed it and did the artwork. Diane Wantz (our Trustee Board President) quilted and finished it.


We’re fortunate to have such talented and generous friends!

04 2, 2019

Library History in Photos: On the Move

By |2019-04-02T06:00:45-04:00April 2, 2019|

Mentor Library's first building of its own is taken on the road in 1960. Courtesy of David Gartner.

Mentor Library’s first building of its own is taken on the road in 1960. Courtesy of David Gartner.

As part of our bicentennial, we asked for your historical photos from Mentor Public Library. And, wow, did we get a doozy this week.

Local photographer David Gartner snapped some gorgeous photos on the day our original library building moved down the street.

A little history is helpful here:

For nearly the first century of our existence, Mentor Library didn’t have a home of its own. Our books were housed in private residences or, later, in Mentor Village Hall.

We finally moved up and out at the beginning of the 20th century when a Mr. Addison Goodall offered $1,500 to $2,000 toward a library building if our Board President James R. Garfield and the rest of the board could raise the remainder.

(To keep your Garfields straight, James R. Garfield is the son of President James A. Garfield.)

Abram Garfield, a famous architect and another son of President Garfield, designed our new building. It opened on May 31, 1903, at the corner of Center Street and Mentor Avenue.

Now, this building may look familiar. It still exists and currently houses the Confectionary Cupboard.

So you may be wondering (1.) why isn’t it a library anymore and (2.) how did a building move from Mentor Avenue to the intersection of Center and Nowlen Streets.

The answer to your first question: we outgrew our first home and moved to what we then called our Garfield Unit in 1960. You now know it as our Main Branch. It’s been expanded and renovated in the last 60 years, but it’s been one of our homes ever since. (Well, not counting the two years we needed to relocate to Tyler Road.)

As per the second question: the credit for saving that historical building goes to one heroic woman, Lila Moore Schaefer. Ms. Schaefer recognized the value of the building, purchased it and had it moved to its present location in 1960. She lived in the building and also used it to house her real-estate business until she passed away in 1964.

Then, insurance brokers Don and Marguerite Krueger purchased it. In 1979, it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this trip down memory lane. Thanks to David Gartner for making it possible!


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