Hesperia library celebrates 100th anniversary.

August 24, 2016
Hesperia Community Library Director Kay Brennan receives a plaque from Michigan Rep. Jon Bumstead (R-Newaygo) for the library's 100th anniversary.

Hesperia Community Library Director Kay Brennan receives a certificate from Michigan Rep. Jon Bumstead (R-Newaygo) for the library’s 100th anniversary.

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HESPERIA — In 1916, the Hesperia Women’s Literary Club started a library with 237 books. This year, the library celebrated its 100th anniversary.

State Rep. Jon Bumstead (R-Newaygo) presented a special tribute to the Hesperia Community Library marking its 100th anniversary.

hesperia library“This community has reached a significant milestone,” said Library Director Kay Brennan. “The library continues to be a thriving resource of information, entertainment and a gathering place for the community.”

Bumstead expressed his congratulations to the community and the library board on the anniversary of the founding of the library.

When the library began, life was very different from today. Eighty-five percent of men over the age of 14 worked, and Social Security didn’t exist. Ten percent of infants died in their first year. The Eiffel Tower was the tallest building in the world. President Woodrow Wilson was in office, and World War I was being fought in Europe. Coca-Cola brought its current formula to the market, and lard was commonly used in cooking. Access to electricity wasn’t widespread, and televisions wouldn’t appear until much later.

When the Hesperia Library was established, patrons had to pay a yearly membership fee to be able to borrow books, which were the only items you could borrow. Through the years, the library was housed in several different buildings until William Branstrom donated money to construct a new building in 1962 which was renovated in 2002 to its current design.

With the development of computers and the Internet, today’s library is very different from the original library 100 years ago. Today, the library offers free computer and wi-fi use. Using the Internet, people can look at the collection from anywhere and request items from libraries across the state. In addition to traditional paper and print books, the library also offers DVDs, online magazines, eBooks and eAudio books, books on CD and many other services.

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