Bluffton Public Library

145 South Main Street
Bluffton, OH 45817

419-358-5016

History and Funding

The Bluffton Public Library, located in the northeast corner of Allen County, serves the population of the Bluffton Exempted Village School District. This includes the villages of Bluffton and Beaverdam, which are part of Richland Township. Our seven-member Board of Trustees is appointed by the school board to serve seven year terms.

The Bluffton Public Library was begun with the construction of an addition to the Bluffton High School building in 1933. The Library was planned to meet the needs of not only the school, but also the community. The Library contained a circulation area, magazine alcove, stacks, and reading room. Students from the adjacent study hall had free access to the Reading Room under the supervision of the Librarian, while at the same time, the general public had access to the Library through a separate entrance.

The Board of Trustees of the Bluffton Public Library were organized in May of 1935. In October of 1935, Miss Ocie Anderson was hired as Librarian, a position she retained until her retirement in 1965. Over the years, the Library became increasingly crowded, and the public did not feel comfortable being in the Library during the school hours. At two different times, an additional classroom was added to the Library to be used for a children's area, and taken away a few years later.

In 1985, the Library received a Federal grant that provided 48% of the cost of constructing a new, separate facility across the street from the High School. A community fund-raising campaign brought in the necessary matching funds. The building, completed in October of 1986, contained a large, open space designed for public library purposes, and a lower level meeting room which could be used for both Library and community programs.

In 1994, the Library went on-line with the SIRSI Unicorn Automated Library System which was purchased with donations raised by the newly formed Bluffton Library Foundation.

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