The Dorr Township Library provides materials for information, education, and entertainment and promotes reading for recreation and learning to all people who use the library.
The Dorr Township Library opened to the public in the basement of the old Township Hall at 1807 142nd Avenue, on February 2, 1940. This was achieved through a state-wide library project sponsored by the Michigan State Library, the WPA, and the dedication and vision of many interested people from the community. These first officers and directors held an organizational meeting on November 15, 1939. They were: Joseph Bartz, Doris Brenner, Mrs. Oscar Douglas, Mrs. Walter Hatch, Reinder Hoeksema, Mattie Leggett, Mrs. Otto Ludema, Mrs. Vincent Pawloski, Mrs. Rosaleen Podurgiel, Alma Pullen, Rev. and Mrs. Lawrence Veltkamp, and William Wiebenga.
Funding for the library at this time came from many different sources. Although books loaned from the Michigan State Library and the Kellogg Foundation helped, the majority of the budget and materials came through local donations and fund raising. Books were donated privately and through the members of organized book clubs. New material was purchased with money raised from box socials, teas, bake sales, and paper drives. In 1940 the library received $50.00 from the Township Board, which was used to purchase 68 books. By 1949, the library had grown to include 1,830 books with a yearly circulation of 4,497, 191 readers, and a budget of $340.25.
In August 2000, voters approved a Millage of .54 Mils for not more than 10 years, to construct and equip a new library building. Construction on the 7,000 square foot building began in August 2001, on Township land on 18th Street. The facility was finished and opened to the public on January 28, 2002.
The new library includes more space for books and other material, a community room, separate patron computer room with six stations, study area, and cappuccino/coffee station all housed in an open and light atmosphere.
A children's garden on the East side of the building includes ABC stepping stones donated by a local 4-H Club, benches, statuary and many flowers and plants. The garden was installed as an Eagle Scout project by Joe Bliss and his Boy Scout Troop. Now known as Nichole's Garden, it was conceived as a place to remember one child and to be enjoyed by all children. A stone and plaque are now in place memorializing the children's garden in honor of Nichole Ringeisen. The plaque, donated by Nichole's father, includes the last verse of a poem written by Nichole.
Throughout its history, the Dorr Library has had tremendous support from many residents in the community. These volunteers have been invaluable in fund raising, book sales, and working in the library. Their help and support are very much appreciated. A special thank you to Ida DeKraker, Genevieve Fein, and Josephine Frary for the dedication, enthusiasm, and hard work they have given to the library over the years.
The recent formation of a Friends group in Dorr is also a welcome addition. The Dorr Friends of the Library was established, registered, and obtained their tax exempt status from the Federal government in 1999. Their goal is to support the Dorr Township Library through community awareness and fundraising.
The Dorr Township Library Board and staff are committed to providing the best service, technology, programming, and facilities as possible. We hope to continue to be an organization our community can utilize fully, and serve the residents of Dorr Township through the next millennium.
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