Five Rivers Public Library
301 Walnut Street
The Parsons Public Library had been housed on the second floor of the Parsons City Hall and was operated by members of the Women's Club as a community project. The official groundbreaking took place April 18, 1974 at the corner of Third and Walnut Street in Parsons, site of the new 1200-square-foot carousel library.
The library building was completed in July 1974 and officially opened Sept. 3, 1974. On May 10, 1974 the Women's Club donated their library books to the new library. It was named The Five Rivers Public Library for the county's five rivers: Cheat, Black Fork, Shavers Fork, Dry Fork, and Blackwater.
In 1984, under the direction of Board President George A. Smith, Jr., a building fund was instituted to add an additional room, 850-square-foot, to the back of the existing carousel to expand the total footage to 2,050 square feet. In June 1985, the new addition was ready for patron use.
On November 4, 1985 the city of Parsons and surrounding towns were flooded. The library lost all but three books. There is a small gold plaque in the library that marks the height of the water that was in the library, (6 feet 5 inches). After extensive repairs and cleaning the library reopened in December 1985.
In October 1996, the library received access to the Internet with the Infomine Computer made possible by the WV Library Commission. In June 1999, we received two computers through a grant from The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. In February of 1999, we lowered and refinished the ceiling in the Carousel part and in 2000 added an entrance foyer to the front. On Sept. 12, 1999, the library celebrated its 25th Anniversary and honored their past and present board members and staff.
The library currently houses over 18,000 books, audio books, videos, and magazines. Six computers are available to the public. Our local newspaper The Parsons Advocate is available to view on CD and or Microfilm. Genealogy reference materials, including family history books, census records, and cemetery records pertaining mainly to Tucker County, are available as well. Children's Story Time is offered in the summer. The library serves many elementary, high School and college students throughout the year.