Gilman - Danforth District Library

715 North Maple Street
Gilman, IL 60938

815-265-7522

Our Mission Statement

The mission of the Gilman-Danforth District Library is to provide services, programs, and resources that will meet the needs of our citizens in their pursuit of life long learning, community involvement and information literacy.

Our History

For 144 years the citizens of the Gilman area have enjoyed excellent library services.  The name of the library has changed a number of times, along with the population served.  Even the location has changed many times.  Nonetheless the quality of the services and the dedication of the library boards and staff have remained constant.  The first library was a private association.  People bought shares and donated books to share with the group.  The first library was housed in the newspaper office that was located west of the railroad tracks.  Next, it moved to a storefront that burned two years later.  In the 1870’s Fannie Lyman Potter became the librarian and is credited with much of the library’s success in the early years.  In 1882 the library board purchased a house on North Main Street between First and Second Streets and it became a city library.

In 1915 the Carnegie Foundation funded a new library building on Second Street, and the Douglas Township Library was completed in 1916.

In 1987 the board voted to include Danforth Township and formed the Gilman Area Library District.

With the help of grants from the Coleman Foundation and the Illinois State Library, the library district was able to construct a new building on land donated by Edwin and Lorraine Goldenstein on the northeast edge of Gilman.   On July 1, 2002 the library moved to its current location on North Maple Street and officially changed its name to Gilman-Danforth District Library.

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