John G.McCullough Free Library

2 Main Street
North Bennington, VT 05257

802-447-7121
Mission Statement:

The John G. McCullough Free Library is committed to providing materials and services to persons of all ages in order to meet their educational, professional and recreational needs. Special emphasis is directed toward stimulating children’s appreciation of reading and learning. The library also serves as a comfortable gathering place for the community at large.

History:

The John G. McCullough Free Library was built in 1920-21 by Eliza Hall Park McCullough in memory of her husband, John G. McCullough, a former governor of Vermont, legislator, and businessman. The two-story brick building, designed by New York architect J. Lawrence Aspinwall of the firm Renwick, Aspinwall & Tucker, was a gift to the community and has served as a hub of village activities for more than eight decades.

When the library opened on August 24, 1921 the adult and children's collections of about 5000 volumes (with a capacity for 9,000) were housed on the first floor; the second floor was entirely given over to public meeting spaces. Over the years the collection has grown to more than 20,000 items of all types, ranging from CDs, DVDs and videos to books, games and puzzles. The children's collection now occupies the entire second floor and public access terminals and the reference section now occupy the alcove space that once accommodated the children's library.

The McCullough Free Library was not the first library in the village of North Bennington. In 1878 the North Bennington Ladies Library Association was formed, charging members $1.00 a year to belong.

From the beginning this library building has served as a hub of community activities, hosting lectures, concerts, meetings of civic groups, reading clubs, and art shows. As the collections have grown, however, the available public meeting space has shrunken greatly. If the library is to regain its role as civic meeting place and cultural center of the village, new space will need to be provided beyond the boundaries of the existing building.
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