Young Mens Library Association

37 Main Street
Ware, MA 01082

History of the Association

Library history in Ware began in 1824 when the Mechanics and Manufacturers Library was organized. In 1861, the books were placed in the care of the Ware Natural History Society. The Young Men's Debating Society was organized in 1871. A year later it opened a room to the public in the Sandford's Block with 700 volumes acquired from the Ware Natural History Society. The Young Men's Debating Society presented a petition to the Massachusetts Legislature in 1872, applying for a special act of incorporation which would allow the town to appropriate money in support of a free library for residents, still allowing the facility to remain under the management of the Society. Instead of becoming a special act, this legislation became a general law that applied to all the towns throughout the commonwealth. The law went into effect on April 17, 1872. The Society was among the first to take advantage of the new law, and it re-organized under the corporate name of the Young Men's Library Association.
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