Our Library, Our Lives

Built as the Beertown People’s Library in 1883, the beautiful building has been known to us since 1967 as the Beertown Community Library. It is one of the most cherished public institutions in the city.

In addition to a wide selection of books, from rare first editions to current New York Times bestsellers, Beertown Community Library offers amenities such as rentals of multimedia including e-books, the Fred Soch Information and Technology Lab for students of all ages, and a regionally respected exhibit space for local historical artifacts. Though our rotating exhibits focus on Beertoniana, visitors from all over the world can appreciate this unique lens with which to examine 19th and 20th century American history and daily life.

Hours: Monday-Saturday, 10-5. Extended hours on Wednesdays and Thursdays upon request for students wishing to explore the Beertoniana Collection with library personnel.

Tax deductible donations to Beertown Community Library can be made here.

Join us for First Fridays! On the first Friday night of each month at 7 p.m., join Beertoniana archivist Joann Sugarman for wine, cheese, art, and an exciting discussion about a new topic in Beertown History. Past topics have included “We Can Do It!: Women and Factory Life in WWII Beertown,” “Thakiwhati? The Whitewashing of Midwestern Indigenous Heritage,” and “Creating a Beautiful World: The Arts and Crafts Movement in Beertown.”

Current Family Programming:
Tuesdays, April – Nov.:

  • Story Hour: 10 AM & 3:00PM. Stories, games and crafts for pre-school- early elementary age children.
  • Mother–Daughter Book Club (Tweens): Rockin’ Readers 6:15 PM

Thursdays, April – Nov.:

  • Tator Tot Time; 10 AM. An interactive program that includes songs, rhymes, and fingerplays. Ages 2-3 years.

Thakiwaki by Mathew Brady, between 1855 and 1865.

Current Exhibits:

Where are They Now?  View discarded items from the time capsule, selected by curator Joann Ryalls Sugarman.  Items will be on display in the two weeks prior to the 21st Quinquennial, as a means of remembering not just what is in our Time Capsule, but what we have chosen to eliminate.

A New Birth of Freedom. Founded just months before the end of the Civil War, Beertown quickly became known as a place for veterans to forget former hostilities and forge optimistically into the future. We remember their wartime sacrifices and honor their resilience through this exhibit, which features rare photographs and artifacts preserved by those in the field and on the home front.

Our First Friends: The Thakiwaki and Early Beertown. A collection of prints and artifacts displaying the evolving relationship between the Thakiwaki and the Beertonians during the 19th century, including images from the Mathew Brady Collection. Through October 1.


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