Free Library of New Hope and Solebury

Accomplishments & History

In 1894 a notice appeared in the New Hope post office: Are there 50 people willing to pay 50 cents a week to open a Free Reading Room? The answer was yes and a library was born. By 1904, the Citizens Literary Society created a reading room in New Hope in the Academy Building near the New Hope-Lambertville Free Bridge. Four years later, a fifty volume traveling library opened in Middleton's Drug Store. The library received 50 books semi-annually from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. In 1913 a full-fledged library with a staff of four volunteers opened in a rented room using the 50 books from the Harrisburg collection. 1918 saw the Free Library of New Hope and Solebury incorporate and move to the Delaware House, its home until 1941. With burgeoning public support, in 1941 the library was able to buy and move into the historic Perry Salt House which it finally outgrew in 1973. The library then moved to its current location, the former New Hope Presbyterian Church. Despite its size, only 2800 square feet, the library contains over 28,000 items and has a growing circulation of close to 60,000 a year.

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