The Jack Russell Memorial
Library provides the opportunity to expand and enhance
Library services to the City of Hartford and surrounding
communities. Your community library offers:
- A separate teen area appealing to reading and
musical interests, featuring special programming, book
clubs, and gaming sessions.
- A community room, designed to hold various library
programs and community meetings, even after hours.
- Consolidation of circulation, Interlibrary Loan,
cataloging, and processing operations enabling these tasks
to be completed away from the primary service desk.
- Expanded adult programming in cooperation with the
Friends of the Library including book clubs, literacy
projects, computer assistance, book discussions,
consumer information programs, and adult/children sessions.
- Expanded Hartford History Room offering genealogical
research materials, local history collections, and displays
of community interest.
- Special quiet reading areas overlooking the Mill
Pond, complete with comfortable chairs, magazines, and
- Three small study rooms for small group meetings,
one-on-one tutoring, and quiet study.
- Nineteen Internet workstations throughout the
- WI-FI capability to enabling owners of laptops and other
mobile devices to use the Library.
- Green design and heating and cooling system making it
less costly to operate.
- Design codes that comply with current standards of the
Americans with Disabilities Act for entrances, restrooms,
and public service stations, including wider aisles and
- A 24-hour drive through materials pick-up and return.
- Customer service desks in all departments, making
assistance more accessible.
- Over 100 public parking spaces to increase accessibility
to the downtown.
Michael Gelhausen, Library
Cary Perzan, Youth Librarian
Kristine Parker, Technical
Barry Wintinger, Aldermanic Liaison
The Hartford Public Library was founded on
August 25, 1904 through the efforts of the Hartford Free
Library Association and was housed in two upstairs rooms in
the old 1892 City Hall until 1914.
From 1914 to 1930, the Library relocated
to the "new" Hartford High School - operating jointly as
a public and educational library. On March 3, 1925, the City
of Hartford assumed total control of the operations and
funding at the request of the Free Library Association.
In 1931, with the construction of the current
City Hall completed, the Library returned to Main
Street and remained there until the new library
opened in 2011. When City Hall was remodeled in 1985, the
Library moved up to the third
floor, 14,500 square foot location. In June of 1985,
the Library's collection consisted of 51,000 books and other
materials, serving the 7,500 residents of the City of Hartford
and the surrounding rural areas.
The Library serves almost
30,000 people. This increase occurred when county-wide service
began in 1987. Current population trends indicate that
Hartford's population could rise to 23,000 by 2030, with the
total service population exceeding 40,500.
Our collections now include over
140,000 printed volumes, audio-books, compact discs, videos,
DVDs, and beginning reading kits. The Library
participates in a statewide Interlibrary Loan (ILL) network,
and is a member of the forty-four library "SHARE" on-line
consortium that provides direct access to over three
million items with regular weekday delivery between the member
The Hartford History Room consists
of an extensive collection of local business records, house
and family histories as well as church and cemetery records.
Nineteen Internet work stations
are available to the public and were used by
over 16,500 people in 2013. We expect to exceed 18,000
users during 2014. The number of Library cardholders was 3,134
in 1985 and has jumped to 24,829 through 2013.
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