Saturday, September 3, 2011

An Appreciation of the Door County Library

Unique in the State: The Door County Library System. (Peninsula Pulse, 9/2/2011)

: The Door County Library System issues cards both to residents and visitors at no charge and without age or residency restrictions. Director Becca Berger attributes this unique policy to the original director Jane Livingston who was, she said, a visionary. And it all began in Wisconsin in 1948.

That year the Wisconsin Free Library Commission (WFLC) published a booklet, The Wisconsin-Wide Library Idea, proposing that library services be taken to the people, especially those living in remote areas. The concept included broadening the base of users, cooperation among libraries to reduce the disparity in service offered between wealthy and poor districts, and the introduction of a bookmobile that would literally carry the library to the people.

In 1949 the WFLC convinced the Wisconsin Legislature to fund the establishment of a demonstration district in a predominantly rural area. They did, overriding Republican Governor Oscar Rennebohn’s veto, and at the recommendation of the WFLC, chose the Door-Kewaunee district as the model

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