York Township Public Library
York Township Public Library
The private group of readers in Thomson formed the Thomson Civic Association in 1911. There were 12 men and 27 ladies.
In 1912, they decided to establish a public library in a store building on Main Street.
In 1914, this library was moved to the front upstairs room in the bank building and staffed by volunteer librarians.
In 1918, two lots were donated by Miss Tillie Dugard for library purposes. Mrs. Mattie Peck (originator of the Thomson Civic Association gave $1,000 to fund construction)
In 1919, a village election was held and the public voted to build a library.
In 1920, construction was completed and 631 books were placed on the shelves. By May 1921 village trustees set 1/4 mill of tax money aside for support of the library.
In 1939, a judicial election was held and the village library became the York Township Public Library with a township tax of 6/100 mills or approximately $800 for all of the year's expenses.
In 1967, the library board voted to join the NILS system.
In 1968, the YTPL had 300 borrowers.
In 1972, the YTPL began a summer reading program for the children.
In 1978, the library's collection and the number of its patrons had grown to the point that we had to relocate the children's section in the basement and hire a children's librarian to handle this and oversee the expanding summer reading program.
In 1981, a modest addition was placed at the back of the original building. This structure contained a restroom and had a handicap-accessible ramp leading to a rear entrance.
In 1982, the library received its first copier, which was donated.
In 1990, the library purchased its first computer.
In 1994, the library received its FAX machine from the local Chamber of Commerce.
In 1996, the library upgraded its computer system, receiving one through the LSCA Fund and the other by means of an Ally Computer Grant.
In 1997, the YTPL had approximately 12,000 hardcover books and showed a membership of 903, many of which were "family" listings and not individuals. The current township population (per the 1990 Federal Census) was shown as 1,951 which is used when applying for per capita grants.
In 1996 the Library Board of Trustees and Librarian, Deeann Kramer started a building fund to add an addition on the current 720 foot brick building. The Trustees accumulated $76,000 dollars that served as the foundation for the libraries building project. These funds were raised with the support of the Thomson Chamber of Commerce donating funding from the weekly bingo, community fund raisers, and the annual Lucky Duck Race in Johnson's Creek.
In 1999 Dr. Arthur Donart, a Thomson Village Trustee, spoke with State Representative Mike Boland & State Senator Denny Jacobs about allocating monies from the Illinois FIRST project for the building project. Librarian Deeann Kramer sent letters to Jacobs & Boland asking them to fund an addition onto the York Township Public Library. In September a letter was received form the Illinois State Library stating that $325,000 was appropriated in the General Assembly session for an addition to be built onto the library. The library also received an additional $25,000 for furnishing allocated from funds secured by Illinois State Senator Denny Jacobs. The Illinois State library was responsible for administering the funding. Execucon, Ltd. of Albany, Illinois was awarded the building project. Dennis Kelly of Kelly & Associates of Moline served as the architect. The new brick addition added 3,317 square feet to the library. The building meets the American with Disabilities Act. Additional parking was added for approximately 23 vehicles. The original structure was renovated into a multipurpose room with a kitchenette and seating for approximately 50 people.
In June 2000 a ground breaking ceremony was held.
On July 14, 2001 a Ribbon Cutting and Open House ceremony were held.