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What Do Libraries Do For Us?

This week is National Library Week —- but you might be surprised to learn what kinds of services libraries offer.

And then you might be wondering, when and how did the idea of libraries even begin?

The History of the Library

Libraries have been around for thousands of years.

You might be familiar with the Library of Alexandria that was unfortunately burnt down in the 1500s.

Some historians theorize that event set humankind back hundreds, even thousands, of years.

That's how important libraries are.

But as for what libraries are today, we have to thank Andrew Carnegie for helping create what they've become.

Yes, you read that right: steel industrialist Andrew Carnegie was not only a businessman but also an avid reader and philanthropist.

After making his fortune, he decided to use his money on his other passion, which was philanthropy.

Carnegie funded the construction of a public library and all of its contents in almost every town in America that requested one.

By 1919, he established over 1,600 libraries — which are currently nearly half of all the public libraries in the U.S. today.

Why did his passion lie here, you might ask?

Because libraries are invaluable!

Your local library is a free community where you can check out books, movies, and music; access the internet; use printing and copying services; and much, much more.

Here are a few free services that you should take advantage of right away.

Computer and Printing Access

Don’t have a printer at home? No problem.

In most cases, you can print your documents at a library for free.

Some may allow a certain number of pages to be free and then charge a few cents per page after, but this varies from library to library.

Skill-Building Opportunities