Moncton Public Library

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Moncton Public Library
Moncton Public Library Logo
Type Public Library in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada
Established 1913
Items collected Books, journals, newspapers, sound recordings, databases, maps, drawings
Size 1.8M items
Website Moncton Public Library
Moncton Public Library

The Moncton Public Library (MPL) in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada, aims to meet the educational, cultural, informational and recreational needs of its users. The Moncton Public Library provides access to a province-wide collection of more than 1.8 million items, 116,000 of which are on its shelves.[1] The library is a primary source of support for literacy and lifelong learning for residents of the greater Moncton area.[2] There is only one main branch in the city, located on Main Street in downtown Moncton.[3]


The Moncton Public Library was founded in 1913.[4] It was made possible thanks to the efforts of the Fort Cumberland Chapter of the IODE which started working on the project as early as 1911.[5] The library was originally opened in the old City Hall and was destroyed by fire on February 25, 1914.[6] Afterwards, it was moved to the Higgins Block, which is located on the corner of Main Street and Botsford Street.[7] On February 27, 1927, the library was moved to Archibald House, which burned down on March 2, 1948.[8]

After the fire, the Moncton Public Library was moved to Kirby House, located at 51 Highfield Street, where it was officially reopened on January 20, 1949. This building was demolished in October 1961 in order to build a new one for the library on the same land; it was inaugurated on September 22, 1962.[9] The Moncton Public Library is currently located in the Blue Cross Centre where it has been since 1989. The library's previous location on Highfield Street was renovated to accommodate office space in 1991.[10]

On July 13, 2012, a statue of former Moncton resident Northrop Frye was unveiled in font of the library. It was created by artists Darren Byers and Fred Harrison.[11]


In 1998 the City of Moncton's name bank committee suggested that the Moncton Public Library change its name to the Northrop Frye Library to honour the acclaimed literary critic Northrop Frye, who lived in Moncton during his early years. However, the library board of the time disagreed on the grounds that though Frye had a great international reputation and was a renowned and celebrated philosopher and critic, he had "done nothing for the Moncton Public Library itself".[12] The board was also concerned that, if the library were to become the Northrop Frye Library, citizens might get the impression that the public library was instead an archive dedicated to Frye and his works. In order to honour this famous Monctonian, the library instead chose to name a meeting room after him.


  • Book collection includes bestsellers, fiction and non-fiction for a wide variety of research and recreational purposes as well as large-print books, audiobooks, music, DVDs and videos, magazines, language kits, adult literacy materials, talking books for the visually and/or physically challenged and braille books for children.
  • E-books and Audio Books can also be borrowed via the Electronic Library New Brunswick with a New Brunswick Library card.
  • Microfilm archive includes Moncton and area newspapers dating back to the late 18th century, census information, and telephone directories.
  • Heritage room archive includes local historical and genealogical books and works by authors from the Albert/Westmoreland/Kent area.
  • A clock, a desk, and a typewriter that belonged to Northrop Frye's family while it lived in Moncton is also on permanent display at the library. This "Frygiana" was donated to the library by American professor Robert Dunham in 2012, along with an important collection of works by Frye and about his work.[13]


  • Programs for children including Babies in the Library, Toddlertime, Storytime, Family Storytime, and Father and Son Lego Club.
  • Programs for Young Adults including a monthly Anime and Manga club, and monthly programs on a variety of different themes including gaming in the library and different crafts.
  • Programs for adults including computer courses, one-one-one email tutorials and other information literacy courses such as genealogy research online, newspapers online, shopping online and social networking. There are also author tours, learning seminars, and a variety of other programs for adults and seniors.
  • Monthly art openings introduce new artists exhibiting at the Moncton Public Library art gallery.
  • Services for Patrons with print disabilities including an adaptive computer workstation with SystemAccess, Zoomtext, OpenBook and Kurzweil 3000


The Magnum Opus Gala and Art Auction was the Moncton Public Library's main fundraising event from 2007 to 2010. Taking place in October the art auction was an opportunity to raise funds for improvement of library collections, but also offered "artists across Atlantic Canada the opportunity to get exposure for their work and the chance to sell a piece of their art."[14]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ City of Moncton Cultural Plan
  2. ^ Moncton Public Library
  3. ^ Library Hours and Location
  4. ^ About the Library
  5. ^ Machum, Lloyd A. (1965). A history of Moncton Town and City, 1855-1965. Moncton: Moncton Publishing Company. p. 230
  6. ^ Machum, Lloyd A. (1965). A history of Moncton Town and City, 1855-1965. Moncton: Moncton Publishing Company. p. 230; 250
  7. ^ Larracey, E.W.(1991).Resurgo: The History of Moncton, Volume 2. p. 174
  8. ^ Site of new Times and Transcript building has much historic interest. The Times and Transcript. March 22, 1960
  9. ^ Potvin, Claude. (1977). Spotlights on the Albert-Westmorland-Kent Reional Library, 1957-1977. Moncton: Albert-Westmorland-Kent Regional Library. p. 76.
  10. ^ Old city library to be turned into office building. Times and Transcript, Friday, November 23, 1990
  11. ^ Frye statue celebrates an icon. Times and Transcript,Friday, July 20, 2012
  12. ^ Library board doesn't want to use Frye name. Times and Transcript, Friday, December 18th, 1998
  13. ^ Northrop Frye's works coming home. Times and Transcript, July 13, 2012
  14. ^ Babstock, Craig, The Times and Transcript, October 2, 2009, accessed June 22, 2011