Freehold Public Library

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The Freehold Public Library the free public library of Borough of Freehold, New Jersey located at 28 1/2 East Main Street.[1]

Serving a population of 11,000 residents and with a collection of approximately 26,000 volumes the library has a yearly circulation of circa 28,000 items.[2] While there have been suggestions that it be incorporated into the Monmouth County Library system, the library remains independent. The building is one of the remaining Carnegie-funded libraries in the state and is believed to be the only one with the name Carnegie Library engraved on its facade.[3]


The King’s Daughters, a charitable and social service organization of the Baptist Church, decided at the turn of the 20th century that the county seat of Monmouth County should have a library. It opened on January 6, 1900, in the Lloyd Building at the corner of West Main and Throckmorton Street with a collection of 500 volumes, but was destroyed by fire in December 1901.[3]

Carnegie library[edit]

The building is one of New Jersey's 36 Carnegie libraries, constructed with a grant made March 27, 1903 by industrialist Andrew Carnegie and opened in 1916.[4][5]

Marion Laird, chairwoman of the Library Committee of the King’s Daughters, wrote to Carnegie asking for financial support for a new library building. The philanthropist offered $10,000, though records indicated that the donation would eventually be $11,000. Two conditions were stipulated: that the town should provide a suitable site. and that it provide support to the library not less than $1,000 per year.[3]

At the annual election of Freehold Township on March 10, 1903, residents voted to support the levy of a library tax. It was the second town in New Jersey to get a Carnegie grant for a new library, the first being that for the East Orange Public Library in 1900.[3] The borough incorporated 1919.[3]

The King’s Daughters raised $2,000 through donations to buy the lot. In the summer of 1903 Frederick A. Brower contracted to construct new library, which cost of $8,874 and opened the following year.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Freehold Public Library
  2. ^ "Freehold Public Library". October 1, 2011. Retrieved 2011-10-02. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f Metzgar, Dick (August 13, 2003), "Library celebrates century of service to Freehold Andrew Carnegie gave town $11,000 to fund construction of building", News Transcript, retrieved 2011-10-02 
  4. ^ Bobinski, George S. (1969). Carnegie Libraries: Their History and Impact on American Public Library Development. Chicago: American Library Association. ISBN 0-8389-0022-4. 
  5. ^ *Jones, Theodore (1997). Carnegie Libraries Across America. New York: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 0-471-14422-3. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°15′40″N 74°16′21″W / 40.261137°N 74.272449°W / 40.261137; -74.272449