Peterborough Public Library

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Peterborough Public Library
Peterborough Public Library's Main Library
Type Public Library system in Peterborough
Established 1868
Items collected business directories, phone books, maps, government publications, books, periodicals, genealogy, local history,

The Peterborough Public Library serves the community of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. Located near the Kawartha Lakes, Peterborough has a population of approximately 75,000.


The Main Library is a full service library with a well-stocked current circulating collection of books, CD audio books, CD-Music, DVDs and magazines. In addition to encyclopedias and dictionaries, the Reference Collection includes a local history collection, government documents, electronic resources and microforms selected to answer the information needs of the community. Any additional material can be obtained from other libraries and for those who are unable to come to the library, shut-in services are offered. Programs such as reading clubs are also available for the public to join. Access to the Internet is possible via the library's workstations. Visit the Children's Department for storytime programs, play a game on one of the computers, or just grab a good book to read.

List of services: Information and reference services, Access to full text databases, Community information, Internet access, Reader's advisory services, Programs for children and youtha and adults, Delivery to homebound individuals, Interlibrary loan, Free downloadable audiobooks.


Peterborough Mechanics Institute, established in 1868, was one of a series of Mechanic's Institutes that were set up around the world after becoming popular in Britain. The Peterborough Mechanics Institute housed a subscription library that allowed members who paid a fee to borrow books. Mechanics Institutes were established across Ontario to make education universal and accessible to all citizens. The Mechanic's Institutes libraries eventually became public libraries when the establishment of free libraries occurred.[1] In Peterborough, the Institute and the Library were located on Water Street. In May 1895, the Mechanics Institute became the Peterborough Public Library. The library remained on Water Street. Later, the Peterborough Public Library received funding from the Andrew Carnegie Foundation and the new Carnegie Library located on George Street opened in 1911. This building is currently the Carnegie Wing of City Hall.


Peterborough Public Library, Peterborough, Ontario

In February 1949, a branch library opened in the south end of Peterborough. It was situated above a hardware store and was a room 50 by 20 feet. It was divided into two sections – one for boys and girls, the other for adults. The DelaFosse Branch Library opened officially on December 1, 1965. The Peterborough Examiner declared that this branch at 729 Park Street S., made "south end residents the envy of the rest of the city." Currently, it holds a recreational reading collection of approximately 14,000 books and a variety of media formats for all ages.

The collection of the Kawartha branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society is also located at DelaFosse, offering personal research assistance on Thursday afternoons. This branch library is named in honour of Frederick Montague de la Fosse, who was the Chief Librarian of Peterborough Public Library from 1910 to 1946.

The Main Library at 345 Aylmer St. N. opened on Tuesday, September 2, 1980. The new library was built on the site of the old fire hall and had about triple the floor space of the old Carnegie building. The opening ceremonies were on September 17 and featured Dr. Robertson Davies, Master of Massey College, University of Toronto, as the keynote speaker.


  • A scene from Jumper was filmed here

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Harris, Michael. History Of Libraries In The Western World. 4th ed. Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press, 1995, p. 153.

External links[edit]

Media related to Peterborough Public Library at Wikimedia Commons