Ypsilanti District Library

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Coordinates: 42°12′30″N 83°36′54″W / 42.2084°N 83.615°W / 42.2084; -83.615

The Ypsilanti District Library moved into the old Ypsilanti Post Office building in downtown Ypsilanti in 1963.

The Ypsilanti District Library is a library that serves Ypsilanti, Ypsilanti Township, and Superior Township in eastern Washtenaw County, Michigan, with a permanent branch in each municipality, as well as a bookmobile that travels throughout the service area. The main location is at 5577 Whittaker Road in Ypsilanti Township, the downtown branch (formerly the main location) is at 229 West Michigan Avenue, and a third branch is at 8975 MacArthur Boulevard in Superior Township. The library has been in operation since 1868, and presently has more than 309,000 volumes.[1]


Early history[edit]

The Superior Township branch opened in 1991.

In 1868, a small group of women started a reading group that created a library, which originally included 175 volumes. They housed the library on the second floor of the Arcade Building on North Huron. In 1886, the Arcade Building became inadequate for the purpose and the library moved to the second floor on the Union Block on Michigan Avenue.[1] In 1890, Mrs. Starkweather donated her home to the 'Ladies' Library' on Huron Street as well as new furniture and a large stained glass window.[1] In the fall of 1948 the Ladies' Library changed its name to 'Public Library'.[2] In 1963, it moved into a 1915 Beaux Arts building that had previously housed the Ypsilanti post office[3] at 229 West Michigan Avenue, which has been in use ever since.[2]

Recent history[edit]

The Whittaker Road branch opened in 2002.

In 1981 a new bookmobile was purchased and scheduled to start on April 1, 1981.[4] A year later the library was denied extra funds by the township to help with the operating of the library.[4] On March 25, 1983 the library closed due to lack of funds and waited on a tax proposal to be passed on April 4.[5] On June 15, 1983 the library was mandated to reopen when the new tax was voted in.[4] On April 14, 1984 the deed of the library was signed over from the city to the library, so it owned the building.[4] In 1991 the Superior branch was opened.[2] In 1996 Round Tree branch was opened.[2] Due to financial setback, this branch closed again the same year.[6] In 1998 the community voted to build a new library, renovate the Michigan Avenue facility and purchase a new bookmobile.[2] In 2002 the Whittaker Road branch opened.[2] The following year the Michigan Avenue branch was reopened after extensive renovation.[2] The Ypsilanti District Library received the John Cotton Dana Library Public Relations Award for its second annual Ypsilanti Songwriting Festival.[7]


Members of the Board of Trustees are elected at large from the library district to serve 4-year terms. Each member is expected to participate in library meetings and the events of the library.[8] The Board of Trustees includes President Angela Moloney, Vice President John Barr, Treasurer Kay Williams, Secretary Brian Steimel, Director Jill Morey and trustees Frances Doe, Suzanne Gray, and Jean Winborn.


Collections Number of Items Number of Circs
Adult Books 139,507 238,240
Adult Books on CD 2,894 19,256
Adult Books on Tape 1,171 3,139
Adult Playaways 237 1,265
Adult CDs 9,482 54,296
Adult DVDs 8,849 115,768
Adult Videos 3,898 12,577
Language Tapes/CDs 501 2,936
Literacy Material 1,287 805
Magazines 16,768 12,383
Adult and Youth Reference 10,063 154
Interlibrary Loan 2,936
Pamphlets/Maps 28
Young Adult Books 11,172 27,897
Young Adult Books on CD 162 476
Young Adult Books on Tape 121 134
Youth Books 93,837 225,461
Youth Books & Cassette 674 1,596
Youth Books & CD 319 757
Youth Books on CD 863 4,074
Youth Books on Tape 541 1,514
Youth Playaways 184 596
Youth CDs 1,263 5,976
Youth Videos 1,289 10,911
Youth DVDs 4,203 43,592
Youth CD ROMS 69 225

All of these publications can be checked out by the public at no cost.[2]


YDL bookmobile

The library provides many services including a bookmobile, inter-library loans, tax forms, photocopies, lively arts programs, community rooms and internet access. The library currently offers the ability to check out free passes to area museums including the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, the Arab American National Museum, Cranbrook Educational Community, and the Ypsilanti Historical Museum. The library also offers online book clubs, teen literacy activities, computer classes, and group book discussion.[8]


  1. ^ a b c Colburn.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Ypsilanti District Library Publication
  3. ^ "Tour Highlights Historic Homes of Ypsilanti, Mich.", Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News, McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via HighBeam Research, 2003-08-08, retrieved 2012-04-19(subscription required)
  4. ^ a b c d Ann Arbor Newspaper
  5. ^ Eastern Echo
  6. ^ Ypsilanti Press
  7. ^ http://www.mlive.com/news/ann-arbor/index.ssf/2009/02/ypsilanti_district_library_win.html
  8. ^ a b [1]


  • Colburn, Harvey C. (1976). The Story of Ypsilanti. Ypsilanti, MMI. pp. 175, 237, 257.

External links[edit]