Historic Library Transforms Into Community Center

History frames new spaces at Hagerstown library.

Washington County, home to the first book mobile, has renovated and expanded its 1964 downtown structure into a vibrant learning and community space.

The current Washington County Free Library building is a 2013 renovation and expansion of the original structure that stood on the same site since 1964. The multi-floor space now includes several conference rooms, 40 public computers, local history exhibits, and of course prints and audio-visual collections. Extensive programming brings a broad crosssection of residents to the library, and local businesses and other associations use library meeting rooms and facilities.

…by the numbers, Washington County’s 84,418 registered Library Card holders borrowed 1.2 million library materials both in paper and digital formats.-Library Director Mary Baykan in the Annual Report 2014-2015.

Washington County Administrator Greg Murray addresses MACo Board at Washington County Hagerstown Library.

In the 2014-2015 year:

  • The downtown Hagerstown Library recently served as the host site for the Maryland State Arts Council annual meeting
  • More than 2,300 meetings, conference, workshops, classes and events took place in the library’s community room, and classrooms.
  • Public Art, including the sculpture, “Our Journey Transports Us Through Time,” by Washington County native Toby Mendez was unveiled at the library. The artist was inspired to pursue a career as an artist by spending time at the library as a child.

This summer the library hosts monthly reading club and STEM programs for children in addition to dance and yoga. The library will also offer a course in java script and a wii sports tournament for teens.

For more information, see the Washington County Free Library.

The MACo Summer Conference will feature a session entitled “From Dewey Decimal to WWW: Libraries Online” on Friday, August 19, 2016, from 2:15 pm – 3:15 pm. The speakers will discuss how libraries are transforming to bring the latest technology to Maryland communities.

Learn more about MACo’s Summer Conference: