The Joice Federated Society Club held a special meeting in the spring of 1961 to discuss the establishment of a public library. The meeting featured two area residents spoke of their success in establishing a library in nearby Grafton, and by the end, a decision was made to move forward with the project. By July, the goal was a reality, with an open house held to celebrate the town’s first public library, located in a room within the Joice Fire Station.
By 1965, money had been raised to begin construction of a new library building. The 1,200-square-foot brick building was completed in October for an estimated cost of $14,000. Interior details were finished and books were moved in time for a grand opening at the new library on December 18, 1965.
In 1960, members of Grafton’s Federated Woman’s club sought assistance from the North Central Area Extension Service and Iowa State Traveling Library to setup a plan to establish a small community library. The town council agreed to appoint a library board, set aside funds for the library, and establish a public library in a small room at the pumping station.
The library quickly outgrew its space, so the board began raising funds for construction of a new library. Fundraising culminated with a one-day “Harvest Festival” in October 1964, which yielded $2,000 for the new building. In 1965, Northwood contractors were hired to construct the 1,200-square-foot library which included a kitchen work-room, two restrooms and a fully-furnished basement. Construction was completed quickly, with an open house held August 25, 1965.
Plans for a public library in the Worth County town of Fertile began in the spring of 1967, when the town council appointed a board of trustees to establish a library. The board held its first official meeting in August 1967; space was quickly secured, and the first Fertile Public Library opened on October 21, 1967. Three years later, efforts began to raise funds for a permanent library building.
Construction on the current, $18,000 library began in July 1970, with many residents donating labor and supplies to build the brick and cement block building. Books and shelves were moved on December 3, 1970, with an open house held shortly after.
While a small, private library operated in the rear of a local drugstore in the early 1900s, the first plans for a public library were developed in 1966. A committee was organized, regular meetings were held, and money was raised to purchase a building. Books were donated, and volunteers spent three months improving the building with new paint, shelving, ceiling tiles, a water fountain and more. The library opened to the public in 1967 with Agnes Cleveland as the first librarian.
In addition to a large book collection, the library now offers DVDs, copy service, and computer/internet access. The library is open five days each week.
Postal service in the Worth County town of Hanlontown dates to 1899, when a post office was established in a local general store. It’s moved several times in its 110-year history, sharing space with a barber shop in the 1920s and moving to a brick building adjacent to its current space in 1952. The current facility was built in 1960 to lease to the Post Office as part of the U.S. Postal Service’s leasing program. The building is still in use today. Though the future of the Hanlontown office was uncertain, earlier this month the Postal Service announced the location would not be closed.