Elmira Mechanic's Institute

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Elmira Mechanic's Institute

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The Elmira Public Library began in April 1886, when several men from Elmira and the surrounding area gathered in Karl Klinck's Hall. The men brought together their books to start a library collection under the name of the Germania Society.

On January 24, 1888, a meeting was held to organize a Mechanics' Institute in Elmira. George Klinck, President of the Germania Society, offered the Society's library to the Institute along with use of the Hall. The Institute agreed to Georgeâs offer, and Klinck's Hall became the home of the Elmira Mechanics' Institute from 1888 to 1893.

The Mechanics' Institute was moved in October 1893 to the Elmira House, later known as Dunke's Block, located at the corner of Arthur and Church Streets. On September 6, 1895, the Institute changed its name to the Elmira Public Library.

By 1910, the Library had grown too large for the two rooms it rented. The Board began to think about building a library and submitted a request to Andrew Carnegie for a library grant. The new Library was officially opened on December 26, 1913.

In 1967, the Elmira Library became a branch of the Waterloo County Library. In 1973, there was another change when Waterloo County was restructured to form the Regional Municipality of Waterloo. The Waterloo County Library became known as the Region of Waterloo Library.


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