Here's a timeline of interesting facts:
1. In 1916, library was located in bank buildingThe citizens of Royal Oak voted a quarter mil tax to support a township library on April 3, 1916. With the new funding, the library moved out of the township offices and into a new bank building on the northwest corner of Main and Fourth Street.
Some early activities of the township library included WWI efforts such as collecting books for soldiers and nut shells for gas masks. The library also helped in the registration of women voters when they legally received the right to vote.
2. Library registers women voters
3. Library moves to Washington Square BuidlingIn January 1928, the library moved into the Washington Square Building. By 1935 it had outgrown its space, and the City Commission purchased the closed National Bank Building at the corner of Main and Third Streets. The library remained there until the current building was completed in 1963.
4. Library starts summer reading programsStory times and summer reading programs were integral from the beginning of the library. A Hans Christian Anderson Room was named as a result of a 1930 contest among the city's young people and was the story room in the Washington Square and Main Street library buildings.
5. Friends of the Royal Oak Public Library startsA friends group was formed in 1940 and raised funds for many library services including a lending music record library started in 1942. This friends group folded in the early 1950s. The current Friends of the Royal Oak Public Library started in 1977 and it still going strong. It runs a used book store inside the library and funds library programs and materials with the book store and annual book sale revenues.
6. Gov. Romney dedicates new library in 1963Gov. George Romney gave dedication speech at opening ceremonies of the new building on April 20, 1963. This building underwent an extensive renovation in 2005-2006.
7. Library purchases bookmobileEfforts to serve all of Royal Oak included "deposit stations" at drug and hardware stores in northern Royal Oak during the 1920s and 1930s. A bookmobile was purchased in 1953. The last bookmobile was retired in 1983.
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