The Ossining Public Library…125th Anniversary Celebration

In 1893, the Sing Sing Public Library, later known as the Ossining Public Library, officially opened its doors as a public library, making 2018 the year of our quasquicentennial—or the much easier to pronounce 125th Anniversary. While the physical location of the library changed several times, from its beginnings in the superintendent’s office at Park School, to the Twiggar Building on Main Street, and finally to our current home on Croton Avenue, its mission has been unwavering: to provide the people of Ossining with access to books, resources, and information.

The library has served the Ossining community through two World Wars, the Great Depression, and an unprecedented boom in media and technology that has transformed the library and library services.

We are so proud of the decades of service we’ve been able to provide the community of Ossining and are thrilled to be commemorating this anniversary. 2018 has been a year of excitement and celebrations, with a year of special programming designed by a dedicated committee of staff members to honor our milestone year with events for all ages, beginning with an opening reception for the community and a library birthday party for kids and teens.

Fittingly, this year we were lucky enough to be gifted with an iconic piece of library history: the circulation desk from the library’s Carnegie building, which was torn down in 1967. Two new Ossining residents donated the desk to the library and with the generous support of the Friends of the Ossining Library and the expert care of a local furniture refinisher, this gorgeous desk was brought back to life and brought back home. The regal desk once again greets our community when they visit their library and a ribbon cutting ceremony this spring officially welcomed back this beautiful piece of Ossining’s history.

As we looked back at our history, we sought to preserve our current celebrations, which will soon become history of its own. This summer, kids and teens created their own time capsules and the library followed suit; a time capsule was created featuring fliers and mementos from the year’s celebration, as well as flash drives filled with pictures of programming. On August 11th, the time capsule was buried on the library grounds, to be opened as part of the library’s 150th Anniversary commemoration in 2043.

Our celebratory events continue this fall. Ossining village historian Dana White will visit the library on September 26th to discuss the library’s history, and an anniversary film series, featuring three films with famous library scenes, kicks off on September 12th with The Wicker Man. A genealogy program in October will give our patrons the opportunity to learn more about their own history, while November’s ice cream social will give our young patrons a chance to celebrate. We invite the entire Ossning community to join us at our Mad About the Library fundraising event on November 3rd; a 60s themed wine and cheese party, the library will be raising money for future programming, and celebrating a big year.

As we host our anniversary, and regular, programming and look through our archives, we’re struck by the support and love we’ve received from the residents of Ossining for these 125 years. We are truly grateful to the Ossining community and are honored to serve them; we look forward to our next 125 years!

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