A Brief Tour of Bixby Memorial Library
Built in 1911 and constructed of yellow tapestry brick, with Indiana limestone columns and a Vermont stone foundation, the Bixby Memorial Free Library is designed in classic Greek Revival style. The library is listed on the National and State of Vermont Historic Registers.
The library is open six days a week for regular library services. Public spaces are located on all three levels of the library. The lower level is accessible through an ADA-compliant entrance, and a vertical lift and stair lift offer access to the main and upper levels, respectively. Parking is available in the parking lot at the rear of the building, and also in spaces along Main Street.
All rooms on the main level, as well as the Kerr and Half Round Rooms on the upper level, are open to the public for reading, studying, visiting, working in groups, tutoring, etc. Some spaces can be reserved or rented for meetings, workshops, small retreats and other private uses. The Building Use Policy addresses the process for reserving these rooms.
Lobby: The lobby features a magnificent dome as well as Ionic columns and a marble staircase. The principal activity that takes place in this space is circulation; this is where members of the public may check out books, ask questions, and interact with staff and volunteers. The lobby is occasionally used for concerts and programs.
Community Room: In 2018, the Community Room was renovated to provide a comfortable space for, as the name suggests, building community. The room features comfortable seating, spaces to work, public access computers, and a coffee cart. A large portion of the library’s programs take place in the Community Room. The room also features Gallery Walls, where artwork (generally by local artists) is displayed. The Community Room provides access to the porch, and has an emergency exit that provides a second means of egress from the main floor.
Children’s Room: The Children’s Room offers materials for children, from babies to middle schoolers. It has furniture of an appropriate size for children, provides a space for educational play, and is the home of the library’s weekly story hour and other children’s programs.
Vermont Room: The Vermont Room is dedicated to long-time librarian Lois Noonan, and once held the library’s immense Vermont Collection. Shifting space needs have resulted in modification of the use of the room, which now houses adult audiobooks, large print books, and frequently-used Vermont books. Access to the remainder of the Vermont Collection is available upon request. Two round tables in the Vermont Room room make it conducive to small group meetings, and it is frequently used by researchers, students, and a library-sponsored book club, among others.
Restrooms: Two public restrooms are located on the main level, as well as a small break room for staff and volunteers.
Kerr Room: The Kerr Room was named after Board president Joe Kerr for his many years of service. It contains a conference table and chairs. It is often used for tutoring, small presentations, and groups studying and working together. Doors may be closed for privacy.
Half Round Room: This room can accommodate larger groups and is occasionally used for library programs. Air conditioning is available in this room, which makes it popular in the summer. There is a restroom off the Half Round Room.
History Room: This room contains historical archives which we are in the process of organizing, digitizing, and deaccessioning, as appropriate. The room is currently closed to the public but researchers may make an appointment to view specific documents in a separate room.
Bixby Hall: This room historically housed the library’s objects and artifacts collection. In order to preserve the integrity of these collections, the objects have been relocated to an environmentally-controlled space in the basement (Museum Storage Room). Bixby Hall is now used for programming and for private meetings. The space has a stage, projector, screen, tables, and chairs.
Director’s Office: The library director’s office is on the upper level.
Bookcases: Bookcases lining the walls on the Upper Level contain Young Adult books and materials.
Book Sale: The library’s ADA entrance leads to a series of small rooms containing shelves for the Friends of the Library book sale. This area also houses the lower level entrance to the vertical lift which allows ADA access to the main floor.
Otter Creek Room: The Otter Creek room is used for the book sale, for meetings and for library programs. The room is accessible to the public via the ADA entrance only; a narrow staircase allows staff only to access this room from the main floor.
Restroom: There is a public restroom on this level.
Office space for librarians and book processing functions are located on the Mezzanine. There is no public access to this level.