Thanks to a grant from Stewart's Shops children enjoyed the magic of Ron Cain in his Magical World Tour at the Sherman Free Library in Port Henry recently. Each child also received a book to keep. The library is now conducting a fund drive.
Facing a budget shortfall, the Sherman Free Library in Port Henry is seeking donations.
Library officials hope to raise $4,000 to help meet daily operating expenses.
The library has an annual budget of $34,503, according to Jackie Viestenz, library director. The library receives annual contributions of $6,000 from the town of Moriah and $3,500 from the village of Port Henry. It also gets $14,400 a year from the Sherman Trust and gets money from the state through the Clinton-Essex-Franklin Library System. With those funding sources, the Sherman Free Library is facing a $4,000 budget gap.
A fund raising campaign is under way and has netted $3,000 to date, Viestenz said, leaving the library $1,000 short of its goal.
“It’s not too late to give to the library,” Viestenz said. “Donors might consider giving a gift in memory of a loved one. A donation of any size is appreciated.
“In the current economic climate, the library is more important than ever,” she stressed. “The library provides skill training through Internet Express, a service provided by the Clinton-Essex-Franklin library system. Monthly computer classes in various subjects are offered. The library offers free internet access, WiFi, best seller books, books on CD, videos and DVDs. The library has access to books from 30 other libraries through the Clinton-Essex-Franklin Library System.”
The Sherman Free Library is supported, in part, by the Sherman Trust. Viestenz said that fund now has $160,000 in its, but library trustees limit the amount they take each year to $14,400 to ensure funds will be available in the future.
“The $4,000 (goal) represents the difference between what we receive from the town, village, state (through CEF) and the Sherman Trust,” Viestenz said.
Donations can be sent to the library at 20 Church St., Port Henry 12974.
The Sherman Free Library is open noon to 4 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, noon to 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. It can be reached at 546-7461 of by Email at email@example.com The library maintains a website at www.shermanfreelibrary. com
The library collection contains 9,862 volumes. The library circulates 5,516 items a year and serves a population of 1,152 residents.
The Sherman Free Library opened on Jan. 17, 1887. George Riley Sherman, partner in the Witherbee & Sherman Mining Company, provided $7,700 to build the library and stock it with 3,000 volumes. He stipulated that the library would be free to every person residing within the village of Port Henry limits. The library now serves the entire town of Moriah.
On Dec. 1, 1907, the library was closed in order to enlarge the building. A fire a week later badly damaged the library and all its books. The library re-opened on Aug. 12, 1908.
Sherman gave an endowment of $10,000 to be used to maintain the library. In 1901 the library received a further endowment of $10,000 from the will of Jane H. Sherman.