Veterans Memorial Library History
Mount Pleasant's first library was organized on March 15, 1879. It was known as the Library, Literary, and Musical Association of Mount Pleasant and housed wherever there was an available space. Being an association, its materials were only available to its members. After most of the books were destroyed in a fire in 1895, the Library, Literary, and Musical Association faded away. In 1909, the Mt. Pleasant Woman's Club supported a movement to establish a public library in Mount Pleasant. The library opened on March 19, 1910. Within a few short years, the library had outgrown the building and relocated to the First Congregational Society of the City of Mount Pleasant on the southeast corner of Illinois Street and Normal Avenue (now University Avenue). Veterans Memorial Library remains in this location. In 1953, plans for financing and construction of a new library building were studied by community leaders. The new library building was constructed and opened in April 1957. Not only was there a new building, but a new name as well. On May 24, 1957, the library was dedicated to Mount Pleasant's veterans of all wars - Veterans Memorial Library. By 1974 the library was already running into space limitations and as the community continued to grow, so did the demand for library services. After years of exploring multiple possibilities, voters approved a $1.2 million bond in June of 1983 to expand the Veterans Memorial Library into the building used today. The building expansion was completed in 1985.
In 2010, Veterans Memorial Library was renovated using funds from the library's millage and support of many generous donors. The renovation included new lights, HVAC systems, computer networking, paint, and carpeting as well as rearranging the layout of the building to better accommodate patron needs.