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So Cincinnati: Book It: Cincinnati Public Library is
Updated: Wednesday, November 27 2013, 04:38 PM EST
CINCINNATI (WKRC) -- It's was 10 o'clock on a Friday morning when Local 12's Joe Webb was at the main branch of the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County and it was already filled with people. This is the hub of a network of 41 branches scattered around Hamilton County but one-third of the systems circulation comes and goes from here. Quatisha Jackson of Mt. Auburn says shes at the downtown library four or five days a week.
This is a great place to look for jobs and do a lot of research and get away from a lot of the hecticness during the day.
Its a busy place.
Last year, statistics showed that we were the busiest central library in North America, says Angela Farmer the librarys Service Operations Manager. Half a million people hold library cards for the Cincinnati Library. A million people come to the downtown branch every year. Even with the advent of internet search engines, the librarys answer desk still takes 35,000 calls every month. John Fleischman, who wrote the definitive book on the librarys history, says its been a big deal since it opened in 1853.
The history of the public library runs right down Vine Street in Cincinnati. This is where the public library system in the United States and North America really got its start, say Fleischman. This library was one of the first libraries in the U.S. that was both free and public. Any citizen, including children, could get a card at this library in 1870 which was astounding. This was unheard of in America.
Today, the library houses more than 8-million items. Despite advances in technology, the library is far from becoming obsolete. Last month 1.6 million items were borrowed or downloaded here. It was the busiest month in the librarys 160 year history.