Griffith Library Dedication in the Rutland Herald

Thursday, March 26, 1908
The Rutland Herald

The exercises this afternoon opened with music by the orchestra, following which Rev. W. A. McIntire, pastor of the church offered prayer.

Library Broader Provision.

“In the institution we have met to dedicate today, we find a still broader provision for the higher life of your community and town. The public library is not for the dead, but the living; its benefits are not restricted by creed, by class, by race or color, but are for the whole public. Here the poor, as well as the rich, can come; here the ignorant may learn, the well informed learn even more; here the bad may find good, the good may find the best. Its doors ever open inward to all who have not availed themselves of its advantages; its possibilities are broader than those of the school, because its work is not limited to the school; broader than the church because its membership is not tested by any catechism; broader than political lines, because it deals with all sides of political questions, and at the same time aids in all these undertakings. So, in the completion and opening of this public library, we have the crowning gift of the successful business man, the man of travel and culture, the man who has given, that you may enjoy his charity, generosity and the highest development in the benefactions he made.”

Fine Showing for Town.

Mayor Bigelow said no other town in Vermont of less than 1000 population could show such an institution as the new library. Its endowment was given as $14,000, the price of the building.

“If we consider the whole endowment of $51,000 and the lot for this building,” he continued, “we find but six libraries in the whole State of Vermont better endowed than yours, and two of these are university and college libraries. These institutions and their endowments are as follows: Middlebury college library, endowed, for $55,000 to construct the building; St. Johnsbury Athenaeum, endowed for $60,000; Fletcher Free library at Burlington, endowed for $70,000; Billings library at University of Vermont, endowed for $120,000; Haskell Free library at Derby, endowed for $100,000; 1 Kellogg-Hubbard library at Montpelier, endowed for $145,000.”

Means Most to Children.

“It is not the mature men and women of today in Danby who will find the greatest value of this library,” said Mr. Bigelow, “but the boys and girls who are just coming to years of understanding.” He then told of the scope of a library and its possibilities.

He spoke of the advantages noted at Burlington in opening the public library each Sunday afternoon and recommended the establishment of a public reading department in which should be arranged some good newspapers, illustrated papers and periodicals and possibly books, containing interesting short stories.

He emphasized the responsibility of the public in connection with the new institution and in closing paid a further tribute to the donor.

Following Mayor Bigelow’s, speech, a selection was rendered by the orchestra, and Rev. H. J. Maillet delivered a brief address. After another selection by the orchestra the building was thrown open to the public.