Utica building purchased to upgrade the Hervey Memorial Library

UTICA – Licking County Library recently purchased a building in Utica that will improve the space and accessibility of the Hervey Memorial Library.

The building, located at 115 South Main Street, is just south of the current location at 15 North Main Street in Utica. A press release from the Licking County Library called it a temporary space, offering a U.S. Disability Act (ADA) compliant entrance, restrooms, and expanded and more convenient parking.

It also includes a meeting space for residents and community organizations. One of the building’s highlights is a driving window, which will allow traveling customers to quickly collect and drop off books in their vehicles. Library board members hope to be at the new facility within six months.

Licking County Library Logo

“Libraries are the lifeline of a community and are just as important as a good school system,” said Ruth Campolo, secretary of the LCL board of directors and president of marketing, in the press release. “We want to provide the inhabitants of Utica and the surrounding townships with a library accessible to all.”

The temporary building is a short-term solution to meet the immediate needs of the library in Utica. The community can now choose between two options: either renovate the original building or build a new building on its site. The Licking County Library Board and staff will seek Utica’s advice as the public / private collaboration plans are developed.

Licking County Library Director Susanne Sacchetti is excited about the potential of enhanced library services for Utica.

“During my short stay in Licking County, I discovered that Utica is a thriving and growing community,” Sacchetti said in the press release. “We are delighted to provide an accessible facility to this community and to rely on our library services in Utica. I see this community wanting the best opportunities for its students, the elderly and everyone in between. The Licking County Library can provide the resources, technology and programs for people to reach their potential.

According to the LCL website, the Utica Public Library was established in the early 1900s by the King’s Daughters, a local reading circle. The village provided a room in the old town hall, and the electricity and gas companies provided heat and light free of charge.

On July 9, 1938, the Hervey family created a trust and wanted their Main Street residence to become the library’s new home. Upon the death of Amanda Hervey, the last resident of the Civil War-era house, the second floor of the house was removed and it was refurbished to meet the needs of a public library.

The Hervey Memorial Library officially opened as a branch of the Newark Public Library in 1953.

Serving Newark and Licking County since 1908, LCL currently has eight locations: Downtown Newark, West Newark (Emerson R. Miller), Utica (Hervey Memorial), Hebron, Buckeye Lake, Johnstown (Mary E. Babcock) and kiosks open 24 hours a day. at COTC Pataskala Campus and Legacy Park in Hanover.

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Jennifer Schuman

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