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Thursday, 26 November 2015

Early Libraries in Essendon and Flemington

A bookplate from the Essendon Public Library which was formed in 1884.  Courtesy of the Moonee Valley Library Service.
What was the very first library in Essendon?  There were many personal libraries in the great homes in the district - George Newsom's personal collection was burnt in a fire in 1849, but few probably  merited the privilege of borrowing from it.

The first known subscription library was formed in 1854 at the St John's Presbyterian Church.  It was another 30 years before the Essendon Public Library was formed.  Early Libraries of Essendon and Flemington explores the nature of the earliest libraries in our district - who started them, what was stocked on the shelves, and how did the library function, are questions that are addressed in this first article about libraries.  To follow will be another article about circulating libraries, but that may have to wait for you to hang your Christmas stockings.  

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