previous next
[p. 77] the United States. Franklin, in his autobiography, speaking of the benefits derived from them, says: ‘They have improved the general conversation of the Americans; have made the common tradesmen and farmers as intelligent as most gentlemen in other countries; and, perhaps, have contributed in some degree to the stand so generally made throughout the colonies in defence of their privileges.’ In Brooks' ‘History of Medford’ it is stated that our own library had its origin in the Medford Social Library, which was founded in 1825 by a society whose design, as set forth in their constitution, was to collect books ‘promotive of piety and good morals,’ and to aid in the ‘diffusion of valuable information.’ We find that the first thought of the library for the people here arose in the mind of the pastor of the ‘First Congregational Church’ in Medford in 1825, the Rev. Andrew Bigelow. In the records of that church is to be found the following account. Mr. Bigelow's letter to the church is as follows:

August 7, 1825.
Believing that a Library composed of serious books established in a Christian society, and conducted on proper principles is of great utility, and that such an Institution is needed by ourselves especially for the benefit of the poorer members of the Flock, I respectfully propose the formation of a religious Library as a subject for your serious consideration;—and to aid the accomplishment of the object, I further offer for your acceptance the sum of thirty dollars to be applied to the first purchase of books. It is suggested that the Library, if formed, should only comprise books of strictly Christian and practical;—not of a sectarian and controversial nature; and that there would be a propriety in its being open under due regulation to the use of the members of the congregation generally. Leaving it to your wisdom to determine on the proposed subject, and also on the disposal of the small sum herewith offered;

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Medford (Massachusetts, United States) (2)
United States (United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Andrew Bigelow (2)
Benjamin Franklin (1)
Abigail Brooks (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1825 AD (2)
August 7th, 1825 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: