57 Church St, Pascoag, RI 02859

Our History

Pascoag Public Library, the first in Burrillville, was founded in 1871 by what became the Ladies’ Pascoag Library Association. The purpose was to provide a broader range of reading options to the community. The founders’ first 163 book collection was housed in a millinery store. The library moved five times to various businesses and mill offices before acquiring its own building in 1924. The building fund began with a $500 bequest from one of the founders. Additional monies came from fundraisers and donations. That building on Church Street remains its current home. Pascoag Public continues to be privately owned by the Ladies’ Pascoag Library Association and governed by a Board of Trustees. In 2011 the Library received grants that funded the building of an addition that doubled the size of the structure. In recent years, 2017 -2019 specifically, there were several changes in staffing and trustee leadership. The long-time director retired and his replacement’s tenure was short-lived. This resulted in the library being out of compliance with state requirements and in danger of losing both certification and funding. In May 2018 the Board’s long inactive Personnel Committee took it upon itself to hire a new director, followed by a youth services librarian, both of whom were experienced and met state standards.  In the fall of 2018, a major flood occurred in the lower level. The damage was extensive and due to neglect. When the Board leadership failed to mitigate the situation, other Trustees stepped in and took action.  At the 2019 election a change in Board leadership occurred. The new and current President took over and instituted a Facilities Committee, reactivated long dormant existing committees, created a regular meeting schedule and a new collegial atmosphere.  Today, having survived the Pandemic, the President and the Director continue to work together to lead the joint efforts of the Trustees and the staff in making Pascoag Public a functioning, vibrant community asset.  In 2021, the library celebrated its Sesquicentennial with a monthly series of historical posters and bookmarks, a Birthday Party for younger patrons in June, a history walk of Pascoag in August, a family tree trimming and drawing in December. The biggest event was the Sesquicentennial Soiree in October!

Did you know...?

The horror author H. P. Lovecraft set part of his story "The Horror at Red Hook" (1925) in Pascoag. 

Not many weeks ago, on a street corner in the village of Pascoag, Rhode Island, a tall, heavily built, and wholesome-looking pedestrian furnished much speculation by a singular lapse of behaviour...

Available at our library!