latter part of 1972, a new release appeared in the newspaper describing
the Instant Library, which was available through the West Virginia
Library Commission for areas without library services. In April 1973,
the Parsons City Council appointed a five member board consisting of H.
Dale Ridgeway, Francis "Fitz" Wagner, Mrs. Mary Shiflet, Edward
McDonald, and Standley Hehle. It was the duty of the board to secure the
library. After nearly a year of investigation, planning and fund raising
the official ground breaking took place on April 18, 1974 at the corner
of Third and Walnut Street in Parsons, site of the new 1200-square-foot
carousel library. Shortly after the ground breaking, Mrs. Joseph (Helen)
R. Gilmore, Sr. was name librarian.
10, 1974 the Woman's Club donated their library books to the new
library. The Parsons Public Library had been housed on the second floor
of the Parsons City Hall and was operated by members of the Woman's Club
as a community project. The library building was completed in July 1974
and officially opened September 3, 1974. The building, initial
furniture, and books were furnished by the West Virginia Library
Commission, who also provided the library with audio-visual equipment
and access to over 1,500 films on request. It was name The Five Rivers
Public Library for the county's five rivers: Cheat, Black Fork, Shavers
Fork, Dry Fork, and Blackwater.
years later in 1984, under the direction of George A. Smith, Jr., the
president, a building fund was instituted to add an additional room,
850-square-feet, the back of the existing carousel to expand the total
footage to 2,050 square feet. In June 1985, the new addition was ready
for patron use. In November of 1985 there was a devastating flood that
hit the town of Parsons, the library had several inches of water.
1999, the old part of the library, the carousel, received an updated
ceiling, where it was lowered, insulated, and painted with new lighting
fixtures. On September 12, 1999, the library celebrated its 25th
anniversary and honored their past and present board members and staff.
Refreshments were served and bookmarks which commemorated the 25th
anniversary were given out.
current Director is Nancy L. Moore, the Assistant Librarian is Kathy Phillips.
Library staff is Ellouise Smith. In June of 2013, Stephanie Fitzwater
was hired as a new staff member, she worked until December 2013, when
she left to take a new job. In January of 2014, Angela Johnson was hired
to replace Stephanie and is here to present. Ellouise Smith is no longer
employed. In July 2016 Lynnette Adams was hired as a new employee.
1600 square foot addition was added onto the existing library building
and was opened to the public on October 16, 2011, with an open house
reception to the public. The new addition consists of a Reading/Stack
room, Foyer, ADA bathroom and a Meeting/Conference Room. There is also
an ADA ramp outside the building for wheelchairs and disabled persons.
The exterior of the building was also remodeled with new siding, new
roof and a new updated entrance to the front of the building.
the older part of the inside of the library was newly painted and new
carpet was installed. 2014 the library had a new library sign designed
and installed in front of the library. On September 7, 2014, the library
celebrated 40 years of service to the community since it's opening on
September 4, 1974. In celebration there were refreshments, a slide show
and gift bags were giving out.
its opening date, the library has loaned several thousands of books to
its patrons. Other services provided by the library include faxes,
copies, laminating , Accu-cut, VITA (Free tax assistance for the
public), DVDs, Audio books, exchange books, Summer Reading Programs for
children, Pre-School Story time class starting in the fall and running
through spring. Internet access computers, inter-library loans, wireless
internet access, meeting/conference room available for public use. In
spring 2015 four e-book readers were added to loan out to adults.
library has this website, a Facebook page online and email,
In the new age of computers this is a way for libraries to keep up with
the growing technology, to promote the library and also communicate with
our patrons and our community.
library also offers downloadable e-books and more for e-book readers,
computers, cellphones, I-pods and tablets of all types.