History

On January 10, 1928, at the home of Mrs. Florence Baker, the Camden Women’s Literary Club voted to start a public library. The club set 1938, the Golden Anniversary of the Club, for achiving this goal. Money was raised, and books were donated from the Nettie Rice Estate, and also from Clara Lennon.

The first Board of Trustees appointed consisted of the following members: Dr. Eva Kennedy, Mrs. J.C. Yunker, and Mrs. Effie Wyatt. The first book committee members were Mrs. Harold Baker, Mrs. Vurpillat, and Mrs. Nelle Quinn.

On March 10th, 1929, at the Vurpillat Pharmacy, the Camden Library was presented to Camden by Mrs. Flora Cripe, president of the Literary Club. Mr. Stangle, president of the Community Club, accepted it for the town.

Mrs. Vurpillat was the first Librarian. The library was moved from the back of the pharmacy to the town hall room at the back of Johnson’s store, which was also called Camden Grocery and Meats. For the next ten years, the library was maintained by the Women’s Literary Club. In 1938, the year of the Club’s Golden Anniversary Celebration, the library became a tax supported enterprise.

In 1950, the library was moved to the town building, formerly known as the Center Garage. In 1969, the library board purchased the brick building on the corner of Main and Monroe Streets. The home was originally built by Mr. A. J. Thomas in 1869. The library was moved to this location in 1970. In 1984, the Andrew Thomas house was included in the National Registry of Historic Places. The Library occupies the building’s first floor, while the second floor houses the Camden Town Museum.