The Bedford Free Library is located at 32 Village Green, Bedford, NY 10506 in Westchester County. The town of Bedford has three libraries located in the hamlets of Katonah, Bedford Hills, and Bedford Village.
History of the Bedford Free Library
"Founded over a century ago the Bedford Free Library had its beginnings when a small group of Bedford residents, under the leadership of Miss Eloise P. Luquer, rented a room in the 1807 Bedford Academy building and furnished it with a rug, chairs and bookcases. The Library’s small collection was assembled from the St. Matthews Parish Library, a small lending library housed in the Bedford Post Office and from books loaned by the State Circulating Library. The Bedford Free Library’s official opening was marked by a tea held in the new Library quarters on March 19, 1903.
"In 1907, a generous gift of 350 books necessitated additional space, and so the trustees rented the large schoolroom of the Academy, which was converted into a comfortable reading room. During this period, the other ground-floor rooms were partitioned off and rented to roomers. A year later, the collection had grown to over two thousand volumes, and by 1912, a decision was made to install a single electric light, replacing some of the oil lamps. While balancing the budget was an annual challenge, generous contributions to the Library’s endowment fund, often by anonymous benefactors, helped offset rising costs.
"The modern conveniences that characterize today’s Bedford Free Library were slow to arrive on the scene. Heated first by a wood-burning fireplace and then by a smoky oil stove, which damaged both ceiling and woodwork, a coal stove was installed in 1904. This was finally replaced by central heating in 1950. In 1956, the Library signed a 25-year lease on the Academy Building and made extensive repairs necessary to its preservation. The book room was enlarged, and the lighting was improved. In the late fifties, the Library acquired a telephone, and a few years later, indoor plumbing was finally installed.
"In 1981, a generous gift from the Fanton Foundation served as the basis for a $50,000 capital fund drive that enabled the Library to build the back extension that housed the reference room and the Director’s office. Lack of space and needed structural repairs led to another capital fund drive in 1987. Sparked by two generous challenge grants, over $400,000 was raised from contributions by the town of Bedford, the Bedford Historical Society and village residents. These funds were used for extensive structural repairs including: the righting of a toppling cupola, total renovation of the downstairs rooms, and conversion of the upper floor from living quarters into library space.
"In 1997, following a lengthy investigation by the Library’s Long-Range Planning Committee, the Trustees embarked on a major expansion and internal renovation of the Bedford Free Library. The new addition, with its newly handicapped-accessible main floor, vastly enlarged children’s area, a new reading room, updated technology, expanded stacks, study carrels and reading areas, was completed in the spring of 2001."
Bedford Free Library
Visit the Children's Room, Young Adult Room, Adults Non Fiction, and learn more about the Bedford Free Library in Bedford Village.
Located on the second floor, this recently renovated space is perfect for quiet study. This area has study carrells and lots of natural light and houses our collection of non fiction and reference books. Biographies, Juvenile Fiction and our Young Adult collection are also located on the second floor.
Press blue button
for General Information, Adults, Young Adults, Children, Friends of BFL, Calendar, and more about the Bedford Free Library in Bedford Village.
Young Adult/Juvenile Fiction Room
Located on the second floor of the Library this brightly decorated space houses our complete Young Adult, and Juvenile fiction collections. Maureen Mc Manus, our Young Adult Librarian, spends Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons upstairs and is there to make book suggestions or help locate anything you might need. The room is also the home of the YA audio collection, graphic novels, study guides, Newbery winners, many other resources and the Fox Lane Ski Club box.
This wonderful space occupies half of the lower level of the Library. The front section is home to the non fiction collection. The back half of the children’s room has picture books, easy and young readers, foreign language books, board books, puzzles and a comfortable area to sit and read. There are also two MAC computers for games, a computer with internet access, word processing and a printer, and a color copier. This is the most active and delightful area of the building. Please be aware that, as we consider safety to be of paramount importance, the Library has a Policy Regarding the Behavior and Supervision of Children which we ask all parents, guardians and caregivers to follow.
Location: Bedford Village