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About the Jacob Edwards Library

          Current  Hours

Monday
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Tuesday
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Wednesday
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Thursday
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

The Library is closed New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, President’s Day, Patriots Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas Day. Also, the Library closes the Friday following Thanksgiving and closes early on Christmas Eve.


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Our Mission

The Jacob Edwards Library enjoys a rich legacy of excellent service and is committed to the promotion of reading, education, literacy, culture, and lifelong learning for persons of all ages in our community.

-Long Range Plan, 2017

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Our History

The first public library was established in the Town of Southbridge by public vote in 1870.  In 1872, Holmes Ammidown, Esq. established and leased space on Main Street for the use of the town library.  Through the generous bequest of Jacob Edwards, a new facility was erected on the current location of the Library in 1914.  Having long outgrown its original building, a major addition was added to the library in 1966; this wing included the current Reading Room, Director’s Office, and the Holmes Ammidown History Room.  A major expansion and renovation was completed in 2000, thus increasing the library facility to its current size of 33,000 sq. ft. 

For a complete history of the library see our book - The First Century: Jacob Edwards Library, Southbridge, 1914-2014.

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Board of Trustees

Richard Whitney - Chairman

Robin Weber - Vice Chairwoman

Gary Bridgman

Mary Ellen Blake

Beth Cournoyer

Maureen Gullekson

The Board of Trustees of the Jacob Edwards Library meets on the fourth Tuesday of each month, except July and August.  All meetings are open to the general public.  Correspondence to the Board of Trustees may be sent to the Library address.

Trustees Meeting Minutes, Terms of Office and Bylaws

Library Director's Reports and Terms of Office

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Staff Directory


Margaret Morrissey Margaret Morrissey,
Library Director
mmorriss@cwmars.org
Stephanie Cyr
Stephanie Cyr,
Adult Services Librarian
scyr@cwmars.org
Liz Gendreau
Elizabeth Gendreau,
Children's Services Librarian
egendrea@cwmars.org


Debrah Gendreau
Debrah Gendreau, 
Circulation Services Librarian
dgendreau@cwmars.org
Lynn Wolstencroft Lynn Wolstencroft,
Technical Services Librarian
lwolsten@cwmars.org
Michelle Garcia Michelle Garcia,
Library Assistant, Circulation
mgarcia@cwmars.org
Ashley
Ashley Stevens,
Library Assistant, Circulation
astevens@cwmars.org
Kathy Lapriore Kathy Lapriore,
Library Aide, Children's
Debra Mercure Debra Mercure,
Library Aide, Children's
Cathy Fournier Cathy Fournier,
Library Aide, Children's
Caroline Lamarine

Caroline Lamarine,
Library Page
    EmilyEmily Gibeault,
Library Page


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FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions

What is curbside service?

How do I get a library card?  How do I get a card for my child?

What do I do if my address, telephone, or e-mail address changes?

What do I do if my library card is lost or stolen?

What do I do if I have lost or damaged library materials?

What are the loan periods for library materials?

How many items may I borrow on my card?

Are there fines on overdue library materials?

Can I renew items?

How do I schedule a meeting or study room?

Does the Library have parking?

Is the Library handicapped accessible?

Does the Library have changing facilities for infants?

Does the Library have computers for public use?

Does the Library have WiFi?

Does the Library have copy and FAX services?

Does the Library have microfilm-reading services?

Does the Library provide genealogy services?

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FAQ's about Curbside Service:

Curbside Service Begins Tuesday, June 9, 2020
 

What is curbside pickup service?

Curbside pickup is a service that the Jacob Edwards Library is offering while the library is closed to the public. Through this service, you may request library materials in the Jacob Edwards Library collection ahead of time to borrow and pick up outside the library. Curbside pickup procedure is subject to change.

What are the available pickup times?

Beginning Tuesday, June 9, 2020, curbside service will be available Monday through Friday, from 10 am until 4 pm. Service is not available on Saturdays.

How do I let the library know the titles that I want to borrow?

     You may place your own hold requests through the library catalog. Click here to learn how to place holds in the catalog.

     You may contact the library by calling 508-764-5426

How many items may I request at one time?

Patrons may request up to ten (10) items per curbside transaction.
 

Can I use the curbside pickup service if I don’t have a library card?

You will need to have a library card before placing hold requests.

You must bring official identification, and current proof of address to receive your new card.

You may print and fill out a library card application on the JEL website (see links below), and either mail, e-mail or fax the completed and signed application back to the library. Staff will contact you with your library card information, and holds may be placed at that time. You may pick up your library card along with library materials during your pickup appointment.

Library Card Application (English)           

Library Card Application (Spanish) 

Am I able to place a hold request for items at other libraries?

The statewide Interlibrary Loan service is suspended until further notice.  Delivery between libraries is also not available.

 You may place holds for items at other libraries within the C/WMARS network through our catalog, but those items are not available until libraries reopen to the public and  Interlibrary Loan service is resumed throughout the state.

When can I pick up the library items that are on hold for me?

After you place a hold request on the telephone, staff will inform you when your item(s) will be available for pickup - most holds will be available for pickup in 60 minutes.  Patrons placing items on hold via the online catalog will be available to pick-up items in 2 hours.  If patron requests surge at any time, the 1-hour pickup time will be adjusted accordingly in increments of 60 minutes.

Items must be picked up by the patron the items are checked out to, unless other arrangements are made at the time of order.  If patrons would like to grant permission to another individual to pick up on their behalf, please fill out the form below and send back to the library via e-mail, mail, or fax.

 

Do I need to wear face covering when picking up my items?

You are highly encouraged to wear face covering when picking up your items. Staff will be wearing masks during curbside pickup.

What is the curbside pickup procedure?

Curbside pickup will take place at the rear of the building.  Please pull into the drive where the accessible parking spaces are located. Please call 508-764-5426, or ring the doorbell to alert staff of your arrival.

     Staff will ask for patron to verify library card number at time of request. If patron does not have library card, they must provide birthdate and address. No exceptions to this procedure.

     Patron should not exit vehicle 

     Item(s) are offered to patron in bin through window; if passenger is in vehicle, passenger may take items from bin

     Patron verifies receipt of all items before exiting curbside lane; especially important for media items, such as video games and compact discs

What if I won’t be arriving in a car?

For walk-up patrons, please call 508-764-5426 or ring the doorbell to alert staff of your arrival.

     Staff will ask for patron name

     Item(s) are offered to patron in bin

     Patron verifies receipt of all items before departing

 
I have library materials to return. Can I give them to the staff while picking up new library materials?

Items may ONLY be returned through the book drop at the rear of the building. Due to health and safety concerns, staff will not be permitted to physically handle returns during curbside pickup service.  This is a “one way” service.  Please do not ask staff to make exceptions, as this could cross-contaminate items currently in process.
 

Can I pay a late fee in cash during my curbside pickup appointment?

In order to maintain safety and minimize contact, we cannot accept cash payments through curbside pickup. You can pay from home by logging into your library account, but there must be a minimum of $0.50 fine on your account.

What if there is inclement weather?

Curbside service will be suspended during inclement weather.  

Updated June 8, 2020.

How do I get a library card?  How do I get a card for my child?

Library cards are FREE! Complete a Library Card Application at any Check-out Desk. Present a completed application along with a photo ID that contains your name and current address. Photo ID without your current address must be accompanied by printed personal mail, such as a lease, bill or official document.  If you have no printed personal mail, please ask the staff to mail you a postcard, which you can then present to the library staff as proof of your current address.

Parents and legal guardians may obtain a card for a child or legal dependent at the Check-out Desk in the Children’s Room on the Lower Level of the Library. A parent or legal guardian must sign for a minor (under the age of 12) and present a photo ID that has the parent’s or guardian’s name and current address. Photo ID without your current address must be accompanied by printed personal mail, such as a lease, bill or official document. If you have no printed personal mail, please ask the staff to mail you a postcard, which you can then present to the library as proof of your current address.

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What do I do if my address, telephone number or e-mail address changes?

If your address, telephone number or e-mail address changes, please notify the Library in person.  E-mail address may be updated through the My Account page.

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What do I do if my library card is lost or stolen?

Please call 508-764-5426 to report a lost or stolen card.  You are responsible for all items checked out on your library card, so please make your report as soon as possible. There is a $1 charge for replacing your card, with a valid ID.

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What do I do if I have lost or damaged library materials?

If you have lost or damaged library materials, you must pay for the replacement cost of the item(s), or provide a replacement of the same item(s). Please speak with a staff member in person about lost or damaged items. 

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What are the loan periods for library materials?

Most books, books-on-CD, Playaways and music CDs are loaned for three weeks. New books are loaned for two weeks. DVDs and videogames are loaned for one week. Magazines are loaned for one week.

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How many items may I borrow on my card?

Lending policies are established to encourage the maximum responsible use of library materials by borrowers. New cardholders are limited to borrowing two items the first time a new card is used. Also, the library does reserve the right to limit a patron to three books on the same subject, so that other students and researchers may have access to materials in order to provide materials on a given subject for other patrons.

Each cardholder is limited to borrowing a total of 10 DVDs at any given time. CDs, audiobooks and magazines are limited to 10 at any given time. Wii and DS games are limited to 2 per family; PS4, XBox One and Nintendo Switch games are limited to 1 per family.

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Are there fines on overdue library materials?

Yes. Fines for most print materials and CDs are $0.10 per item per day with a maximum fine of $3 per item; fines for DVDs & videogames are $1 per item per day with a maximum fine of $5 per item. The maximum fine for late items per card is $10. Lost or damaged items must be replaced.

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Can I renew borrowed items?

Yes, most library materials can be renewed once, as long as there is no one else waiting for the item.  Items may be renewed in person at any Check-out Desk, by phone, or online. Please phone the library during open hours to renew by phone; voicemail renewals are not available. On-line renewals are available by selecting My Account on the library’s website. To renew items online, you will need your library card number and your PIN. Please ask staff to demonstrate how to access your record online if you need assistance.

Now, not only can Southbridge residents use their local library card to check out materials at any CW MARS public library across the state, but checked out items will be automatically renewed.


Patrons will no longer have to remember to log into their account to renew physical items they have checked out.  If a checked out item can be renewed it will automatically be renewed on the due date. 


An email notification will be sent on the due date alerting patrons of renewal status for checked out items.  It will indicate if their items were successfully renewed or unable to be renewed. Patrons can also log into their account via the CW MARS Libraries app to view the status of all checked out items.


All 147 CW MARS member libraries are participating in auto renewal.  This means that no matter where in CW MARS your materials were borrowed from, they will automatically renew on the due date if a renewal is available.

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Does the Library have parking?

Yes, free parking is available. Parking is available along Main Street in front of the facility and in the municipal parking lot located behind the building. Entrance to the parking lot is via Foster Street. 

Parking on Main Street and in the Foster Street lot has a two-hour limit. Should the parking lot be at capacity, additional spaces are available at the municipal lot on Central Street and LaRochelle Way. Parking is also available in the evenings only at the Savers Bank lot across Foster Street.

There are 2 van accessible spaces nearest the library at its rear/north entrance.

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Is the Library handicapped accessible?

Yes, the facility is handicapped accessible from the rear entrance. The accessible entrance is located at the rear of the building.

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Does the Library have changing facilities for infants?

Yes, both restrooms on the Lower Level nearest the Meeting Rooms have changing table for infants. Please see the Check-Out Desk in the Children’s Department for access.

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Does the Library have computers for public use?

Main HallYes, 15 computers are available for public use.  Four internet accessible computers are located in the Children’s Department on the Lower Level for children eleven and younger; four are located in the Young Adult area for teens aged twelve to seventeen; seven are located in the Computer Room on the Main Level for persons eighteen and older. 
 

A valid library card in good standing is required to use the computers.  In order for a card to be in good standing, the account must be clear of all fines. You may also obtain a one-time guest pass with a valid ID if you are not a library card holder. 

All computers have print capability; the cost to print is 20¢ per page for black & white, $1.00 per page for color copies. Please bring a storage device with you if you wish to save your work. Flash drives may be purchased at the Information Desk for $10.00.    

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Does the Library have WiFi?

Yes, free WiFi is available throughout the building and around the perimeter, as well as from the parking lot.
 

We now offer Wireless printing! Click here from your laptop to upload your print job and follow the on-screen instructions. Wireless printing is also available from mobile devices.

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Does the Library have copy and fax services?

The Library has a public photocopier located on the Main Level. The cost to copy is 20¢ per page, black and white only.  

The Library does not have a public fax service. However fax service is available at the following nearby locations: Colonial Copy, 22 Central Street; Staples, 120 Charlton Road, Sturbridge.

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Does the Library have microfilm-reading services?

Yes, microfilm readers are located in the Computer Room on the Main Level. Our most recent acquisition, a ScanPro 2000, is a universal scanner that features high-resolution optics and scanning at all magnifications. An oversized, rotating screen and cutting-edge software let you automatically locate selected words on the film, and link to secondary sources when doing research. Any page or article can be printed or saved as a PDF file. The software also includes editing features, allowing you to "clean up" text or images.   

Vital statistics, historical documents and back issues of local newspapers including the Southbridge Evening News may be searched and printed (20¢ per page). Please see a staff member at the Information Desk on the Main Level to access our microfilm readers. Photo ID is required.

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