In response to your opinion shared last week regarding the library expansion project, we would like to take the opportunity to speak to the citizens of Knoxville and beyond regarding the great need we see for this project. First, a few facts.
The original library was built in 1912, and this year we celebrate its 100th birthday. Over 100 years ago the citizens of Knoxville, seeing the community’s bright future, worked diligently to obtain funding and obtained it through a generous grant of $10,000 by the philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. Through the additional hard work and generosity of many Knoxville citizens, a beautiful addition was added in 1989.
The library also provides downloadable e-books and audio-books as well as tens of thousands of books, periodicals, and other reference materials. Estimates are that we serve 10,667 people from all over Marion County and beyond.
When the Internet first emerged, some people suggested that libraries would become less important, and perhaps not be needed in the future. Those predictions proved to be as correct as those of prognosticators in the 1950s who said that there would be no automobiles in the 21st century because we would all use personal flying machines.
As a matter of fact, libraries have become even more important in the age of the Internet, given the training that they provide as well as increasingly critical services provided by highly trained library personnel. As the Internet is a wonderful tool, libraries have embraced it.