Explore WFPL History

In 1869, WFPL was open two days a week, four hours a day. In the early years, there was intense disagreement over the value of fiction. One trustee argued “the modern story has no place in a town library.” Some worried that novels would corrupt the minds of Watertown youth.

Much has changed in 150 years. Click through the timeline below to follow our story from the “cramped, uncomfortable” basement room in Town Hall to the library we know and love today. For a deeper dive into WFPL and Watertown history, be sure to check out our local history page!