The objectives of the Minor Memorial and Hodge Memorial Library and Museum are to promote and encourage and to serve the needs of the Roxbury Community by providing free access to ideas and information through a diversity of library materials, programs, services, and experiences.
The town officially established its first public library in October 1896, then housed in the back rooms of the old town hall. Upon his death in 1936, long time resident Charles Watson Hodge bequeathed $15,000 to build a library and museum and $15,000 to set up an endowment fund. The stone structure was completed in 1937 by Clayton B. Squire and named after Charles Hodge’s father, Albert Lafayette Hodge. Mr. Hodge’s will also stipulated that the library include a museum room to house artifacts from the Hodge family and the Roxbury community. The north wing addition was completed in 1967 thanks to a generous donation by Everett Hurlburt. After outgrowing this 1,941 square foot structure the town embarked on a major fundraising campaign to construct the 7,500 square foot Minor Memorial Library, which opened in 1994.
A very generous donation of 3.45 acres of land on South Street was given by Mabel and Sandford Sturdevant Smith in 1988. The acreage was given in memory of Rachel Minor Bernhardt and Rulley McKinstry Bernhardt, Mabel B. Smith’s parents. The library was named in honor of Mrs. Smith’s mother who was a descendant of Captain John Minor, who explored Roxbury in 1673. The building designed by Noyes-Vogt Architects is 7500 square feet with shelving space for 40,000 items. In 1998 the Minor Memorial Library was selected by the Association of Connecticut Library Boards to receive the “Award for Excellence in Small Libraries.”
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