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50th Anniversary Observed

An Elwood Call-Leader article of April 30, 1949 reads: “In observance of the 50th anniversary of the Elwood Public Library the trustees and staff will hold an open house Tuesday night, May 3, 1949. A program consisting of a book review by Mrs. Overton Sacksteder, Jr., will be given. Refreshments will also be served. Although open for the program, no book exchanges will take place during the evening hours”.

Various improvements and changes occurred in the Carnegie building over the years. In the 1950’s, the north entrance was altered and the door replaced. The basement was renovated, new lighting was installed and the children’s reading room was moved downstairs. The only major alterations to the building have been the replacement of the front doors and the front steps, circa 1966. The cement steps were replaced with granite and instead of ascending in front, the steps rise to the entrance from both the north and south.

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Carnegie Building with New Steps

It was in April 1968, the Elwood Kiwanis Club planted several trees in front of the library to enhance the appearance of the entrance. The sweet gum Maple trees were purchased at Foland’s Nursery by the club’s agriculture and conservation committee whose members were: Water Allen, Robert Carter, C. Forrest, Leo Jarrett and Weldon Shickley.

The year 1975 saw the main floor carpeted and the furniture rearranged. The skylight in the ceiling’s center on the main floor was boarded up. That same year, a new furnace was added at a cost of $18, 000.

On June 16, 1975 a flagpole was installed was installed on the lawn. Congressman Phillip Sharp, an Elwood native, presented a flag in memory of his mother, Florence Sharp, a former member of the library board. This flag was flown over the nation’s Capital in Washington, D. C. Esther Hunt, library director and Michael Kennedy, president of the library board, accepted this gift for the library.