Library service to the residents of Mount Joy began in 1962 as a Girl Scout troop community project. Demand was so great that a bookmobile stop was established in a former store front at 22 East Main Street in 1964.
By 1993, community interest and expanded services made clear the need for a new facility. Spearheaded by community volunteers, capital campaign plans were developed, and a capital fund drive began in 1996 with a goal of $1.1 million dollars.
Two major gifts totaling over $800,000 were pledged to the project.
Anne Milanof became a library volunteer in 1965 and served for 25 years becoming President of the Library Board. In her will, she donated $450,000 to the library building fund. Clarence Schock started his own oil company (SICO) and founded the SICO Foundation. The Foundation awarded $400,000 to the library building fund in memory of Mr. Schock.
The New Library
The Milanof-Schock Library, located at 1184 Anderson Ferry Road in Mount Joy, opened in February 1999. The new building, a fully accessible 8,000 square foot building, offered 14,000 items, free computer and internet access at nine public computers with separate computers for children. With the new building came an expanded service area which included the municipalities of Marietta Borough and Mount Joy Borough, East Donegal Township, Mount Joy Township and Rapho Township.
In August 1999, community members and volunteers of the Book Sale Committee organized the Friends of the Milanof-Schock Library, a not-for-profit association of persons interested in the growth and development of the library. Upon formation of the group, officers were elected and regular meeting times were established.
“Best Small Library in America”
The Milanof-Schock Library’s dedicated service to its community has earned it local, national, and international recognition. In 2006, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Library Journal named us. Here is the article on the Library Journal’s web page.
Our Tenth Anniversary
The Milanof-Schock Library celebrated it’s tenth Anniversary in February 2009.
Each year since the library opened, community use (especially by children) has grown at a compound rate of over 15% per year! At the 2009 mark, the library had more than 13,000 cardholders – over one-third of our population with an average of 100 new patrons per month. And those users checked out 190,000 items – books, tapes and CDs and DVDs. This included daily visits, borrowing from its collections, use of its public computers, and attendance at its award-winning educational programs.
The library’s collection has increased to offer some 40,000 items and through a collaborative effort, patrons have access to the collections of the 17 member libraries in Lancaster County as well as libraries across the state under Access PA.